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is your leader and tippet just monofilament

Joined:
2013/5/10 9:40
From Southeast Pa
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ive only been fly fishing a year or so and never bothered to buy leaders or tippets. I thought it was just monofilament so id just tie a nine foot leader of 4lb mono to the end of my fly line. I know it sounds stupid but so far it has worked for me ive managed to cast well and catch fish this way. Although I want to know if I should change doing this.

Posted on: 5/17 9:27


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

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5/1 17:19
From Johnstown, PA
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I fished that way for a loooong time. Since I was, hmm, about 8? I'm 25 now. I started using tapered mono leaders a few years ago because once they are stretched out they transfer the energy down to the fly better than straight leader. But I have used regular old 4lb mono for dries, nymphs, live bait, and everything in between at one point or another. So if it is working for you, have a good time using it and don't worry about what is "right"! It's just leader.

Posted on: 5/17 9:57


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

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2006/9/11 13:05
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Yeah a tapered leader, either machined taper or by tying ever decreasing sized of leader material, will transfer your casting energy to the fly better.

I think this is more important when dry fly fishing where leaders tend to be longer and presentation more critical directly after casting.

Plus a store bought tapered leader (say a 7.5" 3X) is only a couple bucks and last a few years before it needs replaced. That's worth it to me. Then all you need is a spool of 4X and 5X (possibly 6X as well) and your are golden.

Posted on: 5/17 16:49
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Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

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Yes you need tapered leaders duhhhhhhhh! And you need 800 dollar Sim waders, and a thousand dollar rod with orvis on it somewhere and a 700 dollar reel, 100 dollar fly line, a chest pack, fanny pack with hydration system and a 50 dollar pair of nippers. Who wants to use what works when you can flatulate all about your gear and your ability to talk to bugs in latin.


Posted on: 5/17 19:36


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

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5/1 17:19
From Johnstown, PA
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^^^ hahaha!!! But for dries, yes a tapered leader does work better. I don't know about them keeping for years (at least not in my experience, not saying it isn't true) but they last quite some time and are not that expensive. Plus you may run into a problem with picky trout or in clear water. The 4lb mono may be too visible in the water in certain conditions and hinder your ability to catch fish. Truth be told, I switched to tapered leaders and have seen no reason to switch back. My advice? Switch and see, nothing says you have to keep using them. On a side note, I still keep a roll of 4lb in my vest, just in case I need it.

Posted on: 5/17 21:30


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

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2/19 19:02
From Philadelphia, PA
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If I'm fishing for trout, I'll use a tapered set up, furled leader with a fluorocarbon tippet, but for panfish, bass, or saltwater, I use a straight piece of fluorocarbon, 4-7 feet in length. If your method works why mess with it.

Posted on: 5/17 22:59


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

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Well working occasionally and working consistently are two different things.

$3 for a tapered leader and 2 spools of Rio Powerflex for $5 each seems work the investment to me.

Posted on: 5/18 10:50
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Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

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2008/1/31 17:19
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If he wants to use mono, thats fine. Just taper it. Start with like 20 lb test, and incrementally add thinner sections down to your 4 lb at the business end.

I use almost solely knotted leaders not much different than that. As you advance you can get leader formulas to give the leader different characteristics for different situations.

Tippet is better than a straight mono. Same stuff (copolymer), but made to tighter tolerances. You might find it worthwhile for the smallest section. One spool of 4x and one of 5x would get me through a season. $3 each or so.

Posted on: 5/18 18:58


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

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2012/2/7 12:42
From Ligonier
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I use a tippet ring on the end of a 5.5 leader, then add 2 - 3 feet of fluorocarbon. Tippet rings increased my enjoyment level 1,000%!!
Breakoffs or changing flies is no longer the hassle it used to be in low light conditions. I usually pre-tie a few offerings.

Posted on: 5/18 21:52


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

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2011/7/6 13:48
From Philadelphia PA
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My droppers are made with 2 lb Floro up to 3 feet in length (depends on water depth). The rest is home made leader starting with say 6 -10 lb mono line down to 4 or 2 lb mono at the dry fly end.

I use such a wide variety of lengths tied together - depending a lot on what I'm trying to present to the fish, water depth as I mentioned and of course what type of fish i'm trying to catch.

Bass and sunnies don't get spooked by a line floating over them - so I can shorten the length from fly line to my leader tippets. And this also helps in presenting those big top water poppers or streamers to their target.

Never cared for the store bought leader tippet combos. tried using them a couple of times but would always return to something that works for me.

Posted on: 5/21 9:01
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"I am respected when I walk into any fly shop. Salespeople wait on me hand and waders. I once tried underwater casting just to see if I could. I am the most admired Fly Fisherman in the world. And when I fly-fish, I use the Orvis Access. Stay Fishing MF


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

Joined:
2008/1/31 17:19
From Pretty much everywhere at some point, Thorndale today.
Posts: 13408
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Quote:
Never cared for the store bought leader tippet combos.


Fully agree. Logically, knotless is nice. But I don't know if it's the taper they use, or what, but they turn over like crap for me.

And my knotted leaders have a fairly large advantage in that they're adjustable. Gotta get a tight loop up under that branch? Take out a section to shorten the leader, and shorten up the tippet too. Fishin the frog water and need to focus on getting drag free? Add a section or two towards the tippet end.

Just an FYI for the OP. Most of us use the term "mono" for anything made of nylon. But true mono's are rare these days. Maxima Chameleon is one example. But most of them are actually copoloymers. Same material (nylon). But mono's are simply extruded to size. Copolymers are extruded to a smaller size, weaved like a rope, and then bonded. Sort of a furled leader effect that reduces stiffness. But even most "monos" intended for spinning rods are copolymers as well. The difference between them and "tippet" is mostly about tolerance. A spin fishing "mono" that says 0.008 may actually average 0.010 and range from .008-.012. A fly fishing tippet that says 0.008 may average .0085 and range from .008-.009. Important? Sometimes. But you certainly can get away with using spinning rod line. Just be aware of what you're buying, and don't trust the size on the packaging. Berkely, namely, is notorious for doing things like taking what everyone else would call 8 lb test, and packaging it as 4 lb test. It will be thicker, and stronger, than what it says. And they can then market crazy stuff like "our 4 lb test is the strongest on the market!". Of course, they'll also sell a "castability" or "ultra-thin" version, which isn't any different, but they'll actually use 6 lb test in that one (while still calling it 4 lb)! Stren isn't much better.

Of the major spin fishing brands, I've always liked silver thread and Tectan. Both can be hard to find.

Stiffest: Mono
middle: flouro
most supple: copolymer

I've always liked my leaders to be stiff in the butt section and as supple as I can get it on the business end. Hence if I do use flouro it's usually NOT the tippet, but a transition between the stiff and supple sections. That said, fluoro does have the advantage of better abrasion resistance, and if I'm after critters that are more toothy than your average 10 inch trout, I will use fluoro tippets.

The nylons stretch, fluoro does not. Hence if planning to fight bigger fish, it's always nice to have at least a section or two of something made of nylon in there. It protects tippets just like a soft rod does.

Posted on: 5/21 9:29

Edited by pcray1231 on 2014/5/21 9:45:45
Edited by pcray1231 on 2014/5/21 9:47:01


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament
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Joined:
2006/9/11 8:26
From Chester County
Posts: 8919
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Quote:

kenbo5733 wrote:
ive only been fly fishing a year or so and never bothered to buy leaders or tippets. I thought it was just monofilament so id just tie a nine foot leader of 4lb mono to the end of my fly line. I know it sounds stupid but so far it has worked for me ive managed to cast well and catch fish this way. Although I want to know if I should change doing this.


Any FFer, no matter how experienced, would be challenged by using 9' of 4lb mono as their leader.

As others have posted, a tapered leader is best to help turn over your fly. You can purchase a knotless leader for a few dollars or make your own knotted tapered leader out of mono you probably have already.

Here is a link to a chapter detailing the why and how to make your own leaders. It also delves into details about tippets.

http://www.orvis.com/intro.aspx?subject=5706

Thanks for posting. Hope this answers your questions.


Posted on: 5/21 9:50


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

Joined:
2011/7/6 13:48
From Philadelphia PA
Posts: 1469
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I love to skip flies across the river.

Posted on: 5/21 10:49
_________________
"I am respected when I walk into any fly shop. Salespeople wait on me hand and waders. I once tried underwater casting just to see if I could. I am the most admired Fly Fisherman in the world. And when I fly-fish, I use the Orvis Access. Stay Fishing MF


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

Joined:
2007/6/19 21:49
From Lancaster County
Posts: 1511
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Quote:

poopdeck wrote:
Yes you need tapered leaders duhhhhhhhh! And you need 800 dollar Sim waders, and a thousand dollar rod with orvis on it somewhere and a 700 dollar reel, 100 dollar fly line, a chest pack, fanny pack with hydration system and a 50 dollar pair of nippers. Who wants to use what works when you can flatulate all about your gear and your ability to talk to bugs in latin.



You missed the $60,000 vanity plated SUV. And maybe a $450 of polarized sunglasses. You need to be able to get to the stream with all that gear and see the fish.

Lots of others have covered the reason for utilizing a tapered leader - more efficient transfer of energy from your fly line to the fly. Think of it as a funnel. With a tapered leader (built yourself or pre-made), you've got a wide hole to pour through and whatever you are pouring is funneled to the other end. With a piece of straight mono, it's like trying to pour water through a straw. You can do it, but you'll spill a lot and get frustrated quicker.

Posted on: 5/21 15:32


Re: is your leader and tippet just monofilament

Joined:
2011/7/6 13:48
From Philadelphia PA
Posts: 1469
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Let's limit our smart @$$ remarks to those with over 500 posts. Ok at least 100.


Posted on: 5/21 15:54
_________________
"I am respected when I walk into any fly shop. Salespeople wait on me hand and waders. I once tried underwater casting just to see if I could. I am the most admired Fly Fisherman in the world. And when I fly-fish, I use the Orvis Access. Stay Fishing MF



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