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View Full Version : Tippet vs. no tippet


243Savage
03-31-2009, 09:36 PM
This might sound crazy, but I'm really wondering if the use of a tippet or not really has any bearing on the ability to catch fish. I've lately resorted to tying all but the smallest of flys directly to the leader and I see no difference in the effects. Another thought I have is that it's one less knot to possibly fail. The trout up here really don't seem to care.

What do you guys think?

bowbuck
03-31-2009, 09:55 PM
I think that you could possibly be a little confused about exactly what is a leader and what is tippet. To start with I'm assuming your using a tapered leader (you know what they say about assuming) If you are using a tapered leader then built into that leader the last 18" give or take is the tippet of the leader or the part of the leader that is actually 4x, 5x etc. On your leader pack when it says 5pd test or 4x, the last 18" or so of the leader is what that is referring too. So if you tye your fly on to the end of a 4x 7lb test leader then you are tying your fly on the tippet. Now after a number of fly changes or break offs etc that 18" of line that is the tippet of the leader is used up and therefore the leader begins to taper to stronger pound test. At this point if you wanted to still use 4x you would tye on a 18" piece of tippet from a spool, and you would in effect have the same length of leader again. So to sum it up if you use a new leader then there should be no difference in fishing a fly on the end of leader or taking a used leader and adding tippet, it's the exact same thing. However learning to add tippet will save you lots of money in not having to buy lots of leaders. I often use an older leader on a client rod for several days just rebuilding it as necessary.

On the other hand if you are using straight pd test line then you might not see much difference in the fish catching ability but you will see it in casting ability. Straight leaders don't have a taper to move the energy of your cast efficiency, therefore have the tendency to pile up on your cast. Hope this helps you out and made sense.

243Savage
03-31-2009, 10:04 PM
Bowbuck....you just explained everything I thought I knew in a way that puts it in a different perspective now. I learned everything I know about flyfishing on my own and never realized what you just explained in that context. It all makes perfect sense to me now. :cool:

WinMag.300
03-31-2009, 10:20 PM
tippet really begins to increase in fish catching ability in clear waters with educated fish. Fresh stockers dont realize or "know" that food will be not be on that strand of leader.

Tightliner
03-31-2009, 10:54 PM
tippet really begins to increase in fish catching ability in clear waters with educated fish. Fresh stockers dont realize or "know" that food will be not be on that strand of leader.

Ive spent hours trying to figure out pods of rising heads. I found times I completely strike out on #20's (seeming to match the hatch) on 5x. Drop it down to the same pattern in a 22-26 with an 8x with about 8 extra inches of fluoro to improve initial drift and....... BINGO!!! it turns the tide. Cold weather = dropping down 2 sizes. But of course 8x is nothing to get agressive with and it stresses the fish really bad getting them to the release point. So....... Be careful out there! (that is unless you are fishing raggid fin corn suckers)(stock the freezer, thats what they were made for, an all natural pick your meal sushi bar! most times they taste like ALPO !!!)

Later..............
:cheers:

bowbuck
04-01-2009, 11:37 AM
[QUOTE=WinMag.300;3408043]tippet really begins to increase in fish catching ability in clear waters with educated fish. Fresh stockers dont realize or "know" that food will be not be on that strand of leader.[/QUOTE

Tippet it's self does nothing for you in clear water, tippet size is what helps you in clear water actually.. If you fish a 9ft leader in 7x that's just as good as tying 7x tippet on to your 5x leader. With that said, going to smaller tippet whether on a new leader or adding tippet to the one you have that is of a larger size does help with smart fish in clear water. Wild fish in clear water are just as likely to hit a dry fly on 4x as on 6x, they can't afford to be that picky. I do however normally fish wild fish on dry flys on 6x orvis superstrong mono, cause it's been a while since a 10" wild fish broke me off.

bowbuck
04-01-2009, 11:38 AM
Bowbuck....you just explained everything I thought I knew in a way that puts it in a different perspective now. I learned everything I know about flyfishing on my own and never realized what you just explained in that context. It all makes perfect sense to me now. :cool:


Glad to help. I knew doing this for a living would pay off eventually.:cool:

WinMag.300
04-01-2009, 12:14 PM
I apologize for not defining tippets size as the most crucial element. I do agree.

Dean
04-01-2009, 02:34 PM
It may have been mentioned, but tippet is to be tied to the leader once you have reached the thicker diameter (from cutting/re-tie flies etc). Tippet also helps extend the life of your leader as you will not need to change to a new leader as you cut your leader shorter. Fishing with a thick diameter leader (and no tippet) can cause your dry flies to not turn over properly and create more drag (mending challanges) as the thicker line is doesn't 'drift' as naturally.

2nd thought is that this time of year in WY (and I doubt you are fishing for 'stockers') you are probably fishing sub surface with some big ugly (wooly bugger for example) and when dredging the bottom or water columns small diameter tippet is typically not required.

bowbuck
04-01-2009, 04:46 PM
I apologize for not defining tippets size as the most crucial element. I do agree.


::ke: Just didn't want to confuse the guy, I knew what you meant

243Savage
04-01-2009, 05:21 PM
I doubt you are fishing for 'stockers'

Nope. All wild and native. :banana: