Leader Size For Channel Catfish

Discussion in 'Channel Catfish' started by Zero, Jan 13, 2010.

  1. Zero

    Zero New Member

    Messages:
    64
    State:
    SC
    I was about to break out the hooks and snell some rigs for channels...but I reached for the #30 mono and thought to myself....wait...

    Now a 30+ lb fish is not out of the question where I fish, but these rigs will be for fishing livers, shrimp, Secret 7, and smaller cut baits. Targeting eater sized fish. 1-5 lbs.

    Should I grab a spool of 17 or 20 lb mono for my leaders instead of the 30? Will I see more bites? Will the thinner line roll around too much and tangle? Not worried about breakoffs.

    I have some excellent 20 lb test, it's kind of a pink/peach color, a discontinued Sufix line. Will the colored line mess with the bites? We generally have pretty stained water...
     
  2. Dirtdobber

    Dirtdobber Guest Staff Member

    Messages:
    3,584
    State:
    Vian Okla
    I use a small dia. 30# mono to snell mine. 18" snell to a barrel swivel to 65# PowerPro. I use it for cut bait and Secret Seven.
     

  3. tricitycatter

    tricitycatter Member

    Messages:
    354
    State:
    Washington
    Well it depends on what type of water I am fishing, untill recently I have been using 12# & have landed a 22# & 26# channel. I was on a back water & right behind a dam so there was very little current. I have recently picked up a spool of 25# Calcuta mono line because it was 1/2 off but I am a Berley/Triline fan so I plan on picking up a spool of red or green 15# or 20# mono to use for leaders. I have used both colors as well as clear for leaders in the past & have had no real difference in bite, of course they say red dissapears under the water but I am no fish expert & I fish clouded & muddy water in the spring & summer, the Columbia & Snake rivers are a bit clearer, if you are fishing CLEAR water it may make a difference.
     
  4. catfishscotty

    catfishscotty Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,388
    State:
    mo
    I would go with the 30 lb mono or bigger for leaders

    the reason i say this is channel cats flip and flop twist and roll alot comming in and they have very sharp needle like fins that will nick the line after time .

    I use 50 lb mono leaders on my drift fishing rigs and catch some small channels while going after blue cats
    so the line size dosnt bother them at all ,, and ive caught small channels and blues on trottlines using 120 lb test braid drop lines off the main line

    color dosnt seem to matter either all tho most of the water if fish is also dingy

    also on my drifting rigs when using leaders i like the leader line to be a differnt color and size as the main line because when they get tangled its easier to see and untangle them .
     
  5. BIG GEORGE

    BIG GEORGE New Member

    Messages:
    10,362
    State:
    JOISY
    The leader on your hook should be of a decent strong test. Its gonna take the brunt of the abbrasion from the cats mouth. I use 40# mono on my channel poles. When I go to a gun fite for big blues its not unusual to snell my hooks up with 60#.
     
  6. Ed1

    Ed1 New Member

    Messages:
    102
    State:
    Virginia
    Most of the time same pound test as my main line.
     
  7. hct236

    hct236 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,833
    State:
    virginia
    For channels I use a 30# main and 30# leader. Just my preference, but I don't use a mono leader with the braid main line, I use braid for both.
     
  8. mmagreg

    mmagreg New Member

    Messages:
    75
    State:
    Pittsburgh
    More often than not i get tired of tying slip rigs and i just tie a sinker on up the line about 18" from the hook, not bothering for a seperate leader. I use anything from 12# mono to 30# braid on my rods and rarely does it seem to make a difference for me how i set up for the channels.
     
  9. Dave53

    Dave53 New Member

    Messages:
    411
    State:
    Lonedell M
    I use a 30 pound leader with 40 pound main line. I have tried using 50 pound leader but found that stuff was too stiff to tie...at least it was for me. I only use a polamar knot, seems the easiest to tie. Just getting old.
     
  10. Branj796

    Branj796 Member

    Messages:
    911
    State:
    Illinois
    30 or 40 pound test mono will work great. A 12"-18" leader would probably be your best bet for most applications. On a carolina rig. The colored line and line diameter dont mean a whole lot in muddy water. Little fish are caught on jugs and trotlines with rope, twine, etc. They dont care. You may not care if you line breaks now but if you get that trophy on you will.
     
  11. M Pain

    M Pain New Member

    Messages:
    454
    State:
    N. Central Pa
    For channels I like to use 30# big game mono or 20# fluorocarbon. But some places i still use 12# xt if real snaggy with 6# on my sinker to sinker slide so they break off easy. :smirk:

    Tight lines
     
  12. JHalden

    JHalden New Member

    Messages:
    106
    State:
    NorthCalifornia
    Well depends what my main line is. If Im usin heavy braid I dont like to use less than 12lb leader. I never use stronger #-test leader than my mainline either. Biggest mono I use for channels is 20 lb. Leader usually around 18" range.
     
  13. CptAhab

    CptAhab New Member

    Messages:
    39
    State:
    Manitoba, CAN
    It seems like the average length for leaders is 12-18". It's got me wondering, should a guy shorten that up if theres fast current?
     
  14. JimmyJonny

    JimmyJonny Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,059
    State:
    sc
    I don't use anything under #40 on my leaders. Anything under that wont make it through the structure we have. Color doesn't matter, I use all different colors on my reels.
     
  15. oahegw

    oahegw Member

    Messages:
    132
    State:
    So. Dakota
    ****
    Nothing less than 30 lb. test. If you are like me, you get forgetful about changing it out after some use. Then a big one gets away because of a small nick that can weaken your snell. IMO