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Tips for solid knots

I vividly remember the time when I biked with my father down to the river Vantaanjoki to fish. Red and white polystyrene float, thick monofilament line, and a bamboo pole. Using two or more overhand knots, I would tie a large single hook on the end of my line once the previous one had come off. At the time, Palomar, lure, or loop knots where not part of my arsenal. Back then, we relied on overhand knots.

However, as my skills have developed, I have begun to favor a traditional lure knot with leaders and hook, the loop knot with flies, and a double uni knot to join two lines. These three have served me well over the past thirty years.

You can use thin nylon cord or thicker monofilament line to practice your knots. Once you are comfortable with these, you can move onto thinner lines.

Learn at least one knot properly and add knots to your repertoire where necessary.

Each time you tie a knot, make sure it holds by pulling on the line! 

Lure knot – quick and easy

  1. Thread the main line through the lure ring.
  2. Wind the free end around the main line seven times.
  3. Pass the free end between the wound line and the lure ring.
  4. Pass the free end once more through loop between the wound line and the previous pass.
  5. Tighten evenly by pulling on the hook or lure. Remember to moisten the knot section before tightening.

The traditional lure knot works well with monofilament lines for snap swivels and leaders, and it is one of the easiest knots to learn. Braided lines work best with non-slip knots, such as Palomar or uni knot. 

Palomar knot

  1. Double the free end of the line and pass it through the hook or lure ring.
  2. Tie a regular overhand knot with the doubled line.
  3. Pass the loop formed by the line through the hook or lure ring.
  4. Tighten evenly by pulling on the hook or lure. Remember to moisten the knot section before tightening.

The Palomar knot is excellent for securing hooks, leaders, and snap swivels, for example. It is fast and easy to tie and works great with various lines. 

Loop knot (Rapala knot) – for small plugs or flies

  1. Tie a loose overhand knot on the line.
  2. Thread the main line through fly or lure ring below the knot.
  3. Pass the free end through the loose overhand knot.
  4. Wind the main line around above the knot you tied 5–7 times.
  5. Pass the free end of the main line through the knot you tied.
  6. Pass the line through the formed loop (parallel to the main line toward the rod)
  7. Tighten by pulling evenly on the main line (parallel to the main line toward the rod). Remember to moisten the knot section before tightening.

A fixed loop knot is recommended for monofilament lines and casting small plugs or flies. The knot allows the lure to move freely, without compromising its swimming action.

You can also use the loop knot to secure leaders. Tie a loop knot onto the main line and the leader. This will allow you to replace your leader quickly if your line is cut or you want to change the size of your hook. 

Angling tip – changing leaders quickly

When fishing with a pole, it may become necessary to change your hook size or replace the leader if your line is cut. One handy option is to prepare leaders comprised of a hook and leader line in advance. The open loop allows you to quickly attach your leader to the end of your line, without having to stop for extended periods.

  1. Pass the loop of the leader through the loop on the main line.
  2. Pass the leader line and hook through the loop on the leader.

Uni knot – excellent for slick lines

  1. Pass the main line through the ring of the lure, leader, swivel, or hook twice.
  2. Double the main line, leaving an open loop at the fold.
  3. Wind the main line around the loop and the doubled main line seven times.
  4. Tighten by pulling evenly on the main line (parallel to the main line toward the rod). Remember to moisten the knot section before tightening.

Joining two lines

A uni knot can also be used to join two lines, such as attaching a  fluorocarbon leader for jigging.

  1. Place the lines to be joined side by side.
  2. Begin the uni knot like you would for a lure by making a loop.
  3. Wind the main line around the other line and inside the formed loop seven times.Make sure that both lines to be joined are inside the circles!
  4. Thread the main line through the loop.
  5. Tighten by pulling evenly on the main line.
  6. Repeat the tying of the knot on the other line and tighten.
  7. Wet both knots and tighten by pulling in opposite directions.

Always make sure that your knots are tied properly, as there is nothing as aggravating as losing a fish due to a failed knot.

Keep your lines tight!

Text: Juha Salonen

 

 

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