After selecting the proper gear, including the right type of fishing line for your fishing rod—it’s time for you to spool the fishing line to the spinning reel without line twist. And anybody who has been fishing for a while knows how big of a pain it is dealing twisted fishing lines.
Twisted lines cause knots, poor casting, tangles, line breaks, and even lost fish. While some people accept that twisted lines will eventually happen when spooling, it’s largely preventable.
Below are tips that will not reduce the twists on your fishing line it will also lower the amount of time you spend on spooling the line to the spinning reel so that you can spend more time fishing.
How to Spool a Spinning Reel
If you want to spool your line to a spinning reel, it all starts proper line management. The initial set-up of your fishing gear must be done appropriately. If you see your fishing line is not spooled to the spinning reel correctly, be prepared to deal with line twist issues.
The proper technique here is to transfer all the fishing line from the fishing line spool to your reel spool without disrupting the natural curve the line has acquired from the main spool you’ve found when you buy it from the store or the warehouse.
The Wrong Method:
One mistake people make while spooling your spinning reel is that they place the purchased line spool over a makeshift axle, probably using a pen or pencil. They then hand it to someone and then transfer the line to their fishing rod spool.
You may be asking, hey, what is the problem here? The problem here is that it adds a transverse twist to your fishing line because the natural twist of the fishing line is changed to 90 degrees as its being transferred onto your new reel. If you loaded your fishing line this, you’d likely have twisted lines and knots.
The Better Method:
Lay the purchased spool of fishing line on the floor with a weight on top, or you can nail the spool to a piece of scrap wood, both of these will restrict it from moving or spinning.
Pass the fishing lines through the eyes of your fishing rod, and then tie the spool with a solid fishing knot. We recommend you go for a Uni Knot, though the Arbor Knot also seems fine.
Apply slight pinch pressure to the fishing line of the first eyelet, and while holding the fishing rod between your legs, begin reeling the line slowly with one hand. After a few turns, lower the fishing rod towards the spool.
If you see the fishing line tangling, twisting, or forming loops, you’re spooling the line on 180 degrees from its natural bend. At this point, turn the spool over. If it doesn’t form any loops, or the loops main their natural bend, keep spooling.
If you can’t tell the difference, keep reeling for a few more turns. If you do this correctly, the line will be loaded to the reel to maintain the same natural curvature.
The Best Method:
Now let’s talk about the perfect approach of spooling the fishing line to a spinning reel. The right way to load a fishing line onto a spinning reel is by using a spinning reel line spooler.
Spinning reel line spoolers involve removing the spinning reel spool from the spinning reel completely, and then loading the line separately from the reel, and finally replacing the reel spool after fishing.
You can buy these systems online, or you can do the same thing using an electric drill. If you feel that all of this feels like a lot of hassle, you can always go to your local fishing store.
If you buy the line from them, chances are they’ll spool it up for free. Overall, using a spinning reel line spooler is the best method to ensure that your fishing line has been reeled onto the spinning reel with a natural bend.
Spooling Pro Tips:
- Don’t overfill your fishing reel. It’s probably best if you keep a gap from the top of the line stack to the lip of the spool—say like 1/8″. If the gap is minimal, the line will jump off the reel. It also causes unnecessary drag while casting.
- Avoid wrapping lines onto your spool with your hand. Otherwise, it will cause twists.
- Stop applying too much pressure or tension to the fishing line while spooling line. While spooling, if you see the line is started to feel hot in your fingers, you’re probably pinching too hard. Fishing lines are stretchy and act like a rubber band if overly stretched. When tension is relieved, the line will retract and unspool.
- While spooling, it’s not a good idea to put too little tension on the fishing line. If the line is spooled loosely onto the spool, there will be a lot of tangles. Just apply enough pressure so that the stacked lines feel snug and even. No less, no more, and you’ll be fine.
- Don’t use cheap fishing lines. Inferior lines are more likely to twisting and tangles. Cheaper spinning reels also cause various line twist issues. Buying better quality fishing lines and spinning reels will ultimately save you from line management troubles as well as save you time dealing with line twists and tangles.
- Another way to prevent line twist when spooling to a spinning reel is to buy using swivels. Similar to good quality fishing lines and spinning reels, always use a quality swivel. Swivels are components that are tied or clipped in the fishing line; you’re spooling to your spinning reel, which naturally twists, preventing the line from twisting. For most people, a barrel swivel will suffice. Also, barrel swivels spin well under low tension, which prevents twists from spinning tackle like baited lures. And yes, if you’re fishing in saltwater, always use stainless steel swivels as they don’t rust.