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Author Topic: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read  (Read 1065 times)

SteelHorseCowboy

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First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« on: July 26, 2017, 09:12:22 AM »

I found some Daiwa J-braid 8 pound on sale Monday, spooled it onto my new to me Mitchell 310 yesterday afternoon, tied on a 1/16 oz Arkie wacky head, attached the same worm that got so much attention yesterday morning, and tried it all out this morning.

Not too sure how I feel about it. Casts smooth and easy, and my palomer knot on the jig head seemed strong.
But the first thing I noticed is that I kept getting knots approximately 5' from the hook. Incidentally, about the distance from the hook keeper to the rod tip. I do pull my line fairly taut to help avoid tangling, but not taut enough to flex the tip or cause any kinks when using mono.
Also, these knots weren't all in the exact same place. They varied from about 4'-6'.

My guess is that maybe I did cause a small stress of some sort on the line. Put together with the diameter being about the same as 2lb mono at .005mm/.013", I think that's what was causing the knotting. That's very thin, reminiscent of sewing thread, and the minimum this reel lists for mono. Maybe these knots were forming exactly at 5', and then sliding a foot or so in either direction as they pulled tight.
After untangling 2-3 times, I just cut off about 8' and retied.
I'd already tried adjusting my casting force. When I first tried this rod and reel out yesterday, it'd come to me with what looked like 15# mono and over filled like crazy. It took a fairly strong flick to toss the same worm TX rigged with an 1/8oz weight, and a bare twitch to throw it the same distance with a 1/16oz jig head.

Once I got the bothersome section cut out, it all went well until the last cast, I got another knot in the line, about 15 feet from the hook. I reeled it in until the knot was about a foot from my reel and was in the process of untangling it when a fish hit the worm I'd left in the water. Crap! I said screw the knot, and got to work trying to get that fish. He pulled it up under a small lay down and let it go, getting me hung on a submerged branch. I thought, okay then, perfect opportunity to test the knot strength at the hook. I don't mind losing a 60 cent jig head once to see how it performs.
So I gave it a series of tugs, increasing force. Then yanks. Snatches. In the end, I took off my shirt, wrapped it around my hand, wrapped some line around that, and hauled back on it. I applied a lot more than 8 pounds of force. First pull did nothing but lift the lay down a bit. This is actually a small sapling about 7' tall that I'd chopped down a few weeks ago to get it out of my way, left it laying in the water cause I reckoned fish would like it. I backed up a few feet and snatched on it. Again, a LOT more than 8 pounds of force. The hook came loose, flew right at my face. I barely had time to turn my head, and it tangled in my beard.

It was almost time for my shift, so I cut the line and drove on in to the office. Thought my boss and coworkers were going to die of laughter when I walked in with a hook and plastic worm in my beard. Shoulda used the back door. Went to the can with a small comb and spent the next five minutes or so untangling the hook, worm, and small chunk of wood.
Then drew out some line from the reel, cut out this new knot, and reattached the jig head yet again.

So, first time with braid, several knots, no breakages, lost a fish, coulda lost an eye and almost lost a chunk of beard. But still, I kinda like it.

Y'all reckon heavier braid could fix this knotting issue? Daiwa's website lists their 20lb as the same diameter as 6lb mono, which is the max mono this reel calls for, and their 15lb braid as the same as 4lb mono. But I worry, this being a light reel, if I use 20lb and catch a fish too big, will it trash the reel? Max drag weight is just over 6 pounds, 6.14 if I recall correctly. But realistically, biggest bass I've caught so far has been maybe 3 pounds or so, and I'm not targeting big bass with this rod and reel. My micro 33 is what I caught that bass on while jigging for crappie with 8lb mono and it had the drag screaming bloody murder the whole time.
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cortman

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #1 on: July 26, 2017, 09:33:10 AM »

I would guess heavier braid would relieve some of the wind knot issues. 8 lb. is mighty skinny! :)
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DonM

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #2 on: July 26, 2017, 09:48:17 AM »

I would use heavier braid.  The drag should keep the fish from tearing up your reel if you accidentally hook a huge one.
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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #3 on: July 26, 2017, 10:26:47 AM »

Dang sure is! I got it because it was on sale for $3.99. Been wanting to try braid just for the heck of it, but didn't want to pay braid prices because I didn't know if I'd like it. 8lb was all Cabela's had on sale.

Come to think of it, they did have some spools of much heavier braid leaders or something on sale, but they were only something like 15 or 20 feet. Not sure, but I remember thinking when I looked at it, "dang, I can spit that far."

If I were to use heavier braid and hook a much bigger fish than this reel is built for, do you think it'd damage the reel? Or would the drag save it?
For the record, I don't reel against the drag and I don't max out the drag. I just let the fish run and start reeling again when they stop.
On this reel, being so light, I turned the drag knob until it was maxed out, then backed off a full turn. I estimate that gives me about a 4 pound drag.
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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #4 on: July 26, 2017, 11:14:28 AM »

I would use heavier braid.  The drag should keep the fish from tearing up your reel if you accidentally hook a huge one.
Thanks! Didn't get to read that before my last post.
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Smallie_Stalker

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2017, 04:09:49 PM »

So, first time with braid, several knots, no breakages, lost a fish, coulda lost an eye and almost lost a chunk of beard. But still, I kinda like it.

It's official. You sir are a true angler.  ~beer~

Btw, sounds close to my first date with my now wife, but I kinda liked her anyway, so i kept her.  ;) :)
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SteveTX

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #6 on: July 26, 2017, 04:53:13 PM »

As for the knots something to think about. How did you spool the line? If the line has twist its going to easily ball up into small knots.

I have used Daiwa J-braid and others have found the same as I researched it after I had a issue myself. The line works quite well for just regular fishing as long as there is no
  • The bail accidentally closes during an attempt to cast a long cast.
  • No backlash happens on an attempt to cast a long cast.
Daiwa J-braids biggest and only downfall I have found is sudden, and I do mean sudden like instant stoppage, as described above will cause the line to snap. And you can kiss what ever lure bye bye as it sails off into the sunset. I have not tried this with a finesse lure (light weight) but anything like a 1/2 oz lure it is easily repeatable to prove its not a fluke. I don't recall the YouTube channel but there is a guy that did line reviews and he had the same issue with Daiwa J-braid. It just cant take a instant jerk.  As far as fish hitting the lure and all that its very strong for pulls like you found out.

Here is the review I saw start at 15:00 for the brief version.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u0Tf5h36-3k
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merc1997

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2017, 05:32:52 PM »

some brand of braid are very bad about wind knots.  i use stren braid and have knot had any issues, and the power pro slick 8 has worked well for me also.  i use it in the #10 quit often to crappie fish with.

bo
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SteveTX

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2017, 05:42:51 PM »

some brand of braid are very bad about wind knots.  i use stren braid and have knot had any issues, and the power pro slick 8 has worked well for me also.  i use it in the #10 quit often to crappie fish with.

bo
FYI Dicks has the Stren Braid Fishing Line on sale cheap. $8.97 for 150 yards  :)
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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #9 on: July 26, 2017, 06:27:11 PM »

Thanks for the tips and recommendations y'all!

Steve, I absolutely HATE line twist. I spooled this one the same as I do my baitcasters and lone spincaster with mono. Filled the spool with the proper amount, and I looked up pictures for reference with this reel and did the best I could; it seems to stack a bit to the rear of the spool. Then I tie a swivel and another loop of line on, tie off to whatever I can find, walk off with the rod and reel until all the line is pulled out, then reel myself back to the swivel, doing my best to keep the line off the ground. So basically, I spool it twice. Once off the roll, then again with the line pulled out straight.
And with this little rod and reel, I just don't plan on tossing anything heavier than a 1/4oz between weight and plastic.
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SteveTX

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #10 on: July 26, 2017, 06:47:59 PM »

Yeah the line twist was just a thought. Some people dont know about spooling one up.

As far as the 1/4 oz being the heaviest weight you use you might be OK. But being your using a very light 8lb diameter that could still be something to watch out for. I was using 30lb and had it happen to me several times. Just something to be aware of is all.  ;)
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merc1997

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #11 on: July 27, 2017, 02:12:49 AM »

FYI Dicks has the Stren Braid Fishing Line on sale cheap. $8.97 for 150 yards  :)
i bet it is not fluorescent.

bo

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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #12 on: July 27, 2017, 07:51:23 AM »

Yeah the line twist was just a thought. Some people dont know about spooling one up.

As far as the 1/4 oz being the heaviest weight you use you might be OK. But being your using a very light 8lb diameter that could still be something to watch out for. I was using 30lb and had it happen to me several times. Just something to be aware of is all.  ;)
I have no idea if that's a normal or even correct way of spooling it. I just know there's more than one way to skin a cat, and I've used swivels to prevent line twists and for speedy lure changes in the past, so it made sense to me.

I've been tossing lighter stuff, but yesterday evening and this morning I was throwing 1/4 oz lures and the line performed perfectly. I'll definitely be upgrading to something with a 6-8lb mono diameter, which puts me in the 15-20lb braid range according to this from Daiwa. I know braid diameter may vary a bit from maker to maker, and type to type just as mono does, but I'd reckon this chart is a good starting point.
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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #13 on: July 27, 2017, 08:16:57 AM »

Also...
For all the pride I take in being so observant with people, OMG I can overlook some of the most incredibly obvious things in nature.

With the laydown I created. Deal is, this little fishing spot I love is a very small point about 4 feet wide and thick trees on both sides. It had that seven foot or so chinese tallow tree dead center of it. Chopped it down, and left it laying in the water hoping it'd attract some fish and I could fish to either side of it.
I've noticed that earlier this year I was catching nothing but bass from that spot, just about anywhere I could cast during spawn. And the last few times I've fished that spot, I'd gotten frustrated. If I got anywhere near this 7'X3' laydown I'd created, bluegill would swarm my bait.
Now, I don't mind catching bluegill for fun, except they seem to stink like hell and these bluegill are are little silver dollar sized turds, not even big enough to take my bait, just big enough to tease and annoy, and they're being extremely aggressive.
The last couple of small bass I've caught there, and the one that hung me up on said tree yesterday, have been in the areas just far enough away that it's been a nuisance to pop my lure out of the water before the bluegill start swarming it. Remember I said I'd left my worm in the water to untangle a knot about 15' from it? I only pop it out of the water because they're annoying me. Like I said, can't catch 'em cause they're too small to take the lures I'm throwing, and they swarm it like piranhas.

See where this is going? I can be so freaking stupid sometimes.
I'm going to dig some grubs and bugs this evening, go out tomorrow morning with this light rig, tiny hooks and bobber, catch some of those baby bluegill and use 'em for bait with a bigger rig. Or, find some little bluegill swimbaits at Academy. I'm a bit of a softie when it comes to hurting critters I don't intend to eat.

These bass are hanging around the outlying areas of this laydown because I've given them an all-you-can-eat buffet. If I toss a bluegill or bluegill swimmer in deeper water, may catch a bigger fish. Or even dinks, I don't care, they're still fun for catch and release.
« Last Edit: July 27, 2017, 08:20:46 AM by SteelHorseCowboy »
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SteveTX

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #14 on: July 27, 2017, 09:38:55 AM »

i bet it is not fluorescent.

bo
It's the Clear Blue color here is the link https://m.dickssportinggoods.com/p/stren-braid-fishing-line-15stnustrnbrd10lbfli/15stnustrnbrd10lbfli?Clearance=true&categoryId=284086
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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #15 on: July 27, 2017, 02:15:35 PM »

Found 30# Trilene Professional Grade on sale at Academy for $11 or so. There were others for the same price, but lighter weight and the Trilene looked to have the smoother finish.
I went ahead and grabbed some, since I was already there and the extra price is worth avoiding going to the mall in Monroe.

I fish dark but low turbid waters mostly, and both of these braids are dark green, which I've read is good for this type of water.

Would it behoove me to go ahead and use a clear mono leader anyway? I have plenty laying around that'd be suitable.
If so, how long? And how should I attach it? Line to line, a swivel, some other way?
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Smallie_Stalker

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #16 on: July 27, 2017, 03:07:30 PM »

Also...
For all the pride I take in being so observant with people, OMG I can overlook some of the most incredibly obvious things in nature.

With the laydown I created. Deal is, this little fishing spot I love is a very small point about 4 feet wide and thick trees on both sides. It had that seven foot or so chinese tallow tree dead center of it. Chopped it down, and left it laying in the water hoping it'd attract some fish and I could fish to either side of it.
I've noticed that earlier this year I was catching nothing but bass from that spot, just about anywhere I could cast during spawn. And the last few times I've fished that spot, I'd gotten frustrated. If I got anywhere near this 7'X3' laydown I'd created, bluegill would swarm my bait.
Now, I don't mind catching bluegill for fun, except they seem to stink like hell and these bluegill are are little silver dollar sized turds, not even big enough to take my bait, just big enough to tease and annoy, and they're being extremely aggressive.
The last couple of small bass I've caught there, and the one that hung me up on said tree yesterday, have been in the areas just far enough away that it's been a nuisance to pop my lure out of the water before the bluegill start swarming it. Remember I said I'd left my worm in the water to untangle a knot about 15' from it? I only pop it out of the water because they're annoying me. Like I said, can't catch 'em cause they're too small to take the lures I'm throwing, and they swarm it like piranhas.

See where this is going? I can be so freaking stupid sometimes.
I'm going to dig some grubs and bugs this evening, go out tomorrow morning with this light rig, tiny hooks and bobber, catch some of those baby bluegill and use 'em for bait with a bigger rig. Or, find some little bluegill swimbaits at Academy. I'm a bit of a softie when it comes to hurting critters I don't intend to eat.

These bass are hanging around the outlying areas of this laydown because I've given them an all-you-can-eat buffet. If I toss a bluegill or bluegill swimmer in deeper water, may catch a bigger fish. Or even dinks, I don't care, they're still fun for catch and release.

Bluegill usually spawn right after the bass, at least up here and they often use the same bedding areas the bass used. Bass hang around on the perimeter to dine on the the nesting gills and their fry. This may be what you have going on. Those gills are a good food source for the bass and will keep them in the area so I wouldn't try to get rid of too many of the gills. You just may have created your own personal honey hole that in time might produce some quality bass.  :-*
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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #17 on: July 27, 2017, 06:56:29 PM »

Bluegill usually spawn right after the bass, at least up here and they often use the same bedding areas the bass used. Bass hang around on the perimeter to dine on the the nesting gills and their fry. This may be what you have going on. Those gills are a good food source for the bass and will keep them in the area so I wouldn't try to get rid of too many of the gills. You just may have created your own personal honey hole that in time might produce some quality bass.  :-*
Well I didn't look at it quite the same way...
There's another spot on the bank about 30 yards away. It's not clear enough to fish from unless you're using a cane pole, and that's actually where I found all the trash.
With this gravel pit being so overgrown on the banks, I've been considering building a few small fishing platforms like mini piers since I'm apparently no good at boat building or keeping a boat I've built...
If I do, I can place one there.
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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #18 on: August 07, 2017, 07:57:18 PM »

So, after about two weeks of using this light braid, the three baitcasters I use are also spooled with braid.
I don't see myself ever going back to mono. The near absolute lack of memory has produced the most forgiving casting I've ever had. May try fluorocarbon someday, but for now I'm happy as a pig in slop with braid.

I've also figured out for sure why I was getting those wind knots, it's something I was starting to suspect. Basically, I was trying too hard to cast light weights. I was pitching them hard enough to cause the tip of that light rod to whip, basically snatching quite a bit of line off the spool all at once with no place to go real fast, so it was just balling up. Using less force and more follow through has completely cured this problem, and has also greatly improved my accuracy with this spinning reel.
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SteveTX

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #19 on: August 08, 2017, 12:49:57 AM »

So, after about two weeks of using this light braid, the three baitcasters I use are also spooled with braid.
I don't see myself ever going back to mono. The near absolute lack of memory has produced the most forgiving casting I've ever had. May try fluorocarbon someday, but for now I'm happy as a pig in slop with braid.
Great! Glad to hear you like it.

I personally like braid not so much because of memory but the sensitivity. Of course I use bait casters 98% of the time so memory isn't as big a deal. With braid I can cast as far as possible for me and its like the lure is 5 yards out when I feel that subtle tick on the other end. Extremely hard to give that sensitivity up and go back to mono unless its a treble hook bait. 
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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #20 on: August 08, 2017, 07:22:56 AM »

Great! Glad to hear you like it.

I personally like braid not so much because of memory but the sensitivity. Of course I use bait casters 98% of the time so memory isn't as big a deal. With braid I can cast as far as possible for me and its like the lure is 5 yards out when I feel that subtle tick on the other end. Extremely hard to give that sensitivity up and go back to mono unless its a treble hook bait.
You're very much right on that count. I have two Berkley Lightning Rods, one short one for my other lightweight rig and one 6'6" for my 5000, and been using pretty good copolymers. Going to a light action pole like this one on my spinning reel sacrifices a LOT of sensitivity, even with the braid. It's almost like fishing with a half cooked spaghetti noodle. Most of the little dinks I lose with it are due to the pole being a bit too soft. It's something I can work on, but I think I'll be completely incapable of hooking anything big, I don't think it has enough power to punch a hook through anything tougher, even though I'm using Owner hooks.
Fishing with a Zebco Z-cast rod is like using a piece of driftwood. It's what came with the Zebco 33 combo I got my daughter. She said she wasn't sure if she'd care for fishing and wanted something cheap. Now she likes fishing almost as much as me and her mom, and wants a better rig. I'll probably get another Lightning Rod and give her my Ambassadeur 5500 C3. She's been trying to talk me out of my 5000 since I let her try it out, but that'll never happen. She can do like I did, fall in love with daddy's and go buy her own when he doesn't give it up!

I know there's better equipment out there, but this is what I can afford. Actually, with the amount of overtime that was on this last paycheck, I may be able to pick up a good rod for her today. Need to go through that 5500 again, I noticed an odd thing last time I was tinkering with it. Reel it pretty quickly and then stop, and the spool makes about another half turn and makes a ratcheting sound.
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TWBryan

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #21 on: August 09, 2017, 07:27:34 PM »

Streelhorse, I've bought several of the abu garcia 4600's off evilbay for $33 or under. They clean up okay,and all most of them need is cleaned,lubed,and maybe a set carbontex drag washers. My last one was a really nice 4600 hardly used at all,no scratches dents or anything.Discovered  it had a loose pawl and some gunk on levelwind worm gear.After I cleaned that up it works perfect.

Not sure I want to go to braid,I think Trilene xt from wallymart is expensive enough...
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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #22 on: August 10, 2017, 02:23:37 PM »

AG round reels are most of what I have. A 4600 Royal Express, a 5000, 5500 C3, and a 6500/5500/5000 high speed Frankenreel. Seems to be an old 6500 high speed with the left plate from an old 5500 all on a 5000 frame. It's my second favorite of the batch. I service them all myself.
I recently had an issue with my 5000 making a racket, and discovered it was because I hadn't snugged down the thumbscrews well enough. I checked that on the 5500, but it seems there's something else going on in there. I'll find it, I ain't worried.

You can find good braid on sale for less than good mono. I paid around $3 per spool of the Daiwa J-braid 8lb on my spinning reel, and around $11-$12 for the 30 and 40 lb spools of Trilene professional grade.
The price was the biggest thing holding me back too. But I was looking at all the mono I'd gone through and how much that cost ($12 spool for the p-line I was using), lost lures and stuff like that. Wanted to try braid, and happened across it on sale. At long as I can keep getting my hands on a good deal, I'll never get mono for myself again.
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TWBryan

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #23 on: August 10, 2017, 02:46:28 PM »

Steelhorse,my objections to the braided line is that it requires a leader in most cases. Then I've read where if you cast it incorrectly it will snap at the knot,doesn't sound particularly forgiving. I do plan to buy a new-fangled modern reel next month and maybe I'll try some braid on that.

Most every baitcaster I have is an abu garcia round reel. I think I currently have 3 4600's (one of them a C4) ,one Royal express 4600,an old and troublesome 5000,and a nice 5500c3. When I got interested in fishing again I wanted something with a smaller spool and a faster retrieve,I started collecting 4600's then...

Most of the time I have no trouble taking apart,cleaning ,and lubing the round reels. I find spinning reels more of a challenge,then again I've never claimed to be the brightest light in the hall. ;)

Next month I'll buy a Daiwa Tatula to try out,heard a lot of people here praise it. I might put braid on that..
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SteelHorseCowboy

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Re: First experience with braid, mixed feelings, fun read
« Reply #24 on: August 11, 2017, 01:38:10 PM »

I'm wanting to try out a Daiwa Tatula myself, can't really afford one though. I have an old Daiwa BC, I believe it's an old Procaster model, a pr1-bb2 or something like that. Seems like one sweet reel, but I haven't had a chance to really try it out more than just playing around in the front yard.

As far as how unforgiving braid can be, so far I've found it to be more forgiving. Beyond the wind knots I've experienced and have corrected, I've experienced exactly one backlash with my Black Max. I made the mistake of pitching light plastics and then switching to casting a much heavier crank without re-adjusting the spool tension. My crank traveled about 15 feet and came to a HARD snapping stop. This was with 30lb Trilene pro grade about an hour ago.
Of course I retied, because I pulled off a few feet of slightly damaged line. It wasn't bad, but it looked a bit scuffed and stressed. Lost about 20 feet total, but that was more a preventative measure and only due to my own negligence.

As far as using a leader, there seems to be three camps: yea, nay, and situation dependent. Reading comments from the nay and situational camps, I've decided to go without leaders. The naysayers produce a convincing argument, and the water types I fish are those that the situation dependent folks seem to go leaderless: tannic stained and/or slightly silty.
But I'm not a successful enough angler to declare whether or not it's affected my catch rate. I blame that more on my skill (or lack thereof) rather than the line. I'm still getting plenty of action, bites and solid hits, I just suck at hooking 'em and bringing 'em in.
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