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Fishing Lines

Fishing LinesThere is a large selection of fishing lines available to the recreational angler today. In fact there are so many, it can often be a confusing and complicated task to try to choose which one is best for any given situation. You may also wonder why there is such a need for so many different types of line, when fundamentally a line is a rope that you use to connect your hook to your rod.

In fact, when you are choosing your line, you need to consider the type of reel you are using. You should also take into account the average weight of the fish you want to catch, while the fishing techniques you are going to use can also be pertinent. The conditions in which you are fishing are also extremely important when you are choosing a fishing line.

Let’s start with reels. If you are using a bait casting reel stiff line is best, although most lines function well in this type of reel. If you use a spin cast or spinning reel, you should always use soft lines. Stiff lines will jam the reel. The line should be thin, and can be braid, fusion or monofilament.

When choosing your line, you will of course need to consider line strength. This is where the potential size of your fish will come in. Obviously if you choose a thin line with a low tensile strength, this is not suitable for catching large game fish. If you do try to reel in a big fish with a line that is simply too weak, it will of course snap and you will lose fish, hook, and any other tackle you may have attached to it.

Finally you need to choose your line based on fishing conditions and fishing techniques. First of all, fishing lines can be purchased in a selection of colours. You should usually aim to conceal your line in the water as much as possible, and therefore you should choose a line colour that closely matches the colour of the water in which you will be fishing.

The most general line colour to choose is called Low Visibility. This line is difficult to see regardless of the water colour. Low Visibility Clear is a variation on this, and is very difficult to see in clear water. The disadvantage of low visibility lines is that the angler himself can often find it difficult to see the line outside of the water. Clear Blue Fluorescent line is a solution to this problem, as on a bright day it is fluorescent above the water, while still being almost undetectable beneath the surface. Other lines that are easily visible above the water are Moss Green, Brown and High Visibility Gold.

Clearly, Moss Green line is best suited to water that is either greenish in tint, or that has a lot of plants and weeds. Brown is good for brown or dark water, while High Visibility Gold is good for conditions where the line may be very difficult to see.


Once you have your colour and line strength decided upon, you will need to choose a type of line that is suited to your reel. Possibilities include Braided, Monofilament, Co-filament, Fused and Fluorocarbons. Braided line is one of the older forms of line available, and is made from braided strands of a nylon-based material. This braided line is called Dacron and is rarely used today, other than as backing for reels used in fly fishing. Dacron has largely been replaced by nylon lines, as it is affected by abrasion and is difficult to cast due to its limpness.

Monofilament line is usually nylon line and is typically more expensive than other fishing lines. It is thin but very strong, and is treated to make it resistant to abrasion. An important feature of any fishing line is sensitivity, and nylon monofilament relays the slightest movement on the line back up to the rod. A further development of this is Co-filament line, which has two layers of nylon layered over each other, which makes the line stronger and more resistant than standard monofilament line, while maintaining the same level of sensitivity.

Another alternative to nylon lines are Fused lines such as Spiderwire. These are made from polyethylene fibres fused to form a line. Fused lines are known for their strength, thinness and resistance to abrasion. Finally there is Fluorocarbon line, which is constructed from polymer of fluorine that is bonded to carbon. This line does not stretch easily, does not float, and is extremely difficult to see under the water.

There is therefore a wide selection of fishing lines today, that have been engineered and designed to the highest standards. Knowledge and understanding of the different types of fishing lines will automatically improve any angler’s fishing skills.