If you’ve used a baitcaster before you know that backlashes are just something you have to deal with. But it shouldn’t be happening very often. If you’ve read this article about preventing backlash but still can’t keep it from happening every fishing trip, your line might be to blame.
So let’s get into what fishing line you should be using on a baitcaster that will help you prevent backlashes. It won’t be a magic fix-all, but a good fishing line can drastically help prevent the dreaded bird’s nest.
Braided Line helps a lot
The type of line you’re using is an important first step when trying to find a fishing line that won’t backlash. Backlashes are caused when too much line exits the reel and starts looping and knotting into itself. So getting a line that doesn’t fold and loop but stays limp and straight is a good way to help prevent unmanageable messes.
Most people say that fluorocarbon is the best fishing line for baitcasters. And while fluorocarbon does have it’s advantages, read this article to learn them all, it does have very high memory. Memory refers to how a line molds to a shape it is kept in. in this case, fluorocarbon’s high memory means it wants to stay in the loop that it is on the baitcast reel. This means if too much of it comes out, it will want to loop and knot.
So instead, you want a low memory line. This means it will want to just go back straight and not keep in loops. Braided line, because it is made from fiber instead of plastic, is the best option for this. Should you let a little too much line out, it won’t loop and knot super easily. And it won’t get stuck as easily throughout the casting motion or in the guides.
If you want to try some methods for reducing the memory in your current line, also try the methods listed here.
Use a fluorocarbon leader
Now a lot of people will say – but braided line has color and isn’t clear! There’s no way I’ll catch fish with that.
The answer is you’ll need to learn to tie a leader onto your line. You will completely fill your baitcast reel with braided line and pull it through the eyelets. Then, you’ll tie about a 3 foot piece of straight fluorocarbon line onto the end of your braided line. This ensures that the fishing line that your rod and reel use are braid, but the line the fish see’s is nice and clear.
You have two knots to do this – the alberto knot and the FG knot. Personally, I am a fan of the alberto knot. It is not quite as strong but very rarely breaks on me if I tie it correctly. And I find it just a little bit easier to tie. However if you want the absolute strongest knot possible, try the FG knot as it has proven to be the strongest way to tie one line to another.
Use a high pound test
Also, you will notice that braided line is the smallest diameter option of any line. This can be good for casting distance, but hard for a baitcaster as you need a little more thick of a line to really get your thumb on and manage properly.
So try and aim for 20 pound and up test for your baitcaster when using braided line. Your reel will need that extra diameter to work properly and it will be easier for you to manage the line with your thumb as well if it has some thickness. Don’t worry about it being too heavy for the pole – as long as you have a medium pole or above it should handle it just fine.
I personally like to use 30 pound test on all of my baitcast reels, with a leader of 20 pound fluorocarbon in most cases.
But what's the exact line I should buy?
So I’ve told you about braid, the leader, and pound test. You probably just want to know the best brand right?
Like many things, this can be a matter of preference. But I have not found a braided line better than Suffix 832. It stays straight no matter how long it’s sat on a real and never breaks or frays easily.
So I would recommend you buy a spool of Suffix 832 in 30 pound test in whichever color suits your fancy. If you can’t cast a baitcaster with that line spooled on your reel, you need to buy a new baitcaster.
KVD Line & Lure Spray
One more last tip I wanted to cover if you can’t use braided line, or even in addition to it, is to always coat your line with KVD’s line and lure spray. It helps protect lines from knots, decreases memory, and helps with durability overall.
It’s not going to turn a high-memory line into a straight one, but it will noticeably change the loopiness in a fluorocarbon line after a few casts and a good spray down. I mean, if the legend KVD himself was willing to put his name on it, you know it has to be good. It’s the standard that nearly every professional fisherman uses on all of their rods to keep their line in top condition.
So it’s as simple as that – if you want to use anything other than braid just coat it a few times in KVD line & lure spray and it can help with the loops causing your backlashes. But if you want to get rid of he problem completely, go for braided line like the Suffix 832. It has no memory and will make backlashes much less of a problem.