A lead is a lead right? by Ken Beech

There was a time when I would agree, Back in the day all leads were garishly bright silver and a country mile behind today’s offerings, fast forward almost thirty years and there are all shapes, sizes and textures to choose from, some even boast brand names so the carp can choose which rig it picks up.

You may well wonder why I have written an article on leads, All we do is clip em on, cast em out, drop em on the take and repeat right?,  However for some years now I have been using the lead to help me in my search for efficiency whilst angling.

I guess the root of my thinking behind the content of this article was born from watching fish feeding and their behaviour around rigs along with the underwater videos of fish picking up baited rigs and getting rid with ease.

We all spend lots of time with our traps set waiting for a bite, why would you not want to try and make your end tackle more efficient?

One trick I have used for a long time is to sheath my lead swivel down to the lead with a length of silicon tube to minimise unloaded movement of the hooklength:

The process is really easy:

  • Cut 5mm’ish off a standard sized silicon sleeve in your chosen colour
  • Wet the inside of the cut down silicon sleeve and thread onto a gated needle
  • Close the gate onto the lead swivel eye and tease the sleeve down over the swivel etc. until it buts up against the lead
  • Repeat steps 1-3 to prep as many leads as you want

The sleeve vastly minimises the “unloaded movement” of the hooklength before the leads weight comes into play.

Try it yourself with an un-sleeved lead; there is a massive amount of unloaded movement of the hook length compared to a sleeved lead whereby the only movement is the top eye of the swivel moving within the void in the lead clip.

The downside to sheathing the lead in this way is that depending on the make up of the lake bed and where the lead comes to rest, the lack of movement in a sleeved lead at the swivel / lead joint may cause the swivel to sit upright rather than falling to the lakebed due to the lack of movement between sleeve and lead. I am willing to live with that due to how confident I am with my rigs increased hooking potential should it be picked up by a fish using a sleeved lead. I also feel that the hooklength has got far less metalwork to potentially get tangled round if the silicon sleeve is fitted.

Simple yes, However we all spend lots of time with our traps set out in the wet stuff and dare i say, we all get far more aborted takes than we like to think about. All the 1%’s add up and allow me to concentrate on “watching the water”and not worrying about that element of my rigs.

An article by Ken Beech

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