In other posts I've talked about big fish mouthing the bait but never taking it and oft times we never know it. Not until we reel in and find our bluegill mangled and missing half it's scales. I believe in a line being tight enough to transmit the little "tics" that may be a signal that your bait "may be" in somethings mouth. And anytime I think my bait is in a mouth, believe-you-me, I'm going for it. If I miss, I simply cast back to the same spot and this time, the fish will usually go ahead and try to not let that happen again, and so he nails it. In most fishing circles, 12 to 18 inches is considered to be the best length for a leader. I question this because the more room a cat has to manuver, the more the chance of our missing a hook up with a possible trophy fish. If you've searched the web for catfishing, you've probably seen a well known "monster cat-catcher" that doesn't use a leader. He slips on a slip sinker and ties his hook straight to the line. I just can't make myself "not use a swivel." Old habits die hard. This rig is also harger to hang up, especially with a circle hook. I remember spending night after night, watching my rods and waiting for the the bells to do something more than give a gentle jingle once in a while. But for a month straight that's all that happened. Slowly it dawned on me that I might be missing chances to catch fish. Then one night, me and Glenn was lighting the lanterns and one of my rods jingled slightly. I stepped over to it and waited for it to jingle again...and when it did, the rod tip dipped slightly and I pulled it from the holder and swept it gently over my head. Fish on! I pulled it up close to the bank like a puppy dog on a leash but when he got close to the rocky bank, he just went nuts. He went east, he went west. He went south, directly away from me, heading for open water. I could feel him gearing down like an eighteen wheeler pulling a hard grade. My rod tip was bent down almost to the water. But I finally landed a 30 pound flat. I could go on but it would just be repetive. I will relate one more instance, to set the hook, so to speak. I was only getting very faint jingles that weren't repeated and decided to spool 'em up and head for the house. It was nigh onto midnight when I picked up one of my 10 foot "Cat Catchers" and danged if it wasn't hung up...I thought. When I really rared back on it, it felt like I was dragging a water soaked log off the bottom. Then it came loose and shot to the surface and slapped the water with a tail the size of both my hands with the ends of my thumbs touching. The water was around six foot deep and the fish surfaced in the yellow circle of light from the hissing Coleman. The end of the rod handle was digging into my lower tummy hard enough to hurt. I pulled him and he pulled me, then the hook came out. Now it ticks me off to no end to think that I'm being outsmarted by fish that don't have much in the way of brains. And if they think I'm just going to just sit there and let them play with my bait and suck all the juice out of it, they got another think coming. In conclusion, I'd like to say that if someone wants to fish a loose line and wait for a run, that's just fine. You can even go to sleep because when a run does come, the fish will usually hook it's self, unless you jerk it out of it's mouth. The next tine you get a little jingle that persists or even if the rod just barely bends and holds that position for even a second or so, try setting the hook, but do it gently. You may get a surprise. Try it, you might like it. And I hope this information will help you catch more fish.