I have yet to fish a wind on leader,
everything I am showing here I have learned from other Salty Dogs at TA meeting and via email
I thought I would post some pics of the wind on leaders I plan to fish this year. I have asked a lot of questions here and other forums, and have had others asking me questions so I thought I would show some of the stuff I have learned.
Last year I fished a uni to uni knot on all my braided to mono connections and didnt have a failure. I did have problems with "green" crew fighting a fish and getting the uni to uni knot to the rod tip, holding the rod fairly verticle and the knot hanging up on the first guide at the tip. The solution to this problem is to lower the rod a little as the knot arrives so it doesnt have to make such a drastic corner to get thru the first guide. I am hoping wind on leaders resolve that problem since the knots are all so small in profile.
The other thing I hope to gain, is when I have a tangle and end up cutting off line, it is not easy to retie the mono to the wet braid on a rough sea and I dont know how long my leaders are unless I have them precut. I like my mono topshots all exactly the same length and when I cut some mono off the rod I like to put on a new leader. By using these wind on leaders I hope to be able to do a quick loop to loop connection and wind the premade leaders off the spool onto the rod very quickly.
I am to cheap to buy hollow spectra and fill the spool of the reel with hollow spectra. If money wasnt an object I would use hollow spectra from the bottom of the reel spool and slide the mono up inside of it for a topshot but since cash is always an issue I will be using a short piece of dacron to splice the solid braid on my exisiting reels to the mono. A short piece of hollow spectra would do the same thing as the dacron, but I have yet to order any hollow spectra and the local stores dont seem to carry any
My plans are to tie a bimini on the solid spectra from the reel, do a loop to loop connection from the bimini to the wind on leader.
Here is how I am making wind on leaders:
First I am using a set of needles to fish the mono up inside the 80lb dacron, I have a latch hook to make the loop on the dacron, and I am using some 15 lb spectra to whip finish the mono/dacron connection point, and I am using 50 lb mono for my topshots. I tried to order a set of needles from Charkbait, but after being told they wouldnt have them in stock for a while, I made a set of needles. I can get 200lb mono inside the largest needle and the 50lb fits in the 3rd from smallest size needle.
First I put the mono inside the needle and fish it up thru the dacron. I am going 4 feet, though I was told I had to only go 3 feet for a full strength chinese finger type action on the connection. After you lose the mono out the back of the needle a few times as you work it up the dacron you learn how to keep it inside the needle.
After you get the desired 3 or 4 feet of mono inside the dacron, you run the needle out thru the side of the dacron.
The latch hooks are tiny little things, with an arm that folds back and forth. When your running it up the dacron the arm is folded back, when you grab the dacron and are pulling it back thru, the arm folds forward and it protects the loop so it doesnt snag on the way thru.
Once you have the mono inside the 7 or 8 foot piece of dacron go to the other end of the dacron and form a loop with the latch hook. I think if I was using hollow spectra instead of dacron a bimini loop here would be just as easy to make the loop, for the loop to loop connection, and wouldnt require the latch hook. But since I am using dacron I am using the latch hook to make the loop.
A few inches from the end of the dacron insert the latch hook and go a couple inches and pop out the side.
Grab the dacron a ways up the line and pull it back thru itself.
As you pull the dacron back thru itself the couple inches you went thru with the latch hook, the dacron will turn itself inside out.
you end up with a lasso type set up with the dacron going thru the hollow part of the dacron that allows you to adjust the size of the loop you want.
Next go thru the side of the dacron with the latch hook and pull the tail back inside of the dacron which locks down the loop
The finished loop looks like this and will transition thru guides with no problems
next I am going back and putting a whip finish on the other end of the dacron where the mono is. I am not sure this is needed, and I know they sell a small bottle of glue for $35
for this connection point for under the whip finish.
I am hoping my whip finish is enough to keep the dacron from sliding up the mono, I am not even sure it will or will not be a problem
Here is the start to the whip finish
Here it is finished off
When I am done I spool off the predetermined length of mono I want and wrap them on a large spool
I have a half dozen of these made up in less than a couple hours this morning, but they are not quick to make by any means.
I am making the dacron loop big enough I can put the loop on the dacron thru the loop on the spectra at the bimini twist, and then put the whole spool thru the dacron loop for the connection. Then I will be able to wind the leader off the spool right onto the rod.
I figure it will take less than a minute to put a new premeasured top shot on the rod should I knit a sweater and have to do some cutting at sea.
As you can see the size of the connections are all very small and should transition thru the guides very easy.
For any of you experts that have fished a wind on leader, that want to comment on them, please feel free to let me know what I am doing wrong. As I said I have yet to fish them, but they look like the cats meow after you have them on the spool ready to go.