FG Knot Vs. The Bimini Twist [Strength Test]

By: Luke Simonds on December 1, 2016
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fg knot vs bimini twist

It’s fishing knot contest time again!

My favorite thing about knot contests is that every once in a while I get completely surprised by the results.

And my latest knot contest certainly proved to be one of the contests that opened my eyes to a potential next strongest knot for the most important connection for saltwater anglers…

This latest knot contest was focused on testing the top performing line doubling knot (Bimini Twist) to the top performing single braid to leader knot (FG Knot).

Best of all, any increase in strength resulting in this test will have a direct impact to the strength of many saltwater anglers’ overall line systems since many of us use a light braided line for our main line (to maximize casting performance) with a heavier leader that can withstand the sharp/rough mouths of our target species.

But before getting to the surprise, let me first explain this contest so you can understand the purpose of the test.

FG Knot Vs. Bimini Twist Overview

As many of you know, the FG Knot won my original knot contest along with all of the other direct braid to leader connection contests.

Similarly, the Bimini Twist won the most recent contest that focused on line “doubling knots” used for tying line to leader knots with doubled line (which is supposed to be stronger).

Doubled Braid to Leader Knot System

Picture of doubled braid to leader knot system… starts with a single line on the right, then get’s doubled over by the Bimini Twist which then gets tied to the leader.

Knowing that these are two of the strongest overall fishing knots, I decided to go ahead and actually test the top single line to line knot against the top line doubling knot paired with some of the top doubled-line to leader knots that members of the Salt Strong Fishing Tribe recommended.

Here are the four knots I combined with the Bimini Twist (to compete against the FG knot):

  • Improved Bristol (aka. No Name Knot)
  • Uni-to-Uni (aka. Grinner Knot)
  • Yucatan
  • Albright

Notes:

(1) For connecting the braid to the leader, the Bimini Twist was first tied to form a loop at the end of the braid. Then, each of these knots were used to connect the braid loop to the leader before testing its strength against the FG Knot.

(2) I used a range of 20 to 30 twists in the Bimini Twist to see if it made a difference.

FG Knot Vs. Bimini Twist Results

bimini twist vs fg knot

Since the braid to leader knot using the doubled line technically has two core variables (strength of the Bimini Twist + strength of the Loop-to-Leader knot), I did three rounds of tests for each finishing knot.

Note: All tests were done using 10 lb PowerPro for the braid and 30 lb Berkley Big Game mono for the leader.

Test 1 – Improved Bristol Knot

The Improved Bristol knot is similar to the Bristol, but instead of making 10 wraps in one direction before bending back…

The improved version makes the initial 5 wraps, but then reverses the next 5 wraps over the first similar to a Crazy Alberto Knot.

Improved Bristol + Bimini vs. FG – [Results]

  • FG Knot won at 12.6 lbs
  • FG Knot won at 13.2 lbs
  • FG Knot won at 13.5 lbs

Findings: Although the breaking point was higher than the listed strength of the light braid, I would not recommend using the Improved Bristol Knot because the others had higher breaking strengths while also being a bit easier to tie (it’s tough to do the 5 wraps over the first 5 with mono).

Test 2 – Uni to Uni Knot (aka. Double Uni Knot)

The Double Uni Knot knot is probably the most popular of all fishing knots because it can be used for almost any connection.

And it’s strength is often tested as one of the top contenders.

Note: The standard wrap count for this knot is 5 turns each, but I did 10 turns on the braid loop since me prior testing of the double uni showed that doubling the count on the braid side adds strength.

Double Uni + Bimini vs. FG – [Results]

  • FG Knot won at 17.5 lbs
  • Double Uni Knot won at 18.1 lbs
  • FG Knot won at 17.9 lbs

Findings: Although the Double Uni Knot won a bout, the FG knot still pulled ahead in the official 3 tests (plus most of the prep ones too).

Test 3 – Yucatan + Bimini vs. FG Knot

The Yucatan is what many claim to be the strongest option for connecting a doubled main line to a leader.

Note: In order to maximize the strength of this knot with braid, I made 10 to 14 wraps (vs. ~5 that many online tutorials show) around the leader since braid has less friction than mono.

Yucatan + Bimini vs. FG – [Results]

  • FG Knot won at 17.7 lbs
  • FG Knot won at 16.5 lbs
  • FG Knot won at 17.1 lbs

Findings: Of all the loop knot connector knots I tested, this has been my favorite to tie since it’s much quicker than the double uni while having a comparable strength… but it’s still not as quick and strong as the FG knot based on this test.

Test 4 – Albright + Bimini vs. FG Knot

The Albright knot is another very popular knot used for connecting a doubled main line to a leader.

Note: In order to maximize the strength of this knot with braid, I made 10 to 15 wraps around the leader since braid has less friction than mono.

Albright + Bimini vs. FG – [Results]

  • FG Knot won at 15.9 lbs
  • FG Knot won at 15.5 lbs
  • FG Knot won at 16.5 lbs

Findings: Although the Albright + Bimini connection provided a higher breaking strength compared to the line’s listed value, I still prefer the FG Knot since it proved to have a higher breaking strength while also being quicker to tie compared to having to tie both the Bimini and the Albright for the doubled connection.

The Big Shocker!

Given that the FG knot won 11 of 12 head to head contests, I concluded that the FG Knot was superior to the Bimini Twist.

But before I completed this article, I decided to see how the FG Knot would do on the doubled line behind the Bimini Twist instead of the more commonly used knots specified above.

fg knot on doubled line

Here’s what the test consisted of… FG knot using the doubled line tied against the FG knot on a single line (background).

And I was shocked at the results….

The doubled line FG Knot with the Bimini beat the single line FG knot every time.

Final Conclusion

Given that final test, I finally found a braid to leader connection that consistently beats the standard FG knot.

But it required the FG knot to be tied onto a doubled line behind the Bimini twist.

So although the Bimini Twist was the main consistent factor in all four sets of the earlier tests, it was not the root cause weakness.

And since the surprise finding happened at the very last second, I’ll have to dig into the specifics in a different knot analysis exercise… my hunch is that the FG knot did the best job at making sure the Bimini’s coils did not shift.

Good news: We finally found something that beats the standard FG knot.

Bad news: We still have some more analysis to do for determining exactly what doubled line knot is the absolute best for this very important connection for saltwater anglers.

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

Related Posts:

– How To Tie The FG Knot

– How To Tie The Bimini Twist

Go To Our Knot Testing Homepage [Full Knot Rankings]

 

Don’t let the biggest fish of the day get off with your lure/hook!

Check out these popular knot contests to make sure you’re using the Strongest knot for each connection:

  1. Braid to Fluoro Leader Knot (top braid to fluoro connection)
  2. “Loop” Leader to Lure Knot (provides best action to baits)
  3. “Snug” Leader to Hook/Lure Knot (strongest final connection)
  4. Monofilament Line to Leader Knot (top mono to mono connection)
  5. Braided Line to Swivel Knot (for using baits like spoons that twist line)

CLICK HERE to get an email sent to you with links to all of our Best Fishing Knot Contests so you can easily store them for future reference… we’ll also send you the results of future contests as they go live!

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Alan
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Alan

Hi Luke
Thanks for the quick reply. Will tie my Bimini as always then use the FG to tie on my leader material. Just started to use Braid after many years. FG is fast and a piece of cake. What a nice knot. I tied a loop on the end of my braid which made it super easy to hold onto with my teeth.

Alan
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Alan

“But it required the FG knot to be tied onto a doubled line behind the Bimini twist”
I apologize for not understanding this. Could you clarify behind VS ahead for me? So as usual I would tie my Bimini then use the FG to leader?

Josh
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Josh

I have been a dedicated mono guy for years surf fishing the Outer Banks (specifically Cape Hatteras, a.k.a “The Point”) It was always a bimini to the bristol for drum fishing with 8 and bait and glass minnows directly to the running line via the rapala knot for spanish mackerel and bluefish. This last trip, I switch to 10# braid on my spanish gear for casting distance. I struggled with connecting to a flouro leader (to my statisfaction at least). This is the knot I’ve been looking for. I’m really intrigued by your last finding. The bimini to the FG. I can tie a bimini at night in the rain with ease. I’ve actually practiced the knot at home, at night, in the rain. Yeah, I’m that sort of dude. So, keeping that knot in my mix is a bonus.

Given my novice status in the braided line and FG knot arena, could you expand on tying the FG to the bimini? Do you have a video of it?

Johnny
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Johnny

Findings: Although the Albright + Bimini connection provided a higher breaking strength compared to the line’s listed value, I still prefer the FG Knot since it proved to have a higher breaking strength while also being quicker to tie compared to having to tie both the Bimini and the Albright for the doubled connection.

if the bimimi was stronger why doesn’t it show it anywhere?

Walt
Member

Have done extensive knot testing for 10 years and the PR knot beats out the FG knot, not so much in strength but in consistency. The PR knot is unbeatable in consistency and strength.

Would also respectfully suggest you guys stop “fiddling” around with 10 lb test . Who uses that for salt water fishing. Well maybe Sardine jiggers or Anchovie hunters. We use a minimum of 20lb test leaders to 30-40 lb spectra. Buy a Rapala digital fish scale .
0-50 lbs. $25.00.
Also would suggest you just try tying the FG with a doubled line and forget the Bimini. Also flatten out the spectra by running it through your thumb and index finger nails to get all the twists out of it.

Here is some food for thought: Knot performance does vary between lb. test and between manufactures. Different test wts. and manufactures will significantly alter a knots performance. That is why it is important to standardize your material and mfg.
Walt Galen
Costa Mesa , Calif.

Lee
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Lee

Where did the bimini to bristol fail?. Main line at the bimini or did it break apart at the loop? Same question for bimini-uni combo.