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Riazuli

Comprehensive guide to prevent braid from snapping on casts.

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Hey everyone, I had been having a lot of issues with braid since last summer and have come up with the following suggestions for anyone having similar issues related to: braid digging in and snapping on the cast or at least getting random backlash and the lure stopping dead in the air.  - this an updated guide I posted before as I've seen a lot of people on different forums having these issues. 

Braid doesn't really stretch like mono or fluorocarbon line does.  If there are any kinks or the braid has dug in to the spool from a previous backlash, lure getting snagged and pulling hard on the line, catching a large fish, etc., it can snap from too much force applied.  This can send your lure flying...but with no line attached.  I probably lost a handful of lures before making all of the proper adjustments, so I feel your pain if this is happening to you.  This can even happen with 30lb+ braid, but the chances are slimmer than with thinner braids of course. Here are the steps to consider: 

1.  What kind of braid and what strength are you using?  A lot of people recommend 30lb test and up to prevent digging in due to larger line diameter, but this all really depends on brand and type.  I'm a big fan of original power pro 30lb, as it has been working well for me after switching from 15 lbs on two of my reels.  My other two reels are being outfitted with sufix 832 at 30lb test, which I've heard a lot of good things about in terms of smoothness, strength, and durability.  Some guys are happy with lower test braid, and I've seen a few guys say they use 20lb test comfortably.  I'm perfectly happy with 30 lbs and might even go higher for my froggin/slop setup.  

2.  When you tie on a different lure, are you checking your line for dig in spots/kinks and are you readjusting or at least considering your brakes and tension knob?  If you switch from a worm to a spinner bait and the wind just started to pick up, you just might get a backlash and lose that spinnerbait.  I often start spinnerbaits at brakes set to 2 (especially if it's windy) and tension knob set to a slow fall.  I think it's a good idea to readjust brakes and tension knob after any lure change - I usually keep the brakes on 1 and only set to two if it's windy or if I'm using a high wind drag lure like a spinnerbait/chatterbait/something else wide (and even just every so often without changing lures as your tension knob can get looser over time). 

3.  Check your line every so often.  Pull out a few yards after casts every now and then to clear the line from any overrun.  When reeling the extra line back in or loose line in general, it can help to hold the line in order to get a tight and even spooling.  Pay attention to your spool every now and then before casts.  This whole process doesn't have to become a nerve wrecking ordeal either - I've got a system down where it just feels to be a natural routine in my fishing and I can say I feel much better than having to fix backlashes all the time or watching $5-10 (more or less) fly into oblivion with a hopeless jaw drop.  

4.  Increase casting distance and power gradually from when you start and when you put on new lures, and just every so often.  I'll start off with a short and easy cast of say 10 yards, and then gradually increase it to 15, 20, 30, etc.  This helps to ensure that you're clearing the line effectively instead of going for a 30+ yard cast right away, only to run into a kink or dig in and lose a lure in the process.  Also, general reel maintenance is key to smoothness and castability. Keep those reels cleaned and lubed as needed!  Also, keep casts smooth and never swing it like you're trying to hit a home run - that's a good way to lose a lure. 

5.  An additional tip that is not absolutely necessary, but can help with smoothness, preventing backlash, and overall castability is using a line and lure conditioner the night before fishing.  I use kvd L&L conditioner every now and then and this really helped me while I was getting into the groove of my routine.  Now that I've got things down, I don't feel I need it as much, but is still nice to use every now and then.  Using LLC the night before can be more forgiving if you forget to implement the above tips right away when starting your day. 

I hope that helps for anyone running into this issue.  Tight lines and good luck out there!  

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I’ve never had my braid snap on a cast. Ran everything from 30-50lb. I have had it happen with mono though. 

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6. Upgrade your reel with a high speed level wind.  Some reels have a version that is made for braid and have a faster level wind worm gear available.  You might not be able to afford that special edition but you can get some of the parts which will make your life much easier.  The daiwa alphas and the zillion have a million models and all parts cross within the same line.  This may not apply to all but if you fish daiwa or shimano a little bit of research could save a lot of money an heartache. 

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13 hours ago, Angry John said:

6. Upgrade your reel with a high speed level wind.  Some reels have a version that is made for braid and have a faster level wind worm gear available.  You might not be able to afford that special edition but you can get some of the parts which will make your life much easier.  The daiwa alphas and the zillion have a million models and all parts cross within the same line.  This may not apply to all but if you fish daiwa or shimano a little bit of research could save a lot of money an heartache. 

I'm not really having the issues these days, thanks to following the steps I layed out, but I am curious about this high-speed level wind - never heard of it before.  Pretty much all I use now is daiwa and shimano (along with one Abu winch).  I'm not interested in modifying the Mets I have, but might consider the Curado K or Tatula SV if I notice something there (also now really considering for my older quantums, which I might still use now and then-and if the part is available) Will be looking into that some more - thanks for the suggestion! 

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I used to have what I thought was braid snapping on the cast but when I switched to a uni knot the problem went away.  I would think the knot was slipping and coming undone rather than the line snapping.  Something to consider.

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1 hour ago, BaitFinesse said:

I used to have what I thought was braid snapping on the cast but when I switched to a uni knot the problem went away.  I would think the knot was slipping and coming undone rather than the line snapping.  Something to consider.

What knot were you using?

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1. Learn how to cast using your thumb as a break.

2. Don't yank on backlash loops, it just creates tighter knots.

3. Learn how to remove a backlash by slowly pulling out loose line until it stops, then put that thumb on the spool suggly and slowly wing all the line back onto the spool. Now keeping your thumb on the spool slowly pull off all the line down past the loops until it's smooth. Done.

4. Learn to cast braid by pulling off 100' of line, then tape one wrap of Teflon plumbers tape over the spooled line. Now wind the 100' back onto the spool using your finger to keep it tight. This prevent deep backlashes.

5. Use Professor braid line conditioner or use Fins PRT or WindTamer polyU coated line.

Tom

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2 hours ago, BaitFinesse said:

I used to have what I thought was braid snapping on the cast but when I switched to a uni knot the problem went away.  I would think the knot was slipping and coming undone rather than the line snapping.  Something to consider.

Yea it is, good suggestion - I definitely considered that.  I know mine had nothing to do with my knots (which were uni), based on where the line broke and how the line dug in.

59 minutes ago, WRB said:

1. Learn how to cast using your thumb as a break.

2. Don't yank on backlash loops, it just creates tighter knots.

3. Learn how to remove a backlash by slowly pulling out loose line until it stops, then put that thumb on the spool suggly and slowly wing all the line back onto the spool. Now keeping your thumb on the spool slowly pull off all the line down past the loops until it's smooth. Done.

4. Learn to cast braid by pulling off 100' of line, then tape one wrap of Teflon plumbers tape over the spooled line. Now wind the 100' back onto the spool using your finger to keep it tight. This prevent deep backlashes.

5. Use Professor braid line conditioner or use Fins PRT or WindTamer polyU coated line.

Tom

The condensed version ;) also great additional suggestions

 

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3 hours ago, BaitFinesse said:

I used to have what I thought was braid snapping on the cast but when I switched to a uni knot the problem went away.  I would think the knot was slipping and coming undone rather than the line snapping.  Something to consider.

Curious what knot you were using? Never had this problem with a palomer 

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1 hour ago, optimator said:

What knot were you using?

The biggest culprit was the improved cinch knot but the palomor slipped a few times as well.  I had a reel with a flipping switch that would engage the reel when pressure was released on the thumb bar.  I would forget it was on and cast then have the thumb bar pop back up and send baits flying.  

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12 minutes ago, BaitFinesse said:

The biggest culprit was the improved cinch knot 

I never use that one with braid, only with fluoro or mono. I always use a palomer with braid

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The original "braid" know is a double line clinch knot. You double the line through the hook eye or line tie eye (like a Palomar knot) 5 twist, put the loop end through the opening next to the eye and clinch the knot tight. You end up with 3 tag ends after cutting them off. This knot never fails, the line breaks 1st.

Tom

 

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47 minutes ago, BaitFinesse said:

The biggest culprit was the improved cinch knot but the palomor slipped a few times as well.  I had a reel with a flipping switch that would engage the reel when pressure was released on the thumb bar.  I would forget it was on and cast then have the thumb bar pop back up and send baits flying.  

Something must have been wrong with the palomar knot. I have been using it for years and never had it fail while fishing. I have had it fail when tying and the tag end slips out but fails when you tighten the knot. I pull pretty hare when I tighten it though. Can see not catching it if youre not pulling pretty hard though. 

 

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A palomar knot shouldn't ever "slip" in the sense that knots that use wraps do, since you are passing the loop over the hook/lure and securing it over the tag end and mainline. That to me points to something not being done properly when tying. I'm yet to have one fail for any reason, even when my lure gets dead-stopped in midair due to a bad backlash. On topic: I do think the line makes a big difference with backlashes. I do worse with mono and fluorocarbon that I do braid, but I recently started using stealthbraid from spiderwire because I liked that it was round rather than flat and had a smaller diameter compared to other similar strength braids. Also that I wanted something with high visibility and thought it being yellow would be beneficial. However, I have decided I don't like it like I thought I would. It frays pretty easily; I'm always singing my tag ends or else they will being to fray and concern me after so many casts. Also, it seems to be really bad with wind. Proper thumb control be darned a lot of times, it just digs in like a tick at the beginning of a cast and the lure drops down like a dead duck. So when I'm throwing light stuff, I want the cast control knob to be fairly loose, yet I can't do that if there is headwind because it's a guaranteed backlash. Which means my distance is greatly limited. So... after I get done with this line I'm gonna try something else. Maybe some suffix 832 or something.

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Good stuff. I like how you think and actually do much of what you laid out.  

 

 

 

 

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7 hours ago, islandbass said:

Good stuff. I like how you think and actually do much of what you laid out.  

 

 

 

 

Thank you!  At first some of it may seem like a hassle, but after some time it just becomes a natural part of your routine and second nature... Makes for a more enjoyable fishing experience :)

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Thanks. Matter of fact, as I read your post I kept thinking to myself, I do all those things too. Either I wrote this, lol (not), or riazuli thinks very much like me. Even the writing style. 

 

As the saying goes, great minds think alike. 😎

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