Leader and Tippet Life Span

rvrwaderrvrwader MemberPosts: 42 Member
OK it has been a "few" years since I have been fly fishing and I still have most of my gear and really don't want to replace anything I don't have to. I know I have to buy new fly line, however do I really need to replace all my tippet material and leaders I still have? What is the lifespan on these? One of my leaders does say best if used by 5/03. I seriously think that is only a year after I bought it. I have tested what I have and it seems to have the original strength. I don't want to sound cheap but I dont want to throw away over a $100 of items if it can still be used.
Well, I aint always right but I've never been wrong.....



  • If its flouro its good. If its mono, its probably junk.
  • Tim MurphyTim Murphy Member Posts: 84 Member
    Dear rvwader,

    Take your rod and reel outside and try casting with it. If it still works passibly to you you've sparely yourself the expense of a fly line.

    If you don't figure on hooking any big fish on your next outing your leaders will work fine too.

    I'm still spooling spinning reels with a 3000 yard of Berkely Big Game 8# test I found new in the box outside of Destin, FL in 1988. It's never failed me.


    Tim Murphy :-)
  • ScottPScottP Senior Member Posts: 480 Senior Member
    If your leaders and tippet haven't been laying on the back seat of the car exposed to the sun too much, or baking in the trunk all this time, you can probably get some more mileage out of them. I usually replace my 4x-6x tippet every year; question you have to ask is how silly are you going to punch yourself if that fish of a lifetime pops your leader because you wouldn't spring $4.50 for a new spool of 5x?

    ps - nice blog; like the post on the Sparrow, great fly (I just twist the marabou butts from the tail for the body)
    They say the times are changing but I just don't know
  • Brian D.Brian D. Senior Member Posts: 4,011 Senior Member
    rvrwader wrote: »
    I have tested what I have and it seems to have the original strength.

    Doesn't this pretty much answer the question?

  • ricinusricinus Senior Member Posts: 6,214 Senior Member
    I looked at my tippet and its dated BB2010. I tested it and it seems like new. It has been stored on the inside of my vest out of sunlight.
    I think i'll run with it for another year, but if it fails I will blame Brian.

    My new goal in life is to become an Alter Kaker...
  • FlytyerFlytyer Senior Member Posts: 131 Senior Member
    Definitely change all Tippet Material. I am going to fish this year for the first time in 3 years and I didn't even look at mine, I just threw them in the fire. If you use your old junk (And that is what it is) and you lose a nice fish because of it you will say " Why didn't I listen to the fat guy from CT ".
  • rvrwaderrvrwader Member Posts: 42 Member
    I have found the solution. I am going to keep everything but only use it for panfish. I will buy new leaders and tippets for trout. I just hate throwing away a hundred bucks. LOL
    Well, I aint always right but I've never been wrong.....

  • stratabassstratabass Junior Member Posts: 7 Junior Member
    I'd definitely buy new tippet. You could tie down with that from your leader butts, which I'd cut back to 0x or wherever it still will hold a knot. Worst thing is crap line and figuring that out on the water. Period.
  • ouzelproouzelpro Senior Member Posts: 5,361 Senior Member
    Yea, its wise to change your tippet, but I haven't done that in about three years. If I break oft at the San Juan, I might snap to the error. Fool myself once, shame on me.

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