Kent I

What braid for conventionals?

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I've been using Sakura 16# mono on my conventionals, and it works very well, but I was out with a guide in Texas last spring, and he was using Shimsmo Calais reels, a 7-1/2' (rod-never heard of the brand, and can't remember it) and braid, was casting chunks of shad, no weight, 100'-150' with no apparent effort, good accuracy, and no backlashes. I know there are a lot of factors involved, but I'd like to try braid on at least one reel...which should I use? I didn't think to ask what he was using.

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I use Daiwa J braid 8 strand in 20# on mine, and it is the best braid I have tried. Priced in line with the better braids out there also. Also use it in 10# on my ultra light spinners. Casts great and I just like the feel of it and has been on couple of heavy used reels going on 2 seasons now.

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I fished an 80 pound power pro on a bait caster and muscled a 42" 25 pound

rockfish on the beach in under 5 minutes.

I once blew up the reel and bent the clicker spring.

 

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On my surf or inlet plugging CS reels I use 30lb Power Pro or Suffix Performance Braid with a mono shock leader spliced on with Power Pro Hollow Ace (see their YouTube videos for how-to).  On my surf or inlet plugging CT reels, I increase to 50lb Suffix Performance braid, as it wears less on my thumb while leveling the line - same shock leader splice. In the Point Pleasant Canal, which involves hevy jigging over rocks, I go to straight 65lb Power Pro without a shock leader, as required casting distance is 75ft max.

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Hmmm, where to start. I tend to avoid braids that are only 4 carrier like straight Power Pro because it can’t handle heavy use, especially around nasty structure and is prone to break unpredictably. I also prefer Daiwa J-8 braid, Suffix Performance braid because it uses 8 carriers and can handle considerably more than it’s published line rating.n

 

On low pro reels for inshore fish I’ll frequently use 10-15# braid attached to fluorocarbon. Many of the braid brands are severely under rated and can handle in some cases as much as 2-3 times their rated load. Be very careful to check knots and line condition frequently while fishing especially after a sustained fight with a larger fish. I’ll frequently trim 2-3 feet off the end of my braid between days fishing to eliminate the line that takes the greatest wear and tear even if it seems to look fine. It’s hard to predict what can happen with the line you can’t see concealed by the exterior of the braid as well as loss of actual line diameter which translates to reduced strength in my opinion. 

 

On small round reels (like a 100-200 frame Daiwa TD Luna, or 2000-4000 frame ABU Garcia’s) used for the same purpose, I’ll stick with 30# braid for its versatility with large and small fish. I’ll also stick with rods having quality ceramic line guides instead of the more inexpensive metal guides because the braid wears through the guides due to sand and grit while ceramics tend to eliminate guide wear. 

 

Hope me this helps!

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Choose any braid that is similar in diameter to the mono you are using. I like 50# on lo pro baitcaster.

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