Are you catching fewer fish in clear water versus dirty water? It could be that fish notice your braided line. Are you having difficulty catching fish on topwater lures with braided lines? The braided line sinks, making it difficult to use with topwater lures. The answer is to tie a leader to your braided line.
The Best of Both Worlds
Any good book with fly fishing tips will discuss the importance of leaders. It’s no different for bass fishermen using a braided line. Braided fishing line is much more noticeable in clear water than monofilament or fluorocarbon fishing line. Many fishermen tie a fluorocarbon leader to their braided line when fishing clear water. Of the three line types, fluorocarbon is the most difficult for fish to see. The Double Uni Knot is the best and easiest knot to tie braided line and fluorocarbon together.
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Another reason to use a fluorocarbon leader is that it’s made from a very durable material. It holds up well around docks and rocky bottoms. You can tie on a three- to eight-foot fluorocarbon leader and fish all day without getting into your braided mainline. This helps maintain the original length of braid you have spooled on the reel. The less braided line you break off or cut off, the more money you save.
Even the best braided fishing line tends to sink. It’s a pain to use when fishing with topwater lures. Many fishermen who want to fish topwater will tie a monofilament leader to their braided line. Since monofilament floats, topwater lures work as they should. The Double Uni Knot is also the best knot to tie a monofilament leader to a braided line. Next, let’s see how to best tie the Double Uni Knot.
Wrapping the First Loop
Hypothetically speaking, we will use a double Uni knot to tie a fluorocarbon leader to a braided mainline.
1. Pull several feet of braided line from your rod. You will only need 12 inches of line for actually tying the knot. You will also need 12 inches of the line from your fluorocarbon leader.
2. Lay the two lengths of line side by side with 12 inches of each line overlapping.
3. Pinch the two lines together in the center, leaving six inches of tag line hanging on either side.
4. Fold the fluorocarbon over to the center and pinch the loop, main braid line and main fluorocarbon line together. Leave several inches of tagline off the loop.
5. Keeping the three lines pinched together with one hand, use the middle finger of your other hand to keep the loop open.
6. Then, wrap the tag end of the fluorocarbon loop completely through the loop and around both the fluorocarbon and braided lines in a counterclockwise direction at least four times.
7. After making your four wraps, use one hand to hold the tag end and the other hand to hold the main braided line. Pull the two ends in opposite directions to form the first knot.
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Wrapping the Second Loop
8. Pinch the fluorocarbon and braided lines together. Make a loop with the braided line and pinch the loop, fluorocarbon mainline and braided lines together.
9. Hold the loop open with the middle finger of your other hand and wrap the tag end of the braided loop completely through the loop and around the fluorocarbon and braided main lines in a counterclockwise direction at least four times
10. After you have made at least four wraps, use one hand to hold the tag end and the other hand to hold the fluorocarbon line. Pull the two ends in opposite directions to form the second knot.
11. You should be left with two knots that keep the braided mainline and fluorocarbon mainline together.
12. At this point, it is important to wet the two knots and the line in between to prevent burning the line when you cinch the knots tight. Most fishermen do this by running the knots and line through their mouths.
13. Get a good tight grip on both lines and pull the lines in opposite directions. The two knots should slide toward each other. Cinch the knots up good and tight.
14. Once the knots are cinched tight, they will almost look like one knot. You will need to snip the tag ends off. Most cut the tag ends off close to the knot to keep their line from snagging in the reel.
Keep It Simple
The next time you are struggling to catch fish in clear water with braid, use a Double Uni Knot to tie on a fluorocarbon leader and see how the fish react. Likewise, when topwater lures are not producing, use a Double Uni Knot to tie on a monofilament leader and see how the fish react. It’s an easy knot to tie, even in a boat, and you will be surprised how much difference the right leader can make.