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BrackishBassin

The truth about black...

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Before I ask my question, I’ll say that I wasn’t quite sure where to put it since it relates to lures and line. So, if it’s more appropriate elsewhere, please feel free to move it.

 

Here’s my conundrum - I’ve heard guys say over and over that they color the last few feet of their braid black so “the bass don’t see it”. Those same people then turn around and recommend that you throw dark colored lures, black and blue being a common suggestion along with straight black, in dirty water conditions so that the bass can see the lure.

 

So, my question is, what’s the deal with black? Is it a high visibility color as suggested by the guys saying to throw it in dirty water, or is it a low visibility color as suggested by the guys saying to color a few feet of your braid with a Sharpie? Curious to hear thoughts on the subject from guys that fish frequently. Thanks!

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Typically people talk about coloring the end of their braided line when they are using bright colors like white or yellow. Those colors are not natural in the water. But a black or dark line could more resemble a stick or grass that fish would not care as much about.

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It's both - depending on a variety of factors including water color, clarity, depth and prevailing light and cover conditions.

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7 minutes ago, Team9nine said:

It's both - depending on a variety of factors including water color, clarity, depth and prevailing light and cover conditions.

I was afraid someone would say something like that. 

19 minutes ago, georgeyew said:

Typically people talk about coloring the end of their braided line when they are using bright colors like white or yellow. Those colors are not natural in the water. But a black or dark line could more resemble a stick or grass that fish would not care as much about.

So, my moss green should be fine? The waters I fish have quite a bit of aquatic vegetation. 

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Personally I've never seen a reason to colour my line.

 

When I flip I use fluorocarbon.

 

When I fishing walking topwaters and hollow body frogs I use straight braid, originally in timber brown but now in green. I haven't noticed a difference in the number of strikes I get and I've had smallmouth in water with 20ft of visibility come up and hit walking baits tied directly to braid.

 

Your braid should be fine.

 

 

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Black plastics work well, don't see the need for braid, but I do use moss green.

 

For guys that use Hi-Vis braid, it coloring the last ten feet black, I am indifferent.

To each his own

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I use yellow braid for plastics for better visibility of the line, watch the rod and line as well as feeling for the strike. I use to use green, but in the bright Florida sun, yellow provides a little better visibility. I use FC leaders with all my plastics, so color isn't an issue for this set up. 

 

For spinnerbaits, cranks baits, frogs, poppers, prop baits, and hard jerk baits, I tied braid directly to the lure. These are thrown on different rods than my plastics, so they are all loaded with green braid. This was advice provided to me by a FLW tournament guy that I work with as they are more moving baits than sit and soak like plastics where fish have time to see and look at the line. He also said that when the green coloring fades out, get a green sharpie and re-color the braid. I asked about black because it is easier to find. He remarked he'll do that in a pinch, but wash out the black with some hot water to fade it to more of a green or brown color. He said both are more natural like a stick or piece of grass. 

 

YMMV.....

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I love throwing black colored lures for 2 reasons. #1 is because of the visibility in deep water, muddy water, or at night. #2 being that it's different, I love throwing an all black jig with all black trailer. Its different. As far as coloring lines go, that's not for me. I use braid to a copoly leader, not for less visibility, but as a shock absorber. Your braid will be fine. And don't rule out a solid black jig with solid black trailer, even in clear water

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It's an excellent question without any logical explanation because black is the absence of light, very visible contrast to every color.

My belief is anglers can't see the line when it's colored black and that gives them confidence. The same angler is convinced bass can see black lures and that gives them confidence. Why that same angler believes in 2 opposite thoughts is beyond my compression.

Tom

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I've always colored my braid once it turns white. But not a solid streak of black. I've always candy cane striped it. One foot or so black them skip a foot or so etc. I think it's just to break it up from being one solid color more then trying to make it invisible. 

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14 hours ago, BrackishBassin said:

I was afraid someone would say something like that. 

So, my moss green should be fine? The waters I fish have quite a bit of aquatic vegetation. 

Yeah. But the only problem is it won't stay mossy long. It'll be mint green before you know it and it will never wear out. LOL. I colored my braid a few times before I realized it doesn't stay long. Hey, fish will bite an A rig.

 

I caught a lot of fish on straight braid for years, but lately I've started using about a 3' mono leader except for with the frog. I haven't really noticed much difference in bites. It will allow you to break off if you get hopelessly hung up on a log with your 30 or 50# braid. I certainly haven't noticed any downside to leaders as long as you use a good knot and I haven't broken one off yet.

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Buy braid that doesn't lose it's color. Where do you think the dye is going when it's wet on your reel spool?

Tom

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Just now, WRB said:

Buy braid that doesn't lose it's color.

Tom

Tom, are you referring to Fin ?

I have also been happy with Gamma

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Getting off topic, there are a few color fast braids that have a coating to reduce abrasion , Fins is the brand I use for that reason.

Tom

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 Back in 1965 , I was fishing in our small farm pond. I made a wayward cast and threw a black worm in the trees hanging over the water. It was about 6 inches above the water and a big bass grabbed it. Broke the line and was never seen by me again. Yes bass can see black very well. No need to mark the line black IMO

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I'm convinced fish can see braid, mono, and flouro. It just depends how much they care about what's on the end of it.

 

I recall fishing with flouro in the river after a good rain watching bluegill bite at the line and thinking "what the hell?"

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First , I never use braid . I have colored mono with  marker before in two inch segments with a black marker , just to break up the outline  . Once  I watched a 15 inch bass under a dock in clear water . I tried numerous times to get him to hit a  plastic crawfish but it showed no interest . I then  cammo'd my line with a black marker in two inch strips , flipped it in  front of the fish and caught it . 

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You want the truth?  You can't handle the truth!  Bass don't care what color the line is...

 

 

oe

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"Bass don't care what color the line is..."

 

About 25 years ago my buddy took me bass fishing to an old historic mill pond full of beaver huts and nearly black water. It was cold and the wind was blowing up small whitecaps and the fishing had been slow all day. He had brought along an old bass rod he wanted me to buy since all I ever had was my assortment of saltwater rigs and he wasn't going to sell me one of his best outfits. I refused to use it all day because it was short and rigged with bright yellow line and a short bubblegum pink worm he'd put on 2 or 3 years earlier and left in the garage to collect dust. The guy has 4 or 5 big racks of outfits to this day and is always looking for more deals.

 

Anyway, along about 4 p.m. I gave in, took this hideous thing and made a 20-foot backhanded cast under some bushes as the wind pushed us at the bank. BANG. My first 7.5 pound largemouth. Go figure. I love fishing.

 

I bought the rod and reel. :)

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It's like blowing on your hands to warm them, or blowing on your coffee to cool it.  Really, makes no sense at all.

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Not buying the line color deal. Look at all of the garbage on the Alabama rig. If fish can be caught on that contraption, I'm not the least bit concerned about line color.  

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only time i worry about line colour is in super clear water i throw braid on pretty much everything except jigs and cranks and that's mainly because im bound to come into contact with some rocks and i'd rather not have so many baits lost.

i do use hi vis yellow on 2 rods and that's so i can see the line

dont get so caught up on line colour just worry about the area you are fishing in first then if you know they are there worry about bait and last should be line 

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Umbrella rig is a moving bait, same with spinnerbaits and buzzbaits.  Add to that, there's five bodies with shimmering color, and moving tails, and it's easy to see why a bass would disregard the wires.   When using stationary or finesse type baits, the fish can definitely see the line.  I'm not sure that throws the fish off or not, but I'm not running bright pink or yellow braid on my drop shot rig.  For jigs and T-rigs, I'll color the last foot black, sometimes.  I also don't fish too many black baits, unless it's a topwater and I don't feel color matters that much for topwaters.  One thing, I catch quite a few smallmouth when pike fishing with bucktail jigs tied to a wire leader.  The water is pretty clear, but who knows.  There's a big difference in dark line and a dark bait.  If you fished yellow line and a chartreuse bait, do you think the fish would go after the line or the bait?  I mean it's not as cut and dry as that, but that's another way to word the original question.

 

Basically, when you ask the question, you are lumping two pieces of advice, about two separate parts of the system into one assumption.  Can't do that and be successful.  You gotta figure out each part that works best for you, one at a time.

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I don't think line "visibility" is terribly important. J Francho catches smallies on wire, and Team9nine, I know, has caught plenty on straight fluorescent braid sans leader. But even a thin FC leader can, under high vis condtions, freak fish out due to the movement. Ever wonder why "drag" is such a "no-no" when dry fly fishing? It's the tippet dummy! :) That supposedly tiny little insect is suddenly 2 feet long!

 

I may camo a line (done it for years in fly-fishing) due to line flash in the air under certain conditions -a definite fish spooker. Otherwise fish don't know what line is, unless it's something perceived large and moving nearby -and that long string, thin as it is, can move a lot of water. 

 

Dont worry too much about line "visibility". There are bigger fish to fry, like line diameter against conditions. I've always said if there was one BIG breakthrough that could be made in fishing, it would be eliminating that line tied to our lures. Any ideas? I'm all ears. 

 

Oh, and yes, black lures can be very visible underwater, esp against light backgrounds. And conversely, light lures can be very visible, esp against dark backgrounds. Then there are "colors". Not going there. :)

 

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Bass are first and foremost sight feeders. That dark, black, lure becomes the focus of their attention. The line, if seen, is secondary and if seen, can distract that focus enough that all the fish ends up doing is watching the bait and not committing to a strike.  I personally don't know of anyone that colors the last foot or so of their line black. I do know of many, including myself that will break up the outline with a dash of green, or black marker every inch and a half or so.

 

When introducing young anglers to fishing jigs and soft plastics, I always have them using bright, yellow braid. It makes it much easier for them and me to see hits and gives them a better sense of feel.  The last foot or so of that line looks like -- -  --  - -  --  They catch plenty of fish with no leader and I have no concerns about line visibility becoming an issue in them not catching fish.

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