Popular Types of Fishing Lines & Setup [Complete Guide to Choose a Fishing Line]

A fishing line is among the essential components of any angler’s equipment. You need a decent line irrespective of where you intend to fish. More significantly, you will require the appropriate line. A fishing line may not be the most flashy piece of equipment, but it attaches to baits and lures and is therefore essential for pulling fish.

Anglers of all kinds and levels of expertise should understand what sort of fishing line to use and when it may seriously affect a catch.

What is a fishing line?

A fishing line is a lengthy braided material; generally, nylon, wire, or silk, used to capture and reel fish using a fishing rod. It is thrown from the rod, travels via the air, and eventually rests in the water’s depth. They come in various materials and strengths, with each having its pros and downsides.

Features of a fishing line

There are specific characteristics that all fishing lines have in common. Knowing them can assist you in determining which line is appropriate for you and which aspect should be prioritized based on your requirements.


A line’s flexibility is crucial since it impacts how easy it is to tie knots. You can tie a more extensive selection of sturdy knots and more complicated ones if your line is nice and flexible. When the line is wet, securing it will be effortless irrespective of the line you are using.


Since most fish have excellent eyesight, you will want to use a line that they will not easily detect. Colored lines are also available, tailored to the color of the water you will be fishing in. Notably, the fishing line’s diameter has an impact on how noticeable it is. The thicker the line, the more visible it is to fish.


A fishing line that curls have a more excellent memory. As you reel in the line, it is more prone to knot or kink. Casting high-memory lines over long ranges is likewise more difficult.

Shock strength

Shock resistance refers to a line’s ability to absorb the force without shattering. If you are fishing for colossal prey, you will need a line that can withstand a lot of shocks. The pound test determines how much strain a fishing line can withstand. This number can be found on every line purchased.


Some lines are a little more flexible than others. The stress caused by a squirming fish is better handled by a stretchy line, although setting the hook is more complicated. Elastic cords can provide less accuracy and sensitivity.


If you want to catch fish that dwell deep in the water, use a heavy, sinking fishing line. In the top water, more buoyant fishing lines will float. The speed with which the line drops is also affected by buoyancy and weight.

Types of fishing lines

Monofilament fishing line

A monofilament line, commonly known as ‘mono,’ is the most basic fishing line consisting of a single plastic strand.

It is made by combining and melting polymers to generate threads of lines, spun onto spools of various shapes and thicknesses. Its unique elasticity and diameter are produced through extrusion, which involves pulling the combined polymers via small perforation palettes.

Monofilaments stand out from other fishing lines because it has the most negligible line visibility in the water while still possessing a high knot strength. As a result, it can be used with various lures and is a safe choice for fishing in a variety of conditions. Monofilament innovation has advanced to a point where it can be utilized with practically any reel type available.

It is a great line to use for freshwater bodies or by anglers who are still unclear about the suitability of existing gear. It has a few downsides for these water bodies, and it is a budget-friendly solution. It also features a ‘memory.’  When the line is looped around the spool, it remembers its shape. As a result, it will come off the spool in large circles as you cast, which might cause twists and bends in the line.

They are available in various colors. A clear line, blue translucent, and bright green are the most prevalent colors. They are also available in red and orange. If you are fishing with many poles and would like a clearer vision of your various lines, the vibrant colors are better.


  • Easier to untangle
  • Abrasion resistance
  • It has a lot of stretches; therefore, it can absorb shocks
  • Pocket friendly
  • Easy to tie knots with because it is softer
  • Available in unique shades of colors


  • The stretch makes it challenging to detect some fish bites.
  • The nylon material tears over time due to sunlight.

Fluorocarbon fishing line

Like monofilament, this type of fishing line is formed in a single strand. However, because fluorocarbon molecules are much more closely packed, the line is thicker and substantially heavy by size. Compounds containing fluorine, carbon, and chlorine and synthetics derived from hydrocarbons are all classified as fluorocarbon.

The Fluorocarbon line was initially thought to be only used by deep-sea anglers. However, thanks to technological developments, it has recently gained popularity among freshwater anglers as well.

The fluorocarbon benefits are considerable, according to most anglers. It, like the mono, has poor visibility since it does not bend light traveling at depth and is practically invisible in most situations. It also has better abrasion resistance and sensitivity over nylon mono and is less likely to disintegrate when exposed to the sun or stored.

This kind of fishing line is ideal for bottom fishing techniques like bottom bouncing and jigging since it descends quickly. It is also suitable for trolling since it has a little but not too much elasticity.

Leaders are mostly made of this fishing line which helps you catch and keep more fish by saving you from casting an entire spool of bulkier gear.


  • It does not contain any memory
  • Strong
  • No stretch therefore extremely sensitive to any strikes
  • Suitable for deep water angling because of the sensitivity
  • Ideal for pulling lures through tough weeds


  • Costly compared to other types of lines
  • Susceptible to tangles

Braided fishing line

Indeed, in hundreds of fishing scenarios, the coupling of fluorocarbon leaders and non-stretch braids has proven successful, if not groundbreaking. However, the scope of what is going on now is considerably greater.

The introduction of these lines resulted in a complete shift in fishing equipment. Rod and reel architecture rushed to keep up with line technology resulting in enormous growth in both areas. This may appear to be a lot of effort over a minor detail. Braid, on the other hand, is not your typical line.

The braided line is the most ancient line in terms of history, and it continues to be renowned in fishing circles today, owing to its excellence in various areas. It has total power due to its diameter. It also offers the most little stretch and maximum knot strength when matched to mono and fluoro alternatives.

Originally constructed from natural fabrics such as cotton and linen, the contemporary braided line primarily consists of artificial materials like polymers. However, in comparison with other fishing types, they are less resistant to abrasion resistance.

Braided lines have the most significant advantage in terms of strength. Their actual breaking strength is frequently more than their test label due to its bigger diameter than mono or fluoro lines. Therefore, they are ideal for beginners unaware of the complexities of test strength in fluoro or mono options when pursuing large fish.

Newbies should also be aware that braided lines are famous among anglers who prefer to experience the pull and bite of their catch owing to the increased sensitivity they provide. The rig and lure may be accurately regulated from the rod because of the minimal stretch element. They can also be thrown over extended ranges.

However, the perceived complexity of fixing a braided line and tying a knot is one factor that may deter some people from using it. Setting up the line and casting out takes a little longer because of the absence of stretch and elasticity. This could be a deal-breaker for an impatient newbie.


  • Great sensitivity
  • Extremely strong and thin
  • Low memory
  • Performs exceptionally well on spinning reels


  • Exerts more stress on equipment
  • Challenging to knot and entangle

Copolymer fishing line

Copolymer fishing line is similar to monofilament in that it is produced from two different types of nylon, but it has several advantages. It is a newcomer to the angling industry, but it is quickly gaining popularity. Copolymers tailored for a variety of circumstances, especially deeper waters, are available.

It is not as buoyant as mono, but there are specific copolymer formulations that are. It is susceptible to UV radiation, heat, and water absorption, just like monofilament, but it is reputed to be more rigid and more abrasion-resistant.

When you need something a little more durable than monofilament, the copolymer is an excellent alternative. Most of the features of these two lines are similar, but copolymer gives more resilience.


  • Low memory
  • Suitable for deep waters because it sinks
  • Manageable


  • It can be destroyed by water absorption

Wire fishing line

It is available in single-strand or braided versions, and it may also be used as a fishing line. When used as a leader material for toothy fish like mackerel and tuna, a wire fishing line can effectively catch fish. The wire is also employed in trolling when it is crucial to get to deeper depths. You will need specific, reinforced spools for your reels when angling with wire.

Fly fishing line

Fly lines are distinct from other lines in that they must be made differently to allow the angler to cast very light flies. There are so many different types of fly lines. However, you must grasp the distinctions to select the appropriate line for the desired behavior of the fly.


Understanding how each line differs and what it can give you is vital to choose the appropriate one. With so many options to choose from, consider factors such as stretch, diameter, color, and more, do your homework, and experiment with a few various combinations to determine what works best for you.

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