I am often asked why I use Braided Line. It's simply because of its sensitivity and small diameter. With Braid I can spool a reel with 3 times the amount of line as I can the same pound test Monofilament. Braided line has almost zero stretch, therefore, allowing me to feel exactly what the fish is doing.
I use Fiberglass rods when I anchor fish, these rods are made of E-Glass which is a very tough material but has a much softer feel than Graphite. When fishing with these type rods and using Monofilament line plus having 200 plus feet of line out, setting the hook is kind of like pulling on a rubber band. With the softness of the rod and the stretch of mono line, the power in the hook set is diminished greatly. Also, the feel of the fight is diminished. I don't know about everyone, but I want to feel every surge and jerk of the fish. The fight of a fish is why I am there to begin with!
I very seldom use monfilament line while Catfishing except for leader material. One thing to remember when using a good Spectra Braided line is to use heavier leader than normal because it is easy to snap the mono leader upon setting the hook since the Braid won't stretch. When I went to Braid several years ago, I went from 20/30lb test leaders with mono filled reels to 30/50lb test with Braid filled reels. Mono is always best for leader material because it has more abrasion resistance, and believe me, those Catfish teeth and fins can cut a line in a heartbeat.
Another note about Braided line is that it has no memory and will last longer than mono. When my Braid gets worn and looking bad I will tie the end to the boat and let the current un-spool the reel down to the mono backing. I then retie, the end that is tied to the boat, to the backing and reel the line back on, reversing the line so that the fresh unused line is exposed.
Always use about 1/8 inch of monofilament, of about the same diameter, as backing for the Braided line. Braided line will slip on the spool if used without backing. The Uni-knot is an excellent knot for joining the mono to Braid.
Also, the rumors of Braided line wearing guides are, in my opinion, not true if the rods have good quality ceramic guides. With the new high quality Braided lines, friction is greatly reduced with coatings, much different than the early Braids.
Braided line, due to it's small diameter to strength ratio, has one characteristic that could be negative to anglers making long casts. That negative trait is that Braid will imbed itself. This usually happens when great amounts of pressure is put on the line and it is forced down between the remaining line on the spool. After the tension is applied to the line, such as when the angler is pulling against the rod and reel to free a hang up, or after the battle of a large fish, the imbedded line will cause the spool to stop suddenly during a cast.
This imbedding is not as bad as it was with the earlier Braids. The new Braids are more round and have slicker finishes, therefore, minimizing this problem. However, always hold on to the rod tightly when casting and look for rods with trigger reel seats. The triggers will give you something to wrap your finger around and help hold on.
Super Braid lines definitely has made a huge difference in the ability to feel the bottom while drifting with the current. This is a technique that I use when the water is warm. I use a stiff but light weight Graphite rod like the Quantum Blu, a small 100 or 200 size Quantum Exo reel loaded with 50 lb. High Seas Grand Slam Braid. With this setup I can feel the bottom, the cover or structure and the bite so well that it improved my catch rate and also prevented me from hanging up as much as the softer feeling mono. Being able to feel what is going on will allways make things go better and will increase anyones catch-rate.
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