“The braided line keeps burying itself in my reel spool.”
“My reel backlashes more with braided lines than with monofilament.”
Is that you? Do you have problems with braided line? Have you given up and gone back to monofilament in frustration? If so, pay heed to the following and see if it doesn’t bring you back to the braid.
There are a number of manufacturers that market a braided line of some sort. Some are flatter than others; others are more round; and, all of them come in a variety of colors.
The ComplaintsThe complaints I hear come in three forms for the most part. The biggest is that the line buries into the reel at the hook set. That’s true for a lot of anglers using braids under certain conditions, but it doesn’t have to be that way! The second complaint is that reels backlash far more often. That’s a function of the first problem, and if we solve the first one, this complaint is fixed as well. Last but not least, anglers complain that fish tend to come off the hook before getting them to the boat, or that they simply can’t seem to hook the fish.
Fortunately there is a simple fix for each of these problems, and this fix will have you standing in line to purchase braided line again.
Braided Line QualitiesBraids are very strong yet very thin lines. Part of the sales pitch for them is that a braided line will be “20 pound test with the diameter of 6 pound test”. This is one factor that causes problems. Because the line is thirty-pound test, lots of anglers will set their drags heavier. The thinner a line is, the more likely it is to bury into the reel spool on a heavy drag set. So a lighter drag will help stop the burying line issue.
Someone might say that a lighter drag will mean more lost fish. That is a misconception that many anglers have. A lighter drag allows the fish to take line. As long as the angler pays attention to all other aspects of fighting a fish, the lighter drag can actually help rather than hinder the angler.
Burying Line in the SpoolOn a hook set with a tighter drag, braided line, rather than coming off the reel and pulling the drag, tends to bury itself in the spool. That buried line will not show itself until the next cast or two. Once a fish is caught, the buried line is hidden down in the spool. When a cast is made and the line leaving the spool reaches that buried spot, the mother of all backlashes usually occurs which allows the angler to sit down, pick line and mumble about braided line for a while.
Many really bad backlashes with thin braided line almost require re-spooling with new line. The knots are not as easily managed as those with monofilament.
The buried line issue ranked so high with some anglers that at least one reel manufacturer designed a spinning reel specifically for braided line. The gearing and spool movement was changed to have the line wrap onto the spool in more of a criss cross fashion, thereby helping to prevent the line from burying. While these reels do make a difference, they aren’t really necessary to fix the problem.
Backlashes with braided line can be avoided by preventing the line from burying into the spool. And preventing that buried line can be as simple as backing off on that drag!
The Importance of Setting the Drag ProperlyMost anglers who replace monofilament line on a reel with a heavier, but thinner braided line will leave the drag setting exactly where it was with the monofilament. They may even increase the drag a bit because of the heavier line rating. What they need to do is back off on the drag! That not only helps the buried line issue, but it also addresses the next issue on the list – line stretch.