Do You Make This Common Mistake While Casting? [VIDEO]

By: Joseph Simonds on May 8, 2016
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the biggest casting mistake

Did you know that one common casting error could cause your line to leader knot to unravel or break?

Even worse, this one casting error could be responsible for you flinging an expensive lure off, it could cause you to randomly break your line at the leader, and even worse… it could cost you a lost fish.

Now, I know what a lot of you anglers are probably thinking right now… how hard can it be to tie and knot and cast correctly without breaking it?

And although the act of casting a line can seem very basic, there are many small aspects of casting that can have a very big impact.

So this post and video will be a continuation of the prior fishing tip about casting longer distances with less effort.

However, this casting tip is focused on a common mistake made while casting that is seen across anglers of all different experience levels…

So what is the #1 mistake when casting?

When an angler casts any fishing knot through rod guides.

Why This Is Such A Costly Mistake

The act of casting fishing knots through guides can significantly weaken the most important connection in your line system (assuming you use a light main line for maximum casting performance tied to a heavier leader to withstand the strong and sharp jaws of many saltwater species).


Because every time your line to leader knot slams up against a rod guide (or guides) during a cast, the friction from the repeated impacts will cause wear and tear… and eventually the knot can unravel or break prematurely.

Now, although the wear and tear is small to start, the continued knot abuse on the guides can create a big problem for anglers in the form of casting off their lures or losing the biggest fish of the day.

Of course, this wear and tear compounds even quicker the further your knot gets reeled into the series of guides (as shown in the picture below):

casting knots mistake

As you can see, the knot in this picture will hit three different rod guides if it was casted from this position… so just a single cast will create three impact zones that can cause harm to the knot.

And I assure you, doing this over and over again will eventually weaken and potentially even break your line right at the top of your knot.

Note: This can be especially troublesome for those of us who use the super-slim FG Knot because the first braid coil (closest to the lure) is the most important part of the knot… if it gets compromised (breaks or get’s nocked lose), then the whole knot could fall apart.

How To Protect Your Knots [Video]

The great news is that protecting knots is very easy to do… it’s all about just being aware of the issue and minimizing the amount of friction that gets applied to your knots.

This video explains tips on how to ensure that your knots stay strong:

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When using line to line fishing knot to connect your main line to your leader, make sure to not make a habit of casting your knots through the guides.

Because although the impact of the knot on the guides is small, the repeated abuse can cause a lot of damage over time.

Best of all, this is an easy problem to fix because it only requires just a little more line out of the rod when casting and/or a shorter leader.

Click here to see a post that shows the most effective leader for targeting redfish, snook, and trout when fishing with lures.

Related Post: This One Casting Tip Can Significantly Increase Your Casting Distance & Accuracy.

P.S. – If you think your angler friends or fishing networks would enjoy seeing this, please Tag them or Share this with them. You Rock! Pa-POW!

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Gary RankelLeviTommy ParsleyLuke SimondsBrad Recent comment authors
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Gary Rankel

Good stuff, Luke, and, having the knot not pass through the guides also reduces wind knots.

Levi Soggybottom

What about surf fishing? There’s no way I can get away with such a short leader!


I’ve found that I can greatly reduce the wear put on my knots due to guide impact by coating them with Loon UV knot sense. Superglue also works pretty well but you run the risk of gluing your fingers together.
I like to start the day with a longer leader because I know between changing lures and fish like snook causing line abrasion my leader is going to get cut down significantly during the day. Starting with a longer leader allows me to spend more time fishing and less time tying on leaders.
The Loon UV knot sense provides a thin, clear, hard coating to my FT knot that allows me to make hundreds of cast without wearing out the knot and without sacrificing casting performance. I use a very thin, very limp Dyneema braid and I have never had an issue with knots wearing out since I started using this method.

Luke Simonds

Thanks for the tip Brad. My only concern about using hard setting glue is that some of them can end up causing more harm than good because knots will condense and change shape when placed under a lot of strain, and if it’s coated with a hard glue and then condenses further, then the glue could crack and end up leaving sharp edges inside the knot which could end up damaging the line.

Sounds like it hasn’t been an issue with the Loon product, just something for others to be aware of if experimenting with different glues.

Fish On!

Tommy Parsley
Youth Ambassador

Yeah I see what you mean. There are certain knots that help prevent that. I’ve always used what’s called a Yukotan knot, and I’ll put 2-3 feet of leader on. I normally use 20, 25, and occasionally 30lb leader, and have not had a problem with it breaking. Yet. However, if you are having problems with it breaking, but the knot isn’t the issue, be sure to check your guides individually. Look for epoxy, scratches, and nicks in the guide itself. That can fray the line, and cause it to break first cast. I hope this helps.
Good luck out there!
Tommy Parsley

Ralph Lassiter

I’d like to see how you cast with 18-28″ of line between the rod tip and the lure. Seems like you loose a lot of accuracy. Do you have some tips?

Luke Simonds

Here’s a post showing a casting tip that allows for greater accuracy and even added distance while using less effort:

Chris Lutz
Chris Lutz

It’s also costly in that larger diameter lines tied into knots, repeatedly going through guides, tends to knock out the inserts of the guides. Now you need repairs.

Luke Simonds

Good point Chris! Thanks for sharing the added tip.