Line Choice

Category: article

 Aug 11th, 2008 by OutdoorsFIRST 

Modified Aug 11th, 2008 at 12:00 AM

The Line UpWhich line should you choose when you fire out your favorite crankbait? Three of the Team Lucky Craft pros, Gerald Swindle, Joe Thomas and Skeet Reese have different opinions on what string to tie on.All of them like mono, while a couple of them prefer the lower stretch qualities of braid and the near invisibility of fluorocarbon.Mono ManGerald Swindle is known for his flamboyant personality and his ability to catch fish with a variety of techniques. Crankbaits are one of his favorites to use and shallow-diving crankbaits get a workout when he is on the bow.”I’m not like a lot of the other guys when it comes to crankbaits,” he said. “I fish them very aggressively. I mean, I’m to the point of almost being reckless with them. I’ll put a crankbait where most guys would only pitch a jig or a spinnerbait.”To do this, I stick with a little heavier line,” he said. “When I’ve got a smaller crankbait tied on, I’ll use 12-pound mono. I step it up to 15-pound when I’ve got a larger bait on.”Fluorocarbon is not on the line menu for him.”I’ve got to be the most un-fluorocarbon guy in the business,” he said. “I feel like it tends to break when you set the hook really hard. It doesn’t have enough give. I set the hook so hard, I mean I almost black out and crack ‘em when I get bit. The mono is what holds up to that abuse.”Use ‘Em AllJoe Thomas feels the need to use the best tool for the job. He prefers to keep a variety of lines available for his crankbait activities.”I guess I choose the right line for the right situation,” he said. “For example, I’ll use Trilene XT when I’m fishing my cranks along wood or rocks. I tend to use 12-pound line.”When I’m using a jerkbait, I’ll switch to fluorocarbon,” he said. “I use 12-pound for that application. I use this lure in clear open water and feel the near invisibility of the line, along with its low stretch, give me what I need to hook more fish.”He feels vegetation is the place to apply the braids.”When I’m using a lipless bait in the grass or other vegetation, it’s hard to beat braided line,” he said. “I use 40-pound braid for these conditions. It just rips right through the grass better than anything else.”Spinner-cranksSkeet Reese isn’t afraid to tie on heavy line when he’s on a crankbait bite. He’s also not afraid of heavy cover when it comes to his crankbaits.”When I’m using shallow-diving crankbaits, I’ll often fish it like a spinnerbait in the 1- to 5-foot depth zone,” he said. “I use shallow-diving models that move a lot of water. They are especially effective in warmer water in areas where a spinnerbait is usually fished.”The size of line I use depends on the depth and cover I’m fishing,” he said. “I’ll use anywhere from 12- to 20-pound mono. I’ve got no problem fishing these lures in the heavy cover, especially if it’s what the fish want.”Skeet Reese varies his line choice for lipless baits. “In the spring or fall when I’m using a lipless lure like a Lucky Craft LV 100 or LV 500, I use either mono or 30-pound braid,” he said. The mono is best in the more open water with wood or rocks and the braid cuts through the heavy grass. Both lines work very well for the individual applications.

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