What diameter line do you use most of?

Zerkalo

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I made a long thread on it before and was told the same thing, a lot of people use 8lb hooklengths for Barbel on big rivers. But that thread was on the back of fishing on the Severn and being asked by the bailiff what strength hooklength I was using, I said 8lb and was told "not good enough!". So that influenced my decision. 🤷‍♂️
 

Zerkalo

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Regarding my choice of 0.16 for the Weir it comes in at 6.7lb, and I use 6lb mainline. This is primarily for Chub and the odd small Barbel that have been showing recently. I did change to 4lb Maxima hooklengths for a while as was getting bitten off by big Chub using prestretched line. I reckon I could get away with that for most Barbel I catch there as they don't have the power of Severn Barbel for some reason. The Chub there almost require a heavier setup as they dive for snags.

I've also been warned against using prestretched line for Barbel hooklengths as they do not cope with 'shock' as well, so that's the rule I follow on the Severn, there must be a reason the Korum Barbel Hooklength line was sold in 8lb, 10lb, and 12lb, because that's what gets used?

As for losing the fish, it was the shock of a splash under the tip, maybe down to poor technique as you say.

Sorry if that sounds argumentative, just stating my reasons.
 

NoCarpPlease

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On the OP
definitely go through rod & reel floatfishing mainline the most ... it's what I do mostly, and the constant cast retrieve wears it out.
And I do 95% of that with 0.16 diameter floating line (ie. 2.6 Bayer, 3.2 Drennan Float, 4 Dave H Pro Match).

For float fishing hooklengths I use (discontinued) Shakespeare AML - it's a hi-tec, pale line ... I'm more concerned with diameter than brand.
silvers 0.09
chub 0.15
canal squatt 0.06
canal caster 0.07
are my starting points and most frequently used.

on the lead/feeder I use trad mono (Bayer or equivalent) hooklengths
Starting points are 0.20 for barbel and 0.18 for chub
 

Zerkalo

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I fish heavier on the feeder for Chub than on the float too! Glad I'm not the only one. (y) I've had a feeling my 0.14 is a bit light for float fishing for Chub on the weir but it has coped. It comes in at 4.9lb so means I can fish a 4lb reel line on the float.
 

Alantherose

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I've got mainline on pole rigs in 0.17 Guru N-Gauge for warmer weather, and I really like Middy Lo-Viz in 0.14 (4.4lb) for a slightly lighter option.

I also quite like using the Middy 0.14 for hooklengths as I find it to be strong and well disguised!
 

NoCarpPlease

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I fish heavier on the feeder for Chub than on the float too! Glad I'm not the only one. (y) I've had a feeling my 0.14 is a bit light for float fishing for Chub on the weir but it has coped. It comes in at 4.9lb so means I can fish a 4lb reel line on the float.
I fish with heavier line for chub on the feeder than float for a number of reasons:
  • more powerful rod so can apply more pressure
  • casting (sometimes long distance) with heavy feeders
  • feeders bring line closer to abrasion hazards (snags and rocks etc)
  • decent chance of rogue barbel on all the venues I fish with a feeder
  • often using bigger baits ... therefore bigger hooks and line to match

but if I'm fishing a tiny link leger for roach then it's 0.14 mainline and a 0.10 hooklength (and a suitable lighter quivertip rod)
 

Silverfisher

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I fish heavier on the feeder for Chub than on the float too! Glad I'm not the only one. (y) I've had a feeling my 0.14 is a bit light for float fishing for Chub on the weir but it has coped. It comes in at 4.9lb so means I can fish a 4lb reel line on the float.
Just generally for any species you can fish heavier on the feeder/leads than float as the lines down on the deck more out of view and more amongst snags and abrasive surfaces and the fish are often hooked and on their way before you've picked the rod up. Plus the generally more powerful rods can cope with heavier line and don't like light hook links as much. Plus you have the weight of the feeder to content with on the cast and retrieval out of snags etc. With float fishing the line needs to be lighter as is more in view of the fish and it makes it easier to cast, control and strike. Then the rods can take lighter hook lengths, the floats themselves don't tend to get snagged and as you strike into fish as soon as they bite you generally can lift them away from snags and abrasions as the first movement.
 

Zerkalo

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I have always felt along with the reasons above, that fish, especially Chub are likely to shake their head often violently against the weight of the feeder, something you don't get on the float, as well as agreeing the lightness of the rod makes a difference.

It was mentioned that I must have the wrong technique or be using the wrong test curve rod when fishing for Barbel. Well on the Severn I use a 1.75lb test rod. I have a feeling this influences my choice of hooklength as I would not feel comfortable using 'hi tech' hooklengths with it as many suggest for Barbel. There's not much worse than losing a Barbel, but it's not a case of how much pressure your applying to the rod as suggested, it's often a case of the fish just splashing about, maybe rolling over the line, and the sudden shock against a 1.75lb rod and 2oz+ feeder can and will break a 8lb hooklength not matter how gently gently you play it.
 

dave brittain 1

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Zerkalo

Maxima isn't pre-stretched and you won't get bitten off on 4lb maxima it's one of the strongest lines out there. I use it as main line for catching 200lb plus weights of carp fishing the pellet waggler with 0.18 low dia hook length that will break before the 4lb Maxima.

If I'm fishing purely for chub on the river float fishing my first choice line is 3lb Maxima to 0.14 dia hook length however I won't hesitate to step up to 0.16. On the Wye I'll generally set up two rods one as above and the other with 4lb Maxima through to 0.16 or even 0.18 dia hook length. With a parabolic actioned match rod you can apply a lot of pressure with little fear of being broken.

For big weights of roach and dace on the Wye standard set up is 0.16 Tubertini Gorilla float with a 0.14 dia hook length to a size 16. It may sound heavy but when your catching 50-60lbs of roach and dace with odd big perch and odd chub putting in appearance you need the right tackle.

Your 1.75 TC barbel rod is designed for fishing up to around 4oz leads and lines from 8-12lbs so it should be ideal for the Severn as it should have sufficient power to subdue the biggest fish without too many issues. If you get snapped under the rod tip, my guess is that you're rushing the fish and trying to net it before it's ready. With big fish providing there aren't too many snags it's best to let them plod about mid river applying controlled force until they are ready to come in as most of the snags will be under your own bank and the last thing you want to be doing is playing a fish under the rod tip that is still full of beans. I also always use my clutch as this not only helps control the fish it also avoids unnecessary break offs particularly when using lighter bottoms.

The other thing to consider is if you hook a barbel level with you, (as you would when fishing the bow by casting a few yds upstream), and it runs upstream, give it some line controlling the pressure applied. If it's going upstream it's fighting you and the current so don't rush it. If hook your fish downstream and it heads downstream you're fighting both the fish and the current.
 
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Zerkalo

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Sound advice again @dave brittain 1, thanks for replying.

I was thinking about your previous comment as it made me unsure so I'm glad to get a reply.

I think a lot might come down to 'match' style tactics I've seen Mal Storey advocate versus a more specialised set up ala Des Taylor who advocates a balanced set up of a 1.75lb rod and 10lb line on the Severn compared to heavier set ups you might find on some areas of the Trent for example.

The 4lb Maxima hooklengths came about as I was struggling to find a balanced set up for my weir with 6lb main line. It seemed to do the job, it's only a small river, but recently I've gone back to using Stroft hooklengths at 6.7lb 0.16 there.
 

Silverfisher

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Some interesting points there again 👍🏻

Whilst I think the 0.15-0.16 main lines I use for silvers are pretty standard a lot of people go lower than the 0.11-0.12 hook lengths I use but I've just got confidence in them through over the years through catching silvers well on them whilst still being able to land bonus fish. Any detrimental effect they have seems to be pretty marginal and that's cancelled out for me by the landing power of bonus fish they have.
 

Zerkalo

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I don't see much point in fishing very fine for silvers on a river when many of them won't have seen a hook before and there's a good chance of a few Chub but I'm not experienced at fishing rivers for silvers so take that with a pinch of salt.

I have lost 5 Barbel in various ways, most of them hook pulls or other freak incidents, out of around 50 when I started fishing for them 2 years ago, so there's room for improvement.
 

dave brittain 1

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Zerkalo there's a very fine line between how match anglers approach a peg and specimen anglers. As a match angler the last thing I want is to loose a fish as every fish counts. Take a standard specialist barbel set up 12 lb main line, 10lb hook length and a 12 ft, 1.75 TC rod. Add a 3oz lead, PVA bag and hook length with a size 8 barbel specialist hook and boilie on a hair rig.

The match angler will set up with his 13/14ft feeder rod 10lb main line, 8lb hook length, 3ft hook length and 5 maggots on a size 10 with a 3oz feeder.

The difference is that because the 13/14ft rod is longer it keeps more line out of the water. Because the line is thinner it's easier to hold and the match angler may away with slightly less lead.

When it comes to playing the fish because the 3/14ft feeder rod is longer and more progressive, (softer through the blank), pressure can be applied more effectively and he can get away with slightly lighter line and a smaller hook without risking tearing it from the fishes mouth.

The advantage the speci angler has is he can apply more pressure to subdue the fish because he's using heavier line and a bigger hook that reduces the chance of tearing the hook out of the fishes mouth. The downside with his set up is it's not as sensitive as the match anglers set up which could be detrimental to his catch rate however his set up is more positive which is a bonus in itself.

The difference between the two is how the angler thinks and applies himself, tackle is relative providing the set up is balanced.

What I'm trying to say is that it's how you think about your fishing and how you apply yourself rather than the label, match fisherman or speci angler and the tackle you use. The tackle is just the tool, it's the tradesman and how he applies his craft that makes the difference.
 

dave brittain 1

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Back to the OP :D

0.14 (silvers rigs), and 0.19, (summer carp rigs), are the two lines I use most of.
 

squimp

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Here's some bedtime reading before your next trip out :D @squimp
Stroft Tippet & Leader Diameter Table
Tippet SizeTippet DiameterApproximate breaking strength in Stroft GTM/ABR (kilos/pounds)Balances with fly sizes:
InchesMillimetreKglb
9x.0025"0.060.701.50
8X.0035"0.081.002.2022 - 28
7X.0040"0.101.403.1018 - 24
6X.0050"0.121.804.0016 - 22
5X.0060"0.152.405.3014 - 18
4X.0075"0.183.006.6012 - 16
3X.0080"0.204.209.206 - 8
2X.0090"0.235.1011.204 - 6
1X.0100"0.256.4014.102 - 6
0X.0110"0.287.3016.001/0 - 4
Thanks.

Serious question: Is the ‘X’ scale actually based on diameters eg is everybody’s 9x .0025mm ? If one manufacturers 9x equates to ano ones 8x; then I still contend it is fairly pointless.

As you point out rod action and things like hook size (and fish size!) also come into it. That’s why I have a stiff 5 weight and a softer one. I tend to use 3-5lb equivalent tippet on one and 8-11 lb on the other.

by coincidence today I received a spool of Stroft GTM from Bobco. Luckily for me (so I don’t get confused!) there are no X’s on the spool. It is 0.25 mm, bought purely on diameter And for a specific non-fly fishing job.
 

satinet

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0.20 daiwa sensor because it's cheap and cheerful ok for float and ledger. 4lb.

6lb for some method and bomb etc

8lb method at boddington etc.

Bulk spools. Think the 6lb is actually Shimano aero match but it's very similar.

Rod and line only. My hook links are nearly all guru ngage (feeder|method) or drennan supplex (float/light).
 

dave brittain 1

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Squimp the X rating is partly based on the size fly and line diameter required to turn it over and present it in an acceptable manner, see below:

A common rule that helps to determine what ‘X’ size tippet to use to attach your fly is to take the size of the fly, say a Size 16 Parachute Adams for example, and divide that fly size by 3. In this example our fly is a size 16, divided by 3 gives you 5.3333. That would work out to be approximately a 5X tippet size. Say your fly is a size 4 streamer… 4 divided by 3 gives you 1.333, which would in turn be approximately a size 1X tippet. It’s a simple and easy to use rule to help you determine the proper tippet to use while out on the water.

As a match angler who does a lot of fly fishing, it took me a while to take it in and if I'm honest it's an out dated system particularly for practical straight thinking anglers, who think how big are the fish and realistically what diameter or breaking strain line do I need to fish to present a fly that gives me a realistic chance of landing the fish.

Personally I stick with line diameters, it's simple and what I'm used to.
 

mike fox

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I don't know anyone that uses the X rating to balance their tackle. Certainly it is not a standard scale across manufacturers other than as @dave brittain 1 says to match the fly size. Pretty pointless with todays' anglers except the traditionalists and purists. Generally though if a line looks wrong to the fly size, it is. As with any fishing gear, balance is the key and if it looks and feels wrong, change it. I don't think the total understanding of the spool specifications is of much use to the average angler except balancing the line strength to the size of fish you hope to catch. Flurocarbon is supposed to be almost invisible in water, so what difference does the X or diameter make other than bait/fly presentation.
I believe the X number is actually the number of times the line is pulled through the manufacturing process to meet the diameter required.
 

CarpCatcher86

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That's 6 and two 3's though. I'd argue the opposite - too many get caught up on 'old fashioned' B/S ! It's whatever the individual can get their head around.
That is actually the diameter of 4lb Maxima Chameleon and 3.3lb Drennan Supplex fluorocarbon.
 

frankg

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Diameter means nothing to me. I hate hearing people in fishing videos saying they are using a 0.17mm main line to a 0.15mm hooklink. Just speak English for god sake, 4lb mainline with a 3.3lb hooklink. People get too caught up on line diameter.
Spot on Carp Catcher.....it’s all meaningless when stated in diameter.... stick to BS for God’s sake 👍🎣
 
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