Knot: The Perfection Loop & Coils on the Floor!

I just noted, I bought a new fly line, the Rio AquaLux Intermediate Lake line. A couple things to not do first of all (I always share most of my mistakes….I can’t share them all or I’d risk total neglect by my visitors)….when you buy a new fly line, it will almost always be on a two piece plastic spool and inside a box.

Now when you take the spool out of the box there will be a tag end sticking out that may have a sticky label noting it is the butt end of the fly line, which should be joined to the running line on your fly reel. Usually, a nail knot is a good choice on joining running line to the butt end of the fly line.

You will also note there may be one or more twist ties wrapped around the coils of fly line. Ideally, you remove those ties but do not separate the two halves of the plastic spool which the fly line is wrapped neatly around. Attach the butt end of the fly line to the running line with the nail knot. This will require unwinding the new fly line just a bit to give you room.

Now you are ready to wind the new fly line, some 100′ of nicely coiled fly line, onto your reel. You may or may not have help. This would be nice as you wind, someone holds the plastic spool and the fly line gently rolls off the spool as the reel handle is cranked. Use your off reel cranking hand to guide the line back and forth onto the reel so the layers are  nicely spaced.


A good 45 minutes later of the most exasperating unraveling of a new fly line and devilish efforts by the cat and loving intrusions by Emma the Lab and I had the new line onto the reel. I used the damn, two piece plastic spool to house the old intermediate line. I decided to keep it just in case. I wrapped it on the spool tip/leader first so the butt section is last. I grabbed a marker and wrote on the spool ‘old intermediate, ok but ‘coily’, Cortland, 2012′. I put the spool back into the box the new line had just arrived in and stuck it in a drawer in the garage to be re-discovered years later.

Ok, the new line has a loop at the end. I usually nail knot the butt section of a stout leader to the end of the fly line. I have not been a fan of loop to loop connections especially for lake fishing. But, I am going to give it a shot, once again. But, I have noticed that after tying some of my loops the line (leader) tends to slightly angle off at a less than true direction. I offer a few versions of loop knots here (PERFECTION LOOP) and two other over hand knots.  

10 Responses to “Knot: The Perfection Loop & Coils on the Floor!”

  1. September 6, 2012 at 15:24

    Oops! I meant IDEAL arrangement.

  2. September 6, 2012 at 15:23

    Man, those 2-part spools are the worst! Those who make or sell fly lines ought to come up with an idea arrangement. Cortland once had a little crank handle you could use to re-spool line right in the box. Do they stilll have it>

    • September 6, 2012 at 18:19

      You know I don’t know if they have that. It would be nice to have a one piece spool. Not sure why two piece…probably for shops who put on a lot of lines and their systems? Not sure. Thanks for dropping by.

  3. 4 craig
    September 2, 2012 at 07:12

    i picked up an airflo line in a shop in wisconsin.
    the guide working the counter swore that it was the nuts.
    he was correct.
    it’s so much easier to replace your leader.

    so i added cortland loops to a few of my other lines.

    in moving water and using butts that match the line i haven’t added significant hinging to my casts and the fish don’t seem to care.

    in stillwater (usually warmwater) however i have had to use longer leaders than usual.
    the braided loop or the heat shrink seems to attract their attention in an adverse manner.
    especially when using larger streamers and bugs i switch to straight, untapered leader (up 17 lb. mono).
    a morning’s outing can yield 2 ounce bluegill, 3 pound bass and 15 pound carp (along with 20 pounds of weeds).
    as a consequence i go for utility instead of aesthetics
    but the simplicity of the setup outweighs the problems that it brings with it.

    crooked knots suck, don’t they?
    take a pencil or your plier handle, stick it in the bight of the loop as you tighten the knot and pull smoothly.
    make sure that you have a good grip on both the tag end and the running portion of your line when you pull.
    you should get straight knots

  4. September 2, 2012 at 00:22

    Great information that will come in quite handy in the not-too-distant future. I haven’t had to change lines yet, but I’m getting ready to change one of my 5wt floating lines to a sinking line. I don’t have a cat, but two beagles would cause as big of a mess I’m sure.

  5. September 1, 2012 at 12:09

    Ug, I hate it when spools fall apart. That was my first experience when I spooled my first reel. The spool had come apart in the box. Not a fun night.

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