By Montana Grant

Posted: August 4, 2022

Line connections are the main reason anglers lose fish. You can tell that they tied a lousy knot by the little curly cue at the end of the unbroken tippet material. The other reason is having wind knots in their tippet.

Tying proper knots is critical to catching and landing fish. Most anglers are lousy knot tiers. They can barely tie a Clinch knot. Blood knots, a line-to-line connection, are nearly impossible. Most anglers rarely practice or explore new knots to learn. 

This is where swivels come in. If you can tie a Clinch Knot, you can make line connections with swivels.

Slip Knot Stops    Use the sized swivel that will stop a slip bobber. Pre tie rigs at various depths such as 10, 15, 20, or 25 feet. Wrap the pre rigs onto toilet paper roll tubes. The bobber will go between the swivel and the hook or jig. This is a great way to fish for suspended fish from a boat or shore. The small micro swivel can easily be wound through the guides and onto the reel.

Streamers and minnow patterns    Adding a thinner and stronger tippet is easy. You do not need to tie a Blood Knot. Tie to the barrel swivel. This will prevent line twist and create better motion.

Spin fishing    Reeling in spinners, trolling, and lures can gradually twist the line. A barrel swivel eliminates this problem.

Slip Sinker Rigs    Micro swivels help prevent twisting of line and bait. This also allows more natural movement of jigs and minnows. The swivels allow 360-degree rotation without tangling your line.

Colored line applications    Non clear lines are great for the angler to see where they cast and bites. The problem is that fish can see them too. Using thinner, stronger fluorocarbon tippet solves that problem. Fluorocarbon is nearly invisible.

You can buy standard swivels and barrel swivels at most stores. Finding Micro Swivels may be harder. Really small swivels, in sizes 12 and smaller are less common. You can find them on Amazon or other websites. Remember to match the swivel size to the strength that you need. Some micro swivels, in the smallest sizes are less than 10 lb. in strength.

The best line to add to the terminal swivel end is Fluorocarbon tippet. This more expensive material is consistent in strength and diameter. It is also thinner and more durable than standard mono tippet material. This tippet also lasts for hundreds of years, so pick up and dispose of waste. This is smart to do with all fishing line. Many sporting goods stores have collection bins for old line, tangled line, and wasted line. 

Standard swivels with a squeeze hook at one end can be useful to a poor knot tier. My Dad used to tie on my swivel and then allow me to connect and disconnect a snelled hook, spinner, or lure. The larger hooked swivels can fail and come undone. Lock back swivels help prevent that from happening. These hooked connections are also junkier and less natural. You will catch more fish without them.

Make your best connections!

Montana Grant

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