26 posts in this topic

Ok - this might have been covered before and I just couldn't find it on a search. If so, just politely send me the link and we'll leave it at that, but if not....

I've decided I'd like to try using a shock leader - I've tried to keep it simple and reduce the number of knots, but it seems like that 17lb line gets nicked and abraided far too easily by the fishfinder, dogfish, sand, etc etc and I end up snapping off on a cast if I don't regularly cut off a few feet and retie.

I'd like to hear opinions on what material works well with 17lb suffix tritanium plus - for those using this brand line, what shock leaders have proved reliable for them? (I've read that some lines are compatable more than others for knot strength etc). Shoud I stay with suffix brand - tritanium in 40lb or 50lb(is it available)? Should I bother with any of the special "shock leader" products, or are these just plain mono repackaged for a higher price? Or does anyone bother using flourocarbon shock leaders? (Useless expense???) Is it best to go with something that has more stretch to absorb the shock? or do you go with less stretch to preserve the energy of the cast and load the rod better?

Just some pointers on material (and knots too - if you found one that is small, stong, easy to tie, and reliable).

Main reason I haven't used a shock leader up to this point is that I am afraid of adding another knot into the equation that could fail as well as hang up on the spool or guides while casting.

Thanks in advance.

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Good question. From what I understand, the rule of thumb is twice the mono line strength. 20lb mian line/40lb shock leader. My shock leader usualy wraps around the spool 3 times before casting. I use the blood knot, but Coop uses a different kind of knot. Hope this helps and I also hope someone knows a little more about braid because I am interested in that as well.

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I've always kept it simple. I attach a snap swivel to my running line and a 3-5' section of 80# tied to it with the FF.

Then I do a barrel swivel with my rig at the end.

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I use no shock leader, had no breaks in the surf only on 10lb freshwater rods in the bay casting too much weight. If your rod is too stiff for your line it will probalby cause this. My surf rods are very flexy and I've casted up to 13oz on 14 lb line with them but it's spinning gear.

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I think you are right - when the line is in good condition - I think i only have break offs casting when the line already was weakened/nicked for whatever reason - the cast will expose that weakness immediately with a snap :( maybe Steve's suggestion of no shock leader, but a protective lenght of 80 lb for the FF to ride on / absorb any dogfish skin rubs, sand abrasion, etc would do fine? I guess the advantages of this is that there is no knot to hang on the spool/guides as it is always out of the rod tip, but the disadvantage is its not a "true shock leader" for casting (you don't get the real protection - you're still only at the strength of 17lb, but like you said, its probably enough in most casting situations), you don't have the protection in the wash fighting a big fish, and you still have at least one, maybe two (if using a swivel) more knots in the equation....

Hmmm lots to think about...keep it comming :)

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if you are casting more than 4 ozs, I would definitely recomend using a shock leader of about 15' of 40lb line,,,when you start tossing 10ozs, I would recomend 50lb shock leader,,,you can even go longer on the leader,,,I am always snipping some off and retyng my knot at my rig,,,your fish finder can wear out the line, so retying is necessary,,,as far as knots, I use a loop knot tied from the main line, connected with the no name knot from the shock leader,,,very strong, when I get home, I'll post more about the loop knot,,,my loop knot (not sure what its called but got it out of a book of fishing knots) is a little different from what others use but I find it to be very small and only takes 30 secs or less to tie both knots,,,never had one break and stays strong for a long period of time,,,bimini twist is anopther loop knot but can be hard to tie and there is another one, but this one I use is strong, small, easy and quick to tie.

I just bought a rod that casts best with 4 oz's, and I do not use a shock leader,,,this allows to maximize distance and can throw it a mile without the knots going through the guides, but I do use a 4' section of 40lb leader so the ff slides along,,,I can also grab the 4' section when the fish is on the beach still trying to squirm away.

I'll post more when I get home on the knot system when I get home.

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I've always kept it simple. I attach a snap swivel to my running line and a 3-5' section of 80# tied to it with the FF.

Then I do a barrel swivel with my rig at the end.

Yes, but what about the shock leader? :?: :wink:

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Thanks Coop - thats good info - So far - it seems like I use 5 or 6 oz most of my times out and the 6 and 8 oz is what makes me nervous to go "shock-less". I think though even if I am casting 4 oz and don't use a full shock leader of 15-20', a short section of beefier mono will help with that wear. Looking forward to seeing the knots you use (30 seconds and no failures sounds good to me!)

What type of main line and shock do you use (i.e. brand and type) I still think that sometimes a compatable set of lines play a role in knot strength as some pairings might either slip or cut into each other more than others. Want to be sure if I try this I get something that's proven compatable tied with the suffix tri.

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I have research the issue and read many articles about shock leader size. I also read a engineering study of the forces placed on the shock leader during a cast. I am not a expert but heed the advice and warnings of people with lots of experience. This is why I use ten pounds of leader strength for every ounce of sinker. On my eight and bait rod I use eighty pound Cajun leader. I use 20 pound ande and tie the two together with a standard leader knot. Some might say that forty is good enough for a eight ounce sinker. My guess is the person casting is not using advanced casting methods like the pendulum cast and this is why no incident has happened yet. I bet a tournament level castor could separate an eight ounce sinker from the 40 pound leader during a pendulum cast. I think this would be especially true after the leader gets normal abrasion from fishing the surf. I have seen the engineering numbers and it makes sense to use ten pounds of leader strength for each ounce of sinker.

It really doesn’t hurt you casting distance to use eighty pound line with a standard leader knot on a conventional reel. I bet most would not notice the difference on a spinner. You get the great advantage of the abrasion resistance of the larger line that might make the difference between getting bit off or landing the Jack fish. Larger line is much easier on the hands when pulling fish over a sea wall. Just my two cents.

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I use 20 lb. suffix usually, I am trying out a newer line now called "cuda" and I like it so far. The only place I have seen it is at red drum tackle in buxton. this is the line they reccomend and the guys and girl at the shop reccomend it over suffix. if the people at red drum tackle reccomend it, it has to be good. it was like $42 for a 1 lb. spool so it is about the same price.So far I like it, it is more limp than suffix. little memory in the line is good when surfcasting (at least I like it). It is also supposed to be more abrasion resistant than suffix. the only drawback is that it is a little thicker than suffix, but it doesn't make that dramatic of a change in your line capacity. because it is thicker, it also increases the drag of the line in the water which is good and bad. might take 1 more ounce to hold, but will wear out a big fish quicker. when I am on the beach you can check it out.

for shock leader. I just use like 50-60 lb. trilene, unless I am sharking and then I use 80-100lb. just for the abrasion resistance. I use the albright knot, which is hard for me to tie when I am in a really big hurry but I guess every knot is. the albright works great on 2 lines of different diameters like 20 to 50. I have used tapered leaders that have a high strength of 70 but taper down to like 18 and for those I use the uni to uni knot. that is the best knot if the lines are close in diameter.

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I am an extremely hard caster and 40lb is plenty sufficient with 6oz and even 8oz weight,,,when you go to 10 and up, I would recomend 50lb which seems to me plenty of shocker,,,the problem with heavier leader is a larger knot,,,the larger knot tends to grab on the guides and reduce casting distance which is my main goal, especially for reds,,,distance matters when those reds are around,,,if your casting 10 oz, you should use 100lb line?,,,seems very excessive to me and overkill under normal fishing conditions.

I think a guy name Holden devised every 10lbs per ozs,,,I think very true if you are power casting 5ozs of lead in tournaments but not really necessary in normal fishing conditions.

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I do not want to be disrespectful to anyone. I have always tried to learn by finding the most experienced people, getting the best results and doing what they do. I have heard Neil Mackello say 10 pounds of leader per ounce of lead. I read Arra's book and he says the same. On the Florida surf fishing forum Gowge says the same. Here are three very experienced castors with high levels of achievements that all state that you should use ten pounds of leader for each ounce of sinker. I do use One hundred pound line on my leaders at times. The Ande leader that I use is 1mm in thickness. The 80 pound Cajun Leader is 1.07mm thick. With the standard leader knot I can barely hear the knot go through the guides. I have had many people tell me that I am getting good distance with my casts. Yes I am sure I can get a little better but my gut tells me to err on the side of caution.

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I am an extremely hard caster and 40lb is plenty sufficient with 6oz and even 8oz weight,,,when you go to 10 and up, I would recomend 50lb which seems to me plenty of shocker,,,the problem with heavier leader is a larger knot,,,the larger knot tends to grab on the guides and reduce casting distance which is my main goal, especially for reds,,,distance matters when those reds are around,,,if your casting 10 oz, you should use 100lb line?,,,seems very excessive to me and overkill under normal fishing conditions.

I think a guy name Holden devised every 10lbs per ozs,,,I think very true if you are power casting 5ozs of lead in tournaments but not really necessary in normal fishing conditions.

:up:

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That IS my shock leader. I've used 80# and barrels since I lived in FL. Obviously the barrels eliminate a lot of the line twisting, (which can lead to nests or failure if not corrected) and I like the 80# because of the reefs the line would always be rubbing on. Taking a 5-6' (not 3-5', typo) length and using it as my FF slide and shock has worked for me for at least a couple of decades. I dunno' about 10# per 1 oz of lead, in the fast cuts I used 10 oz with 80# leader with no problem.

Tying on a 15' piece of summin like 40# for leader is fine, but I don't want that much thicker line holding back my crummy casts, I need all the distance I can get.

Perhaps I'll drop from 80 to 40 since there aren't reefs here as in FL.

I've always kept it simple. I attach a snap swivel to my running line and a 3-5' section of 80# tied to it with the FF.

Then I do a barrel swivel with my rig at the end.

Yes, but what about the shock leader? :?: :wink:

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I am talking about the shock leader for casting. When I cast, I put everything I've got into it and my main line would break every time if I didn't have at least 15' double the lb test as a shock leader. If you have a snap swivel attached to your running line, how can you have a shock leader? Maybe I'm missing something here. :?:

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I dont think there is any real correct answer,,,everyone has there own idea what works for him or her,,,the real purpose of a shock leader is used for the amount of lead you want to throw,,,if your throwing a pendulum cast, which is by far one of the most powerful cast, its always better to be safe than sorry,,,no disrespect is being felt and hopefully I didnt come off as being disrespectful as well, just everyone has there own idea whats best for their own casting technique and there is nothing wrong with a healthy debate over shock leader,,,it's all good :up: .

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Amen Coop. There is never one right answer when it comes to tackle - everyone has to pick their own pluses and minuses that matter most to them.

I'm a pretty gentle caster - I'm a beginner without a shock leader so I tend to "lob" my casts because I'm afraid of what might happen if I put too much energy into it and snap the line. However, I know that my generel style will probably always be more relaxed (for example - in fly fishing, which I've been doing long enough not to be a "newbie" I prefer use moderate action rods that load and unload slowly throughout most of the blank - even though most rods today are made to be "fast action") so I'm not sure that I'll never be pushing things to the limit and breaking any distance records. Right now I'm safe 99% of the time lobbing 6 and sometimes 8 oz without any shock at all, but iI do get snapped now and then and if I ever want to improve my casting without loosing half my rigs and injuring someone else in the process, I feel I need to start using the "Full lenghth" (15-20ft) shock leader.

Anyway - I"m on a hunt for 40 and 50 lb shock mono on the web....gotta start somewhere and see what works for you I suppose.

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Thanks! I'll experiment with that knot (looks pretty simple and easy), the spider hitch, bimini (doubt I want anything that tough to tie), and some single line methods. I've been reading that on spinning gear, double line knots might cause problems, but not everyone seems to have the same experience. I guess just another reason to move to conventional...

Seems that the spinning gear causes the knot to take more of a beating on the guides during casting as well as sometimes getting caught on the collector guide... Wow this topic is confusing! I'm sure I'll find something relieable enough and just keep my drag conservative so I don't have to push the knots to the limits...

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Ok Sam, I see what yer talking about now.....

Not shock for a fish on but shock from casting....

My 80 is right at the tip so it does absorb some of the casting shock.

I'm also using 17 for running line.

Maybe I just don't throw hard enough to snap it????

Remember, for years I've had those rinky-dink flimsy fiberglass rods so you really couldn't put too much behind them.

Now that I am moving to stiffer Taco rods it may make a difference in how I do my leader.

I'll do up a 20' stretch of 40 for next time.

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:v: 8) Now we are on the right page. What I really need to work on are my knots. The ones I have are not bad, but I would like a variation.

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That end loop knot looks a bunch like the figure eight knot which is also called the surgeons loop but with a few more twists. I bet it is strong. I tested a buch of knots last month with a scale and the surgeons loop was the strongest. the line almost never broke at the knot.

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I have been using 50# mono about 10' of it so that the braided line doesn't cut through the sliders. I tie it on with a Uni to Uni knot. It also helps with the shock of casting. except when I get a bit of a nest and it all snaps off and the braid explodes and zips back and hits me in the face. :censored:

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except when I get a bit of a nest and it all snaps off and the braid explodes and zips back and hits me in the face. :censored:

HA!

Well, I ordered a few of the tapered shock leaders to try. More expensive than I'd like for a permanent solution, but for a while, It should get me started with safety - while I fine tune my knot selection/technique. They taper down to 18lb, so the knot to my 17lb should be pretty easy to keep small. I'll probably also pick up some 40lb line when I get a chance for when I get some confidence in knots sliding through the guides.

So I figure I have a week or two to practice my knots while I wait for the package to arrive ;)

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I use the tapered leaders on my 2-6 ounce rods and they are great. Not really expensive when you think about it. A fifty yard wrist spool of ande leader cost 6 dollars and I can get six leaders out of a roll. The tapered leaders cost seven dollars and comes with five leaders. Price is very close. I bought six rolls so I now have thirty leaders. You can not even hear the knot going through the guides. I use a nail to nail on my tapered leaders. I believe I am getting better distance with the tapered leaders due to the reduction in friction of the knots dragging on the guides is totally eliminated.

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THanks for the info EKLutna- do you get yours at Veals? or have you found a cheaper domestic source?

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