Fluorocarbon, Braid, or Monofilament?
One of the most common questions asked by beginner and experienced anglers alike is how do I know what line to use for a specific technique? While you will find varying opinions on the subject, through trial and error some general consensuses have been reached to help point you in the right direction.
Monofilament was once the main line that anglers used for virtually every technique. While nylon or monofilament as it is more commonly known is still a great line, and could certainly be acceptable to use for the majority of your fishing, there are areas where it is a better choice than others. Monofilament typically has more stretch than other types of lines, and also exhibits floating properties as well. While the floatation properties can be good for certain lures such as topwater and other surface baits, it can be a disadvantage for lures that are designed to go deeper, such as deep crankbaits. The higher amount of stretch can be a disadvantage when fishing baits such as soft plastics or jigs where a strong hookset is needed. However, the stretch can also be an advantage for certain situations such as if a fish is barely hooked on a treble hooked bait, acting as a shock absorber if the fish surges. Monofilament is generally less expensive than fluorocarbon and offers more abrasion resistance, meaning that is does well around cover and doesn’t break as easily.. Our Super Natural Monofilament is our best-selling monofilament (nylon) line, and can be purchased along with various other monofilament products on our website.
Over the past several years fluorocarbon has become extremely popular among anglers. Some of the key properties that have made fluorocarbon so popular are that it has very little stretch, it sinks, and it has a thinner diameter than monofilament. Because of these advantages, fluorocarbon can be 2-3 times the price of monofilament, but it can be well worth it. The advantages of fluorocarbon make it good for most situations because it covers so many techniques. However, as mentioned earlier, fluorocarbon is less abrasion resistant than monofilament which means it can break more easily. One disadvantage of fluorocarbon is the amount of memory that it has, which often causes line twists that can occur in your reel spool and cause the line to kink up and eventually break. One tip to help with preventing line twist after you spool your reel with new line is to tie a hook to the end of the line, hook it to something in your driveway, walk down your driveway until all the line is out, and start reeling your line back on the spool while you are stretching it. This stretches the line some so that it won’t twist up as much. Also, another tip is to always remember to make sure your line isn’t getting kinked up way down in the spool while you are fishing. If it stays kinked up for a while it will eventually break. There are different types of fluorocarbon line you can buy that differ in their strengths. For example, our Super FC Sniper is slicker, more flexible, more durable, and has more stretch than Shooter, but Shooter is known for its superior knot strength, tensile strength, abrasion resistance, and sensitivity. Another thing to remember about fluorocarbon or any other line is to use lighter line on lighter lures and hooks, and heavier line on heavier lures and hooks. Lighter fluorocarbon can also help the bait get down deeper because it cuts through the water more easily and also offers a more natural presentation, which are just a few of the reasons anglers tend to use smaller pound test on baits such as crankbaits and jerkabits. A full selection of technique specific and general-purpose fluorocarbon linescan be found on our website.
Braided line is starting to become more popular as anglers are tying leaders to their braid with an Albright, Double Uni, or FG knot. If you choose to do this, you can learn more about how to tie these knots along with others on our website. Our FC Leader is perfect to use when tying a leader to braid because it has the strength, sensitivity, abrasion resistance, and durability to perform with the braid. There are many advantages to braid such as it is more sensitive, you have more power which leads to better hooksets, it is a thinner diameter than fluorocarbon and monofilament, and it lasts a lot longer than other lines because it has no memory. Braid also has no stretch, which gives the angler more power as mentioned earlier, but make sure to use a rod with enough taper so you don’t pull the hooks out of the fish’s mouth. Because of the lack of stretch, an angler can feel the most subtle bites from a fish when using braid. Our best-selling braid is the Xplasma Asegai Braid. This braid is made with Plasma Rise Technology, which improves slickness, abrasion resistance, and water repellency. Because braided line is extremely slick, it will improve your casting distance. Always remember to spool up enough backing line to at least cover your spool so that your braid won’t slip. Most anglers prefer to use braid in stained or muddy water situations because the braid has high visibility in clear water. Braid also floats completely, which makes it good for topwater lures. There are certain lures that most anglers would say you must throw on braid such as a frog or punch rig for thick grass mats. The typical sizes for these type situations are 50-80 pound test because of the heavy cover that these lures work best in. In fact, we make a braided line at Sunline that is specifically designed for frogging and flipping, but you can also check out our other braided lines on our website for other techniques.