Monday July 27, 2009
Fishing Knots
Chester Hastings

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By Chester Hastings

After choosing your rod and reel combo, fishing line, and style and size of fishing hook, you want to safely connect them all together. This should be done with knots that you know are going to work.

Knot Basics

Fishing line is only as strong as the knots that are tied in it. All fishing line is weakened by the act of tying knots in it. The best knots have little effect on the strength of the line, while bad knots can cut line strength in half. Choosing knots that are easy to tie is highly recommended because even strong knots will prove to be weak if not tied properly.

Some Commonly Used Knots

There are many different knots used by fishermen for tying fishing line. Here are four basic knots that every fisherman can use.

Trilene Knot: The Trilene Knot is good for tying hooks to fishing line and retains about 90 percent of line strength. Pass the line through hook's eye twice from the same side and leave a small loop next to the eye. Wrap the free end of the line around the standing line 5 times and insert the free end through the double loop. Snug up with a steady firm pull on both the line and the hook. Trim the tag end.

Palomar Knot: The Palomar Knot is used for tying the hook to the fishing line and retains about 85 percent of the line's strength. To tie the Palomar knot first fold the line against itself to form a double strand and push this through the hook's eye. In this double strand tie an overhand knot and leave a loop large enough for the hook to pass through. Pass the hook through the loop and snug up the knot by pulling on the double strand with one hand and the hook with the other. Trim the tag end.

Improved Arbor Knot: The Improved Arbor Knot is used for tying the fishing line to the spool of the fishing reel. This knot will retain about 60 percent of the line's strength. First, loop the line around the spool and tie an overhand knot around the standing line to form a loose slip knot. Tie another overhand knot in the free end and pass this through the first overhand knot. Snug up the free end knot , then pull firmly on the standing line to tighten the other knot around the spool.

Blood Knot: The Blood Knot is used for tying fishing line to other fishing line, and will retain about 65 percent of the line's strength. First, overlap the lines so they point in opposite directions. Twist one of the lines around the other four times and bring the free end back and insert between the two lines. Twist the other line the same and bring it back through the same opening that holds the other line. Tighten with a quick jerk. Trim the tag ends.

Knot Tips

One tip to remember when tying fishing knots is to moisten the knot with saliva before you snug it up. This will reduce friction and help to form a tight, smooth knot. Another tip is to use a smooth, strong pull when you snug up the knot. Always test your knot after tying. It is better for the knot to break or slip apart now than when fighting a big fish. Since all knots will slip a little, it is best to leave a little extra on the tag end.

Always remember that use will weaken your knots. Knots should be retied and tested frequently on your fishing trip. Doing so will help to increase your fishing success.

Chester Hastings is an avid fisherman who enjoys being outdoors and fishing with his daughter and granddaughter.

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