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The Rooster

Back yard grass fraying up my line

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I was in the back yard casting a practice plug with my new Citica and noticed that my line is frayed up in quite a few places. So I cut out a full cast length of line to get rid of this. I thought it was from where I went fishing last time cause I was around rocks quite a bit but apparently it was not. When I had all the bad line cut off I looked at the line underneath and it was clear of abrasions. I retied the plug and casted it about 10 or 15 more times and noticed afterwards that it was frayed up again just as bad as before.

I know grass has sort of rough edges on the blades but I didn't think it would do that to line. I'm using Berkley Trilene XL in 12 pound test, just plain clear mono line only.

I also did the Q-tip test on all my guides to see if one was rough, including the levelwind guide on the reel. As far as I can tell, all the guides are good and smooth, no roughness on any of them that I can see or feel either, no catching or pulling at all on the cotton fibers of the Q-tip. Some of them were dirty though but not enough to cause this (that I know of anyway).

Any thoughts on this?? I'm thinking it's the rough edges of the grass that got it but I've never noticed this before on any other rod I've ever had and I've done quite a bit of back yard casting in the past. The line has a lot of places in it but they are not really rough or anything.  It's like little slivers of material are frayed up and sticking off the sides of the line, not really deep into it, but enough that I'd worry about setting the hook very hard.  The places are anywhere from a few feet apart to as little as a couple inches.  Say in an 80 foot cast, I'll have 25 or 30 places of fray going on.

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Rooster I've done my share of backyard fishing, and never noticed any abrasion from grass. A lure cast into a tree can cause abrasion, but that is another story. ;)

BTW up until this year XL was just about all I used. It is very soft and frays fairly easily, but should not in your yard IMO. Maybe you have a bad spool?

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Well, that's possible. But I went outside and pulled a blade of grass and brought it in and actually used it to saw on my line to see what it would do.  Its rough edges were catching on the line but I could not make it duplicate the exact marks I was seeing.  But then again, as I'm reeling through the grass it's actually hitting hundreds of blades as it passes by so I'm figuring it might do a bit more to it under those conditions. 

I'm not exactly sure.  Mainly I wanted to make sure it was not the rod or the reel doing it.  Visual examination of the guides shows no damage at all, and using the Q-tip on them I found none as well.  And I do not plan to use this line on this reel for the most part.  I only got it cause it was cheap and I needed some line to try out this new reel.  Money was tight at the time so couldn't afford a nice spool of fluorocarbon AND the reel together.

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Grass fraying line? Unless you live in a field of saw-grass I don't think that's the cause.

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Grass and sand will fray up your line a little. I found that out when I was learning how to cast in my back yard. A limp, soft mono like XL may need to be respooled after lots of practice casting, but you didn't really cast very much. Sounds to me like the line was strung though the metal base on one of the guide and not the ring.

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That is normal and should be a given, and I know this as a fellow yard/cul de sac caster myself.

It is an accumulation of the minor wear and tear acquired during the retrieve. When I am done practicing, I will check line a cut off where the wear and tear meets the fresh line.

You also have to take into account every overrun, even the small ones because even the lightest tugs will kink the line.

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get xt its a little stiffer but it is so much stronger and abrasion resistant but don't use it on a spinning reel ans also it will be a little squirrely for the first few days its on the spool

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This sounds like a classic case of a bad guide on your rod to me, you might want to check closer.

    T

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This sounds like a classic case of a bad guide on your rod to me, you might want to check closer.

T

I agree 100% either a cracked/chipped rod guide or tiptop, or, a sharp edge in the reels line carriage or nose piece strut area....

Good Luck & Tight Lines!!

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In northern Ohio, we have a Bluegrass/Fescue mix of grass. I have practiced with my new baitcaster on 8lb mono, my spinning reel on 6lb mono and my two kids beat the heck out of their new stuff for a day practicing on 4lb and 10lb mono respectively. My stuff is $5 Stren and the kids have whatever was on their reels from the factory.

On all 4 rods, not a bit of fraying is noticable and the line feels just like it did when it was new. Granted, in the water going over trees and through weeds you have water that acts as a lubricant, but I don't think grass should tear up line like that.

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i think its just the line itself. i have the exact same 12lb XL Trilene line on one of my spinning rods and i notice the same thing with it easily fraying and i havent casted it in the grass any. i dont think its rod tips or guides either. its just how the line is, but it hasnt been an issue for me either, ive had 0 breakoffs with it. i would however suggest checking your line after a few fish to see if you need to retie...

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Trilene XL does fray up easily,specially when it's going over stuff. I took one of my set ups on a fishing trip to detroit river and i was cutting off line every 5th cast or so.The XL version isn't meant to be fished in cover like that much less dragged across grass,rocks or whatever else..I try to fish that stuff in open waters...that's where it excels for me.

Rooster,switch to some 12#-14# test Trilene XT and this will stop. The XT version works much,much better on baitcasters IMO.Much more abrasive resistance.

If it still does it,then your rod and reel might need to be looked at closer.At the start of the season i do the "cotton swab" around the guides and reel carriage to check for that.Same thing you do.

There's a reason why i went back to P-line CXX this year on spinning reels...the very same reason you mentioned.

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Rooster, I've read enough of your posts about reel cleaning to get the idea that you pay attention to details, so I believe you when you say the guides or OK.

But, do one more check. Using the q-tip again, twist the guides just slightly when running the q-tip around them. Don't try to bend them down towards the rod.  Twist them perpendicularly to the rod's axis. Not much; you're not trying to twist them off, just a little bit of flex.

Pay particular attention to the tip-tip and the reel's line guide. Also to the area of the reel around the line guide.

If this all checks out good, then you got a bad spool of line.

I've been using XL for years. Make that decades. In all that time, I've gotten three bad spools of line. Two came from big box stores. One came from a Cabelas clearance sale. 3000 yards for $20. Sounded to good to be true, and was. A valuable lesson it only cost me 20 bucks to learn.

I buy line now only from BPS, a local tackle shop, or Cabelas. Only in -store, where I can inspect it before purchasing. And never buy line on sale.

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I haven't casted it since the other day when I first noticed this. I cut off all the bad line and wanted to take it to the water for some open water casts to see if it still did this. With nothing to scrape it on if it comes back to the rod and still has abrasions on it then it must be the rod or reel.

One other detail I did notice is that not only does the line have abrasions in it but some places it actually looked like it was cut into and a sliver of mono standing up from the side of the line. It was done as if it was cutting against the line while pulling on it, none of them were as if it was going away from the rod. So this would have to be done while reeling line in as opposed to the casting where the line is going out.

Now this still doesn't rule out a guide or the reel, but if it is at all possible that the grass could have done this, these marks are consistent with reeling it in and a cutting of the line occurring as it passes a blade of grass.

Also just to let you know, my grass is sort of rough. It's actually uncomfortable to walk through it barefooted and does scratch up around your ankles some. Never thought it would do that to line, but I could see that it might.

I'm going to check the rod and reel one more time. What am I looking for by twisting the guide?? Am I trying to make the bad place in the guide insert stand up more by doing this?? Seems like that's what I'd be doing.

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**UPDATE**

I looked at the rod and reel closely again, this time under a very bright light and using a jeweler's glass, one of those type that you look at a diamond through to check for flaws or inclusions in the stone. This glass made the levelwind guide in the reel appear as large as a dime and each guide on the rod looked about the size of a quarter........so you get some idea of the depth of magnification this thing has. I was able to see microscopic particles of dust on the line itself that were not visible to the naked eye at all. They looked like giant white bubbles on the line. Weird!! It also made looking at the reel's levelwind similar to looking down the barrel of a shotgun while cleaning one. It was very detailed.

Anyway, theres is not one shread of a flaw in any of the guides on the rod or reel. No cracks, any rough surfaces or anything, just nothing but slick shiny surfaces. So until I see otherwise I'm going to think that the grass DID do this. I'll know for sure this coming week since my wife is going to be out of town for a week on a trip with her mother and I'm liable to fish every single night while she's gone. If I see anymore signs then I'll assume it's the rod or reel and go accordingly. They're both Shimano so the rod is covered by a lifetime warranty, and the reel is less than a month old so it's covered too.

I'll let you know what happens......

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Last night I got the rod out and ran the line through the guides and took the line in my fingers above and below each guide and one at a time I swirled the line around on the inside of the guides, reel line guide too, and had no burrs at all.

So then I took the rod out into the back yard again to cast it so I could find out for sure if the grass is doing this.  I made quite a few casts only this time instead of reeling the line through the grass I held it up high so it did not touch the ground other than where the bait landed and I walked to it and reeled it in.  After quite few casts there were no burrs at all on the line.  So I'm satisfied it was the grass that did it the first time. 

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That makes no sense to me.

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That must be the worst line in the history of fishing lines.  Did you buy kite string by mistake?

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