Originally Posted by dronedog
SO I probably should have read this but what is the purpose of the tapered leader?
The purpose of tapered leaders is twofold. The taper allows for more delicate presentations and for flies to turn over more efficiently. The second reason is simply for the gradual progression of a thick, strong, more noticeable line diameter to a smaller, weaker, but less visible diameter.
Many warm water species (such as bass and bluegill) don't care much about loud or perfect fly presentations. Some are even drawn to the extra disturbance. One piece tapered leaders can also get expensive to constantly buy, where as a leader made of two different sizes of tippet material tied together can be just as effective (in the right circumstances) but cheaper.
Like I said in my previous post, I see no significant benefit to one piece tapered leaders in most warmwater applications. I make my bass leaders from one length of 16lb line tied to one length of 12lb line. Bass and bluegill aren't generally line shy so the thick line helps with pulling bass and flies from weeds and lily pads without much downside.