Close Up View Reel Line Jig

5 COMMON FISHING LINE CARE MISTAKES

Your line is one of the most crucial tackle items you have. You can invest as much as you want in a top-of-the-range rod and state-of-the-art reel, but if you aren’t looking after your line broken lines and bite-offs will ruin your time out on the water.

Even small abrasions in your line can have a profound effect when you are locked in battle with a stubborn and ferocious fish. It can mean the difference between success and failure on the water. I know fishos aren’t deliberately neglecting their lines but for many, their line care maintenance regime falls by the side out of laziness. When they do pay any attention to their line, it is insufficient and inadequate, leading to more line care mistakes. Here are the line care mistake you are probably making but shouldn’t be if you want to maintain a reliable and robust line.

TYING KNOTS TOO QUICKLY

Plenty of fishos are in a rush to start casting when they tie their knots. They rush them, often forgetting to wet the line and usually pulling the knots in quickly, causing friction and creating a weak spot in the line. Whenever you are tying rigs or lures on, wet the line, and cinch the knot slowly. This will reduce the friction and leave your line in a healthy condition.

SETTING THE DRAG TOO TIGHT

When taking larger species, anglers usually push the drag up. This is logical but only if you don’t push it up too high. If I had a penny for every time I have seen a fisho’s line break within 5 or 10 foot from the boat, I’d have about $2. The last surge which occurs right before you get the fish boat side, is an absolute killer. Set your drag too high and your line is done for. I won’t set a drag higher than 25% of the line’s strength.

NOT CHECKING THE LINE AFTER EVERY FISH

Checking your line should be part of your catch routine. Every time a lure is taken, there is the chance it had rubbed against the fish’s teeth and caused an abrasion. An extra 2 seconds to run your fingers along the line and leader won’t delay your fishing much, but it will mean the difference between taking your next fish and saying goodbye to the fish and the expensive lure.

STORING YOUR GEAR UNDER LIGHTS

Light breaks lines down faster than heat. Your rod and line should be stored in a cool, dry, dark space for preservation. If you have no choice but to store it under lights or somewhere warm, make sure you change your lines regularly, as they will break down at a much faster rate.

HOOKING LURES TO YOUR REEL FOR EASY STORAGE

We have all done it for convenience. But my advice is, stop it! The lures damage the reel, which will lead to more abrasion, and the dangling hook can easily snick your line.

Similarly, don’t hook them onto your top guide either. These are usually made of ceramic and prone to chips and cracks. Nothing shears through a line as much as cracked ceramic, it will cut your line to shreds and leave you with a lost lure.

I cannot stress enough the importance of good line care. Setting up a regime where you are regularly checking and changing the line, as well as tying knots carefully and practicing the correct storage practices will save you money and help you catch more fish. It is no surprise that the pros have a meticulous attitude towards line care. Their livelihood literally depends on it.


 

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Jackson Williams
jacksonw@dinga.com.au

Jackson Williams has been fishing around Australia for 20 years and loves his home region of far north Queensland.