Custom Leaders - My next adventure

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letumgo
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Custom Leaders - My next adventure

Post by letumgo » Thu May 30, 2019 11:42 am

I recently bought a set of Maxima leader material, with plans to make up some custom leaders.

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First on my list is making a few of Rob Smith's wet fly leaders:
WEB LINK: http://www.northcountryflies.com/north- ... resources/
http://www.northcountryflies.com/north- ... d0416-2a1d

Rob Smith’s 12ft 3-weight North Country Spider Leader Formula
40” – 0.017 (20lb)
20” – 0.015 (15lb)
12” – 0.012 (10lb)
8” – 0.011 (8lb)
8” – 0.009 (6lb)
8” – 0.008 (5lb)
12” – 0.006 (3lb)
36” – 0.005 (2lb)

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Followed soon after by tying some of Dana Reed's wet fly leader rigs, and John Shaner's spider leader formula.

I will share my results, once I've played around a bit. Hopefully this will spark some conversation around custom leader set-up. Please share your own leader formula, if you can recommend others to try.

Dana Reed's Dropper Loop Leader Section:
Maxima Chameleon (5# / 0.008")
Total Length = 66"
Perfection Loops at each end, and dropper loops at 24" and 56". The dropper loops will extend roughly 5/8" from the leader.

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Ron Eagle Elk
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Re: Custom Leaders - My next adventure

Post by Ron Eagle Elk » Thu May 30, 2019 4:19 pm

Ray, Donald Nicholson sent me some cards that are designed for multiple fly and leaders set ups. I'll dig them out and send you a couple.

Instead of dropper loops, I've been using tippet rings, either 2 or 3 mm rings. I like the ones from RIO.

Are you using loop to loop to attach to the fly line or nail knot?
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Re: Custom Leaders - My next adventure

Post by Ron Eagle Elk » Thu May 30, 2019 5:04 pm

The cast is made by Donald before he mailed it. I've never had the heart to fish it. I've used the cards and they work very nicely, no tangles, no fuss. Would be nice to get them in a water proof or at least resistant stock though.
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Re: Custom Leaders - My next adventure

Post by hankaye » Thu May 30, 2019 6:02 pm

REE, Howdy;

Got some old milk jugs??? You have a template ...

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Re: Custom Leaders - My next adventure

Post by Mike62 » Fri May 31, 2019 6:01 am

That's a nice idea, Hank; I wouldn't have thought of that. I sat around the wood stove one cold winter practicing my blood knots and ended up with a pile of leaders. They fish well but aesthetically my blood knots still need work. I'm looking forward to what you come up with, Ray.

I like Ron's idea of using the tippet rings as opposed to the loops.
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Re: Custom Leaders - My next adventure

Post by Ron Eagle Elk » Fri May 31, 2019 6:18 am

Mike, I suck at blood knots as well so I don't use them. I use a double triple surgeon's knot instead. When I was young and dumb we used to use that knot to join climbing ropes together. If it's good enough to keep me from falling to my death... Any way, it's a good strong knot to tie, even in the middle of a river. I used to make my own leaders when fishing with two hand rods or switch rods.

Hank, your brilliant, my friend. I never would have thought of milk jugs either.
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Re: Custom Leaders - My next adventure

Post by Theroe » Fri May 31, 2019 6:38 am

great stuff - love the milk jug idea, Hankaye!!
In the late 19080's, I was on a custom leader kick - it is a lot of fun. Plus you can fabricate leaders for any purpose, and get your tippet to behave exactly how you want. Anymore, I just buy 9' tapered to 3X, and add my 5' of 3X with three loops on the end. It is fast, easy, and suits my fishing. Changing flies and the 5' looped tippet only takes seconds....


One other point - the absolute very best tippet material is Damyl Tectan Superior - NOT their fluorocarbon. It has the suppleness of the very early pinkish DaiRiki(pre oblong spools), color of Umpqua mono, and strength of ANDE Tournament monofilament.
I use .20mm 8.2# test for the looped tippet, and .18mm 6.6# test for the dropper flies. I snell all of my flies on 4 1/2" looped droppers. When Im out of DAMYL, I use Maxima green.

just my 2 cents FWIW
Last edited by Theroe on Fri May 31, 2019 9:53 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Custom Leaders - My next adventure

Post by ForumGhillie » Fri May 31, 2019 6:58 am

Ray, it's fun to make your own leaders during the Winter or during long rainy seasons when trout streams are flooded - like now! :(

I am going by memory... when I tied my own leaders I used Maxima Chameleon only for the butt section and Maxima Ultra Green for the rest, except the tippet section. I have tried Kelly Galloup's Perfection Loop dropper idea, which I like better since you can adjust them and not screw up the leader.

I used very thin cardboard, cut square, and notched all four corners to wind the leader around. Then I wrote in the center the leader details. I kept the square cardboard small so it would fit in my vest pocket if needed.

I can see it now... "Letumgo's Custom Hand-tied Soft Hackle Leaders" :D

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Re: Custom Leaders - My next adventure

Post by Roadkill » Fri May 31, 2019 9:17 am

Ray,

I still suggest this little book...
the used ones are quite a bargain.

https://www.amazon.com/Drag-Free-Drift- ... way&sr=8-1
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Re: Custom Leaders - My next adventure

Post by narcodog » Fri May 31, 2019 9:35 am

Waaay back when I tyed my own leaders also. I started with an Orvis kit then added Maxima for the butts. Then I went to the furled leader which I use for the most part now. A year or so ago Shaner shared his leader formula's and I started tying some of my leaders again. Using Maxima and his suggestion for Trout Hunter tippet.
Now I was not really looking for leaders for wets but long dry fly leaders. I'm talking about 20ft leaders. Now they work but I just can't cast them.
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