Monofilament vs Braided Line


To any American fisherman, the age-old debate about braided line and monofilament is one we are all too familiar with. And now, with fluorocarbon joining the fray, it can be somewhat confusing for new anglers. To keep it simple, we’ll stick to mono and braid.

Both have strengths and weaknesses. Which one you decide to use may also depend on what type of fishing you choose, but for the sake of keeping things clear, lets take a look at the pros and cons to using these lines in the context of bass fishing.

Monofilament is by far the oldest and most widely used form of fishing line. The fact that it is relatively easy to make and cheap to buy has made it an age-old favorite for anglers everywhere. Because the line is clear, it makes it harder for wary old largemouths to detect the true nature of the lure he is staring at. Another advantage some bass anglers have found is that it is much easier to do particular retrieves with monofilament, like the walk the dog retrieve for instance.

However, despite some of these advantages, many argue that monofilament is not the most effective fishing line on the market. For instance, monofilament is much more likely to fray and eventually snap when pulled through thick cover that can be found on bodies of water such as Lake Okeechobee. Another noted complaint with monofilament from anglers I have spoken with is that the stretch in monofilament makes it difficult to feel the lure and set the hook on a fish. Lastly, something I have found to be a major setback is monofilament’s nasty habit of coiling up when left on fishing reels for an extended period of time, which could potentially cause your line to get into a tangled mess while you are fishing.

On the other side of the argument we have a braided line, which has become very popular in recent years. Braid could be thought of as a tiny rope instead of a line like monofilament. Several noted advantages to braid include things like the fact that it’s strong and more abrasion resistant, which could be a huge benefit if you are pulling your lures through thick weeds. Another noted advantage is that you are able to find very high poundage braid with a much smaller diameter compared to monofilament of the same poundage, allowing you to fit more line onto your reel. Lastly, many anglers have noted that because braid does not stretch you are able to control your lure more and set the hook better. However, critics of braid argue that it may be harder to convince fish to bite since the line is not clear, and it is much more visible to fish in the water. It should also be noted that yard-for-yard braid is much more expensive than monofilament.

Both lines have their supporters and critics, and both have very notable advantages and disadvantages. If you’re looking for an inexpensive fishing line that offers less visibility in the water, my recommendation would be monofilament. If you’re going to be fishing through heavy cover in murkier water, I would suggest you give braided line a try on your next day on the lake.

Brandon Tourigny, of Loxahatchee, Florida, is a high school senior who hopes to work in the hunting and fishing industry.