Used and Abused # 2 – Braids and Tapered leaders

Posted By Oz on Apr 23, 2015 | 0 comments

There has been a lot of talk of the FG Knot recently or call it the FC knot ? Its been around a good few years , we used it for GT fishing , it was fiddly and I lazily relied on our guide to do the dirty work and re tie our leaders .Here is a good video with the latest simplified version

Its tricky on a boat when we are sloshing back and forth on a tidal rip. My drifts are short and often close to jaggedy rocks so burying my head in complicated knots is not an option at times . We fish the Fiiish Minnows almost exclusively once we get into 30 foot or more . We fish them around all kinds of nasty snags . Lure loses are par for the course Im afraid , fortune favours the brave and sometimes you have to get that lure right into the the bears cave if you want to hook that big one.


Casting Fiiish Minnows close to the rocks can be expensive if you fish too light !

Casting Fiiish Minnows close to the rocks can be expensive if you fish too light !

After several seasons fishing with the Minnows and re tying an average of 10 leaders a day . I would guess  that somedays I have even retied 20 leaders for customers . I knew I had to find a better system . The first change was the braided lines. I switched from 20 pound to 35 Pound breaking strain . I use Sunline Castaway. Its not cheap, its not even the smoothest 8 strand on the market, It almost feels half way between 4 and 8 strand , think of it as 6 strand . It just doesn’t seem to fatigue the same way other 8 strands do. Talking of which I remember fishing with Ben Field a couple of years ago , we had a slow day for Bass. I hooked what was very obviously a very good Bass , my 8 strand line parted in the middle . That was my last time using that particular brand of silky smooth braid.

For any lure over 12 g I would say 35 lb Castaway is fine . We can still cast far enough. The next upgrade was my Flurocarbon leader .

As time has gone by my fear of using heavy Flurocarbon line has reduced . I went from 15 to 19 and then from 25 to 35 Lb . I always use Seguar . Its not cheap and I get through around 10 spools a year . So we now have 35 lb Braid ,30 to 35 lb Leader at around 3 foot long .The next step in the leader is the stainless steel leader ring . I have used the seguar 3 mm leader rings for years now. I have landed 20 lb plus stripers ,big bonefish , double figure Permit. These things never break.. They may bend out a bit and go oval shaped but they have never let me down . The final 18 inch section of fluro carbon will be 25 lb . So what we have is a tapered leader system . If and when I do hook the reef and loose gear 9 times out of 10 I will break off on the lure or at the ring. Replacing the 18 inch ” Tippet” section is a doodle . I have a nice leader ring sitting there waiting for me .

The added bonus of using the leader ring is if and when you want to fish a dropper you have a perfect attachment point. I always fish significantly lighter line on droppers . The last thing you want is  it to a  hook a fish then hit a snag with the dropper while playing the fish . I did that once in Cape Cod, I had to strip off , wade out and rescue the fish !


This simple tapered approach has made a huge difference for me . I have had the same braid to Fluro connection on my jigging  rods all winter !! Thats tempting fate bragging about that one !

Try this system and please let me know how you get on. I get so many people that say they read my blog but they never actually feedback online.






cheers Oz



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