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How to Put Fishing Line on a Reel

What to Know About How to Put Fishing Line on a Reel: The Ultimate Guide

Fishing is an incredibly relaxing and fulfilling hobby, and there are a plethora of benefits that can come from this pastime. Whether you’ve been fishing before or are just starting out, knowing how to properly set up your fishing gear is essential to a seamless and enjoyable experience. One of the most critical steps in this process is putting your fishing line onto the reel.

While it sounds simple in theory, there are many steps you’ll need to take to understand how to put fishing line on a reel before you can test your luck among fellow fishers. Remember a few fundamental techniques and considerations to ensure your fishing line is appropriately and securely attached.

To help you out, this article will walk you through the step-by-step task of how to put fishing line on a reel. From the different types of reels to the best tips for a successful fishing experience, this article will ensure you’re well-equipped for the ultimate fishing experience. Let’s dive in!

What are the Types of Lines?

Fishing anglers typically have three options for the type of fishing line they use to make a big catch: a monofilament, braided, or fluorocarbon line. Below is a brief breakdown of these options.

  • Monofilament: Also known as a mono line, the monofilament fishing line is made of one plastic fiber, typically nylon. This line is quickly produced and highly affordable. Mono fishing lines are flexible and hold up well under pressure. Additionally, this line has a slow sink rate, making it popular for anglers using a topwater lure.
  • Braided: A braided fishing line comprises numerous synthetic fibers that provide excellent strength. While these lines are more expensive than a standard mono line, they don’t need to be replaced as often, and the lack of stretch makes them perfect for anglers in deep or dense waters. These lines allow you to cast your rod further and with more accuracy.
  • Fluorocarbon: A fluorocarbon fishing line is made from fluorine, carbon, and chlorine. These lines are relatively invisible under the water and used primarily among anglers looking to catch more skeptical fish and less likely to approach a noticeable line. These lines are durable but expensive and less flexible than other options.

What are the Types of Reels?

Before exploring putting a fishing line on a reel, you must understand the various fishing reels you’ll encounter as you embark on your next adventure. Below is a brief overview of three common types of reels integral to a successful fishing experience.

  1. Spinning reel: A spinning reel is the most popular fishing reel used by expert anglers worldwide. These reels have an open-faced design that gives your fishing line sufficient capacity and makes it easy to exchange your fishing line as necessary. While it’s unsuitable for heavy lines and catches, a spinning reel is incredibly versatile and allows for high accuracy.
  2. Baitcaster reel: Baitcaster reels are incredibly accurate but far from the most straightforward fishing reel available. A baitcaster reel is designed to be highly accurate rather than for easy line casting, making it ideal for experienced fishing anglers. With a baitcaster reel, fishers control the spool with their thumb. Unlike the spinning reel, this reel is intended for heavier lines and lures.
  3. Spincast reel: A spincast reel is a type of closed reel that is simple to use, making it ideal for children or newcomers. A spincast reel has a closed face that protects the essential parts of your reel and is controlled with a thumb button to ensure accuracy when you cast your fishing line.

Step One: Setting Everything Up

Now, let’s get to the meat and bones of this article: how to put a fishing line on a reel for a successful fishing experience. Once you’ve chosen your fishing line and reel, you can begin the process by assembling your fishing rod. Double-check that all of the eyes on your fishing rod line up.

Once you’ve ensured that everything lines up correctly, take your fishing reel–in this case, suppose you’re using a spinning reel, as this is the most accessible option. Jerk the spinning reel into the reel seat of your fishing rod and tighten the reel until secure.

Always check the direction your reel turns while you crank and secure it in place. Your fishing line will unwind from one spool while winding in the same direction onto the other.

Step Two: Attaching and Threading Your Fishing Line

Once your spinning reel is set up and secure, you can begin attaching your fishing line to the reel. In this situation, it doesn’t matter what type of line you’re using–mono or braid, the process remains the same. Take your fishing line out of the spool, up to 15 feet of line.

Once you’ve removed some fishing lines, begin threading the line. You can do this by threading your fishing line through your fishing rod’s eyes. Start threading at the top of your rod and end when you reach the reel.

Step Three: Opening the Bail

The bail on your spinning reel is vital to a successful setup, as this device serves two critical purposes. First, your bail acts as the casting trigger for your spinning reel, meaning you must open the bail for your fishing line to spool off correctly. Additionally, your spinning reel bail keeps your fishing line in the proper position as it rolls off your spool. The bail ensures your line doesn’t go off-track or become knotted during the casting process.

Opening the bail is essential to successfully put a fishing line onto your reel. Without opening the bail, your fishing line won’t be able to perform correctly, causing a massive hassle where you have to go back and redo the threading process.

Step Four: Attaching the Line

Next, you need to attach your fishing line to the reel spool. This step requires you to tie your line to the reel by wrapping it twice around the spool and securing it by tying an overhand knot. Once the knot is secure, you can trim the tag end.

Step Five: Winding the Line

Once your line is attached and tied to the reel securely, begin to slowly wind the line onto the reel. Be careful to prevent obstacles once you start casting your line during this step. Holding the spool and a screwdriver in one hand and a thick cloth in the other to grip the side of the spool, put pressure onto the spool to secure the line tightly as you wind. The cloth will start to heat up as you wind.

Step Six: Continue Winding the Line

As you continue winding, your spinning bail will lay the fishing line onto your reel spool. As you turn the handle, flip the bail closed and crank a few times before checking to ensure that your line spool is facing in the proper direction.

Step Seven: Monitoring the Spool Orientation

Keep an eye as you orient your fishing line spool. This step is crucial to avoid twists and knots in your fishing line that will prevent you from casting your rod into the water. The line should come off your rod with the spool pointing toward you.

Crank the reel about ten times, then observe the orientation of your fishing line. The line should be loose and lay on the floor in loops. These loops should be relaxed–if you notice tight coils twisting over themselves, you’ll have to start the process and unspool your line.

Step Eight: Fill Your Spool

Once you’ve completed the previous step and noticed relaxed loops in your fishing line, continue cranking until you’ve filled the spool entirely. Hold your fishing rod parallel to the floor and crank slowly–this step can take a lot of manual power, so prepare yourself adequately beforehand.

Keep cranking until your fishing line reaches about ⅛ of an inch from the edge of your spool. Once your line reaches this point, you can clip it and thread it through the remaining rod guides.

Tips for Success

While putting your fishing line on a reel doesn’t have to be difficult, the numerous steps involved in the process can confuse anybody. To ensure that your experience is successful, remember the following tips:

  • Choose the correct type of fishing line for your reel. Make sure the line is appropriate for the type of fishing you hope to do and the weight of fish you expect to catch.
  • Hold the reel in your non-dominant hand and use your dominant hand to hold the line.
  • Keep tension on the fishing line with your fingers to prevent it from twisting or bunching up.
  • Cut any excess line with scissors or clippers, leaving enough lines to tie on a leader or lure.
  • Test the line by pulling on it gently to guarantee it is securely tied to the spool and won’t slip or come loose.
  • Choose the right reel for the type of fishing you’ll be doing. A spinning reel is best for beginners.
  • Make sure your reel is clean and free of any debris.
  • Don’t forget to open the bail.
  • If the line twists, stop winding and allow the spool to spin freely until the line untwists.
  • Practice casting in a safe area to get used to the feel of the line on the reel.

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