Follow the Leader [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Follow the Leader

03-17-2001, 09:04 PM
Tying perfect loop knots on new leaders, whether on the water or trout streams, used to be a problem. Countless times, especially with smaller tippet sizes of fresh water the enviable would happen. By the time I finished the loop knot, the rest of the leader would be in a tangled mess. With three pound test line those knots were hard to get out. Just think of all the wasted time I spent undoing that mess, that I could have used for fishing. The windy days of spring didn't help either.

Now I pre-tie all my knots at home. All you do is unraveling about 8" of line at the butt end of the leader from the coil. Stick the rest of the coil back into the package. If you have a self sealing plastic package close the seal around the line. Tie the loop knot and coil that piece back onto the coil and reseal the package.

If you get leaders in paper envelopes with open tops, just put a paper clip over the opening to keep the coil in the package. Believe me it saves a lot of time and headaches. Keep it simple, than it's easy.

Any other tips for terminal tackle?

03-17-2001, 10:29 PM
Ray...Perfection vs Surgeon's loop?! What do you think? Or is there a better choice that's strong and easy to tie? I'm getting ready to prep some leaders and I love second opinions.

03-17-2001, 10:54 PM
Ray --- I agree that tying any Knot too quickly or under the pressure of the moment sometimes leads to failure. Since I switched to tying a double surgeons loop for tippits my knot failures here have vanished. It is basically a very easy knot to produce.
My knot failures when the do happen come at the tippit fly connection where i have been using the trilene which is again an easy,quick knot to tie. Most failures are in salt water with heavy tippits as apposed to fresh with light material


03-17-2001, 11:44 PM
Pete and SaltRon -

I use the perfection loop exclusively on all my leaders. The knot seems a little smaller than a double surgeons knot. This I find especially helpful with fresh water leaders that are usually longer, sometimes 12 feet. Many times while landing a trout the loop knot will enter the rod guides. Once in a while a fish will get spunky and make one more effort. The knot seems to cause less interruption from snagging the guides on smaller rods.

The knot gets it's name from the loop being central to the leader. With double surgeons knots the loop can be cock eye and not aligned with the leader. Don't know how they compare with knot strengths and it's not an issue because the tippets will break first.

For tippet attachments I use a barrel or blood knot if similar diameters. But most of the time a double surgeons knot is more dependable with different types of material or different diameter lines.

03-18-2001, 08:33 AM
I usually use the double surgons knot but it does come off at an angle and sometimes will use the perfection loop. Just one thing the perfection is more reliable because if you tye the the surgons not just right, that is, if your lines are not tyed evenly you will lose 50% of the line strength. This error is easy to do when you are hurrying.

03-18-2001, 07:11 PM
I use a non-slip loop knot for all my loops in leaders and for a loop knot at the fly. The loop is always straight and it has a high break strength.


John Desjardins
03-20-2001, 01:41 PM
As one of those who ties perfection loops in the line end of the leader I would like to add my own trick. You shouldn't cut the tag end of the knot until it is on the line. When you go to do the loop to loop connection thread your line through the leader loop, and then stick the tag end through the loop in the line, and pull the leader through.

03-20-2001, 04:40 PM
Ray -

I go with a perfection loop on stout diameters but opt for the surgeon's loop for fine line due to the incredible strength and minimal impact of a slightly out-of-line knot shape.