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Is a Leader Necessary for Braid when using Finesse Techniques?

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philm63

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I know; loaded question. I use braid for everything now and have not yet used a leader but I plan on getting more into finesse techniques this year - new rod, new reel, new tackle, etc. dedicated to the cause.

Researching online - a lot of what I am seeing regarding using braided line for finesse techniques also indicates the use of a leader, usually fluorocarbon.

Is this necessary, or will straight braid be fine?



Fun4me

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I think you will hear most anglers say to use a leader. I would try both, and see if you get different results one way or the other. As with most everything in fishing, you will find people who say one way works better than the other. If you're fishing highly pressured water, that is crystal clear, a leader would probably help. If you're fishing places where very few fish have ever seen a lure, and the water has some color, you'd probably catch just as many fish on straight braid.

geneinnc

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Leader here 100%. I tried blacking out braid with a scented marker. Major drawback on straight braid comes when you snag a lure. You either cut the line or winch in the tree you're stuck in. Sometimes breaking the Leader off is a plus. I hate cutting braid at the surface and leaving all that braid in the water.

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twocold

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I fish mainly clear water and because of age and eyes I use high viz braid. I always use a fluro leader.

coldfront

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for me?  yes.

Oldfart9999

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philm63

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...Major drawback on straight braid comes when you snag a lure. You either cut the line or winch in the tree you're stuck in. Sometimes breaking the Leader off is a plus. I hate cutting braid at the surface and leaving all that braid in the water.

Ok, I can see the point here - didn't think about snags.

NO!!!
Rodney

Ok Rodney, I'll bite - why such a resounding "NO!!!"? (I'm sure there's something behind that...)  :)


merc1997

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i have fished the clear waters of table rock since 1963.  i have used a hi-vis line all these years, and at the present time have more fishing pressure than most lakes.  i use hi-vis yellow braid at the present time and see no drop off in bites.

bottom line is to do what you think works for you.  leaders are unnecessary for me.  braid works for me in all situations, but some think it just does not work for them.  i could give you a whole list of why the pluses of braid out weigh the short comings, but most of the time it falls on deaf ears.  so, one must experience things for themselves before they believe.  case in point is a long time friend of mine that fished professionally for several decades.  we had not seen each other for over 30 years and got hooked up once again and went fishing on his home waters, a very clear western lake.  i showed up with my hi-vis yellow braid and immediately he went to telling me that i had better put floro on.  at the end of the 3 days of fishing, i gave him a trashing.  he changed his mind about invisible line making any difference.

line certainly affects sink rate and action of lures.  and, that is how i view line.  i adjust line size to conditions such as wind and lure choices not visibility.

bo

merc1997

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Leader here 100%. I tried blacking out braid with a scented marker. Major drawback on straight braid comes when you snag a lure. You either cut the line or winch in the tree you're stuck in. Sometimes breaking the Leader off is a plus. I hate cutting braid at the surface and leaving all that braid in the water.

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since you brought up the subject of snagged lures, shy do you not use a lure knocker and attempt to get your lure back instead of being ok with just breaking it off and leaving it in the water????  should we not all make a better attempt to not leave so much of our tackle in the waters we fish??  on table rock alone based the average of 500 fisherman on the lake 365 days a year, and each one left 5 items in the water each trip, that is close to one million pieces.  so, there is a million pieces of line with a million pieces of hooks, sinkers ect. attached.

sure there will be times that you just can not get a lure back, but there would be a whole lot less of them if folks used lure retrievers and attempted to not leave something in the water.

more folks need to become more aware of this before we get banned from fishing.  just sayin".

bo

big g

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No, but I would in really clear water.
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Smallie_Stalker

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i have fished the clear waters of table rock since 1963.  i have used a hi-vis line all these years, and at the present time have more fishing pressure than most lakes.  i use hi-vis yellow braid at the present time and see no drop off in bites.

bottom line is to do what you think works for you.  leaders are unnecessary for me.  braid works for me in all situations, but some think it just does not work for them.  i could give you a whole list of why the pluses of braid out weigh the short comings, but most of the time it falls on deaf ears.  so, one must experience things for themselves before they believe.  case in point is a long time friend of mine that fished professionally for several decades.  we had not seen each other for over 30 years and got hooked up once again and went fishing on his home waters, a very clear western lake.  i showed up with my hi-vis yellow braid and immediately he went to telling me that i had better put floro on.  at the end of the 3 days of fishing, i gave him a trashing.  he changed his mind about invisible line making any difference.

line certainly affects sink rate and action of lures.  and, that is how i view line.  i adjust line size to conditions such as wind and lure choices not visibility.

bo

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philm63

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since you brought up the subject of snagged lures... ...should we not all make a better attempt to not leave so much of our tackle in the waters we fish?? ...there would be a whole lot less of them if folks used lure retrievers... ...more folks need to become more aware of this before we get banned from fishing.  just sayin".

bo

I for one honestly appreciate the PSA and I'll admit; being still fairly new around these parts didn't want to be the first one to bring it up - I hate snagging a lure because more times than not, I pull hard and snap my line. Braid included. Even if I used a leader that would snap at a lesser pressure than my braid, I'd still lose that lure and I hate losing a lure. But reading what Bo wrote, now I hate it even more!

In some cases there is nothing I can do about it - lure lost. But wait... what's this about a "lure knocker"?

Independent of whether or not one uses straight braid for finesse or braid with a leader, fact is; you snag, you pull, you break off, you leave tackle in the water - not good on multiple levels. And whether or not I decide to try a leader for my finesse fishing, I'm looking onto that lure knocker thing now... (thanks, Bo.)

Bassinlou

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I'm leader user with braid. Use it for several techniques, including a few power techniques. I DON'T use leaders when frog fishing however.  ;D

One of the main reasons I use leaders is because are waters are lined with limestone. Big Peacock's and Bass swim against this structure shredding braid. Thicker mono leaders can withstand the abrasion so much better.

coldfront

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i have fished the clear waters of table rock since 1963.  i have used a hi-vis line all these years, and at the present time have more fishing pressure than most lakes.  i use hi-vis yellow braid at the present time and see no drop off in bites.

bo, no disrespect and I know better than to question stuff you share.  well, most of it...   ;D  you are after all, an angler.

in my world, i've learned that some stuff I have to find my own way.  I can't fish YOUR spots and catch those fish like you.  I'm just a bit different and finding my own fish is part of dialing in what I need to do to consistently catch them.

so yep, I do use flouro leaders with my braid (spinning rods).  braid techniques for the baitcasters is primarily frogging, punching and tossing the big (spro) rats.  I do also tie in a shock leader for swimbaits.

and in my world, lure/bait color makes a significant difference.  I've proven it time and again.  Many others will tell me color doesn't matter.  I accept that.

I also know without a doubt, in my world, it does too matter.

 lo

Oldfart9999

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Ok, I can see the point here - didn't think about snags.

Ok Rodney, I'll bite - why such a resounding "NO!!!"? (I'm sure there's something behind that...)  :)

After reading a post by Bo, I had to do some experimenting, I used to put leaders on everything braid, I did and found the fish just don't think the bass worry about it like we do, they still bite the lure. Now if I think I need stretch in the line, I run straight mono otherwise I run straight braid.
As far as lures snagging read what Bo says about plug knockers.
Rodney
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Bassinlou

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As the saying goes, "different strokes for different folks." This topic always gets attention and the responses are 50/50. To the OP, best advice I can offer, I know what works for me due to time on the water, fish with leaders for a while, and with out. Come back and tell us what "you" think, and what you learned from your experience.  ~beer~

coldfront

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As the saying goes, "different strokes for different folks." This topic always gets attention and the responses are 50/50. To the OP, best advice I can offer, I know what works for me due to time on the water, fish with leaders for a while, and with out. Come back and tell us what "you" think, and what you learned from your experience.  ~beer~

boy would I love to have a 'thumbs up' button to push for this post.

merc1997

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I for one honestly appreciate the PSA and I'll admit; being still fairly new around these parts didn't want to be the first one to bring it up - I hate snagging a lure because more times than not, I pull hard and snap my line. Braid included. Even if I used a leader that would snap at a lesser pressure than my braid, I'd still lose that lure and I hate losing a lure. But reading what Bo wrote, now I hate it even more!

In some cases there is nothing I can do about it - lure lost. But wait... what's this about a "lure knocker"?

Independent of whether or not one uses straight braid for finesse or braid with a leader, fact is; you snag, you pull, you break off, you leave tackle in the water - not good on multiple levels. And whether or not I decide to try a leader for my finesse fishing, I'm looking onto that lure knocker thing now... (thanks, Bo.)
tackle warehouse has them.  the best one used to called a hound dawg lure retriever.  jewel bait bought the mold and makes them.  you just need that an old bait caster and some 80 lb. test braid.

bo

merc1997

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I'm leader user with braid. Use it for several techniques, including a few power techniques. I DON'T use leaders when frog fishing however.  ;D

One of the main reasons I use leaders is because are waters are lined with limestone. Big Peacock's and Bass swim against this structure shredding braid. Thicker mono leaders can withstand the abrasion so much better.
and table rock is not filled with limestone?

bo

merc1997

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bo, no disrespect and I know better than to question stuff you share.  well, most of it...   ;D  you are after all, an angler.

in my world, i've learned that some stuff I have to find my own way.  I can't fish YOUR spots and catch those fish like you.  I'm just a bit different and finding my own fish is part of dialing in what I need to do to consistently catch them.

so yep, I do use flouro leaders with my braid (spinning rods).  braid techniques for the baitcasters is primarily frogging, punching and tossing the big (spro) rats.  I do also tie in a shock leader for swimbaits.

and in my world, lure/bait color makes a significant difference.  I've proven it time and again.  Many others will tell me color doesn't matter.  I accept that.

I also know without a doubt, in my world, it does too matter.

 lo
i believe i did state to do what you think works for you personally. 

bo

coldfront

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i believe i did state to do what you think works for you personally. 

bo

bo, I have a truly great friend who is a very capable angler.  one of those guys who's dream was to fish professionally.  the talent, the drive were there.  but it's tough to liberate the cash when you have a family.

I benefit greatly from his friendship, shared time on the water and mentorship.

still, one of my favorite memories is from when he showed me a photo of his 'biggest' fish from the local water retention reservoirs (flood control).  this fish wasn't weighed, but had to be somewhere in the 9-lb category.  HUGE suitcase handle jaw.  thick, square body (think built like a crappie).

so I knew the lake.  I even knew the spot.  asked him what he caught it on.  his answer still has me chuckling today.  He said he caught it on a 1/2 ounce white spinnerbait with a purple powerbait ribbontail worm trailer.  I just 'filed that away'.

fast forward a few years and we were talking about that fish and my friend, trusted mentor, was talking about the jig he caught her on.  My friend told a couple of guys that 'spinnerbait/powerworm' story.  always figured he was just waiting for the day he saw someone tossing that.  the giggles he'd have had.

I listen to what anglers with much better experience levels, smarts than I have, what they have to say.

I also consider how hard it is at times to get 'the real story'.

 ~roflmao

Bassinlou

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and table rock is not filled with limestone?

bo
To be honest, I have no idea, never fished Table Rock.

coldfront

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To be honest, I have no idea, never fished Table Rock.

highland reservoir.  limestone shelves, chunk rock is pretty much the norm.

I use flouro leaders for their abrasion resistance.

Bo:  quick question on your braid useage - how often do you see the need to retie?  here in the TN river, muscle beds are amazingly sharp and it didn't take long (2-3 lost $5 tungsten c-rig weights) to catch on to keeping a close eye on the braid.

fluoru handles it better.

mono not so much BUT, it's not like these lines break just because you look at them wrong.  when they get knicked, scuffed, an aware angler reties.

Bassinlou

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highland reservoir.  limestone shelves, chunk rock is pretty much the norm.

I use flouro leaders for their abrasion resistance.

Bo:  quick question on your braid useage - how often do you see the need to retie?  here in the TN river, muscle beds are amazingly sharp and it didn't take long (2-3 lost $5 tungsten c-rig weights) to catch on to keeping a close eye on the braid.

fluoru handles it better.

mono not so much BUT, it's not like these lines break just because you look at them wrong.  when they get knicked, scuffed, an aware angler reties.

Thank you Coldfront.

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As the saying goes, "different strokes for different folks." This topic always gets attention and the responses are 50/50. To the OP, best advice I can offer, I know what works for me due to time on the water, fish with leaders for a while, and with out. Come back and tell us what "you" think, and what you learned from your experience.  ~beer~
This is the best advice anyone can give! 

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merc1997

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highland reservoir.  limestone shelves, chunk rock is pretty much the norm.

I use flouro leaders for their abrasion resistance.

Bo:  quick question on your braid useage - how often do you see the need to retie?  here in the TN river, muscle beds are amazingly sharp and it didn't take long (2-3 lost $5 tungsten c-rig weights) to catch on to keeping a close eye on the braid.

fluoru handles it better.

mono not so much BUT, it's not like these lines break just because you look at them wrong.  when they get knicked, scuffed, an aware angler reties.
braid is not a line that you never have to retie, and there is where most cause their own break offs.  you can not feel braid for damage, you have to visually inspect, and if your close eye sight is gone, you will need to put some cheaters on.  i actually find braid to be much more abrasion proof than floro.  if i have been tugging pretty hard while stuck in a rock, i check to see if there are any fuzzies sticky up from the braid.  if so, then it needs to be retied.  overrall for me, i have to retie way fewer times than with other line choices.  i use braid for cranks and jerk baits with no issues in hookups or fish tearing loose.  for me, the hookups with those two baits is way better because the hooks go in instantly because of the no stretch.  the other plus for me is feeling bites that would never be felt on floro or mono.

as i said before, the best advice is for each individual to use what they have confidence in.  experimentation goes a long ways at many things.

bo

coldfront

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thanks Bo.  appreciate your patience with me.

merc1997

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thanks Bo.  appreciate your patience with me.
i understand what works well for you might not work well for me.  there are several ways to skin the same cat.  by the way, purple works really well with white.  i've used it for years.  gizzard shad in particular have a purple sheen to them.

i am one to just keep things as simple as possible.

bo