How Much Line To Put On Your Spinning Reel (To Maximize Casting)


Have you ever wondered if you are maximizing the performance of your spinning reel?

If you are not managing the amount of line you have on the reel then you may be at a disadvantage.

Watch this video and learn the best way to determine how much line to put on on your reel and why it matters.

Check it out below!

How Much Line To Put On Your Reel [VIDEO]

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By understanding how much line to put on your spinning reel, you can effectively increase your casting distance and decrease your chances of getting wind knots.

If you have too much line, you will significantly increase your odds of getting wind knots.

And if you put too little line on, you are not going to be able to cast nearly as far.

So what is the ideal amount?

There needs to be some gap between the edge of your spool and the outer layer of your line.

Think about it like this…

No gap = increased wind knots

Too much gap = decreased casting distance

The normal recommendation is 1/8 inch gap and this does work in most cases.

But, through testing, we have found that casting distance is still impacted with the 1/8 inch gap!

My recommendation is to customize it based on your needs based on your preference for increased distance vs. fear of wind knots:

  • Distance Focus: Slightly under 1/16 inch will help you cast farther while still having a low risk of wind knots for advanced anglers
  • No Distance Focus: Use a 1/8 inch gap because it’ll still cast well and you’ll have a very low chance of wind knots

Also, do you want to know a little trick for spooling and how to know the amount of backing to put on your reel?

For most 2500 or 3000 size reels with similar diameters (1-3/4 inch), a 1/4 inch gap is what is best for the backing.

This is the perfect amount of gap to be able to use all 150 yards of your new line.

Of course, this will be different with larger-sized reels but the ratio of the backing gap to reel diameter should remain the same!


what size mono backing for spinning reel

Line management is very important, but it often gets overlooked.

Don’t make this mistake!

If you understand how much line you should have on each reel and what the gap should be, then you can maximize your casting distance while decreasing the occurrence of wind knots.

Have you found any other best practices when spooling up your reels?

Let me know down in the comments.

Know someone who spools their own reels? Please TAG or SHARE this with them!

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Malcolm Hayward
3 days ago

Fine, but still missing reality.

Easiest fix. Biggest spool that will work with your butt ring.
I generally use a 7000 or 8000 with a 4ft run into a 50mm ring.
50mm, 40mm, 30mm with 30 or 20mm tip is good.

Penn style LC spool.
Cheap, cheerful, long, tapered and with a line lay we would have strangled for.
Loverly Jubbly but useless for heavy boat work.
My expendable boat fixed spool is a Pennfisher 6500 LL.
Superb clutch despite being so cheap.

Now comes the “7Ps”.
Adjust your backing, by hand, with much trial and error. Yes, probably hours and hours.
Aiming for the load 1/16″ down from the lip, doming to a level centre, then carrying flat all the way to the back of the spool. Line can fall off the front but not the back. LOL.
The brave / foolhardy may dome a little higher.

You should have adjustment washers to help with the line lay. Try them. In the box.

A MF action will cast with a fixed spool much better than F or Tip actions.

Line 1/8″ down from the lip causes significant drag.
By 3/16″ you can feel the rod pulling in your hands. Cast will then just die.
Had a 70mm tapered spool Diawa that walled out, fishing load, 174yds.
80mm tapered spool Shimano Beastmaster, likewise, 192yds.
Competition load, Shimano went 206yds.
Mitchel 498, hand profiled, went a lot further but only one cast for every hand load.
Took six spools to a competition.


Malcolm Hayward.

Joe Puleo
3 days ago

You only need enough distance to get the specific bail to it’s desired location.
when throwing a spook on my 7’6” Avid I want maximum distance. Same for a MR 17, these are search baits generally across open stretches of water, however when pitching an X-rap or paddle tail up against or under mangroves etc. from the bow, on. 6’9” Avid totally different story.
leave Tuesday for 7 weeks in the Lagoon, mosquito lagoon that is 😄

Judi Cole
6 days ago

What do you use for backing? My dad taught me what I know about spooling line on a reel. I don’t think he did anything but just tie a knot in the line and reel it on until it was “enough.”

Dana Endorf
8 days ago

Thanks, Luke. I’m new to fishing, so these videos are a huge help for me.

8 days ago

On the reel with the green mono, is the mono backing and then you load other line on top?

Jean Long-Thomason
8 days ago

Thanks Luke, it’s always been a guessing game.

Dennis Wheelus
8 days ago

What kind of knot do you use on the first layer spool, backing to metal spool. Then how do you tie the two lines together?

David Vest
8 days ago
Reply to  Luke Simonds

Excellent video, including the knots to tie. Thank you.

David Tejada
9 days ago

What pound test for the backing?

David Tejada
9 days ago
Reply to  David Tejada

Found my answer in the thread.

Oliver Clarke
9 days ago

Why is 150 yards of braid is suggested? Seems like we should Only spool a bit more than we can cast, so when it gets lost to oysters on a piling there’s less damage to the environment and less costly to replace. I’ve been spooling 75 yards which is well beyond what I cast. The backing will be there for the big one. Thoughts?

Oliver Clarke
9 days ago
Reply to  Luke Simonds

Thanks for your experience. I’ll spool 100 yards on my surface lure \ spoon rod.

david layden
9 days ago

I know you’ve suggested using the 100 yard trick when spooling your real. Have you ever thought of just running the 150 yards of used line on one reel to another reel. You get 2 uses out of 150 yards. What do you think?


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