Can You Use Braided Line On A Spinning Reel? Is It A Good Choice?

Not only are braided lines suitable for spinning reels, for some applications it’s absolutely brilliant. 

And that’s coming from a staunch mono fan, who still has half his arsenal spooled with old-school.

Many modern monofilament, braids, and fluorocarbons are outstanding fishing lines. 

The question is not so much about which line for which reel. The better question is what fishing line for what application.

To be honest, it comes down to personal preference more than science. 

And it’s probably best you’re not overly influenced by the marketing spiel on the packet in which your new fishing line is encased.

When it comes to line selection, there are a few things you should be aware of. But to answer a question that is still surprisingly common; 

Yes, you can use braided fishing line on a spinning reel.

Let’s have a look at a few braid basics to get a feel for why you should include braid as a critical weapon on your favorite spin reels.

Can You Use Braided Line on a Spinning Reel?

There are plenty of anglers who spool their entire spin reel arsenal with braid. They’ll use it for every application without exception.

I’m a little different from that. I like to mix it up a bit, and I’m far from alone here. There’s plenty of anglers like me who like to use all types of fishing line.

Mono and braid, and fluoro for that matter, have different qualities.

Although there is no line that can be considered superior, each type is a bit more effective than others for certain fishing applications.

Having said that, personal preference comes into consideration. 

In fact, it’s the predominant deciding factor for many anglers, meaning that there is no emphatic universal measure of what line is best for any application.

People will talk about feel, castability, sensitivity, and a bunch of other variables between line types, but the true measure of line performance must always be the catch ratio. 

And that’s pretty difficult to measure. However, there are some benefits to going braid which you can see below.

For example, I’m spooled with mono; my buddy is spooled with braid. We’re fishing the same spot for the same species with the same lure and rig. 

Does one catch more fish over the other?

Braid is brilliant because of its strength to diameter ratio and sensitivity. It makes it a great line for lure fishing because ‘feel’ is enhanced, and I can fit more of a heavier class line on my spool. 

But will it catch more fish? Potentially, but that’s a very difficult question to answer.

What braid will do is increase fishing efficiencies, particularly when using lures. And there is a strong argument to suggest more efficient fishing should increase the catch.

How Do You Put Braided Line on a Spinning Reel?

The process of spooling up with braid is pretty much the same as spooling up with any other line type. Simply tie it to your spool as you would mono.

Many anglers will use a mono backing. This means they will fill up to a third of their spool with mono, then the next two-thirds with braid.

The backing amount varies between anglers. Some will use even more backing; some will use just a few yards to mitigate slippage.

When spooling braid, your connection knot or arbor knot will slip as you try to wind on the line. 

This is one of the reasons anglers use a backing line. To mitigate slippage. Many modern spin reels have a feature known as “braid ready.”

Braid ready means that the spool has a rubber sleeve or ring on the arbor that stops braided lines from slipping when you spool up.

In my opinion, they’re a little bit gimmicky. And as they are rubber, they will deteriorate over time to a point where they become ineffectual.

However, when new, they do make it a heck of a lot easier to connect braids directly to the arbor and spool up. If you have a large reel, however, this can be very expensive.

Good braided lines are notoriously expensive. So spooling up a 16000 size spinning reel with braid only can put a hefty hole in one’s wallet.

This is the main reason most anglers chose to use mono backing. If you can fill up your spool with 30% of cheaper mono, you can save a reasonable amount of cash.

Rarely will we have a fish battle that rips 70% of our spool out to sea, so your mono backing is never likely to see the light of day? 

It is possible, so appropriate braid to mono knots such as a uni knot or FG knot makes sense.

How do you Stop Braided Line from Spinning on the Reel?

As mentioned earlier, there are braid-ready reels that have this covered. And it works, at least until the rubber ring begins to degrade.

Aside from this, I have witnessed countless techniques that vary between obsessive and madness.

Some people use sticky tape. Others will use ancient secret knots handed down over generations. Some will even use a dab of glue on their knots.

My advice is not to go OCD on spool connection. If you’re ever in a situation that a fish battle sees you having to rely on the arbor knot, the battle is well and truly lost anyway.

The critical thing is to prevent slippage to avoid the annoyance of slippage. And there’s a simple method that doesn’t even require a knot or backing.

The trick is to wind on the first few hoops of line slowly and loosely. 

With a few layers over the arbor, you can increase the tension over a few cranks, and the line will grab, and grab on itself.

I have done this for decades, with the addition of a knot, and it’s a feel thing. With practice, the required pressures will become second nature.

Having said that, I’m an old hand and used to it. Slippage can be very annoying. In which case, use a few yards of mono backing.

Should You Use Backing With Braided Line? And How Much to Use?

As stated earlier, the use of backing can be a pretty wise financial decision. It also adds a small level of convenience when spooling up, but this benefit, in my opinion, is neither here nor there.

The big benefit is financial savings. Over the year, with an extensive, well-used spin arsenal, the savings in line costs can be pretty significant. 

Particularly if you use large spinning reel sizes of 6000 and above.

You certainly don’t have to use backing, there’s no real benefit to your fishing, but it’s a frugal solution to an expensive problem.

There are no rules as to how much backing you should use. There are two things to consider. 

Firstly, how much line do you think a potential target will strip from your spool in a battle. 

Secondly, the larger diameter mono backing you use, the more you will reduce the spool capacity.

There’s nothing stopping you from using 50% or 60% backing, or even more if you like. 

Ultimately, even should an unexpected fish battle spool you to the backing line, a well-tied connecting knot ensures there’s no issue.

My advice is to back with as much line as it requires to make a reasonable financial saving. Do the math with your preferred brands.

It’s possible you can save 25% or more on line costs over a season. If you fish a lot and have a large arsenal, this can be a great saving. 

Money is so often hard-earned. Why give it away unnecessarily!

Frequently Asked Questions

How Long Can You Keep Braided Line on a Spinning Reel?

Braid can last a very long time relative to mono because, besides decoloration, it handles UV far better than mono.

I have used braids for a couple of years. It all comes down to how often it’s been fished, how much sun it has seen, and how much gnarly structure it has contacted.

I have some Spider Wire on a spinning reel I rarely use. It’s been on the spool for 10 years, and it’s fine.

The imperative is to check your lines and test your lines. The killer is nicks and cuts. If your line has abrasion of any level, it’s time to replace your line.

Some braids can fade pretty quickly, so don’t use the color loss as a primary indicator of line degradation.

What Size Braid is Good for a Spinning Reel?

All braid line classes are good for spinning reels. It’s the same principle as mono. 

You select your test weight based on the target.  You spool up based on the line test weight advice printed on the side of the reel spool.

Is Braid or Mono Better for Spinning Reels?

Either line type is perfect; While opinions vary, it comes down to personal preference. 

There’s no scientific reason for suggesting one line is better than the other. Beware of those who tell you this.

Braid and mono have different properties and excel in various fishing applications. Ultimately, one line type is not better than the other.

The Spin Reel Braid Wrap Up

Yes. You can use braid on spin reels. What’s more, many braids are brilliant fishing lines that will enhance your fishing experience.

Whether or not you’ll catch more fish is up for debate – a long, never-ending debate. Ultimately, it’s a personal preference.

I use them both on my spinning reels, and I think you’ll find this a good practice too.

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