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Braided Line Without A Leader....amazed At Results...

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Happy Holidays,

 

I have had a week off from work and have spent ALOT of time on the water Bass fishing here in Florida and I have always been a guy who only fishes braids with a diameter under 6lb test on Spining reels and typically 50lb or 65lb on Baitcasters for flipping.

 

Here is a question I have....Do you guys ever use your spinning gear with thin braid and skip the leader, even in clear water? I have tried the Braid as Backing for clear water with 10-20ft of FLuoro and also Mono for Topwaters, carolina rigs etc. since it floats. Other than the fact that Fluoro sinks, I am finding that it really does not help me out except causes more breakoffs due to extra knots.

 

I did an experiment with my buddy where I used 25lb Tuff Line xp with a 6lb diam in a bright green color and I had the other rod with 10lb Power pro in green and no leader at all while fishing slow with Light Texas rigged Worms, tubes, and soft craws...I actually used a drop shot rig with some small 3" drop shot baits with the 2lb diameter line vs. his straight 8lb fluorocarbon setup and had more success.....My thinking is this.....Bass can Feel heavier line in the water, and even in clear water, they can still see "invisible Fluorcarbon" as no water is clear with the same tint etc..I have used the slim beauty knot for the extra fluoro but even using that set up I had breakoffs due to knot failure as it is impossible to avoid unless you re-tie every ten minutes...

 

I am now  thinking any braid is better going right to the hook without a leader unless a heavy Shock Leader is Necessary and if I want Fluorocarbon for Confidence, I spool up a reel with all FLuoro and skip the leader. I also rig up a baitcaster with 12lb Trilene xl Just like I did as a Kid and use that for My topwaters, and then one with 20lb for Carolina rigs, and Spinnerbaits since Mono casts so nice and I only need one improved Clinch Knot.

 

I love braid for the small Diameter and floating properties as I am a line watcher, and I have even used the Yellow Samurai 8 strand Spectra in 15lb 2.5 diameter and had plenty of action. I did notice that I was not getting bit in a clear water Phosphate pit with the yellow, and when I switched to the green power pro in 2lb dia, 10lb test, I started doing as good as my buddy who is now more confused than I am  since I have alway's preached Long fluoro/mono Leaders with Braid and used it as backing for the past year (10-20ft) since it saves money and the knot gets less stress and you can still cast just as far..(stole that idea from an Aaron Martins video)

 

sorry for the ramble, but I would love some thoughts and experiences. I also think that Green Line should be most visable since we have all heard the phrase "when in doubt, throw green pumpkin". If they can see the green soft bait, then they see the green line for sure? I know for a fact many pro's flip heavy jigs in cover with 65 & 80lb braid without a leader since 10-12lb dia is better than adding a 30lb leader.......Are we just wasting money with more leaders? is anyone successful with swivels? I am now confused & hoping others can share some advice or ideas of what you do when using braid as mainline.

 

Thanks.

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I've always used straight braid and fish a lot of gin clear water. The only time I hesitate is around a lot of rock. I catch plenty with no leader and I feel it's more of a confidence thing.

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 Lets say it's middle summer and you are fishing for bass in lake.  The bass are neutral and you want to use finesse fishing lures (Texas Rigged plastic worms).   You have to pick one rod/reel:  1. Spinning reel with 8 pound mono clear color.   2.  Spinning reel with ten pound braid green color with no leader.  Which one would you pick?  Mono or braid?  

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Most lake I fish are slightly stained. I do not tourney fish. I use 20# PP on my medium spin rods. 12# PP on my medium light dropshot rod and 8# PP on my light crappie rod. I have tried flouro leaders and personally see no difference except snapping 10# seaguar red flouro on hooksets and losing more lures.

 

However IF money was on the line I would try to get every advantage I could and use a flouro leader.

 

Dont forget 8# mono is thicker and stiffer than 8# braid so braid will give a light bait much more action.

 

Does that even make sense LOL?

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If you use a Alberto knot to join mono or floro to braid you wont have the break offs as long as you are tying the knot right. There are several reasons to use a leader. For instance with a dropshot, braid and floro will give two totally different actions to the bait. Braid floats floro sinks. Or as mentioned around rocks, braid and rocks don't mix. I think fish can be line shy and I would rather error on the side that they are.

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Fluoro has it's advantages. It excels for slack line bite detection and also visibility. I've also tied a leader on after not getting many bites on straight braid and started getting bit 3x more. Sometimes braid is overkill for certain things. I also feel it could just be your knot. I was actually showing a friend the other day how to join braid to a leader. #50 braid and #10 mono then a Palomar to the lure. Hooked it to the spring scale and hit approx. 9lbs before the Palomar broke. Did the same test again using the same piece of line but used an improved clinch to the lure. It broke around 8-8.5lbs. The Alberto never failed though.

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In central Florida, sharp rocks and mussel beds are not a problem,

so we tie 30-lb braided line directly to the lure 100-percent of the time.

With regard to line visibility, braided line is very fine and hard to see as most line-watchers will tell you.

Bass are not intimidated by snap-swivels, unsightly rattleboxes, long goofy fiberguards

and lures with 3 big treble hooks dangling down, so why would an ultra-fine filament frighten them away?  :paranoid:

 

Roger

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In central Florida, sharp rocks and mussel beds are not a problem,

so we tie braided line directly to the lure 100-percent of the time.

With regard to line visibility, braided line if very fine and hard to see as most line-watchers will tell you.

Bass readily approve of snap-swivels, unsightly rattleboxes, long fiberguards

and lures with 3 treble hooks dangling down, why would an ultra-fine filament frighten them away?  :paranoid:

 

Roger

I couldn.t agree more - look at the package hanging on Jika Rigs - it's like a suitcase and they hammer that.

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I use the yellow braid as I can see it so feel better using a fluro leader. Use a double uni with five wraps braid side and four on the fluro. No complaints. Besides if I break off the braid I hear the cash resgisters ring. If my leader breaks....oh well. Like to always have a full spool....(mainly spin rods...8 and ten)

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I use braid on all my rods, flouro leaders when fishing clear water. As an experiment one day, i had 10lb yellow pp on and decided to skip the leader. I was in absolute clear water fishing a flickshake, (finesse fishing) and nailed a nice bass. Im another believer that the fish is looking at the bait not the line.

 

Im still more confident with a leader though, and a big bonus is you save alot of money. I was spooling my reels every 3 weeks when i was using straight copoly/mono... Now i can get a few years out of a spool of braid, and months out of a spool of flouro for leaders...

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I'm still experimenting, but another important aspect of using a leader is the ability

to break-off when you need to. I fish a lot of fast moving water and sometimes it's

just not feasible to work with a plug-knocker. Fishing from the bank is another example.

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Synopsis of the above I agree with:

 

Best reasons for using braid.

1  far less line twist and tangles when using a smaller diameter, spinning reel spool or twisty lures

2. no stretch for long distance hook sets and playing fish

3  smaller diameter allows cranks to go deeper with less line lag or arc

 

Best reasons to use a leader with braid

1  more abrasion resistance

2  allows certain baits unique action not seen with braid

3  includes the advantage of both types of line

4  the leader line is far cheaper than braid

 

other:

1  Double uni-knot - no breakoffs

2  line shy fish are plainly not active fish anyway (if there is such a thing as a line shy fish)

3  dark colored, thin braid is difficult to see

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Another 100% of the time leader-user here.

 

Agree with many here, and primarily because braid is expensive to retie numerous times in a fishing outing. It makes the mainline dwindle faster. Adding a leader slows this down tremendously.

 

Albright, uni-to-uni leader knots have proven themselves to me over and over. I have 100% confidence in them. I learned to tie them (over and over) and test them which helped in my confidence of them.

 

And like Oregon Native, I use hi-vis yellow, so prefer a leader for greater stealth - whether it matters or not, it's what I choose to do.

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 Lets say it's middle summer and you are fishing for bass in lake.  The bass are neutral and you want to use finesse fishing lures (Texas Rigged plastic worms).   You have to pick one rod/reel:  1. Spinning reel with 8 pound mono clear color.   2.  Spinning reel with ten pound braid green color with no leader.  Which one would you pick?  Mono or braid?  

 

 

I think that the characteristics that mono displays on a spinning reel is why they invented braid.  :laugh5:

 

Fish will eat both baits - but on a long cast, you'll get a better hook set with the braid. 

 

Braid.

 

A-Jay

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I fished one time this past year in which I decided to forego the leader on my braid.  Never again.  My friend outfished me 4 fish to my every 1.  We were in gin clear water and I am convinced that the Fluoro he was using made all the difference for him.  

 

We even talked about it afterwards and he agreed.

 

Before that I messed around from the bank between no leader and leader and always seem to get more bites with the leader.

 

It may be just a confidence thing but that's how I roll from now on.  Leader all the way.   :xmasicon_cool:

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I am bank fisherman and went straight braid for a couple of weeks. I liked the ease (no leader to tie; color braid with yellow marker and go). However an unexpected issue came up. I got snagged a few times and had to break off the line. Twice I left MANY MANY yards of braid floating in the water attached to the lure*. As a result, I had to buy another box of PP braid last week to respool.

 

Breaking off 7-10' of Invizx is a much more economical proposition.

 

*Weeks later I returned to one of the spots I broke off a length of braid. I cast and got hung up. I ended up bringing in a suspiciously familiar length of yellow braid with a Gama hook and purple Senko. Was able to salvage the hook.

 

 

I'm still experimenting, but another important aspect of using a leader is the ability

to break-off when you need to. I fish a lot of fast moving water and sometimes it's

just not feasible to work with a plug-knocker. Fishing from the bank is another example.

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I'm still experimenting, but another important aspect of using a leader is the ability

to break-off when you need to. I fish a lot of fast moving water and sometimes it's

just not feasible to work with a plug-knocker. Fishing from the bank is another example.

This is a good point.  First off I fish braid, leader and swivel 100% of the time in fresh and with only 1 exception in salt.  There have been quite a few times fishing from a jettie where I can't land the fish, to avoid being spooled I''ll break it off at the leader.  

My setup is 10 or 15# braid with a 20# floroclear leader, inshore set up isn't too much different.  I prefer the leader as not wanting my braid getting tangled in the hooks, it can be a nightmare to untangle and that is lost fishing time.  My knots are of the most basic, lure gets a loopknot, swivels get a standard clinch and braid to swivel gets a double wrapped improved clinch, knot failure is only due to an occasional user error.  Fish in heavy vegetation to open crystal clear water, fish run the gamut size wise and haven't had the need or desire to deviate.

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I fish a lot of braid, and in my neck of the woods I find the bass to be very line shy so a fluro leader definitely helps. The other advantage of a leader is when it comes to break offs. I will rather break off 3 ft of leader material, than try to go head to head with braid. Although the suggestion to bring a small piece of wood and wrap the braid on that, was a good idea. 

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I fish a lot of braid, and in my neck of the woods I find the bass to be very line shy so a fluro leader definitely helps. The other advantage of a leader is when it comes to break offs. I will rather break off 3 ft of leader material, than try to go head to head with braid. Although the suggestion to bring a small piece of wood and wrap the braid on that, was a good idea. 

 

Did this with a thick branch from the bank after a big snag which cut into my hand when I tried pulling it too hard.  The only problem here is the fray you leave on the line from pulling the braid with the wood.  I rather go the leader route every time.

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I did a little experiment during my vacation while fishing on Erie a couple years ago. 2 set-ups, almost identical. One with 10/2 PowerPro and a 18' 6# fluoro leader and one with straight 10/2 PowerPro. The PowerPro only rod didn't get a bite but the leadered PowerPro saw much action.

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I have been using leaders for a while now, and I have had no problems with break-offs. If you tie your leader knot correctly, you will bend a hook before you break off. One problem I see a lot of people do is not using a strong enough leader. If you are using 15lb braid, don't use a 6lb leader or 8lb even. This just weakens it. I stick to 12-15 lb leaders, which don't cast as well, but don't break off.

 

I have actually had less break-offs when using a leader.

1. Better abrasion resistance for when you get wrapped by a fish or something like that.

2. Shock-absorption of the fluoro leader. Braid tends to snap when sudden, high pressure is applied so this fluoro leader tames this problem.

 

Also, fluoro leader is a confidence thing. If I feel it is helping me, then I will stick with it.

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I used to use straight braid back when I lived in nc.i dealt mostly with mud and some grass so it was great. Now in mo I have to fish over a lot of rock and braid simply does not hold up as well as fc when dragging jigs and t rigs on the bottom. Also, as mentioned, if I do get hung up the leader is much more economical to break off as opposed to a direct tie.

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I use straight braid for heavy cover flipping and pitching and punching, as well as hollow-body frogs and buzzbaits. I use all floro for medium to light jigs and T-rigs. I use hybrid line for all moving presentations like swimjigs, spinners and cranks. mono for sparse cover topwater presentations, and 10 lb braid with 8 lb floro leader for all finesse spinning reel applications... each has a time and a place that it excels in. if I didnt fish tournaments I would probably switch my to mono or hybrid line for jigs and t-rigs, but I do believe floro does account for a few more fish throughout the day on moderate to clear lakes...

 

Mitch

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I have been using leaders for a while now, and I have had no problems with break-offs. If you tie your leader knot correctly, you will bend a hook before you break off. One problem I see a lot of people do is not using a strong enough leader. If you are using 15lb braid, don't use a 6lb leader or 8lb even. This just weakens it. I stick to 12-15 lb leaders, which don't cast as well, but don't break off.

 

I have actually had less break-offs when using a leader.

1. Better abrasion resistance for when you get wrapped by a fish or something like that.

2. Shock-absorption of the fluoro leader. Braid tends to snap when sudden, high pressure is applied so this fluoro leader tames this problem.

 

Also, fluoro leader is a confidence thing. If I feel it is helping me, then I will stick with it.

 

Just like when we use the phrase match the hatch, I follow the same concept with braid to fluro leaders. I match the diameters. By doing this you will avoid accidental break offs. 

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I don't think the comparison of straight braid and leader can be made in one or two fishing trips. Think of it this way... If you go fishing 100 days out of the year and a leader only makes a difference 5 % of the time that means 95 times out of 100 there will be no difference. Its the 5 times I am worried about.

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