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> Steel Leaders for Pike
robertmowen
Posted: Jun 20, 2019 - 09:09 am


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Has anyone experienced an impact on their bite (+/-) when using steel leaders? In shopping I always look for the shorter variety, usually 6", but am amazed by the number of 12"-18" versions out there like we're fishing for barracuda or sharks.

How about stronger test mono leaders instead of steel? Have you noticed more bites because the fish aren't spooked by the extra length of steel in front of their target?

Thanks!

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Paddy
Posted: Jun 20, 2019 - 11:42 am


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Best thing to do is buy a spool of 30 or 40 pound flourocarbon leader, a bag of barrel swivels and snap swivels and tie your own. I don't measure, but mine are between 8 and 10 inches. No issues.

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Fishing Rod
Posted: Jun 20, 2019 - 02:44 pm


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I crimp steel live right to my lure and then tie it to my braid.

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Seguin Fisher
Posted: Jun 20, 2019 - 03:05 pm


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This is the best stuff Iíve ever used for pike. Usually I just use 20 lb test, but it comes in much stronger tests if you want. Ties straight to the lure ( or a snap if you want to), and the other end can be tied right to your line, I use an Alberto knot to attach it to either fluoro or braid, with no issues ever. Comes in several colours, I just use black. Even in gin clear water, it doesnít seem to make any difference with deterring fish from biting, and itís pretty strong stuff too.

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Antique Fisherman
Posted: Jun 20, 2019 - 08:19 pm


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QUOTE (Paddy @ Jun 20, 2019 - 12:42 pm)
Best thing to do is buy a spool of 30 or 40 pound flourocarbon leader, a bag of barrel swivels and snap swivels and tie your own. I don't measure, but mine are between 8 and 10 inches. No issues.

Agree - I add a bead just to prevent the swivel from going through the tip and causing possible damage

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Northhunter
Posted: Jun 20, 2019 - 09:26 pm


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I tried 55lb flouro and still had them cut it clean. Now I just use the stuff Seguin Fisher posted. My only complaint is it can kink pretty bad forcing you to retie. I've read that if you are catching bigger fish flouro leaders are not as much of an issue as the smaller the pike, the sharper the teeth?
Then again I saw a pic once of a flouro leader from someone fishing Kesagami. It wasn't pretty.

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Dbfish
Posted: Jun 20, 2019 - 11:00 pm


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I use a titanium steel leader if targeting pike,6-8 inch.If after Walleye I still use a five inch steel leader, with no issues. I dont like giving the fish too much credit.They would bite my presentation if I presented it on a garden hose! Lmao

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Collingwood Dean
Posted: Jun 21, 2019 - 05:28 am


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I do a lot of pike fishing on lake Nip....and I personally do NOT use a leader
..I find it affects the action of my lures....I guess it really depends on what kind of lures you are using. In 35 years of fishing, I have lost 2 pike due to being bit off.
...Now musky are a different story....I once had a musky bite clean through a 50lb. wire leader as if it were butter....while using a crocodile spoon.

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robertmowen
Posted: Jun 21, 2019 - 01:22 pm


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QUOTE (Paddy @ Jun 20, 2019 - 11:42 am)
Best thing to do is buy a spool of 30 or 40 pound flourocarbon leader, a bag of barrel swivels and snap swivels and tie your own. I don't measure, but mine are between 8 and 10 inches. No issues.

Thanks Paddy. I'm rolling with your advice this year. I'll have a few steel leaders in the box if your approach is defeated.

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Grumpa
Posted: Jun 21, 2019 - 02:49 pm


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I must be blessed.
In nearly 60 years of trophy pike and muskie fishing I never once had, or witnessed someone else in the boat, have a leader cut through by a fishes teeth. Line yes...leader no. I've seen leaders fray sliding along aluminum boat channels, crimp and weaken or fail at the clip...but never once cut through on a big pike or muskie's teeth. That's hundreds of muskie...many huge fish that inhaled a bait and the leader's raking across the teeth while it's powering around the boat.
We started using single strand steal leaders for muskie fishing in the 70's...switched to titanium and now use flouro exclusively...mainly because of it's flexibility, neutral buoyancy and invisibility (light passes through it).
Many muskie fishermen now use flourocarbon leaders for every application...cranking, jerk baiting, trolling...it has become the go to material for many in the sport. You won't be disappointed with flouro...just slide your fingers along it every once awhile and check for nicks. I have no intentions of switching from my flouro leaders any time soon.

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Northhunter
Posted: Jun 21, 2019 - 06:39 pm


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Grumpa - what poundage are you using?

The only complaint I have heard is that it is not friction resistant.. say if it rubs rock under tension. Like I had said, I tried the 55 (mainly to prevent bit-offs when after bass or walleye) and they cut it, too. I started using 20lb to tie spinner rigs for walleye for the same reason, but now use a short section of wire for the hardware as I found that the sonic blades I use (no clevice) would eat through it after a while.

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Grumpa
Posted: Jun 22, 2019 - 08:03 am


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Northhunter...personally I've not experienced any friction wear issues on the flouro...not even sure what that would look like. We drag them through reef after reef if we're trolling the basin...sheldom do we notice wear or damage of any kind. Flouro is extremely abrasion resistant, UV resistant and has the same refractive index of water...meaning, its virtually invisible.
Fluoro leaders don't kink and one leader can last many fish. I usually ended up tossing a wire leader after one good sized lunge...kinked, bent, sometimes frayed, ultimately weakened. I've been using one particular flouro leader on one of my muskie trolling poles for several years now...changed the line out once but was able to continue using the leader. I'm really particular on my terminal tackle...the barrel swivels, split rings, leader material, crimps, snaps etc.
As far as poundage...really depends on what type of bait or lure you're throwing or using. Generally crank baits and bucktails move quicker and most muskie will not inhale a larger fast moving bait...they generally get snout or lip hooked...so higher poundage to prevent leader wear or failure isn't as big a concern as when you use twitch baits, gliders, topwaters or some plastics that you might fish slower or on the pause and consequently those types of baits have a greater potential of being inhaled with the leader ending up caught between the muskie's teeth.
My lunge buds use 130 lb fairly frequently, sometimes 150...I'm currently using 100 on my casting poles and 130 on my trollers. I've become lazy, so I've settled on a one size fits all for the casters. After I quit making flouro leaders I bought Berkley's at first, then tried Seaguar...but have now settled recently on Stealth...14" on the casters (which allows plenty of freedom to do effective figure 8's at boatside) and 36" on the trollers. I usually get them in the states when I head down there or have them brought up to me when fishing friends come this way

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westarm
Posted: Jun 24, 2019 - 09:44 am


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interesting topic as it always is when it comes to leaders, I use straight up 6" steel leaders, however I firmly believe they DO affect the action as well as those lethargic follows that won't hit. I have recently been considering tying direct to the lure, I fish pike regularly with in line spinners, spinner baits and minnow crankbaits so in most cases there is a decent buffer zone to get to the line although there is always that possibility.

it has not happened too often but when a fish breaks off it bothers me, I don't like the idea of the poor bugger swimming around possibly having his mouth sealed shut with a treble hook, but I am convinced without that terminal tackle you would increase the incidental bass and walleye catches being directly tied as well as the odd picky pike. tho many pike hits are straight up aggression.

I have lost 2 giants, a huge pike and a giant muskie due to wire leader failure, one just above the clasp frayed and left me with a swivel and the wire probably from teeth, broke right at the side of the boat, and one at the swivel leaving me reeling in just a swivel. broke during a very intense long run from the side of the boat as well. I try to use very good leaders but.....

fishing rod, I like that idea! i'm assuming you mean virtually like what's on an erie dearie?

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Chuck Enwinde
Posted: Jun 25, 2019 - 01:32 am


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I've had pike cut through 100lb Seaguar fluorocarbon on two occasions. Once on a jerkbait and once on a quick strike rig through the ice. Both on the hook set. It sticks with you. I use steel almost exclusively now. A few years back I was doing some experimenting with quick strike rigs and found that when looking down the ice hole the 100lb fluoro was more visible to my eye than the the much thinner steel.

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Fishing Rod
Posted: Jun 25, 2019 - 11:05 am


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QUOTE (westarm @ Jun 24, 2019 - 09:44 am)
fishing rod, I like that idea! i'm assuming you mean virtually like what's on an erie dearie?

30 lb. steel braid. I crimp it at the lure end and tie the other end to my line.


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