Using A Shock Leader

A common problem for anglers new to shore fishing is losing tackle when casting, especially when using thinner braid as mainline. The problem is that braid doesn't have the same abrasion resistance as mono and fluoro, and it can also wear through when exposed to rocks etc. While braid is great for casting or fishing on the bottom, if it comes into contact with the edge of a wreck or rock reef, it is vulnerable. So how do you remedy this? The solution is to add a shockleader to your mainline.

A Reel With Shock Leader
When using relatively thin mainline, it is essential that a shockleader is attached to prevent the line breaking when casting. The rule of thumb to remember is for every ounce of lead weight, you must use at least 10lb of mono. That means if you use a 5oz sinker, you must use at least a 50lb shockleader; 6oz for 60lb, and so on. A shockleader attached to your mainline will also keep the thin braid out of danger. In terms of length, opt for the length of your beach rod plus six turns on your multiplier or fixed spool reel.

Fish eagle Tourney Shockleader
The easiest knot for attaching the shockleader is the half-hitch plus grinner, but you could also use the Albright knot by making a loop in the mono, passing the braid through the mono loop, wrapping it around at least 6 times, then pulling back through the loop. Meanwhile, always ensure you wet both lines before pulling tight. You can tie a swivel to the end of the shock leader to make changing sea rigs and lures quicker.

Berkley Big Game Mono Leader
As discussed, using shockleader protects your braid from heavy structures. However, it can also help you when landing fish. Try grabbing braid with wet hands and then flipping a fish into the boat. You will be lucky if the braid doesn't cut your hands! Another advantage is that it is inevitable that you will get at least one mess of tangled line, including your rig. However, using a shock leader will get you out of a mess quicker, even if the mess is so bad that you have to cut the mainline.  If you do need to cut your line, simply re-tie your shockleader and rig, and you will be back fishing in no time.

Shakespeare Beta Shockleader
If you would like more information about rigs, rig tying, or shock leader, you can visit us instore at Glasgow Angling Centre and Edinburgh Angling Centre where we have staff who are experienced sea anglers who are on hand to help you with you fishing questions. Alternatively, you can call us on 0141 212 8880 where our friendly and helpful customer service staff can help you.

This article was brought to you in association with Sea Angler Magazine.