Leader Length and Strength

Discussion in 'Blue Catfishing' started by flying_v_64, Dec 7, 2008.

  1. flying_v_64

    flying_v_64 New Member

    Messages:
    151
    State:
    NC
    I'm relatively new to fishing for the blue monsters. I've been reading in the BOC about using leaders. I've never used leaders in my life. Usually I just tie my hook directly to the end of the line. I use a heavy barrel type slip sinker with a split shot to keep it from slipping to the hook which usually doesn't work too well. I'm primarely a bank fisherman.
    My questions are:
    1. Why are leaders used?
    2. What length should the leader be?
    3. What type and strength of leader material should be used?
    Thanks Brothers!:wink:
     
  2. cathog

    cathog New Member

    Messages:
    855
    State:
    Lone Oak Texas
    Leaders are used to add strength to the stress points of the line(Where the fish are). I like to use a 50 pound or bigger leader. Any good mono makes a good leader. I tried the braids for leaders and they really dont make good leader material. Another good leader material is flourocarbon, but it is very expensive. My leaders are from 18 to 36 inches long. Around here I use a 25 pound mono main line with a #5 swivel, then a 50 pound leader. Above the swivel I use a 2 oz slinky weight, below the swivel, about 5 inches from a 8/0 octopus circle hook is a 2 1/2 inch cigar float. This is the rig I use 99% of the time while drifting.
     

  3. BIG GEORGE

    BIG GEORGE New Member

    Messages:
    10,362
    State:
    JOISY
    Have ya ever had your hand a big cats mouth? That is one of the primary reasons for a good strong leader material. Abrasion causes weakness that costs ya fish. Live bait I use a shorter leader. Less drama with line tangle. Especially with eels. Cut bait I use about an 18 to 24 inch leader.
     
  4. Flamekeeper

    Flamekeeper New Member

    Messages:
    2,314
    State:
    Louisville, Ken
    What they said..LOL.:wink:
     
  5. olddriller

    olddriller New Member

    Messages:
    260
    State:
    Missouri
    Vic. I also am sort of new to chashing blue cats. You will get alot of replys to this post. I use several different rigs. I just started using 1/4 in. long pieces of rubber vacume hose ( small diameter) sinker- beed- than the hose than the swivel knot. Acts as a cushion when sinker weight hits knot.
     
  6. flying_v_64

    flying_v_64 New Member

    Messages:
    151
    State:
    NC
    Paul that's a sweeeet tip. Thanks!:smile2:
     
  7. WylieCat

    WylieCat Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    7,160
    State:
    NC
    1. Why are leaders used?
    Abrasion resistance, and some added strength when they are on a "short rope". When used with a swivel before the main line they prevent the line from twisting too.

    2. What length should the leader be?
    Opinions vary for each type of rig, but 12"-18" for bottom rigs, and 16"-24" for drift rigs.

    3. What type and strength of leader material should be used?
    Again, opinions vary, but I go with 50# leaders.
     
  8. Jacksmooth

    Jacksmooth Member

    Messages:
    574
    State:
    West Virginia
    You can also use 1 or 2 beads for this.
     
  9. brew1961

    brew1961 New Member

    Messages:
    182
    State:
    West Virgi
    Before I went to using a barrel swivel with two beeds to stop the weight and snelled hooks (Which are snelled with 60 LB. Salt striker line from Cabel'as). I just slipped my sinker on the main line then a 1/2" peice of aquarium air hose, loop the line trough it twice and then tie your hook on. This can be adjusted to and length you want your sinker to be from your hook. Just pull the line on both sides of the tubing it will set the tubing at your desired spot. I have also used small rubber hose the same way. Good fishing!
     
  10. ShilohRed

    ShilohRed New Member

    Messages:
    4,339
    State:
    West Tn
    I have been using the little pieces of pipe for years. I get mine in a big pack. Cut to length and it glows in the dark. Also with the tube your knot is not going to take a beating like it does with a bead.
    I plan on adding something to like this to our website in the next few weeks.
    Pete
     
  11. flying_v_64

    flying_v_64 New Member

    Messages:
    151
    State:
    NC
    Great tips guys! Thanks to all of you for the gift of catfishing knowledge. Merry Christmas.:big_smile:
     
  12. Arkansascatman777

    Arkansascatman777 New Member

    Messages:
    7,782
    State:
    AR
    The rule of thumb when using mono as your main line is to use equal or greater lb. test for leaders. Not so with braid, you should go down in strength so it will be a breaking point when you get hung. This will save you a lot of braided line. The reels I have 30 lb. mono on I use 50lb premium salt water ande for leaders. The reels I have 40lb. mono on I use the same 50 lb. mono for leaders. The reels I have 65 lb. power pro on I use the samr 50lb. mono for leaders. The reels I have 100# power pro on I use clear premium salt water ande in 50lb or 80lb. for leaders depending on how heavy the structure is I'm fishing that day.
    The type is strictly personal preferance, use what ever you have the most confidence in. Some like this line, some like that line, some like florocarbon etc...
     
  13. flying_v_64

    flying_v_64 New Member

    Messages:
    151
    State:
    NC
    Super info 777! You touched every item wonderfully. Thanks for the help.:big_smile:
     
  14. kenlaw76

    kenlaw76 New Member

    Messages:
    2,323
    State:
    S.E. Pa.
    That's the same thing I do. I run #100 Power Pro with a #80 leader. Then I use a #80 shock leader about 10'-15' long, depending on structure. I attach that to my mainline with a Uni-Uni Knot.
     
  15. flying_v_64

    flying_v_64 New Member

    Messages:
    151
    State:
    NC
    I use mainly 50 pound braid on my 6500CL. Looks like I need to use a smaller weight leader, say a 20 or 30# leader for break-off purposes. What type of leader material is best for high abrasion?
     
  16. Mickey

    Mickey New Member Supporting Member

    Messages:
    14,592
    State:
    Illinois
    Berkley Big Game.
     
  17. upncomincatfishking

    upncomincatfishking New Member

    Messages:
    415
    State:
    Cheviot Ohio
    personaaly I use leaders all the time no matter how I fish. I usually use a 3f™ leader. especially if I'm fishin bottom. so I have up to three ft for my bait to float up off the bottom. which I'm gonna start suspending more with a cork float. plus fishin top wit a slip float it gives my bait more room to swim around. I use 3ft steel leaders that are from 50-75 lb test.
     
  18. bwhupp

    bwhupp New Member

    Messages:
    1,680
    State:
    Belleville
    I agree with Mickey... I use Berkley Big Game most of the time. I have also used the cheaper Eagle Claw stuff from Walmart.... came on a big spool and was like 30lb test I believe. I have not had any problems with that either as leader material. As long as it is mono and has a nice weight to it, shouldn't be too bad.

    Ideally though.... Big Game is my fav.
     
  19. Dave53

    Dave53 New Member

    Messages:
    411
    State:
    Lonedell M
    After several years of using braided line I went back to 40 pound mono..it seemed like 7 out of 10 times my braided line broke above the swivel rather than below it where the mono should have broke. I supposed it was a nick or small cut in the braided line that gave way but with mono I expect the 40 pound to break before the 50# leader does. I like using a Carolina rig except when I am fishing in rift raft..then I go to a drop sinker with 12# line.
     
  20. bwhupp

    bwhupp New Member

    Messages:
    1,680
    State:
    Belleville