Help on line weight

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ImTheDave
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Help on line weight

Post by ImTheDave » Sun Nov 24, 2019 7:18 pm

Hi all,
I’m after some help on line weight. I’m not that experienced in fishing and the wife and I do it for fun but either our rods are broken or were completely useless because we never catch anything (just got back from a weekend in Lakes Entrance and caught 2 toadies and one Salmon in the surf off Eastern Beach over about 15 hours so probably the latter....)

We like surf fishing but I’ve always had a problem with lines breaking so like a noob, bought a roll of 50lb mono line. I know I’ll never catch anything that size off the surf but it did solve the problem with line breaks. We went the whole weekend without a single break plus the mono line was great and didn’t tangle once.

There was a guy there giving some helpful advice on how to cast out a good distance but he kept saying our line was too big. I was pretty happy with the distance we were casting and it seemed to match everyone else on the beach but what really is the disadvantage in using heavy line?
Is there such a thing as being ‘too heavy’ and does it affect casting distance?

We’ve got a couple of 12ft ugly stick balance II we got from BCF.

Thanks a lot



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DougieK
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Re: Help on line weight

Post by DougieK » Sun Nov 24, 2019 7:23 pm

It depends on how much money you want to spend. It's probably your knots and not your line strength that's the issue.

If you have the $ spool your reel with a quality braid, learn to tie a solid leader knot, then use uni knots to connect everything else, or buy premade rigs. Heavy mono will not cast very far at all.

The braid will let you cast much, much further. Uni knots are relatively simple to learn and as good as anything else for connecting terminal tackle.

Your rods and reels are probably ok for salmon surf fishing, target high tides at dawn or dusk, low swell conditions and cast at the darkest spot in the water.

Bit of blue bait on each hook, surf popper on top if you feel like it's necessary.

Salmon fishing is not rocket science, don't over complicate it.
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ImTheDave
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Re: Help on line weight

Post by ImTheDave » Sun Nov 24, 2019 8:09 pm

Thanks mate. Appreciate that.
Knots have never been the issue for me, neither have the rigs. I can’t remember the last time I had one fail and it’s always been a line snap which is why I went for the heavier line. Every time we’ve gone Eastern beach we’ve needed a very heavy sinker because of the under current.
That’s said, I’ve also always had continuous line up to the rig simply because I figured having a knotted leader would cause a ‘bump’ on the cast out as it went through the eye and limit the distance.
I’ll give braid a go and learn how to tie a uni knot. I always thought mono was better (smoother, tangle free)

To be honest, it’s probably my casting technique too. I tend to ‘swing’ rather the flick like other people I watch because I’m always afraid of the rod breaking. When I do flick it really is almost effortless and goes very well

skronkman
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Re: Help on line weight

Post by skronkman » Sun Nov 24, 2019 9:04 pm

50lb mono does sound pretty heavy to me for surf fishing. I imagine it might be a limiting factor in cast distance. Can you get away with 20lb mono? Perhaps check your guides to make sure you have no cracks or splits that can cut the line. Mono isn’t a bad choice for rough surf fishing as braid can take a beating and the potential for wind knots is always there. I don’t do a lot of surf fishing but when I do I mostly use straight mono (unless I’m spinning).

When does your line snap and where does it snap?
Is it decent quality line?
Do you set your drag up correctly?

Cheers

smile0784
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Re: Help on line weight

Post by smile0784 » Mon Nov 25, 2019 3:59 am

Is mono you have faulty?

DougieK
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Re: Help on line weight

Post by DougieK » Mon Nov 25, 2019 4:11 am

smile0784 wrote:
Mon Nov 25, 2019 3:59 am
Is mono you have faulty?
I'd guess what's more likely is that the guides on the rod are damaged, or the rim of the spool on the reel is.

IF you're sure it's not your knots, have an inspection of the guides on the rods, and the rim spool and see if there's any damage there.

Consider investing in some grapnel sinkers, they will hold the bottom for less weight and make your casting a bit easier. How heavy was the mono you were using?

Line breaking shouldn't really be an issue unless the line is being damaged somehow. Knots reduce the strength of the line and will usually be the weakest link, unless there is some other bit of damage in your gear.
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WayneK
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Re: Help on line weight

Post by WayneK » Tue Nov 26, 2019 5:09 pm

Here's my 2 cents worth, mate...

Selecting an appropriate line weight is dependent upon a few things. The first thing to consider is what size fish you're targeting and, then, consider what sort of reputation they have for fighting. The next thing you have to figure out is where your target species is located, off the beach, and what sort of structure it likes feeding amongst. For example, flathead and gummy sharks are more likely to be found in gutters with sandy bottoms, while snapper and other reef fish are more likely to be found in areas with a reefy or rubble bottom. The question you should ask yourself in this respect is how likely is it that your target species will bust you off on some structure? A fish fighting on the bottom of a sandy gutter, such as those along the 90 Mile Beach, is not likely to bust you off on a reef or rocks. In such a situation, you can afford to err on the side of a lighter line, such as 15Ib or 20Ib. (I've routinely fished with 12Ib line along that beach and never had a problem.)

If you're worried about some part of the fish's body abrading or cutting the line, then consider keeping your main light but going for a heavier leader, perhaps in the 30Ib to 40Ib range, again, depending on what fish you're targeting and where you're fishing. One of the biggest mistakes 'newbies' make when surf fishing is falling into the trap of believing there is a linear relationship between fish size and casting distance. Trust me, some of the best fish you're ever likely to hook are to be found in the gutters immediately off the beach, not out in the vicinity of the second sand bar. In my experience, line weight is not a significant factor in relation to casting distance because I don't usually cast very far at all.

Finally, as others have said, inspect your rods and reels for any signs of damage that may affect the line. The next key thing to consider is what type of knots you're going to use to secure your terminal tackle. Whilst it's far from perfect, I routinely use half-locked blood knots to secure everything except hooks - I tie on my hooks with Snell knots. As for joining line to line, I use an FG knot to join braid to monofilament - not that braid is needed in every situation. My advice, while you're finding your feet, is to stick to monofilament and master your knots. Once you've done this, you can explore the whole new world of braided line. Best of luck, mate.

Cheers,

Wayne

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4liters
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Re: Help on line weight

Post by 4liters » Tue Nov 26, 2019 5:59 pm

Something's wrong if you need 50lb to avoid line breakage. I use cheap 30lb Rovex D8 braid (you can get bulk spools from Dinga) for surf fishing for gummies and haven't had any issues with it breaking.

As others have said, I'd be checking the rim of the spool, line roller and rod guides for any rough spots that might be causing abrasion. While you're checking your gear, have a look at your drag. If it's not running smoothly it can cause spikes in the amount of pressure on the line which can lead to breakages. Your drag should be set at a max of 30% of the line's breaking strain so that the drag system is the weakest link in the chain connecting you to the fish - i.e. for 30lb braid have the drag set no higher than 10lb/5kg (in reality 5kg of drag is a lot for a surf rod but it's a good idea to keep it in mind anyway).

You might think your knots are ok but have you tested them to see what they're actually breaking at. You used to be able to get a set of cheap electronic scales from SuperCheap Auto that are handy for testing knots. Tie a bunch and try to break them all to see how consistent your knot tying is. These scales are also good for setting your drag.

Probably the hardest thing to fix is your casting. You want a smooth action that loads up the rod evenly, an uneven or jerky casting action can over load the line and break it. One way around this is to use a long enough leader that you can get a couple of wraps around the spool when you're in position to cast. This won't affect your casting distance much but if you are putting too much strain on the line during the cast the heavier leader should be able to take it without breaking. Ideally in the long term you should aim to improve your casting though because rods can break from **** casting too.

Finally, it might just be crap line that you've been using. Even reasonable brand name mono will go brittle if it's too old.
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Robbie1950
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Re: Help on line weight

Post by Robbie1950 » Tue Nov 26, 2019 6:21 pm

If your using 50lb mono and its breaking it must be only 1 of two things. Like Dougie said, your guides are damaged or your knots are coming undone. When you say break, does it "snap" on a connection or randomly somewhere?

Theres is merit to what 4litres is saying in regards to casting, but I don't think 50lb would break that easy under stress.

Also are you using blood knots or uni knots? I had an issue with blood knots a long time ago were I thought my line was breaking when in fact the blood knots were coming undone.

happyfriggincamper
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Re: Help on line weight

Post by happyfriggincamper » Tue Nov 26, 2019 8:18 pm

What type of line and weight were you previously getting the breaking on? And was it commonly breaking when doing the same thing eg casting, the start of pulling your rig back in, hooking up into a fish etc?



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