How to find the perfect balance between your line, rod and reel


So let’s put together a good rod, reel and line setup for a square beak. We want to fish this bait below the surface and around deposits, so we don’t really want to use a floating line that will fight the action of the bait. And the strength of the line is more important than its stretch, because of the coverage. So the 15-pound test Fluorocarbon makes for a pretty good selection of lines here.

We’ll grab the aforementioned LFS speed reel as it’s good for the 15-pound fluorocarbon diameter, again capable of holding around 120 yards of that line. This reel fits well on a medium heavy 7 foot rod which is a good choice for the square beak as we will be fishing it through some poses and may need a small backbone to wrestle against the fish. When all of these components come together, you have a setup that works together perfectly, capable of making the longest, most accurate casts possible and fighting fish as well as any other.

That’s the point. Assemble the appropriate rod, reel and line to be most effective. Another good example: a punch setup consisting of a heavy 7-8 rod paired with a Lew’s Super Duty LFS Casting Reel, which has a deeper spool with a 12/150 capacity, capable of holding approximately 112 yards of the largest diameter of 65 lbs. braid.

Changing any part of this configuration would require changing everything to struggle to regain harmony. And even then, you wouldn’t be able to achieve maximum efficiency if you switched to, say, a heavy 7ft 3in rod with a 50lb test and the same reel. Although you reduced the size of the line to match it better with the new rod size and the setup is again in harmony, the overall combination would be too light for a heavy punch.

Starting with knowing that a 65 pound or more braid is imperative for punching, and then adding a strong enough rod to the mix to pull a big one out of a mat, it’s easy to see that a reel like the Super Duty is the obvious choice to complete the perfect setup, as it is strong and able to hold an adequate amount of the largest line. Approaching your line, rod, and reel selection from this angle should help you better build a great setup for any technique.


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