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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
I really dont think a catfish cares if the sinker is right on top of the hook, it's not bass fishing. But most of my fishing is done with some type of santee rig configuration, and I want my bait up off the bottom, but if you are flathead fishing with a float, or dont need your bait suspended, I dont see why you couldn't run your sinker on the hook and eliminate some knots.
Seem's like you'd only elminate two knots, both on the swivel. Probably could put on the sinker and a bead then tie two lines together. Then only elminate one knot but break the leader and save the sinker.
 

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I fish 25lb main and 40 or 50lb leaders for the majority of my catfishing...the heavier leader is just to slow down how fast a cat can fray the leader with that mouth full of sandpaper 馃槀
 

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On the subject of eliminating weak links (knots), I have, on occasion, run 80lb test straight through to the hook with the lead held on the line just above the hook with a breakaway, held in place by a stop knot like you use for a slip float.
With this rig, which I鈥檝e used to lower live baitfish directly into nasty snags, there鈥檚 just one knot at the hook.

鈥
 

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Ive been running 40 mono mainline and 60-100# fluro leader. The suskie is ROCKY, most of the spots I fish are fairly shallow (5-20'). I often have to cut off 30- 50' of line after fighting a fish just because they drag the line across every snag they can trying to stay on bottom (flatheads).

Reason I use a heavy leader is simply abrasion resistance. Fishing shallow, the angle of my line is such that the leader gets abused pretty bad especially on a big fish. All that being said, I burn through tackle in ridiculous amounts ....but I do not lose many fish to tackle failure and I put tanks in the boat fairly regularly.

Also, I definitely get better hookup rates with stiff leaders with circle hooks. The stiffness of fluro keeps the circle hook facing the way it needs to in order to find a good purchase.

If I fished somewhere that wasnt so rocky I would probably fish with heavy braid and a lighter leader to save on sinkers.
 

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The only time your leaders should be stronger than your mainline is when you鈥檙e using monofilament or fluorocarbon and are fishing by rocks, bridges, and docks or are targeting fish with sharp teeth. JMO
 

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30lb mono mainline with 50lb leader. Trolling with 2-3oz styx santee style. Need heavier leader to protect against rubbing through during the fight with a 50-100lb鈥檈r with brush nearby.
 

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A question for you folks that use a heavy braid mainline and then a heavy mono leader. HOW do you break the line when you get hooked up on something??? I took that heavy braid off after I had to use the boat motor to break the line. Good braid is too expensive to just cut it off every time you snag. I tried using a lighter leader but then the abrasion issue on rocks was an issue. Any ideas or suggestions?
 

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Seems everyone uses a lot heavier leader than main line. Why is that? Seem's to me you hang up and end up breaking the line to get it loose and the line you break will be the main line and not the leader causing you to loose the swivel, sinker and hook. Watched a guy on you tube and he was worried about hanging up on bottom so he went without a weight. his main line was 40# and leader was 50#. the bait and hook get hung up somehow and the main line will break befor the leader anyway, even without the weight. Why don't those guy use say 50# main and 40# leader. I went to 20# braid on my catfish rod, around here a 6# fish is big. That let me up my leader to 10# or I could go to say 15# and if hung up break the leader and loose some leader and a hook rather than leader, hook, swivel and weight! I don't understand the idea of leader heavier than main line!
I moved around the aria where I have access to in order to find places where I stand a good chance of catching fish from 3-7 lb. 98% of my fishing is from the bank. Where I fish is all rock bottom. So using a weight is almost a guarantee to loose the weight/swivel/hook. So I use a float. I use 20# mono with a 100#
braid leader. The point here is abrasion resistance. Cats love to role on the bottom. Often if they drag the mono across rocks the line is cut instantly. But at least if they role the braid gets most of the abuse and that means the thickness is what counts...not the # test. Using a float I hardly ever loose lines, but it does happen...and so what. That is why I use a Penn 650SS which holds a couple hundred yards of 20# test line in mono.
 

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A question for you folks that use a heavy braid mainline and then a heavy mono leader. HOW do you break the line when you get hooked up on something??? I took that heavy braid off after I had to use the boat motor to break the line. Good braid is too expensive to just cut it off every time you snag. I tried using a lighter leader but then the abrasion issue on rocks was an issue. Any ideas or suggestions?
Dan I have never had an issue with breaking my 50 lb mono leader. One of the benefits of braid is it doesn鈥檛 stretch. I always keep several wooden dowels with me that, after getting the line itself and taking the slack out of it, I wrap the dowel several wraps then yank it like I was starting a lawn mower. I have never had an issue with the 50 lb leader breaking. Now for those that use 80 pound leader and heavy braid, I will let them describe what they do. Now if you are one that uses an entire spool oh heavy mono, I guess you tie it to the boat bumper and take off, hoping the line breaks before you get to the ramp. Lol
 

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馃ぃ 馃ぃ....Tom that is pretty much what I do with my 40# Offshore Angler Titeline. I have tied it to a cleat several times and used the big motor. Sometimes I break off and sometimes I drag up some pretty big logs and limbs.馃槼
 

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A question for you folks that use a heavy braid mainline and then a heavy mono leader. HOW do you break the line when you get hooked up on something??? I took that heavy braid off after I had to use the boat motor to break the line. Good braid is too expensive to just cut it off every time you snag. I tried using a lighter leader but then the abrasion issue on rocks was an issue. Any ideas or suggestions?
 

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I use 80 lb braid with 50 lb mono leader. I want as much tackle back as possible and don't want to lose any mainline.
 
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