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Hatchet Jack

Hand tied leaders, 'hard' mono?

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Been reading an old magazine article, circa 1985 from George Harvey.

He explains how to build a leader from hard & soft monofilament.

 

I do have some Maxima Chameleon leader spools of mono - is this brand/model considered

'hard' mono? Seems mildly stiff. Anyone have recommendations for other

brands of stiff mono? Thanks

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At one time there were a variety of types of monofilament leader material a tyer could access. These days the distinctions are less clear (and rarely touted the way they were years ago....). The only one I know of that's still commonly available is Mason hard monofilament (and if you enter that designation onto E-Bay you'll see what's currently available..). I use quite a bit of it for tarpon leaders and I think it's still the standard for tarpon tournaments (the ones that still specify a particular leader material for all participants). With the advent of fluorocarbon the need for stiffer monos simply disappeared. One of flourocarbon leader material's side benefits is that it's not only stiffer than mono but any "set" or coiling can easily be stretched out with a single pull (not the way mono behaves at all... and a big reason that tarpon leader stretchers have fallen out of favor - they're just not needed any more....). Remember we're talking about fluoro leader material (I'd avoid most of the fishing lines labelled "fluorocarbon" or "son of fluorocarbon" for leader purposes since they don't have the same characteristics as dedicated leader material....).

 

By the way I'd rank the old Maxima as not particularly soft or hard... and I'd be very wary of anyone touting a mixing of soft and hard mono when building fly leaders. Guys like Lefty Kreh, Chico Fernandez, and Mark Sosin long ago warned that leaders with mixed properties were not very efficient in transmitting power down their lengths...

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Bob, I did not specify in my original post, but George Harvey's article discusses trout leaders.

The upper (roughly 2/3rds) section is tied with 'hard' mono, and the lower 1/3rd is tied with 'soft' mono.

He states this soft section is necessary for developing the desired S-curves and thereby lessening drag on a dry fly.

Hope that makes sense.

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No kidding!

Thanks FIN-ITE, it's an interesting read for sure.

 

I'm going to build some Harvey type leaders with my Maxima Chameleon &

Orvis tippet material and see how they roll out. Crimey, this leader business

sure gets deep & murky right quick ☺

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I would disregard anything about line and leaders written in 1985. There's a world of difference between 1985 line and 2016 line. Don't make leaders more complicated then it needs to be. 60-20-20

 

What ever you do don't start reading about furled leaders if you don't want to be confused.

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I've been trying mine with some 20lb hard mono from Bass pro then 20lb flourocarbon then 12 pound flouro in about 3 2.5 2.5 for Bass just ends there no additional tippet. Works great if I used then for smaller flys I would just add about a 1ft tippet.

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I tied some leader years ago but went to a furled leader and handshake loop for the tippet. Too much trouble, IMHO.

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Thanks Hatchet - I know less than nothing about freshwater leaders.... and consider folks on the freshwater side to be much more technically skilled than I am.

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Captain LeMay ... laugh.png ... I use a "Technically advanced" straight piece of 10# test mono from fly line to fly.

 

But thank you for the confidence boost !!! It's good to know I am more technically skilled than SOMEONE !!!

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No kidding!

Thanks FIN-ITE, it's an interesting read for sure.

 

I'm going to build some Harvey type leaders with my Maxima Chameleon &

Orvis tippet material and see how they roll out. Crimey, this leader business

sure gets deep & murky right quick ☺

 

Still have spools of Mason from 25 years ago that are used for Harvey's leaders where Orvis is tied in for tippet . Works very well, especially for under 6' fly rods & shortened leader formulas in casting to bass & crappie.

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