How To Spool A Spinning Reel With Braid While Saving Money And Time [VIDEO]

By: Luke Simonds on July 3, 2020
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how to spool braid on a spinning reel

Want to learn the best way to spool a spinning reel?

There are many ways to do it, including getting a store to do it for you, but I’m going to show you how to do it yourself and avoid the most common mistakes that many anglers make when spooling their reels.

Most of these mistakes can lead to you getting more line twists and wind knots when you’re fishing, so you’re better off doing things the right way from the start.

Watch the video below to learn:

  • How to spool your spinning reel by yourself
  • The common misconceptions to spooling spinning reels (that I believed for many years)
  • How to save money on braided line
  • How much line to put on your reel
  • And much more

Enjoy!

How To Spool A Spinning Reel [VIDEO]

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Here’s what you need to spool your spinning reel (in addition to the line, rod, and reel):

  • Mono backing line (within 5 to 10 lbs of your braid strength)
  • Scissors
  • A wet towel or washcloth
  • A pencil
  • A narrow cardboard box (or someone to hold the spool)

Now before we get going, you might be asking yourself why mono is on the list if you’re spooling your reel with braid.

Here’s why: braid doesn’t grip into the arbor (the center of the spool), so if you tie braid straight onto it and you have a big fish on, the line might free spin and you could lose your fish.

Monofilament does grip into the arbor, so the best way to combat this is to have a base of mono line on the arbor.

Plus, even the small reels like the 2500 series can hold a LOT of line, so it’s smart to fill up some of the spool with the much less expensive mono line knowing that it’ll likely never see the light of day.

Alright, now let’s get into the steps.

Step 1: Thread the monofilament through the top eye.

Step 2: Tie an arbor knot to connect the mono to the arbor.

Note: This knot isn’t very important because its job is only to start creating friction on the reel’s arbor. None of the “Arbor Knots” are very strong, so you should never let a fish pull the line out all the way down to this knot because you’ll end up losing all of your line out into our waterways… instead, just grab the spool when you realize that you can’t turn the fish so that no more line can go out should palm the spool before a fish takes all of your line out (video lesson on this here)… either your hook will straighten or your line will break at the leader 99% of the time so you’ll at least prevent your line from getting dumped into the water.

Step 3: Set up the spool of mono so that it can spin vertically around a pencil with the help of a friend or simply using a box to hold it as shown in the video.

And a key thing to keep in mind here is that you need to have tension on the line as you’re reeling it in — this will decrease your odds of getting wind knots down the road.

To do this, grip the line with the wet rag and apply pressure to it as you’re reeling in.

Step 4: Tie the mono backing to the braid.

I like to use a double uni knot here (5 turns with the mono and 10 turns with the braid).

Step 5: Reel the braid onto your spool just like you did with the mono backing.

Again, don’t forget to use a wet rag to apply tension on the line as you’re reeling it in.

When the line is about 1/16″ away from the top of the reel, you know you’ve put enough braid on.

If you put too little braid on, you’ll inhibit your casting distance, and if you put too much on, you could be more susceptible to wind knots.

How To Save Money On Braided Fishing Line

There are many benefits of using braid, however, it is considerably more expensive than mono.

Here’s a quick tip to make the most of your line:

Once you’ve spooled your reel, go to a park or beach and walk out 100 yards of it.

Then, walk back to your reel, cut the line, and retie it with a double uni knot with 10 turns on both sides.

Since braid lasts for many years, whenever you need to re-spool, you don’t need to touch the line after the knot.

You’ll only have to put on 100 yards to the top, so if you get a 300-yard spool, that will last you for three re-spools which can save you a lot of money over the years.

Conclusion

spool reel with braided line

Although you could have a store spool your line, by doing it yourself you can make sure that you’re less likely to get line twists or wind knots, and you can set up a system that helps you save money on braid in the long run.

Have any questions about spooling braided line onto your reel?

Do you do it any differently?

Let me know in the comments below!

And if you know someone who needs to learn the best way to spool their line, please TAG or SHARE this with them!

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Dave Otte
5 days ago

Luke, here’s something I don’t understand about braid. If 10 lb briad is stronger than 10 lb mono and breaks at much > 10 lbs, and it’s diameter is much smaller than 10 lb mono, why is it considered 10 lb?

Randy Edwards
Randy Edwards
7 days ago

That technique/plan is all well and good for most inshore fishing, but for offshore/bluewater fishing I and others would rather not have a knot in the mainline when a big fish runs more than 100 yd or whatever your topshot is. So, here is what I do…more complicated, but it keeps 200-300 yd of braid on my reel filled properly near the rim of the spool. When I have lost say 20 or 30 yd of braid, I unspool the braid wraping the line around a couple of tree trunks about 50 yd apart in my yard. I continue to unspool until lthe mono backing is off of the spool also. Then, I tie the the end of the braid that was on the top of the spool onto the bare spool. I wind that braid on. Then I can either continue to wind on the mono backing, or new mono until the spool is full. If I wind on the on the original mono, I can tie on a shorter length or additional mono and continue to wind it on until the spool is properly full. That way I have a knot (uni to uni) between two sections of mono. I then wind the mono and braid off the reel by going around the trees again. Then I go to the mono end of the line, tie it with an arbor knot to the spool, wind on the mono, followed by the braid, and I have a completely full spool, with over 200 yd of braid before the knot to the mono, and then the knot to the added mono is all the way down to within 20 or 30 yd from the spool end.

It takes a little time, but this way one can start with 300 yd of braid, and continue to have well over 200 yd of braid without any knots. Of course this could be done by spooling the line onto a couple of reels, but a couple trees or poles is much easier and quicker.

Tom Marks
7 days ago

Luke! That makes so much sense! Spoiling it on with a twist and it UN twists coming off. Have a Berkley spooling stating where I take the spool off the reel and wind the line on. I knew it wasn’t perfect because I had some twists in the line never knew it was my setup. Your method makes so much sense. Thank you!

Gary Rankel
8 days ago

Using spare spools is the quick and easy way to go to reuse old line. While reel manufacturers have these for sale, many seem to be overpriced. I assume they’re in cahoots with the line manufacturers.

John h
1 month ago

What are the circular line at differnt point on the spinning reel spool

Douglas Edwards
1 month ago

Good morning. When putting braid on spool you mention you put mono backing. My question is how much mono and how much braid do you spool on 2500 series reels? Thanks in advance.

Brad Ewing
2 months ago

Trying this and the line keeps getting hung on the Power Pro spool as I try to reel it on the reel. This normal?

Bill Woodhouse
7 months ago

Luke. Pls comment on Piscifun device as reviewed on the Marx Fishind YouTube channel. Thanx!

Sean Paschal
7 months ago

on one of my 2500’s I have 200 yards of braid on the spool, so I’m curious as to what you recommend doing with that base? Do you just keep it on there and never use it other than a base?

Carlos
Carlos
10 months ago

Just wanted to point out that there is an app and a couple of sites that I found that help you calculate the amount of backing based on the reel’s capacity info and the mono backing line specs you want to use and how much main braid line you want. I use both spinning and casting reels and as I understand it these reels perform better with a full spool and reels can hold hundreds of yard of braid that you would never use specially if you use 10# braid as per your post, in my case I accomplish this and save money by using a lot of mono as backing and the rest is the amount of braid I want/expect to use for the target application of the reel (bass is less than inshore). The app along with a line counter helps me figure it all out and It’s not that much more work and if I want to go even further with extending the life of the braid I flip the braid starting at the mono backing joint if not I just reload with new braid from the mono joint forward. Hope this helps others that may want to do the same. Great site, great content. I think that you could add this type of calculator to your site. The android app I use is called CalcLine.

Rich
Rich
1 year ago

Stupid question. Why not just walk out 75 yards when your ready to respool instead of walking before and cut /splice?

RICHARD FIORENTINO
1 year ago

Curious – how did you know it was 75 yards?

Mike Shannon
1 year ago

Very helpful Luke – Thanks for the post!

I’ve been switching all of my reels to braid from mono and need some help. Most of my reels do not show a spool capacity for braid. So, how can I calculate the amount of braid I need to have on hand when I start the spool load?. E.G.: Spool capacity 250 yards of 25# mono = XX yards of 0.095 dia braid. I can see a couple of ways to present this , but the best might be a “calculator”. That is the user inputs the known mono spool capacity (25#, 250 yards) and the diameter of the braid the user intends to load, the the “calculator” outputs the number of yards of the specified diameter tail needed to fill the spool.

Have you seen such A tool? Can you add this tool to the Salt Strong site?
Thanks for the continuous flow of relevant information and community connectivity!!

Michael McDowell
2 years ago

Thanks again. It is so nice to be able to keep coming back and reviewing these videos every couple of months for consistency and error reduction. would hate to have a mistake cost me a big fish.

Jim Saylor
Jim Saylor
2 years ago

Wish I’d of known this trick years ago would of save money on new spools big time,Thx

Buck
Buck
2 years ago

Luke, I just picked up an automatic line spooler. Seems to put the line on really tight for my baitcaster. What are your thoughts on those? Have you ever used one – https://shop.tackle.org/collections/fishing/products/fishing-line-spooler-for-mono-and-braided-line

Dennis
2 years ago

Why not use a double double uniknot at the splice?

Stephen Klott
2 years ago

Hey Luke, nice job once again! What braid do you prefer and why?

Jhun
Jhun
2 years ago

Hello Sir, for some reasons you need to cut your braided line and it become shorter and shorter (specially for trolling use). Do you suggest to have a joint between braided lines to make it long again and save some money on the process. If so, what will be the recommended knot between braid to braid of the same size?

Jhun
Jhun
2 years ago
Reply to  Luke Simonds

Thank you so much Sir, this is very helpful to me.

R Leveque
2 years ago

Just wanted to let you all know how much I enjoy your articles and video’s. Thanks for a great job!

P. Barber
2 years ago

Unfortunately, I haven’t yet moved to SW Florida so I’m stuck up north fishing for muskies, bass and walleyes. For years I’ve used 50 & 80# braids. Unless you want to buy a lot of expensive line, using backer is essential. On big baitcasting reels for muskie, I allow for 50 yds. of braid and use what ever amount of backing is needed to fill the reel. Mono is great; but, I’ve found and now prefer 30# Green Spot dacron. A back-to-back uniknot to splice the 2 lines does not fail. Taking this experience to light weight spinning reels (1500 to 3000 series) for bass and walleye, I use 50 yds. of 6 to 20# braid and fill the spool with 20# Black Spot dacron. In any case, wind it on tight and it won’t backlash except when casting repeatedly into a strong wind. Watch for the braid fraying, especially in the 1st 6 – 10′. Cut it off and re-tie. Braid will last several years and won’t retain memory on the reel. After some long amount of time of continuous use, I’ll cut out the uniknot and reverse the braid. Test the backing before reversing the braid. Every so many years, I’ll replace the backing.

Anonymous
Anonymous
3 years ago

When you show how to do or not, you should use a thick piece of twine or cord so the knot and is more easily visualize

Jim
Jim
3 years ago

Hi Luke, just wondering what braid brand are you using right now for fishing? Thx…

Dwain Holmes
Dwain Holmes
3 years ago

I fill My Arid 4000’s with either 20 or 30 # braid!I fish surf from a boat anchored off the breakers and 75 yards does not cut it!Also I take several wraps of braid around the spool and then tie a Uni type knot but make 12 wraps and pull down as tight as possible and never have a problem with slippage and like a full spool of braid because I catch both rooster fish and jacks in the surf!The current is very heavy because I am fishing the falling tide at the mouth of the largest estuary in Central America!The current is running 4 to 6 miles per hour and even a 25 inch jack will take 100+ yards aof line when it gets the current to it’s advantage!Also catch Cubera snapper,mackerel,and snook!I have straightened many hooks on red fish lures,used to fish them in S.TX before retiring,and believe Me the strongest red does not even come close to most of these fish in a fight!

Nicholas George
3 years ago

What size mono do you use for what size braid? does it matter?

Shea Frazier
3 years ago

One of the reasons I love the Battle 2s that I use – the “braid ready” spool. No need for a backing.

Dwain Holmes
Dwain Holmes
3 years ago
Reply to  Shea Frazier

Tied right You do not need backing on any reel with braid unless it is a very small reel!Just take about 8 or 10 wraps around the spool tie a uni knot but wrap 12 times and pull as tight as You can and I have never had a slippage problem or knot failure!Had a store fill 2 large spinners with 50 pound braid and knot came loose!

Jeff
4 years ago

What if the first time you marked 75 yards with a sharpie marker instead of cutting the line? With the yellow Power Pro it should show up well.

Dwain Holmes
Dwain Holmes
3 years ago
Reply to  Luke Simonds

I fish several times a week and usde no backing!I use it for minimum 2 years or more and never a problem!I do reverse the line when it starts to show wear!

Anonymous
Anonymous
3 years ago
Reply to  Luke Simonds

I have never had line spin not using backing except one time on an ultra light!Even that I solved by respelling the line and took 20 tight wraps on the spool and tying a uni knot and snugging really tight!I take at least 12 line wraps on the uni and never had one fail! I fish for jacks,snook,cuber snapper ,rooster fish ,etc and depending on how I am fishing use 20,30,50 or 65 # braid and never had a line slip except the ultra light with10 # braid!I I want all the capacity I can get on a given reel because I have had the fish here nearly spool me on mono!Even had one large fish on light tackle take near 300 yards of line with the help of the current!I fished for Red Fish,trout,gar,Kings,etc !Reds pound for pound are no where near as hard to land as these are!Used to use 10 or 12 pound mono on reds!That will not cut it here!

Carmelo Midolo
Carmelo Midolo
4 years ago

Thanks Luke. That was cool the 75 yd move I guess I good do that every 100yds. For surf fishing. Like the fg knot braid to mono. Better than Alberto knot l think

Thomas McWhirter
2 years ago
Reply to  Luke Simonds

Just how often does one need to respool? What are the clues that tells you it’s time?