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  #1  
Old 07-29-2009, 08:32 PM
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pametfisher pametfisher is offline
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Hollow Spectra V: Mainline Loops (End Loops, Biminis, Surgeon's)

If you are going to use a Wind-On leader with your Spinning reel, one of the choices you face is how to make the loop on your mainline for the loop-to-loop connection between it and the Wind-On leader. (Loop-to-Loop photo below.) The loop-to-loop connection lets you change leaders reliably and quickly, in 6' seas, a 20 knot wind, when the temperature is 50 degrees, at night. And if you have pre-tied swivels/split rings to your spare leaders, there are no knots to be tied when the bite is on.

The mainline loop is a critical part of a loop to loop connection system. Done correctly, the mainline loop is a line-doubler. A well chosen line-doubler reduces the tension of the in the loop by half, with no loss of strength (e.g. if the mainline tension is 40 lbs., the tension in the line inside the loop, is only 20 lbs--almost magic).

Halving the tension in the loops is key to the loop-to-loop connection because the loop-to-loop knot itself is a 60-65% knot. Simple math (and real world testing and experience) says that a 60% efficient knot, running at half of the tension of the mainline, is a 120% connection. Of course 120% is meaningless but it does guarantee you a 100% strong connection--no loss of line strength in the connection. (Note: A single loop-to-loop connection is all that is needed.)

For spinning reels, the ideal mainline loop is:
--thin and without knots so that it does not catch loops of line on the spool, leading to wind-knots;
--sized small so that it can't loop around a guide during casting;
--and does not reduce the strength of the line.

Some examples of mainline loops, photos below:

1. Spliced End-Loop in hollow-weave Spectra. This is a thin, reliable way to form a line-doubler loop. There are no points of stress concentration and it is easy to make perfectly. The spliced End-Loop can be made in any loop size from fractions of an inch to feet. The catch is that you need hollow-weave Spectra.

If you prefer solid-weave Spectra as your mainline, a good alternative is to splice 5 to 10 yards of hollow-weave Spectra on top of the solid-weave and then make a spliced End-Loop. Solid to Hollow Spectra Splice

2. Bimini Twist. Thin and nearly 100% strong, the key to successfully using a Bimini Twist in a loop-to-loop connection is to use enough twists so that each side of the loop can carry 50% of the load. In my testing, that rarely happens below 30 initial twists--I say initial twists because about 60% of the twists you start with are used to create the top wraps, leaving only 40% of the initial twists to hold the connection. In my experience and testing 50 initial-twists is a good number. (Note, the loop-to-loop is a different application than tying a Bimini Twist to a Slim Beauty.) The final lock knot on the tag end of a Bimini should be superglued or it will loosen after a couple hours of casting.

The biggest drawback to the Bimini Twist is that it is difficult to control loop size, and large loops can catch on the guides during casting. More twists means a bigger loop, less twists means a risk of the knot slipping.

3. Surgeon's Loop. This is a quick, reliable, east-to-tie knot. And it is relatively easy to control loop size. The main drawbacks in a spinning reel application are: a) there is stress concentration where the mainline makes its first turn inside the knot, which reduces the strength of the mainline by about 30%, b) it is a knot that can hit the guides, and hang on them, and c) after an hour of casting, when the line on your spool is no longer packed tightly, it can pull wind-knot loops off the spool. The 30% strength loss is not usually a problem in 80# Spectra on a spinning reel, unless the particular line doesn't overtest (e.g. some of the PE lines).

All of the above choices will work, with some having advantages over the others. You can probably tell, I'm a big fan of the spliced End-Loop
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Last edited by pametfisher; 07-29-2009 at 08:43 PM..
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  #2  
Old 07-30-2009, 12:33 AM
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Albiemanmike Albiemanmike is offline
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Roger,
No problems with the solid mainline braid cutting the hollow spectra when using a loop to loop with bimini in mainline??? That is why I always shyed away from using the bimini as the mainline loop and instead went with the spliced end loops as you know. I am more confident with hollow to hollow loops then solid to hollow loops if you get my drift.
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  #3  
Old 07-30-2009, 05:10 AM
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pametfisher pametfisher is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Albiemanmike View Post
Roger,
No problems with the solid mainline braid cutting the hollow spectra when using a loop to loop with bimini in mainline??? That is why I always shyed away from using the bimini as the mainline loop and instead went with the spliced end loops as you know. I am more confident with hollow to hollow loops then solid to hollow loops if you get my drift.
That's a good question. The simple answer is that there are no problems with solid Spectra cutting hollow Spectra. Here's why--

The materials of hollow-weave Spectra and solid-weave are the same, Gel Spun Polyethylene. The difference is purely how the bobbins move on the weaving machine when the line is made. In the case of solid-weave, the threads are brought across the pattern from time to time, in hollow-weave the bobbins move around the outside and never cross the center.

When put under tension, for all practical purposes, hollow and solid of the same strength are nearly indistinguishable. When I splice an end loop on a piece of Spectra and hang it on a hook, then go back to it in a few days, the tension of hanging makes it hard to find the center at times--that's how easily the "hollow center" disappears. When you're jigging, casting, retrieving or trolling hollow-weave Spectra, the center is fully closed.

Forgetting solid and hollow for a moment, if you take 50 lb. actual breaking strength (ABS) Spectra, and loop it to 80 lb. ABS Spectra and then load it with 50 lbs. or so, the 50 lb. loop will appear to "cut" through the 80 lb. loop. (I've tested this a few times.) But what is actually happening, according to the Materials Science guys I've spoken to, is that the 80 lb. line is being "bent" around the much thinner 50 lb. line and is fracturing. But this type of breaking is merely an example of a 50 lb. line, connected to an 80 lb. line, breaking at 50 lbs.--just what you would expect.

The biggest problem that I've seen and heard about with Bimini's in casting loop-to-loop connections, is the Bimini loop (which can be a few inches in diameter) opening and wrapping around the stripper guide--followed by an abrupt break-off or lure flying back your way. It is hard, if not impossible, to make a 50-turn Bimini in Spectra that is as small as an inch in diameter. That's one of the reasons I like hollow-weave for loops.
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  #4  
Old 07-30-2009, 06:53 AM
jaydreamin jaydreamin is offline
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How about the Bimini/ Slim Beauty connection? Have you experimented with that combination?
Good info, thanks~
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  #5  
Old 07-30-2009, 07:28 AM
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pametfisher pametfisher is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jaydreamin View Post
How about the Bimini/ Slim Beauty connection? Have you experimented with that combination?
Good info, thanks~
The Bimini -- Slim Beauty is a very good connection. I have only done a little testing but it is very strong. The number of turns in the Bimini Twist is not as important for a Slim Beauty, because it is not as important that each leg of the loop loads equally.

For connection to heavier leaders, 80# to 130#, the Figure-8 knot of the Slim Beauty gets large and so I've personally steered away from it and toward wind-on leaders--much easier on the guides, and they cast further.
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Old 07-30-2009, 08:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pametfisher View Post
The loop-to-loop connection lets you change leaders reliably and quickly, in 6' seas, a 20 knot wind, when the temperature is 50 degrees, at night.
Are you nuts?
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  #7  
Old 07-30-2009, 12:19 PM
Danny M Danny M is offline
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what size hollow would you use to splice on the end of 80 lb floro to make the loop for the wind on leader?
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  #8  
Old 07-30-2009, 01:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny M View Post
what size hollow would you use to splice on the end of 80 lb floro to make the loop for the wind on leader?
80# JB White.
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  #9  
Old 07-30-2009, 01:42 PM
Danny M Danny M is offline
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Thanks, but I still have more questions.

I would like to put a 3 hundred yards of solid pp 80 on a penn 6/0 then top it with 2 hundred yards of 80 mono.

would you use the loop to loop to connect pp to mono, or would splice to splice be beter seeing as it wount be cast through the guides 100 times, or there will be no need to change it quickly or often.

Thanks again, very helpful!
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  #10  
Old 07-30-2009, 03:49 PM
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Codfisher Codfisher is offline
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Buy a couple extra rods and use a PR knot which is the only knot that will give you 100%...problem solved
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  #11  
Old 07-30-2009, 05:07 PM
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pametfisher pametfisher is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danny M View Post
Thanks, but I still have more questions.

I would like to put a 3 hundred yards of solid pp 80 on a penn 6/0 then top it with 2 hundred yards of 80 mono.

would you use the loop to loop to connect pp to mono, or would splice to splice be beter seeing as it wount be cast through the guides 100 times, or there will be no need to change it quickly or often.

Thanks again, very helpful!
Why go with solid PP over hollow JB?

If you choose PP, I'd Bimini it and carry a spare topshot or two (on a spool) in case I needed to change them. Or as Codfisher suggested, you could carry a couple spare rods and reels instead of a spare topshot. (Hi Codfisher.)
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  #12  
Old 07-31-2009, 11:01 AM
DAWNPATROL DAWNPATROL is offline
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I too have this issue at the moment. I have a spin reel which I loaded up with 80# PP solid and have been using the Bimini - Slim Beauty (80# mono - 80# PP) and although it is a strong connection, it is bulky and catches on the guides.

I now wish I had spooled it up with 80# hollow PP instead.

I am currently considering leaving the solid 80# PP on the reel and getting a Wind-On Leader and connecting it via Bimini to the Solid Braid. Any advise would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Murf
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  #13  
Old 07-31-2009, 11:20 AM
DAWNPATROL DAWNPATROL is offline
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A friend was telling me about the Sebile knot which he believes to be superior to the Slim Beauty in terms of being a low profile connection between mono and braid. Does anyone have any experience with this knot or have any opinions to share? Is it as strong as the Slim Beauty?

Thanks,
Murf
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  #14  
Old 07-31-2009, 11:55 AM
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Looks like a great knot. Chinese finger type. But 8 minutes on dry land to tie - not including the glue.
Slim beauty about 4 min...
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  #15  
Old 07-31-2009, 03:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DAWNPATROL View Post
I too have this issue at the moment. I have a spin reel which I loaded up with 80# PP solid and have been using the Bimini - Slim Beauty (80# mono - 80# PP) and although it is a strong connection, it is bulky and catches on the guides.

I now wish I had spooled it up with 80# hollow PP instead.

I am currently considering leaving the solid 80# PP on the reel and getting a Wind-On Leader and connecting it via Bimini to the Solid Braid. Any advise would be appreciated.

Thanks,
Murf



A friend was telling me about the Sebile knot which he believes to be superior to the Slim Beauty in terms of being a low profile connection between mono and braid. Does anyone have any experience with this knot or have any opinions to share? Is it as strong as the Slim Beauty?

Thanks,
Murf
See how small a loop you end up with if you make a 50 turn Bimini. Try to make it as small as you can. If you can get the loop to be under about 2 1/2" inches long then use it (or you could even try 40 turns).

Otherwise, and I'm not a knot fan, make a 1" five turn Surgeon's loop. In the PP it will probably break at 60 lbs. or above. I bet that's enough for your application.

Then, take your windons, and make sure they're short enough so the mono/fluoro is just above the spool (9-10'). This setup should cast well and be strong. (I would tie my swivel/split ring to the leaders ahead of time too and bring spares.)

The Sebile is probably a good knot. If you want to go that route, the PR Knot and Mid Knot have been used much more and are VERY strong. The problem with all these knots is they take time and practice to learn and tie well. And they are all knots that should be tied at home. I know some people who tie them on boats but the are very experienced with the knots.

The most reliable, simplest connection for 80# leader and above is the windon. I will soon be describing one that only has a 12" splice. In the meantime, BHP Tackle makes great windon leaders.

PF
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