Shock leaders vs Leaders

Discussion in 'Fishing Line Review' started by WaltonsMountain, Aug 11, 2009.

  1. WaltonsMountain

    WaltonsMountain New Member

    Messages:
    233
    State:
    Nebraska
    I've been doing some research and I think i've narrowed down the difference between a leader and a shock leader:

    "A shock leader is a leader long enough so that half a dozen wraps of leader remain on the spool up to the moment you release the cast. The knot that joins the leader to the running line comes off the reel and goes through the guides during the cast. If that knot isn't on the spool and under a few wraps of line when you release the cast, it isn't a shock leader. If the running line's connected to the leader by a knot or barrel swivel that stays outside the tip, it's a leader, but not a shock leader."

    So now that I know the difference between the two I have a couple of questions:

    1) Are Shock Leaders and Regular Leaders commonly used together?

    2) If using a shock leader w/ a Carolina Rig what am I attaching my sinker and bead to? If it's a barrel swivel, are you attaching a different piece of leader material on the other end? I guess i'm confused because alot of folks on here seem to be happy when a leader side of a knot breaks on line-to-line, but if this is the case wouldn't you also lose your sinker, bead, swivel and hook too?

    Example Carolina Rig:

    reel------------------braid-----=----mono shock leader------sinker/bead=barrel swivel=----mono leader-------=hook
    ~~~~~rod~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    = - knot

    The above diagram sort of shows what i'm trying to explain in a Carolina Rig w/ Braid as your running line and a mono shock leader. If your line-to-line knot that connects your braid to your mono breaks you will STILL lose your entire shock leader along w/ your sinker, bead, swivel and hook. What am I missing or doing wrong here?
     
    Last edited: Aug 11, 2009
  2. WaltonsMountain

    WaltonsMountain New Member

    Messages:
    233
    State:
    Nebraska
    And also... another question.... is there any point to having a shock leader w/ a heavy braid? It seems like there wouldn't be one when all you need is a 2'-3' regular leader for abrasion resistance....
     

  3. Iowa_Josh

    Iowa_Josh New Member

    Messages:
    1,463
    State:
    Central Iowa
    Shock leaders are for throwing big lead on long poles with a light main line. Their purpose is to keep big sinkers from flying loose and hitting someone. No you don't need one with heavy braid.
     
  4. mrmarkedwards

    mrmarkedwards Active Member

    Messages:
    919
    State:
    Delaware
    no you're not doing anything wrong. you're right on target. a shock leader is a length of line that absorbs the abuse from casting. do you need one with heavy braid? I'd say yes and here's why no matter what lb test braid you use it just doesn't have the abrasion resistance mono has. now if you want to up that abrasion resistance try 100% flourocarbon
     
  5. WaltonsMountain

    WaltonsMountain New Member

    Messages:
    233
    State:
    Nebraska
    Hey thanks for the response. I'd definitely agree w/ you on the abrasion resistance being higher w/ mono. Couldn't you get this from just a regular hook leader though? I'm guessing the shock leader is to absorb the abrasion and wear specifically on the guides...

    Also, since i'm guessing you use shock leader do you use a Carolina Rig as well? I imagine any rig that uses a swivel will need an additional leader....?
     
  6. HOPPY4

    HOPPY4 New Member

    Messages:
    382
    State:
    Waldorf MD
    WaltonsMountain,
    This is my reply to a simular question posed on another forum:

    I feel that 50lb. PP is the way to go! This in conjunction with a 10/20 yd. flourocarbon shock leader and you are set for almost any situation. I have changed over the past year to the flourocarbon leader rather than a 80 lb. PP leader for stealth and abbraision resistance. It works for me and will allow casts of 130 yd. with 3 oz. and hooklenth. When I use the feeder cages or springs, this will drop, but I am not casting as far most of the time anyway. If I am required to cast farther, the use of a HEAVIER rod is employed. JMHO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    This reply was given with the planned usage of Carp rods of 12 or 13 ft. with 3 and 3 1/2 lb. test curves. I do not use a Carolina Rig as this is added hardware and not needed. A Shock Leader is required as Mark has stated for the initial pressure and snap to line of the rod when casting Heavier weights. My feeder rig when full of attractant is at least 5 to 6 oz. and that weight on the PP is enough to break the line on the cast. Using heavier line would cut down on the distance and mono at that strength would be to stiff and cumbersome. Your setup would work just as well with this type of combination. JMHO!!!!!!

    HOPPY4
     
  7. JimmyJonny

    JimmyJonny Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,059
    State:
    sc

    Shock leaders are simply for using really light main lines and heavy weights. Like mentioned, its so the weight wont break the line during the cast.

    Unless your runnin really light braid and throwing heavy weights, you would use a shock leader, just a regular leader for abrasion.
     
  8. WaltonsMountain

    WaltonsMountain New Member

    Messages:
    233
    State:
    Nebraska
    well i'll just go ahead and tell ya my setup is a 65lb PP hi vis yellow w/ a Carolina Rig. 3'-4' of hook leader made of 30lb Berkley Big Game Mono. For the reel i've got a Abu Garcia 6500c3 attached to a 7' Ugly Stik Tiger Medium action. I'm tossin' 2-4oz also.....

    From the sounds of things I probably wouldn't need a shock leader. From the responses i've seen using a main line around 20-50lb test w/ a heavy sinker you will need a shock leader. Is this right?
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2009
  9. metalman

    metalman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,447
    State:
    IN
    Name:
    Winston
    Ryan,
    With 65lb PP and a 7 foot rod you do not need a shock leader.

    Imagine a scenario where I am fishing in the ocean before braid was invented. I need to cast 100+ yards I have a 14 foot rod that is capable of casting an 8 or 10 ounce weight. To get the maximum distance and to reduce the drag of the tide on my line I need to use the lightest mono i can get away with. I choose to go with 15lb test.

    Obviously the power needed to send that much lead out is going to mean that the 15lb line will snap like cotton as I compress the rod and that lead weight accelerates to well over 100mph. On a crowded pier an 8oz weight that is out of control is deadly, literally, people have been killed!!!
    This is why I need a shock leader

    So, I use a length of 60, 70 or 80 pound test to be my shock leader. As you know, it only needs to be long enough to make half a dozen wraps around the reel and hang down far enough to make the cast.
    As I don't need a hook leader of 60-80 lbs I have a short leader of 25lb test on a swivel on the end of the shock leader.

    With the short rod you are using, the 65lbPP and the weights you have mentioned you don't really need to worry about needing a shock leader.

    I have never needed to use one in any of my catfishing.
    ...W
     
    Last edited: Aug 12, 2009
  10. lou_a

    lou_a Member

    Messages:
    80
    State:
    Texas
    Interesting read.. Another aspect that you might want to consider: For spinning reels, the thick mono of a shock leader is much friendlier on your casting finger than thin braid.