Braided fishing line has made vast improvements recently. Sure, they have weaknesses, but they deserve consideration for their versatility and performance.
What is braided fishing line?
The structure of this type of line is right in the name. It is a line made of strands that have been woven together. It is not one solid piece. It is usually made of 4 or 8 smaller strands braided together. The number of strands in the braid is a key factor of the structure that influences the function of the line. The individual strands of a 4 strand line are larger than those of an 8 strand line. Generally speaking, this means that each individual strand will be stronger and more durable on the 4 strand line. However, the 8 strand line with be more flexible and easier to cast.
What are the advantages?
Braided fishing line has 4 main advantages: strength, castability, sensitivity, durability.
They are made from synthetic materials. This allows them to be both exceptionally strong and very small. The chief benefit of this is that if your line gets snagged, the line is strong enough to straighten the hook and free up your expensive lures. Today’s braided lines function well in areas with heavy cover, plants, or sticks. This prevents most possibilities of line damage while establishing the hook or retrieving fish from these areas. Braided lines are likewise excellent options for fishing in thick marine weed mats permitting us to muscle the fish out of this heavy cover.
The woven structure of braided lines allows them more freedom of movement than a monofilament or solid line. The smaller diameter also aids in the ease of movement. This allows your technique to control the distance and placement of the cast. You won’t be as constrained by structural limitations of the line itself. You should be able to cast further and more precisely with a braided fishing line.
The structure of braided fishing line allows it to be more sensitive. You will be able to feel what’s happening better. You will be better able to read the subtle movements in your line because the weave transmits even small differences more efficiently.
The structure of the braid also makes the line more durable and abrasion proof. Minor nicks or even breaks to one strand will not immediately compromise the whole line. It is a strength in numbers kind of deal. This means it can have a much longer reel life, if appropriately spooled and stored. Braided lines likewise function well on spinning rods. For these it is generally better to pick several of the lighter versions of line, yet the structure of the braid allows you to still obtain the above advantages.
Here are our 3 favorites:
Power Pro Spectra Fiber Braided Fishing Line
Power Pro is the most popular and well-respected brand on the market. It is our top pick. They offer a wide variety of lines to meet all our fishing needs. They range from 5 pound to 80 pound test line. They have a range of colors from clear to moss green to high visibility yellow. They have both 4 strand and 8 strand lines.
- Incredibly round, smooth and sensitive line
- Enhanced body technology (bet) boosts handling performance
- Constructed with spectra fiber for incredible abrasion resistance
Kast King Super Power Braided Fishing Line – Abrasion Resistant Braided Lines – Incredible Superline – Zero Stretch – Smaller Diameter
Kast King is another top contender in this market. Their lines are also available in a wide variety of strengths and colors. They offer both 4 and 8 strand lines as well. Many choose Kast King as their top line for the ease of knot tying.
- Strong knot strength - dynamically incorporated strands in Casting Superpower braided lines allow you to easily tie a more solid knot; you...
- Low memory - helps you achieve a better, farther casts, less chance of wind Knots
- Greater abrasion resistance - of Casting braided fishing line decreases the likelihood of losing your "big one"! Casting Superpower Braid...
Spider Wire Stealth Superline Braided Fishing Line
The best feature of Spider Wire line is the coating. In addition to the basic weave structure, the coating can play a huge role in the functionality and performance of your line. Spider Wire has the best coating in the business. It is especially great for top-water, crank bait fishing.
- Fish Confidently with RED, WHITE, and BLUE!
- Show your patriotism on and off the water
- Optimal visibility in all water conditions
Getting Started with Braid
What Kind of Reel?
Braided fishing line will work well with bait casting reels or spinning reels. The only “real” difference with a “reel” is your drag. You should use a looser drag because of the tautness of the line. It doesn’t stretch so you will need more slack.
What Kind of Rod?
Braid will work with most types of rods, but a fast action tip rod will help you maximize the sensitivity of the line. Of course, the specific type of fishing is the deciding factor, but your speed and action responsivity to the feedback for the sensitive line is paramount.
How to Spool?
When you use braided fishing line, your reel should have some backing before spooling. This backing will protect both your reel and the line from snags and nicks. It will also prevent snags. Plumbers tape or electrical tape are excellent choices they are durable and functional. The rubbery surface of the tape will give the braid more traction when reeling in your catch.
Braided line does have its drawbacks as well. Ironically, some of the disadvantages are directly related to the best features of braided line.
Hard to break. As mentioned above, this type of line is very strong. As a consequence, if you do get a snag, it will be nearly impossible to break. Yes, it is strong enough to straighten a hook, but a serious snag will lead to a more permanent problem. You will need to cut the line.
Cost. Many bristle at the added cost of braided line. Foot for foot it is considerably more expensive than your typical monofilament line. Is it worth the price? Many think so, and we agree, but it really comes down to personal choice. And after all, while it is more expensive, it’s not that unreasonable.
Gear Stress. The added strength of braided line can also put additional stress on your equipment which leads to more wear and tear and faster decline. But this is largely a question of technique and finesse. As you learn how to use braided line, you will learn how much power to use. If you become more adept at finesse techniques, you gear will be protected and last longer.