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Shock Leader for cushioning the load when casting

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A knot that's a few wraps down is well insulated from the stress of the cast, A shock leader protects the leader/line knot from the load of the cast by keeping it on the spool, which is far more punishing to the knot then anything a fish might do.   

A shock leader is just a piece of heavier fishing line that is tied to a smaller line and handles the weight of the sinker during the cast. The shock leader absorbs the load weight of a heavier sinker and allows you to throw safely with more force getting greater distance and accuracy with each cast. If your going to be throwing the weight hard figure 10 pounds for every ounce your casting, for normal surf casting a 50 pound test line for the shock leader will be enough. The length of the shock leader will depend on the rod, usually the shock leader is from 9 to 15 feet long, just make sure it goes around the reel spool about 5 times. This is to insulate the line from the stress of the cast. (More than 20 feet disqualifies you from an IGFA record). Everybody has their own favorite knots to join the shock leader to the running line. If you need a knot that won't break make an 8 to 12 inch loop in your smaller running line with Bimini Twist and use the loop as a doubled running line to attach it to the shock leader with a back to back Uni-Knot or Improved Blood Knot. You can use a Uni-Knot to tie on your swivel.

. A way to tie on a shock leader is to use the albright knot. Or you can use the following method. I've not had this knot fail on me.

Shockleader knot to use when joining large diameter line to a thin diameter line

.Granny Knot

Step 1: Tie an overhand (Granny) knot in the heavy trace material and pass your lighter main line through.

Step 2: Pull the overhand knot in the heavy line tightly closed. Take four or five turns around the heavy line with the light.

Step 3: Pass the light line back through the first loop as shown. Lubricate with saliva and pull tight. Trim end to about 2mm.
Use a length of heavier nylon at the working end of your main line. The shock leader should be about 2 to 2 and half times the length of your rod. The weight of shock leader line should generally be two or three times the breaking strain of your main line.
We use what is called a "tapered" shock leader which is approximately 20 lb at one end (which attaches to the main line) and about 40 to 70 lb at the sinker end. This allows for smoother travel through the guides on your rod.


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