Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Non-Trout pursuits

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jameslejames
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Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by jameslejames » Fri Jan 07, 2011 2:33 pm

Hi all,

I have a few questions about non-trout species: first, what size and length of leaders(and/or) tippets does everyone like for bass and sunfish? I'm guessing that they can be a little heavier than 5 or 6X, right? And how about length? I remember when I was 10 using a 3 or 4 foot section of mono in lakes and ponds, by the way...

Thanks,

Jamey

mickmcco
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Re: Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by mickmcco » Fri Jan 07, 2011 8:39 pm

Depends on the size and weight of your flies, the amount of "structure," and how much stealth is required. I'm typically fishing 3x or heavier with sunfish, on 6-7.5' leaders, and heavier stuff for bass (Ox to 2x). For things like stripers up here on Texoma, it's 12-20 lb test Orvis AR (Abrasion Resistant) leaders nine feet long. If I need to add tippet, it's usually fluorocarbon. If I am fishing poppers around weed beds, it'll be a 6 foot leader tapered to Ox or heavier. If you are fishing in the Hill Country Rivers, I'd go a little lighter, especially in high water clarity.
Mickfly
Fish Friendly - Life's too short not to enjoy every minute on the river.

Danny S
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Re: Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by Danny S » Sat Jan 08, 2011 4:02 am

For the rivers of the Hill Country, can't think of a time I went smaller than 4X. Sometimes, I just tie a length of 4X directly to my fly-line to leader connector (a couple of inches of Amnesia with a perfection loop knot). I like to keep that length in the 5-7 foot range but have gotten away with 4 feet. My most complicated leader for these rivers has been 3-4 feet of 3X then about 4 feet of 4X. May seem to go against everything we learn about tapering and such, but it's served me well..

Jimbo Roberts
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Re: Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by Jimbo Roberts » Sat Jan 08, 2011 3:20 pm

Most of my Bass fishing is really fishing for Guadalupes, smaller largemouths, and Perch on our Hill Country rivers.
Most of the time I start out with a 7 1/2' 3X mono leader and attach various tippet sizes fron 3X to 5X depending on what I am doing.
Almost everyone who knows me knows I love fishing poppers and hoppers for Bass and Perch. If the fishing is slower I will switch to using streamers like a Cat's Whisker, wooly buggers, larger nymphs like damsels and dragonfly nymphs. I will tie in a longer tippet section using mono or fluoro depending on the amount of brush in the water or water depth. If the Bass fishing is slow I will switch to targeting Perch on medium to smaller nymphs like Dave's Red Squirrel Rubber Legs and smaller and longer fluoro tippets in 4X to 5X with split shot and strike indicators.
If I go fishing on waters with bigger average sized Bass, like the Colorado, I start out with 7 1/2' 0X mono leader and use 0X to 4X mono tippet or fluoro if again there is a lot of wood on the shore. Again I start out with poppers and hoppers and switch to streamers and other specific flipping flys if I need to go into brush to get the Bass out.
It really a simple plan, but I rarely find I need to be more complex. I do carry sinktip for those really tough days. I usually stick to floating lines inspite of difficult fishing, but if the Bass are holding deeper than 5' or 6' I will switch. Many carry full sinking lines as they are really the go to lines for typical lake fishing in depths of 8' or deeper that those Bass typically hold. Using sinktip and full sinking lines I will use straight fluoro tippet OX to 3X of < 4', or designed short heavy tapered leaders < 6' for sinking lines.
Jimbo

jameslejames
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Re: Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by jameslejames » Thu Jan 13, 2011 12:25 pm

Thanks again, guys.

I live in Austin and have been exploring wadeable water in my area-anyone ever flyfish Town Lake?

Jamey

judsondeancole
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Re: Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by judsondeancole » Thu Jan 13, 2011 12:46 pm

i used to fish town lake alot when i lived in austin. i did pretty good with some foam poppers up against the banks and the mouth of barton creek. i also used a few common streamers, like a mickey finn, wooly bugger, and cat's whiskers for probing the depths. i always use a 3x tapered leader on all my town lake outings...never ran into anything where i needed bigger.

also, you will see some monstrous bass if you make your way up barton creek. i tried for years to catch these fish.....i literally bounced a clouser off of the head of one with no reaction.

good luck!

lathrop
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Re: Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by lathrop » Wed Feb 16, 2011 3:38 pm

"fluoro if again there is a lot of wood on the shore"

Jimbo, in what way is flouro better when there is a lot of brush?

By the way, I've seen many posts discussing your Hopper proclivities, do you do foam rubber legged high floating types; or deer hair whitlock or muddler minnow style. I've tried the latter some but haven't had great success.

If you don't mind sharing I would be curious what kind of colors and presentations have worked?

Jimbo Roberts
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Re: Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by Jimbo Roberts » Wed Feb 16, 2011 6:20 pm

Fluoro is much more abrasion resistant than mono alloys. It is generally stiffer than mono also per diameter, but they are getting much better. Fluoro also is denser than mono and tends to sink through the water more quickly, great for sub-surface presentations, not so good for topwater presentations. You can dress it with floatant but it still wants to sink more easily than mono.

As far as Hoppers go, closed cell foam definitely floats higher and longer than deerhair. As far as different designs go there is no universal best design, some work better on some rivers and on different rivers other designs work better. So experiment and see what works best for you. You would not believe the number of different hopper designs I have in my collection. Another thing is that hoppers are just one of the big three terrestrials; don't overlook Ants and Beetles. They can be big producers especially for Trout and Panfish.

Jimbo

castell
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Re: Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by castell » Wed Feb 16, 2011 9:35 pm

My bass leaders are all fluorocarbon with a 4' section of 30lb and a 3-4' section of 20lb. If you go with a sink-tip or full sinking, then I use a 4' strait 20lb. Also, I use a lot of non-slip loop knots (see here) for both poppers and streamers for bass.

I don't know of much water on town lake to wade. You might try around Red Bud Isle and around the mouth of Barton Creek, but most places your backcast will be limited and I find more fish on the far bank. You might talk to Greg at Sportsman's Finest, he knows some spots on Barton and Bull Creek that offer nice wading.

2x is about as light as I go for any streamer fishing. Even for streamer fishing on the Guadalupe for trout I never go lighter than 2x. I can't tell you the number of times on the Guadalupe that I have taken someone else's bugger out of trout with 4x or lighter tippet.

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Coconut Groves
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Re: Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by Coconut Groves » Thu Feb 24, 2011 10:44 pm

I pretty much run flouro on everything, except when fishing anything meant on top of the water. Even poppers will work fine with flouro and I usually wont' change up just for that.

For bass, I run full sink heads, 15' in length, with 6' flouro leaders. 10 - 12 lb on the 6 wt, 12 - 15 lb on the 8 wt, just depending on the size bug I am throwing. Usually, the 8 wt has a 2/0 on it, and I rarely drop below a size 2 on the 6 wt. I like to run a bit longer and lighter, though some say bass aren't really tippet shy. I've never had issues with that size and length - the bugs turn over nicely and sink like a rock.
"Strip... Strip... Strip...... Fish On!"

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Ron Mc
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Re: Tippet sizes for bass, sunfish, and other non-trout?

Post by Ron Mc » Fri Mar 18, 2011 5:05 pm

I fish 3x fluroro pretty much across the board for warmwater.
The only difference would be if I'm fishing poppers, and then I go to nylon.
Ron Mc

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