CaryGreene

Leader Design - Saltwater and Freshwater

Rate this topic

214 posts in this topic

18 mins ago, CaryGreene said:

I would say not, no pun intended!. A three-piece leader has only two blood knots. Fluorocarbon is a little tougher to tie this particular knot with. However, it can be done fairly easily. Practice your blood knots and get comfortable with them. I have a way to tie them that I should do a video on.

 

When using Medium Hard Mono, Blood knots can also be a little tricky because the stiffer material is harder to cinch.

 

I've heard guys are lubricating the material ahead of time with a little chapstick and that seems to work for them. 

 

I don't use it because I don't need to. The not cinchrs down pretty nicely. All you need is five turns on each side. Maybe get a pair of rubber fingered work gloves and use them to cinch down if it helps. The key is just to really pull the two main lines and I'll actually bite the two tag ends to prevent them from slipping. Grab them both, lay them over each other and just bite them and then really cinch down hard on the knot. 

 

I can tie a perfect looking knot with very heavy material, so trust me it is possible. You just need to get comfortable and confident with the knot.

 

 

 

I thought I was pretty good at knots.  I guess I need some practicing.  Its the 5 turns on 80# that's a bugger.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 mins ago, sinfish said:

I thought I was pretty good at knots.  I guess I need some practicing.  Its the 5 turns on 80# that's a bugger.

It is, try either chapstick and or rubber fingered work gloves. The knot should pop into place. Pull very hard too. That's a key. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

These past 40 years I believed that blood knots worked best when the lines being joined were close in diameter.   If my midsection was say 40lb test I would never have considered tying on a tippet of say 8 or 10 lb test using the blood knot.  I'll have to dig out my Kreh/Sosin book.  I did take a 26 lb bass on an 8lb tippet and the loop broke right as I grabbed her.  I don't need 8lb flouro much anymore.

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@CaryGreene I feel like 5 turns seems a little overkill? On mono heavier than 20lb test, I generally use 3 turns on each side. When tying 0x flouro tippet to 20lb test mono, I use 4 turns on the 20lb mono tag, and 5 turns on the 15lb tippet tag. That's never failed for me, as long as I seat the knots well. Pulling on the tags to eliminate slack before really cinching down helps.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks Cary.  That's what I planned to do--extend the mid section a bit.  As far as cinching knots down, I think a little lube is important to avoid burning the line.  Spit, chapstick, even petroleum jelly.  It is imperative to get a blood knot fully tight, or it will fail. I also like to use a simple tool to get max leverage on the line after I get it cinched down most of the way.  A couple of 6 inch pieces of metal tubing or wooden dowels covered with shrink wrap does the trick.  Just make sure that you wrap the line on those pieces of tubing so that it does not cross itself or you may damage it.  Works great for me.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Water knots are pretty decent for joining  mono or  flouro. They form better to. The ubiquitous Double blood knot I am not convinced by very much.  
Uni knots pretty good to.

Knot failure occur because the knot is tied poorly or too big a load is placed on it.

How many tie good knots.

 

Mike

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Posted (edited)

6 hours ago, JohnDe said:

These past 40 years I believed that blood knots worked best when the lines being joined were close in diameter.   If my midsection was say 40lb test I would never have considered tying on a tippet of say 8 or 10 lb test using the blood knot.  I'll have to dig out my Kreh/Sosin book.  I did take a 26 lb bass on an 8lb tippet and the loop broke right as I grabbed her.  I don't need 8lb flouro much anymore.

 

 

 

I tie any diameter Tippet to any diameter Leader Mid-Section - indiscriminantly, with a Blood Knot. I've never had one fail in my life (knock on wood). If you're concerned about line slip on a Tippet, just use the George Harvey Knot (now for some reason called the Orvis Knot). That's fine for a quick no-slip Tippet knot. But - a well snugged down Blood Knot doesn't slip either, so to me, a moot point. 

 

To back that up, I've taken numerous 40# Stripers and six 50# Stripers in my life, all on Blood Knots. Mostly 12# or 20# Blood-Knotted to 30# or 40# mid sections. In fact, I've taken many other species with Leaders that feature Blood Knot connections (Makos, Roosters, GT's, 40lb Class Tuna, big Tarpon, Billfish, large Blue fish (20lb-ish). 

 

Often, the Knot isn't what fails, its the way it's tied or it's abrasion (in the wraps of a knot or on a leg of a loop) that we may not even be aware of, that's what usually gives out - providing the knot is tied properly and well snugged. Freight Train Delaware River Upper-Main-Stem Wild Rainbows will test any Knotted Dry fly leader and when you're using a 7X Tippet, you better make sure the knots are tied right. Otherwise "pop" goes the weasel. 

 

George Harvey knew what he was doing regarding Leaders. Blood Knots keep a Leader's body length in-line and ruler straight during a cast. Surgeon's knots do not do this. Leaders become janky and crooked in spots, they don't lay straight. 

 

Even a three piece leader can lay out crooked and uneven, that can cause issues during a cast. The goal when using a saltwater Leader is to have a ruler-straight presentation and very easy unrolling of loops during a cast, building up to the final shoot (as quickly as possible). 

 

Tippet to Mid may seem really sketchy, as in a way too thin Tippet connected to a seemingly way too thick Leader Mid Section. George Harvey didn't seem to mind this in the least. Neither do I. Neither did Walt Dette, Neither did Joe Humphreys..etc. On and on. 

 

No one here wants to be insulted or challenged. I get that and do say with respect to all of our readers - take some time to focus on the Leader and if you need some knot tying practice, it will only help you, not hurt you. Knots have a way of sticking with you but if you get out of practice tying them, it can be a challenge to get back into the swing of executing the turns of a knot properly. 

 

I've done a number of seminars on Leader building, mostly for clubs in the NYC, CT, RI, Long Island and Catskills regions and I have to day, it's always a pleasure talking to fly fishermen/women about how to set up the right terminal solution for the right job. Here's a video on a simple Double Bimini. When you watch the vido, note the line manipulation, fingers moving, tension always on the line. 

 

Blood Knots are as easy as a Double Bimini really, they just require extreme pressure when cinching. All fishing knots should be snugged down as if catching the fish of a lifetime depended on the knot holding up. For this reason, I NEVER let some fly-shop mook from the boroughs tie one of my knots on a line. NEVER! I've seen how that works out. ALWAYS insist on doing your own knots and take the time to get proficient at tying them. Tying knots is fun in a weird way. You're doing something cool with your bare hands. 

 

Edited by CaryGreene

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

And now, here's the video I promised on how to tie a Blood Knot. We're joining 50lb Seaguar Blue Fluoro to 12lb Yozuri Pink Fluoro. I chose Fluoro because everyone says it's so hard to tie Blood Knots with. Please watch the video and then let me know your thoughts okay SOL fly-guys and gals!

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, Mike Oliver said:

Water knots are pretty decent for joining  mono or  flouro. They form better to. The ubiquitous Double blood knot I am not convinced by very much.  
Uni knots pretty good to.

Knot failure occur because the knot is tied poorly or too big a load is placed on it.

How many tie good knots.

 

Mike

Mike, if you want ruler straight presentations you need Blood Knots. Watch the video I posted and we'll circle back okay you CRAZY (like a fox) Brit!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, bmac said:

Thanks Cary.  That's what I planned to do--extend the mid section a bit.  As far as cinching knots down, I think a little lube is important to avoid burning the line.  Spit, chapstick, even petroleum jelly.  It is imperative to get a blood knot fully tight, or it will fail. I also like to use a simple tool to get max leverage on the line after I get it cinched down most of the way.  A couple of 6 inch pieces of metal tubing or wooden dowels covered with shrink wrap does the trick.  Just make sure that you wrap the line on those pieces of tubing so that it does not cross itself or you may damage it.  Works great for me.  

Excellent suggestions bmac!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Sondek said:

Thanks, Cary. Time to practice my blood knots.

Absolutely, check out post #166, I made it for you guys! Should show how easy a Blood Knot really is to fashion. I can tie any knot I tie, with my eyes closed. The fishing clubs have even blindfolded me. Comes from night fishing. Fishing in the dark. Not wanting to trun my red headlamp on. Not wanting the wrecker ghosts to sense my presence. Best to travel light, in the dark. No noise. No lights. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 hours ago, iklu said:

@CaryGreene I feel like 5 turns seems a little overkill? On mono heavier than 20lb test, I generally use 3 turns on each side. When tying 0x flouro tippet to 20lb test mono, I use 4 turns on the 20lb mono tag, and 5 turns on the 15lb tippet tag. That's never failed for me, as long as I seat the knots well. Pulling on the tags to eliminate slack before really cinching down helps.

 

 

Try 5 iklu. And hello by the way lad! If something's not broken, why fix it? To your point, if what you're doing is working, then we only need ask one question. What fish have you tested this on and how old are you?

 

A fish with shoulders will make you glad your knots hold. If you've experienced this success, then it means you're doing something right. What is overkill? Nothing that the fish of a lifetime can't splinter and destroy. As can a girl with golden hair and sea water glistening on her eyes. For this, if your knots truly do hold, and hold they will need to do, then your soul is no longer yours to command. You might chose to set it free in fact...

 

Every evening the young Fisherman went out upon the sea, and threw his nets into the water.

 

When the wind blew from the land he caught nothing, or but little at best, for it was a bitter and black-winged wind, and rough waves rose up to meet it. But when the wind blew to the shore, the fish came in from the deep, and swam into the meshes of his nets, and he took them to the market-place and sold them.

 

Every evening he went out upon the sea, and one evening the net was so heavy that hardly could he draw it into the boat. And he laughed, and said to himself, ‘Surely I have caught all the fish that swim, or snared some dull monster that will be a marvel to men, or some thing of horror that the great Queen will desire,’ and putting forth all his strength, he tugged at the coarse ropes till, like lines of blue enamel round a vase of bronze, the long veins rose up on his arms. He tugged at the thin ropes, and nearer and nearer came the circle of flat corks, and the net rose at last to the top of the water.

 

But no fish at all was in it, nor any monster or thing of horror, but only a little Mermaid lying fast asleep.

 

Her hair was as a wet fleece of gold, and each separate hair as a thread of fine gold in a cup of glass. Her body was as white ivory, and her tail was of silver and pearl. Silver and pearl was her tail, and the green weeds of the sea coiled round it; and like sea-shells were her ears, and her lips were like sea-coral. The cold waves dashed over her cold breasts, and the salt glistened upon her eyelids.

 

So beautiful was she that when the young Fisherman saw her he was filled with wonder, and he put out his hand and drew the net close to him, and leaning over the side he clasped her in his arms. And when he touched her, she gave a cry like a startled sea-gull, and woke, and looked at him in terror with her mauve-amethyst eyes, and struggled that she might escape. But he held her tightly to him, and would not suffer her to depart.

 

And when she saw that she could in no way escape from him, she began to weep, and said, ‘I pray thee let me go, for I am the only daughter of a King, and my father is aged and alone.’

 

But the young Fisherman answered, ‘I will not let thee go save thou makest me a promise that whenever I call thee, thou wilt come and sing to me, for the fish delight to listen to the song of the Sea-folk, and so shall my nets be full.’

‘Wilt thou in very truth let me go, if I promise thee this?’ cried the Mermaid.

‘In very truth I will let thee go,’ said the young Fisherman.

So she made him the promise he desired, and sware it by the oath of the Sea-folk. And he loosened his arms from about her, and she sank down into the water, trembling with a strange fear.

 

Every evening the young Fisherman went out upon the sea, and called to the Mermaid, and she rose out of the water and sang to him. Round and round her swam the dolphins, and the wild gulls wheeled above her head.

 

And she sang a marvellous song.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, CaryGreene said:

 

Blood Knots are as easy as a Double Bimini really, they just require extreme pressure when cinching. All fishing knots should be snugged down as if catching the fish of a lifetime depended on the knot

 

I'm generally in agreement and don't doubt your experience in the field at all.  It's just that my own experience joining mono or flouro lines of greatly different diameters has led me to believe that a double or triple surgeons knot or a Yucatan or Albright are more reliable than a blood knot.  Maybe not, and it may boil down to cinching that blood knot completely.  I learned a long time ago that the choice of knot is way less important than how well you tie it.  Thanks Cary for giving all of these details a forum for thought and discussion.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to register here in order to participate.

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.