Fluoro’s use was once limited to leader duties, while in recent years, it has become a popular option in many fishing situations.
Fluorocarbon is different from other lines in terms of visibility, stretch and durability, all aspects which affect its performance in the water. Here are some important things to keep in mind to understand which line you should choose for your fishing trips.
What are the advantages of fluorocarbon line?
Fluorocarbon is made up of 3 elements: carbon, fluorine and chlorine. Their combination is called Polyvinylidene Difluoride. Fluorocarbon is excellent for many fishing practices, from spinning to surfcasting, thanks to its many advantages.
Firstly, fluorocarbon is almost invisible in water, seeming to be part of the surrounding environment. By using fluoro, fish won’t get suspicious and run away when they see your line. Fluorocarbon is less noticeable because its optical density is lower in water, and this is the reason why fluoro is often used as a leader and paired with other fishing lines.
Of course you can use monofilament, either as a fishing line or as a leader, and still be able to catch fish. Fluoro, however, might be a better choice in crystal clear waters.
Compared to monofilament, it is also more sensitive. Since fluoro does not stretch as much as mono, it’ll be more rigid and sensitive to bites. With a minimum stretch, you’ll be able to feel the fish better, react more quickly, and fight the fish more effectively.
Another advantage of fluorocarbon is that it sinks faster, due to its higher density, thus, it’s better to use it for spinning or other similar types of sea fishing.
Fluoro is also more abrasion-resistant than braid: even if it hits rocks or submerged obstacles, it will resist very well. Braided line has a higher breaking load, but when it comes to abrasion-resistance, fluoro is the best choice. This line will also absorb less moisture, meaning that it won’t become softer and it won’t break over time.
Since it’s often used as a leader – combined with either mono or braid – fluorocarbon is also more resistant to knots: it loses only 10% or its breaking load, compared to 15% or 20% of monofilament.
What are the disadvantages of fluorocarbon line?
The first disadvantage of fluorocarbon line is its price tag: it is way more expensive than monofilament, and that is why many anglers use it as a leader only. This is because fluorocarbon’s manufacturing process costs five times more than nylon, which is the main component of monofilament. However, considered that fluoro is more resistant and lasts more than mono, many anglers think it’s a solid investment.
Another disadvantage worth mentioning is that it may be difficult to use fluoro on spinning reels for novice fishermen, especially if you’ve already experienced discomfort with monofilaments.
Many anglers prefer to use braid with a monofilament leader, as the former is more compatible with spinning reels. Compared to the past, however, fluorocarbon has become more pliable and manageable than before.
Finally, despite it being more resistant to knots, you need to be very careful when tying fluoro. Bad knots are the most common reason why anglers break off this type of line. In order to avoid problems, you need to make sure that the knot is neat and not sloppy. Lubricating the line and paying extra attention will help you to tie a better knot.
Can you use fluorocarbon as a main line?
Fluorocarbon is mainly used as a leader in many fishing applications, mostly because of its high cost. However, many fishermen prefer fluoro over mono as their main line, mostly for its abrasion resistance.
Jig and worm fishermen will benefit from the use of fluorocarbon as their main line, because of its premium sensitivity and its invisibility. When it comes to spinning reels, it’s best to use fluoro under 8 lb: if you choose a heavier line you’ll get a lot of tangles and a poor casting distance.
Also, consider that some brands make excellent fluorocarbon for leaders, but the same may be terrible as your main fishing line. Be sure to do your research and listen to other anglers’ opinion, before choosing a fishing line.
That being said, there’s no perfect choice and each angler will have their own preference, based on personal feeling and budget.
Is Fluorocarbon line really invisible?
Fluorocarbon offers many benefits to fishermen and invisibility is considered to be one of them. But is it really true? Fluoro is considered to be the most invisible line you can buy, because of its refractive index. The refractive index measures how light is transmitted through a material and, according to the tests, the refractive index of fluorocarbon is very close to the water’s index.
However, this does not necessarily mean that fluoro is invisible because there are so many variables involved. For instance, as is comes close to the bottom, fluoro becomes more noticeable. Fluorocarbon line is still the most invisible line you can buy and it looks super clear under the water; however, some anglers argue that its invisibility is mostly a myth created for marketing purposes.
Of course, no line is completely invisible and some fluoro lines will tend to attract more dust and dirt than nylon, while underwater.
Is fluorocarbon line stronger than mono?
One of the advantages of fluorocarbon is that it’s stronger than monofilament. Since fluoro is very resistant to water absorption, it does not lose stretch and strength like monofilament does. The downside is that a line that does not absorb water is less easy to handle. Fluoro also has better abrasion-resistance than nylon and it will not be degraded by UV light.
Does fluorocarbon line make a difference?
There are some fishing situation where fluorocarbon is an invaluable tool. Since other lines are more noticeable than fluoro, this is the best choice for fishing in crystal-clear waters or for fly-fishing. If you’re worried about the price, you can still use it as a leader. A fluoro leader makes a big difference in situations where you need to be as invisible as possible.
When it comes to using fluoro as your main fishing line, it’s a totally different story. You should not confuse line and leader, since they are manufactured differently. Fluorocarbon is mostly used as a leader, but some anglers use it as their main line, especially when low visibility, strength, sensitivity and hooksetting power are crucial.
An anglers’ favorite line is subjective, but if you’re looking for a line that does not stretch, is highly resistant and sinks easily – and you’re not worried by fluoro unruliness – using fluorocarbon as a main line can make a big difference in your fishing game.
What is fluorocarbon line good for?
Fluoro is a good choice when you need your line to sink; in fact, anglers often choose fluorocarbon when they need their baits to stay closer to the bottom. Fluoro is mostly used for fishing in crystal-clear waters, bass fishing, fly fishing and saltwater fishing thanks to its many special properties. Fluoro is better for those using worms, while it may not be a good choice for topwaters.