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  1. #1

    Default So, You want to tie your own leaders .. buy line, where?

    Hi to all,

    Well, after getting all excited about the Leader Calc2007 program from an earlier posting on the forum ...

    Man, this could be fun !

    Learn something new .. new project for the man cave time ... use my own stuff on the water .. more cool points for the hobby.

    Figured out what I need line wise from the Cal. program for a Fool Proof 9' leader 6X - 0.005 ...

    Here's the recipe so you can see what I'm talking about ...

    46" - 6X - 0.018
    12" - 4X - 0.016
    6" - 2X - 0.013
    6" - 00X - 0.012
    6" - 1X - 0.010
    6" - 3X - 0.008
    6" - 5X - 0.006
    20" - 6X - 0.005

    Adds up to 9' give or take a few inches .. neat.

    Sooooo, I go looking on line at some of the Big Box stores that sells line ... well, it "seems" that not ALL sizes are to had in a one stop shop here.

    Y'all have a favorite place to order from that carries all the needed sizes for this type of adventure? Or shall I go on a "safari" to find my "prey"?

    OR .. OR ... spring for one of the "Leader KITS" for $100.00 or so that has 14 different spools or so ?

    Thanks!

    Gordon in NC
    If you are going to try cross-country skiing ... start with a small country.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    Chatham County, North Carolina
    Posts
    432

    Default Re: So, You want to tie your own leaders .. buy line, where?

    I like the idea too, and have considered the "kit", but 9ft and 7 knots!!!

    7 more ways to loose that fish. :-)

    Sep

  3. #3

    Default Re: So, You want to tie your own leaders .. buy line, where?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sep View Post
    I like the idea too, and have considered the "kit", but 9ft and 7 knots!!!

    7 more ways to loose that fish. :-)

    Sep
    Ya got a point there for sure .. which means ....

    Learn to tie the knots properly and if it fails .. learn again ...

    If the knot / line fail due to my "uhh ohhh" the fish can show me the FIN as he swims away ....
    If you are going to try cross-country skiing ... start with a small country.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Lake of the Woods/Rainy River Minnesota Canada border
    Posts
    4,752

    Default Re: So, You want to tie your own leaders .. buy line, where?

    Way to many knots. My 15' Spey leaders are 54", 54",36" and 36" = 15'. My 9foot single hand leaders are 3 @ 36" = 9' I use blood knots between the sections, and they are a nearly 100% strength knot. I use perfection loops on the big end. Those are not 100%, but because they are on the big end it is still tougher than the test tippet. I don't remember the last time I used a factory leader. When I cit the sections, I add 2" to the length, and by the time you have the knot and the tag end, the length comes out perfect. If you are using really heavy lines like for Pike fishing, make it 2 1'2".

  5. #5

    Default Re: So, You want to tie your own leaders .. buy line, where?

    Way more knots than I could stand to fish, but I'd love to see how one of those 7-knot leaders would turn over!
    The man who busies himself proclaiming something can't be done is frequently interrupted by the man doing it.

    the764

  6. #6

    Default Re: So, You want to tie your own leaders .. buy line, where?

    I hate store bought leaders. Too much frigin' memory. We got Joni a Frogs Hair Leader building kit. Yes expensive, and they layed out great. Much better than store bought. My biggest problem was knots picking up **** like moss. And like mentioned a knot is the weak link.
    Then I enslaved her to making furled leaders and haven't looked back.

    But if you're set on building your own leaders, google George Harvey. He's got some very nice recipes for leader building.
    One more thing- mono on spools at big box stores are different sizes than fly fishing tippet spools. 2, 4, 6# mono is NOT the same size (diameter) as fly fishing tippet in 2,4, or 6#. Fly fishing tippet is thinner and I think more supple.
    Life is not like a bowl of cherries. It's more like a jar of ghost peppers. What you eat today might burn your ass tomorrow...

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Lake of the Woods/Rainy River Minnesota Canada border
    Posts
    4,752

    Default Re: So, You want to tie your own leaders .. buy line, where?

    Quote Originally Posted by mojo View Post
    One more thing- mono on spools at big box stores are different sizes than fly fishing tippet spools. 2, 4, 6# mono is NOT the same size (diameter) as fly fishing tippet in 2,4, or 6#. Fly fishing tippet is thinner and I think more supple.
    Most definately correct. I still use mono though because I want to know what my leaders bust off at. I use ANDE Tournament because it is promised to break at the rated #. Most stuff, and most likely tippet also, breaks at from more to way more than advertised. I lost a record because of line that seriously over tested. Won't happen again.

  8. #8

    Default Re: So, You want to tie your own leaders .. buy line, where?

    Sure, kits are expensive, but they're extremely helpful at getting the right diameter material with the right breaking strength, cascading from large to small as you go down the leader.

    Without getting a kit, you may get lucky and find a store that has all those diameters, but you likely won't find them all in one brand. That makes a bit of a difference. Two lines of identical diameter may have different breaking strengths when purchased from different companies. The idea is not only to have decreasing diameter all the way down, but a consistent and predictable decrease in breaking strength, and thus, increasing suppleness. If you were to get your leader material from various manufacturers, there's no guarantee they'll work out like that.

    When it came to making my knotted leaders, I paid more attention to breaking strength than diameter. And my entire rig was made with line of the same brand. Although I can confess that this may also be attributed to OCD.

    Dan hit the nail on the head with Ande line. Somewhere in all this mess are at least a dozen spools of that stuff in at least as many weight ratings. Oh, and Ande was dirt cheap at my local military exchange for some reason.
    frus·tra·tion (frəs-ˈtrā-shən) n. Watching a nine year old with a cane pole and a tin can of worms catch his limit while you get skunked.

  9. #9

    Default Re: So, You want to tie your own leaders .. buy line, where?

    AMAZING !! In one short afternoon I have gained a new insight on leaders and the construction thereof along with a great deal of help.

    Back to the drawing board ....

    Some days ... it just pays to ask and LISTEN.

    Keep the suggestions / thoughts coming .. please.

    Gordon in NC
    If you are going to try cross-country skiing ... start with a small country.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    quiet corner, ct
    Posts
    8,612

    Default Re: So, You want to tie your own leaders .. buy line, where?

    Not all kits are expensive. The Maxima kit is around $45. Maxima is a hard material and is good for the butt and mid sections but not as limber for tippet as many people like. I tie my trout leaders from Maxima but use a soft mono for the tippet
    When I first tying leaders, I got an Orvis Super Strong kit, which is an excellent material and I still have a number of good spools from that kit that are over 20 years old.
    For my saltwater leaders, I've used Ande, Trilene Big Game and Climax. Alll good.

    Lefty Kreh was saying yesterday that he ties his leaders from 1/4 lb. mono spools (didn't mention a brand) and stores the spools in beer can Koosies to keep them from unraveling. Good tip, I thought
    The simpler the outfit, the more skill it takes to manage it, and the more pleasure one gets in his achievements.” --- Horace Kephart

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