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September 21, 2007

Leader Dispensers

I store my spools of leader in "food savers," such as those sold by Rubbermaid, or in an empty plastic peanut butter jar. The containers allow me to dispense leader from the spool with minimal hassle. First, find a plastic container with a diameter a bit larger and taller than your leader spool - a little extra room in the container allows the spool to turn freely. Use a heated razor blade to cut a horizontal 1" slit in the side of the container. Heating the razor creates a smooth cut that prevents frayed line and holds the tag end snugly when the spool is not being used. Apply a piece of tape to the side of the container near the slit, so you can find it easily, and write the line test on the tape for easy reference. Put a large, heavy steel washer in the bottom of the container to add weight and balance and reduce friction. Run the line through the slit with a small screwdriver and stand the leader spool in the container. Cut a dowel or hard-plastic tube to the proper length to hold the spool in the middle of the container and slide it through the center of the spool and washer. Seal the lid and you can pull as much or as little leader off the spool as you want. If you use two different line tests as leader on a regular basis, simply stack two spools in one taller container.

—Gary Cupit, Mexico Beach, Florida