Everything which is sold on the face of this planet has some degree of bullshit attached to the sales propaganda. My car runs on less fuel than yours and mine is bigger and faster. Some of you may remember that Rover launch in India. 12 kilometers to the liter....hahahah.. that didn't last long.
Fishing tackle suffers in much the same way. Most ‘manufacturers’ buy their lines from the ever mighty China (some do make it in the US of A - the Mecca of fishing). The actual manufacturer, even if he is in the US, may be making the line for Shakespeare, Rapala, Berkley etc using the same material but a different packing. What does that tell you? Nada (Spanish for nothing)
We started out, as mankind started to use spears, sticks, rocks and dams to catch the fish we ate. Eventually the net. Someone then decided it was more fun to fish with a pole and a hook attached to a line. Thus the gentlemen’s way of fishing with bamboo sticks, bone hooks and plant fibers for the line was born. Henceforth, this lead to the modern fishing line which comes in a nice attractive package, with claims of how it beats the others and catches the biggest fish and, not to mention, confuses the crap out of us!
If one were to check the reviews on major retailers for fishing tackle like BassPro and Cabelas. There are five guys who love a particular line and swear by it, then there are five who hate that line and put it down. What does that tell you? Nada again.
Now that we are all thoroughly konfoosed, and my head is still spinning from what I read and what I have always been told. I decided to investigate for myself. Here is my post mortem on lines, remember this is a crude no nonsense report as per my experience only:-
There are three types of lines widely used, they in turn have different thicknesses and weights.
Monofilament. Fluorocarbon and Braided.
1.Monofilament line: This is the most common line used and also the cheapest. They have PolyVinylChloride (used in shoe soles, I am in the shoe business). They are more than adequate for Spinning reels and also for the ‘master’ with the old talcum power can, who will always seem to fish more than you. The only drawback is that they absorb water, decay over time, and stretch. The water absorption is minor and not a hindrance. If it decays, change it. The stretching however, is the reason why the other two lines have been adopted in USA and elsewhere. Bass fishermen and others who use ‘Baitcasting’ reels with worms, need to be constantly in touch with the worm. When the fish bites we need to feel it to jerk the rod up and thus insert the hook. The stretch in the monofilament line takes away some of that feel. But, for a person who will fish using a spinning reel with lures like spinners, spoons, cranks etc, this is perfect line and there is no need to buy expensive lines. Just get the correct weight and you are all set. Remember, this line has been around for ages and when it came out it was the line to own.
2.Fluorocarbon line. This line has Polyvinylidene Fluoride a polymer which has a carbon base. There is no carbon string in this line, but, the sales gurus had to come up with a fancy marketing term for this line. So, they called a plastic polymer with a carbon base, Fluorocarbon. now we must buy it, or, our entire fishing lives will be ruined beyond repair. (I do know, that, if you eat it you will be on the John for the next two days). It is much more dense than the Monofilament line and does not absorb water. It hardly has any stretch so it is favored by anglers who use ‘baitcasting reels’, who need to feel what is happening at the other end. Because it is dense, the lure goes deeper than a monofilament line. The line is also much more invisible than a monofilament line. The abrasion resistance is very high, so I use it in lakes which have a rocky bottom and other debris which will cut other lines. This line is so invisible and abrasion resistant, that, many anglers use it as leaders, even on expensive braided line setups. But again, the use of this line is not all that warranted except by personal choice and absolute need of use. I use it as the lake beds in Mexico are rocky. This line can be used for spinning, bait casting and trolling reels without any problems. They are also less prone to backlash and getting all wound up (saves time).
3.The Braided Line: Considered to be the king of lines in the modern fishing environment. This is actually Dracon, technical term polyethylene which you will find in your cell phone, car, computer etc. Who cares we just want to fish right?. Braid equals strands twisted together just like a woman’s ponytail. This line is absolutely the lightest, longest cast and the lure does go much deeper. A 20 Lb line has the diameter of an 8 lb monofilament line. It has a high jerk resistance and will not break that easily under the poundage certified. The knots are also very strong and will be need to cut open with scissors specially for braided line. There are some downsides which I find. It is much more visible than the monofilament and fluorocarbon lines. So I use a fluorocarbon leader. God only can help you if you have a backlash or a spool up. The line will ‘bite’ into the line on the spool, so I use a softer heavier monofilament line on the base of the spool then wind the braided line on to the base. This saves some line. In rocky conditions it will not stand to abrasion but, will probably hold on. Now why it is much preferred? Well in the United States of America (sales numbers are picked up for publicity, by sales mostly in the states) most bass fishermen use bait casters, this line is absolute no stretch and gives the best feel for what the worm or lure is doing. Most people are also using worms now for bass. Thus more sales and the sales prices are not coming down. The casting distance achieved using this line are super. However, If you are NOT using a bait caster reel, worms, or at least feel the line with your finger tips. This line is not for you.
Now you can use any kind of line with any setup and it will probably work. You have the rod and reel in your hands, you know what you need best. Do try different lines and see for yourself.
I hope, I did give out some useful information there and maybe helped some new comers. I will continue writing what little I know and help in keeping this dying sport in India from dying.
Last edited by pavanmex on Fri Mar 27, 2009 7:42 am, edited 4 times in total.