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Brandon Guyer

What Line Should I Use?

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I'm fishing a very grassy lake and I'm using soft plastic baits. I have a Quantum PT Energy reel and I want to have more sensitivity when fishing with soft plastics. What type of line and what pound test would you recommend?

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Power Pro or 832 Braid in the color you prefer.

 

Low Vis for moving baits, Hi-Vis for bottom contact or stand still plastics if you're a line watcher, if not low-vis will work too. 

 

#15 or #20 if you're spinning

#30 or #40 if you're using a baitcaster.

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1). If it very thick with vegitation, or flipping, I would use 65 pound braid.  It will cut through the veggies like butter. 

 

2).  My #1 favorite line for plastics in South Florida is 15 pound Berkley Floro (Professional Grade).  Not all floros are the same, don't be fooled, this stuff is very good.  Super sensitive, super clear in clear water, super strong.  This stuff is expensive, and you will have to change it out more than mono.  I have alot of confidence in this floro and I'm convinced more bites.  Any heavier than 15 pounds and the Floro become difficult to handle on the reel.

 

3). Top Water I use 12 pound Mono.  It floats and helps keep the lure up, high and dry.  It also provides alot more action to the lure.

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Power Pro or 832 Braid in the color you prefer.

 

Low Vis for moving baits, Hi-Vis for bottom contact or stand still plastics if you're a line watcher, if not low-vis will work too. 

 

#15 or #20 if you're spinning

#30 or #40 if you're using a baitcaster.

What he said....except bump up to 50lb on the casting gear if it's really nasty/matted stuff. Some even suggest 65lb, but I like 50 just fine for this.

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What he said....except bump up to 50lb on the casting gear if it's really nasty/matted stuff. Some even suggest 65lb, but I like 50 just fine for this.

 

It's certainly thick cover, but I've never had problems with line breaking while using 8lb mono in this stuff. So is the point of using 50lb braid to get the bait in a certain area where the fish are more likely to be? I'm fishing from a canoe so I don't know if that plays a role in deciding what to use. 

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50+ like WW2 suggested if you're casting/flipping/pitching directly into the thickest stuff in the lake. Dense lily pads, matted grass, and thick milfoil or alike would be areas for this.

Your boat is not a factor in line choice.

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When it comes to choosing fishing line it can become overwhelming if you start doing research and experimenting witth all the different types and colors etc...I have tried almost every braid, mono or copolymer on the market since I work part time at a large tackle shop with bulk spools of all the major brands, and I find that each brand of Mono is similiar & perfoms well....I still use Mono for Topwater, Baitcasting reels for Open water cranking, spinnerbaits, and soft plastics since it is the easiest to handle, and if you are using 8lb mono now and not having any issues, why fix what isn't broken?

Fishing with braided line is not for everyone, and there is a learning curve involved which can be quite expensive the first few days on the water, especially if you are casting in windy conditions, not used to closing your bail manually, and prefer a fast tip rod & rip hooksets extremely hard. I won't get into the entire process of knot tying which is different than mono, the need for leaders in many cases, line color, and unlike mono, power pro braid compared to Berkley Fireline (coated braid or superline) or even power pro plus, is comparing apples and oranges in how it handles.....

Everyone I speak with about fishing line always has a personal preference and I rarely try to sell someone braided line if they are happy with mono, and I find many customers at the shop I work in will purchase braid without knowing anything about the line they are buying, and they almost always have a bad experience on the water after blindly spooling up 40lb power pro on a spinning reel that is not able to handle a line that strong...

I can ramble for hours about lines since it is the most important factor when it comes to catching fish in my opinion next to having quality hooks that will not bend. Here is what I recommend if you have never used braid before and want to start punching heavy cover for bigger fish with soft baits or jigs....

If you are using spinning gear for worm fishing in heavy cover I would Strongly encourage you to make the move to a PE Coated Superline like Berkley Crystal Fireline, Tuff-line duracast or the newer coated line, or Berkley Nanofil which is a true Superline, and not a braid at all. Nanofil is expensive, but truly hanldes like Mono and is every bit as good as berkley advertises and Fireline is optimized for spinning reels and very good as well. The coated lines are a good choice for more strength on spinning reels and if you currently fish 8lb mono, I would go with 14 Fireline which has a 6lb diameter for longer casting, more strength, and same clear color. If using a baitcaster, then simply go to a heavier Mono like 17lb Trilene XT,Suffix, or any abrasion resistant mono.

If I had to choose the best overall line for every situation in bass fishing, I would have to pick yo-zuri Hybrid Co-polymer Fluorocarbon/Nylon fused line which has the benefits of Flurocarbon in abrastion resistance, more sensitive, softer than Fluoro and easier to cast, and does not lose knot strength or any tensile power from water or sunlight. Yo-zuri 10-12lb is stronger than labeled and is a bit thicker than mono, but is super strong and breaks near 15lb test or more.

If you are sticking with mono, I would think 20lb test is about as heavy I would ever go on a spinning rod, and maybe 25 on casting gear, and for hybrid, 20lb is all I would consider for Bass Fishing, and if you want more power than that, 20lb coated braids are usually 8lb in diameter, and 30 would be overkill in my opininion....If looking to throw frogs in slop or really start flipping and punching heavy cover, I would get a baitcasting reel and spool up any 4 strand multifilament like Power Pro, Tuff line xp, Fins windtamer, and Suffix 832 is also razor sharp for such a smooth line and is great. 40-65lb test is what I throw on casting gear, and I love Suffix as mentioned, and for the money, Tuff Line XP is every bit as good and rated better than power pro from a tensile breaking strength on a consistent basis, and it handles exactly the same. Power pro is good line, just do not purchase on Ebay from anyone who is not a reputable dealer. Fake Power Pro is more common than people realize, and so is Spider Wire......hope my ramble helps. I am not a fan of Fluorocarbon lines for any application except for spinning gear, finesse fishing, and line in 6lb test for ultra clear fishing only and never in the cold.

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Choice is real easy for me, braid !  I'm not overly fussy on who makes it, I do buy a lot of PP because I can buy it at 4 am.  10-15-& 20# is just about all I use for everything, bass, peacocks, snook, jacks, permit, tarpon. Whatever kind of line is used it's all about the drag, even 40# braid on a spinning reel is fine if the drag is set to the mono equivalent.   Overthinking is probably the worst enemy you can have.

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You want to use braid in that situation, 30#+ if using a bc. It will add some sensitivity and cuts through grass. I guess I would go with 30# if there is no other structure for the fish to wrap themselves around.

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When it comes to choosing fishing line it can become overwhelming if you start doing research and experimenting witth all the different types and colors etc...I have tried almost every braid, mono or copolymer on the market since I work part time at a large tackle shop with bulk spools of all the major brands, and I find that each brand of Mono is similiar & perfoms well....I still use Mono for Topwater, Baitcasting reels for Open water cranking, spinnerbaits, and soft plastics since it is the easiest to handle, and if you are using 8lb mono now and not having any issues, why fix what isn't broken?

Fishing with braided line is not for everyone, and there is a learning curve involved which can be quite expensive the first few days on the water, especially if you are casting in windy conditions, not used to closing your bail manually, and prefer a fast tip rod & rip hooksets extremely hard. I won't get into the entire process of knot tying which is different than mono, the need for leaders in many cases, line color, and unlike mono, power pro braid compared to Berkley Fireline (coated braid or superline) or even power pro plus, is comparing apples and oranges in how it handles.....

Everyone I speak with about fishing line always has a personal preference and I rarely try to sell someone braided line if they are happy with mono, and I find many customers at the shop I work in will purchase braid without knowing anything about the line they are buying, and they almost always have a bad experience on the water after blindly spooling up 40lb power pro on a spinning reel that is not able to handle a line that strong...

I can ramble for hours about lines since it is the most important factor when it comes to catching fish in my opinion next to having quality hooks that will not bend. Here is what I recommend if you have never used braid before and want to start punching heavy cover for bigger fish with soft baits or jigs....

If you are using spinning gear for worm fishing in heavy cover I would Strongly encourage you to make the move to a PE Coated Superline like Berkley Crystal Fireline, Tuff-line duracast or the newer coated line, or Berkley Nanofil which is a true Superline, and not a braid at all. Nanofil is expensive, but truly hanldes like Mono and is every bit as good as berkley advertises and Fireline is optimized for spinning reels and very good as well. The coated lines are a good choice for more strength on spinning reels and if you currently fish 8lb mono, I would go with 14 Fireline which has a 6lb diameter for longer casting, more strength, and same clear color. If using a baitcaster, then simply go to a heavier Mono like 17lb Trilene XT,Suffix, or any abrasion resistant mono.

If I had to choose the best overall line for every situation in bass fishing, I would have to pick yo-zuri Hybrid Co-polymer Fluorocarbon/Nylon fused line which has the benefits of Flurocarbon in abrastion resistance, more sensitive, softer than Fluoro and easier to cast, and does not lose knot strength or any tensile power from water or sunlight. Yo-zuri 10-12lb is stronger than labeled and is a bit thicker than mono, but is super strong and breaks near 15lb test or more.

If you are sticking with mono, I would think 20lb test is about as heavy I would ever go on a spinning rod, and maybe 25 on casting gear, and for hybrid, 20lb is all I would consider for Bass Fishing, and if you want more power than that, 20lb coated braids are usually 8lb in diameter, and 30 would be overkill in my opininion....If looking to throw frogs in slop or really start flipping and punching heavy cover, I would get a baitcasting reel and spool up any 4 strand multifilament like Power Pro, Tuff line xp, Fins windtamer, and Suffix 832 is also razor sharp for such a smooth line and is great. 40-65lb test is what I throw on casting gear, and I love Suffix as mentioned, and for the money, Tuff Line XP is every bit as good and rated better than power pro from a tensile breaking strength on a consistent basis, and it handles exactly the same. Power pro is good line, just do not purchase on Ebay from anyone who is not a reputable dealer. Fake Power Pro is more common than people realize, and so is Spider Wire......hope my ramble helps. I am not a fan of Fluorocarbon lines for any application except for spinning gear, finesse fishing, and line in 6lb test for ultra clear fishing only and never in the cold.

 

+1 Really great information here. 

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Personally I like Berkley Crystal Fireline... I have it on most of my spinning reels and it's great in heavy cover.

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What I've never understood is why use braid if your just going to tie on an 8ft flouro leader, that leader is what will be in contact with whatever line cutting hazard is in the water so why spool up braid in the first place? Also has anyone been experiencing braid cutting into your rod guides? I've been really considering braid but I would hate to ruin an expensive rod , I think maybe this whole super line thing is over my head

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Devildog, your guides will be be fine with braid. No need to stress. Spool up and go catch some nice fish.

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For those conditions with soft plastics (texas-rig), I like Powerpro (40lb) with a 12 lb flourocarbon leader.   (tied with a double-uni knot).

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