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You have probably interacted with a monofilament line at some point in your life consciously or subconsciously. Allow us to start from the beginning to either jog your memory or teach you something new. The goal is to get us all on the same page before we start breaking down this gem.
A monofilament line is a single thread of synthetic fiber made of a mixture of molten polymers that are then squeezed through holes through extrusion to create lines of various thicknesses.
Traditionally it was mostly made of molten nylon because of properties like its high melting point, excellent abrasion resistance, and flexibility. These very properties, among others, made the resulting fiber ideal for fishing. This is most likely the interaction you may have had with a monofilament line as a fishing line. Ring a bell?
It is while using the monofilament lines for fishing that the need to improve on them became apparent. This prompted experiments like the introduction of fluoropolymer materials like PVDF (Polyvinylidene Fluoride or Polyvinylidene Difluoride).
PVDF is highly non-reactive and is resistant to solvents, acids, and hydrocarbons. These qualities made it a good insulator for premium wires, increasing their durability, making them less discernible to fish, and resistant to UV light damage.
It has the lowest density among fluoropolymers, making a light product that can be buoyant in water. It is also non-toxic, meaning it does not contaminate food upon contact. Finally, it improves gloss and color detention.
It is no surprise, therefore, that experienced anglers continue to rely on monofilament fishing lines to date. As much as all the improvements to the monofilament line were made with fishing in mind, today, the lines are used for more than just fishing. Different uses require different qualities, and the best monofilament line for one may not necessarily tally with the other.
Below we shall list some of the best monofilament lines according to an assortment of reviews, highlighting their strengths to enable you to pick the one that best suits your usage.
Best Overall Choice
1. KastKing Monofilament Superior Fishing Line
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The brand slogan for KastKing is ‘Keeps fishing fun.’ They have really lived up to it in this one, creating one of the best monofilament lines currently available.
They have clearly embraced the fun in fishing, considering how they have named the diverse colors available for this line. We have the black mamba, rose blue, ice clear, sunrise yellow, rebel red, pink shocker, and mountain green.
The ice clear line remains invisible to the fish, so you don’t want to spook them. The blue blends in with the water, while the red remains visible to attract fish to the lure and also for you to keep track of your line. These diverse colors make this monofilament line one of the most versatile in terms of fishing techniques that can be applied.
This superior monofilament is composed of high-density nylon material made using the unique roll track design unique to KastKing. The result is a high strength thin line that is very tough and does not have that annoying line memory.
At 0.2 to 0.5mm diameter, this fishing line tests at 4 to 30lbs, which is a very impressive strength to diameter ratio, better than other monofilament lines in their test range. The thin line also offers you a better reel capacity, allowing you to cast further.
What enables you to make those long casts is that this line’s low memory enables a smooth cast and prevents your line from digging into the spool, making the process efficient. It further reduces backlashes and wind knots.
Its great abrasion resistance enables fishing around the structure while making it very durable. This and the powerful tensile strength allows you to take on even the feistiest bass fish in harsh conditions without worrying.
You can also use it for topwater fishing by moving lures or baits. It is viable for both freshwater and saltwater fishing, making it ideal for most fishing conditions and techniques. It is easily a tournament-grade fishing line.
It is super sensitive as its stretch-level is very low; they say it is up to 10% lower than other monofilament lines. You will definitely feel the bite, and this also helps set up the hook right while keeping the knot strength tight and intact even underwater.
KastKing has pioneered a keeper package for this line that protects it from elements like UV light while making it easily available to make your work easy while you are in the water.
You can get it from 300 to 600 yards.
• Low memory
• Resistant to abrasion
• Convenient keeper package
• High strength to diameter ratio
• The colors have been reported to run in some instances
Best Premium Choice
2. Stren High Impact Monofilament Fishing Line
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This line is impact resistant enough and does not break easily, so it is suitable when fighting line punishing game fish and handling the heavier hard-hitting fish species like walleyes, monster sheepheads, and catfish.
It receives a thumbs up from many seasoned anglers for having enough strength to reel in the catch after it bites despite the size.
This mono line has been specifically designed to be saltwater fishing tough, so it can be used for coastal, bay and blue water fishing pursuits, be it casting, spinning, and trolling reels. It gives both fresh and saltwater anglers an advantage in all these situations.
The combination of tensile strength and corrosion resistance contributes to its durability and ability to serve for many expeditions before you start considering replacement.
It has excellent transparencies for exceptionally low visibility by the fish when in stealth mode and high visibility options when you want a clear view of your line.
It comes in various lengths and diameters, with colors ranging from clear, low visibility green, high visibility green to smoke blue. The sizes range from 10 to 30lb test. These offer you a variety to pick from depending on your specific needs.
It is increasingly being bought by people who don’t fish for its strength. It can be used as a garden trellis for growing climbing plants where the clear version blends easily without interfering with the ambiance. It is also used for decoration and bird deterrence during outdoor functions involving food.
• Comes in many variations for versatility
• Corrosion and saltwater damage resistance
• Enhanced strength
• The line sometimes knots due to twisting
Best Budget Choice
3. KastKing FluoroKote Fishing Line
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This is an upgrade to the KastKing copolymer fishing line, which was done by coating it 100% with fluorocarbon to reduce its visibility underwater. Essentially this added fluorocarbon qualities and performance to the copolymer without a proportional increase in the price to fluorocarbon levels. This tells you the value for money has been surpassed on this one.
The copolymer has excellent castability and low memory, while fluorocarbon line is invisible in water. Combining the two maximized these traits to give a fishing line that is very stealthy in water and can be cast accurately over long distances.
The combination also created new advantages in this upgrade. The KastKing FluoroKote is even smaller in diameter than the original copolymer, ranging between 0.18 to 0.48mm. This makes it less visible with a higher density, meaning it sinks faster and offers you more reel capacity.
Besides making casting easier, the depth attained when using diving baits has also been increased. The increased tensile strength (it tests between 4 to 30lbs) is the ideal line to be armed with when tackling those crazy, hard-hitting, and heavy bass fish.
The stretch has also greatly reduced from the copolymer resulting in a highly sensitive line that enables you to feel the instant your prey bites and all the structures under the water. It also makes it easy to reel in that catch and navigate it to the boat or shore.
It makes stronger knots, ensuring the hook is correctly positioned for the bite and holds fast until the catch is safely in your hands.
This tag-team of copolymer and fluoro-coating created a superior abrasion resistance that enables you to fish in very rough terrain without worrying about damaging your line. It also makes the line applicable in freshwater and saltwater applications, and is super durable, ensuring it will serve you for days.
It comes in 300 yards, and from the above qualities, you can tell it is very versatile in terms of the fishing conditions and techniques it will allow you to explore.
• Versatile in terms of fishing conditions and techniques
• Resistant to abrasion
• Super strength to diameter ratio
• Ties strong knots
• Offers easy and smooth casting
• Higher reel capacity
• Only available in clear color
4. Berkley Trilene Big Game Monofilament Fishing Line
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This is arguably the best monofilament line for big fish angling, as touted by many experienced fishermen for a long time. They offer diverse colors to accommodate your preferred fishing style. You can get it in optimal, basic, clear, coastal brown, green, solar collector, steel blue, and ultra-clear.
It gives you value for your money as you can get a whopping 1,500 yards in any of these colors to use as you please.
The monofilament line is super strong; it tests from 10 to 30lbs and can usually hold slightly more than the test rating. The rough waters can surprise you as you never know what will bite that bait.
It has extreme fighting power against those big game fish because it has a controlled stretch that absorbs the shock of the powerful tugs or jerks on top of the powerful tensile strength. This grants you the peace of mind that comes with knowing your line will not break under pressure.
This line is exceptionally resistant to abrasion and toughs it out against rough and sharp objects underwater like rocks, weeds, and fish teeth consistently. It is both saltwater and fresh water-friendly, giving you even more options for fishing.
Besides fishing, this line has been used for many other functions on account of its strength. It has been used to make jewelry, for sewing, as min fences to keep away small animals from properties, among other things. It is still a great buy for the non-fisherman.
• Exceptional abrasion resistance
• Hyper strength
• Available in both clear and color versions
• Great fighting power
• Retains some memory
5. Trilene XL Monofilament Fishing Line from Berkley
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It is referred to as the XL because seasoned anglers have been leaning on it as the best mono fishing line for long casts for a long time now. It has incredible tensile strength, testing between 2 to 30lb.
The Trilene XL is polyvalent in reference to its resistance to water and UV damage and is also resistant to abrasion. These reinforce your confidence in its strength and ability to reel in some of the sneakiest species in the water.
This monofilament line has a low memory and is very limp, and as a result, you can easily make great knots and loop it on the reel. The flexibility also makes for easy, smooth casting using conventional reels as opposed to other stiffer lines. This eliminates twists and kinks, supporting line manageability.
It has excellent sensitivity, which gives you a good feel of the fishing ground’s structure and the bites as soon as your target connects to the bait. You are never caught off guard.
It comes in three colors: clear, low visibility green, and fluorescent blue. Clear and low vis green take care of almost all scenarios you may encounter requiring your line to blend in with the water. This is crucial when the situation demands that the fish do not see the line, since you don’t want to jolt the target away from your hook.
On the other hand, fluorescent blue fluorescence takes care of night fishing or fishing in environments with poor visibility that require you to see where your line is.
*We note at this point, however, that this fluorescence is not high vis enough for fishing techniques such as nymphing. These require the nymph flies to be delivered to the right spot with the proper presentation to entice the trout to bite.
This is a versatile mono fishing line that delivers exceptional results with various baits and fishing techniques.
• Low memory
• Great casting experience
• Resistant to abrasion
• Easy to knot
• Great sensitivity
• Decent invisibility
• Limited high visibility options
6. The SpiderWire UltraCast Ultimate Monofilament Fishing Line
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It is engineered for high performance in both saltwater and freshwater through a four-step process. This involves weaving together the best fibers to a uniform roundness and incredible strength.
The line is then floro-coated, resulting in a super-strong and super-smooth monofilament line that is quiet and glides quickly through the guides. Its tensile strength tests between 6 to 100lb.
This floro-coating makes the line invisible to the fish underwater as it breaks up the line’s outline. Above water, the line appears white, so you can see where it is and track your fish all the time. These qualities make it one of the best monofilament lines for stealth mode.
It has less stretch than most monofilament lines in its caliber at only 15%. This makes it highly sensitive, and you can feel everything from the slightest bite to underwater rocks, weeds, and structures. This ensures you are never caught off guard, and you can set the hook just right.
It comes with various popular spool configurations, including 125, 200, 300, 500, 1,500, and 3,000yard spools to fit your needs. This means less wastage and unnecessary weight as you can select exactly what you need.
The SpiderWire UltraCast is exceptionally thin for its strength, which gives an allowance for a higher spool and reeling capacity, leading to exceptional bait action.
It has exceptional knot and shock strength even while wet underwater, which gives you the peace of mind that comes with knowing it will not suddenly snap and make you lose your bait and/or prey.
• Has a high strength to thickness ratio
• Low visibility underwater
• Great sensitivity
• Excellent knot and shock strength
• It is prone to retain memory
7. RUNCL PowerMono Monofilament Fishing Line
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It is a very strong line, testing at up to 35lb with a degree of stretch. This gives it excellent shock absorbing strength that can withstand aggressive strikes and maintain strong knots. The stretching ability manages the hooks, maintaining their position even as the bass throw the lure about while trying to resist capture.
Strong as it is, the line is made to the least density possible to be light and buoyant. Consequently, it sinks slowly and essentially suspends in water. This is a great bonus when fishing using topwater baits and buoyant lures.
It is abrasion-resistant to enable prolonged service even as you tackle these aggressive creatures in the most hostile waters.
It is easy to tie into knots that will persevere the harsh conditions and not come undone even underwater.
The PowerMono monofilament line is available in both high visibility and low visibility options to give you a range to maneuver regardless of your environment. There is clear and low-vis green for when you prefer stealth or to hide the line from sight. Then there is the high-vis gold for when you want to see the line.
• It is a very strong monofilament line
• Makes strong knots
• Buoyant in water for high water fishing
• Available in high and low visibility options
• Tends to be stiff when reeling.
8. Stren Original Monofilament Service Spool
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The Stren monofilament lines have been an angler’s choice for many years and are acclaimed all over the world. The original monofilament line does not disappoint either. It is a strong line that tests from 4 to 30lb.
You can get it in both low visibility and high visibility options and fluorescent for night fishing. There are clear and green colors for low-vis, gold for high-vis, and fluorescent for the night. These cover all your possible fishing scenarios, making it a versatile choice.
It is also one of the toughest lines and is as resistant to abrasion as they come. Additional UV light damages protection for those extra sunny days all but guarantees your monofilament line will give you great service for an extended period.
It is very limp, which makes it easy to cast and to tie the necessary knots. It will obey all your instructions without any trouble as the limpness also means it is supple and has low memory.
The sensitivity is on another level; you can detect the lightest strikes regardless of the amount of line that is in the water.
This balance of strength, sensitivity, and abrasion resistance make it one of the best monofilament lines for freshwater and saltwater anglers.
It is evident that a conversation about the best monofilament line can’t be had without referring to their fishing application. It represents more than 90% of the current usage. This does not take away from the 10%, which are also valid reasons for having a monofilament line.
There is no blanket recommendation for getting a decent monofilament line as it will be dependent on your needs versus the accessible options.
To determine the best monofilament line for your purposes, it is good to understand why they have retained their relevance even with the advancement of technology and the development of alternative fishing methods.
• Has a very low memory
• Offers exceptionally smooth casting
• Accommodates both high and low visibility options
• Resistance to abrasion
• Offers above-average sensitivity
• Not available for the heavyweight tests
Choosing the Best Mono Fishing Line
The first things you need to familiarize yourself with are the different attributes these monofilament fishing lines have that separate them from each other. These will help you develop a checklist of the minimum requirements your ideal fishing line should meet.
Attributes of a Mono Fishing Line
This refers to the stress level at which the line will fracture. A tensile stress test usually determines it, otherwise referred to as a test, as you may have noticed throughout this article.
It is measured in pounds; a 12lb line should not break until pressure exceeding 12lb is applied to it.
Your target catch will determine your ideal breaking strength. This is a combination of the prevalent species in the area, the one you are going for, and the type of lure you are using. Your line is prone to snap if the weight is overwhelming.
On the other hand, if the line is much stronger than is required, your fishing expedition may be less successful because you will lose out on the advantages of having a lean fishing line.
Knots are the backbone of the functionality of any fishing line. It can’t be employed without them. The first type of knot is the one that attaches the hook and the bait to the line. The second kind joins two sections of the line together.
Knots in fishing lines respond differently to pressure when the actual fishing is going on. Sometimes they become undone due to a combination of factors like the amount of pressure being applied, how slippery the line is, the reaction of the line once exposed to water, and the proficiency and technique of the person tying the knot.
A knot coming undone sets you back a few steps because you not only stand to lose your catch but also the lure, hook, and line. You should definitely consider the knot rating when fishing for a fishing line (pun intended).
UV Protection or Resistance
Ultraviolet (UV) light affects monofilament lines by making them brittle, thus reducing their tensile strength. The estimated tensile strength loss rate is 20% for every 100 hours of exposure to the sun.
As much as you will not expose your line for this long, you are not always in control of the conditions under which you will be fishing. The more the reel is exposed to direct sunlight, the faster it will degrade.
Fluorocarbon lines, on the other hand, are less affected by UV light and hardly degrade solely because of exposure to the sun; however, they are susceptible to abrasion and the general wear and tear of fishing.
Some mono fishing lines have incorporated fluorocarbon, so they are more immune to the adverse effects of UV light and, consequently, are more durable. Your mono fishing line’s UV tolerance level is an important consideration if you are concerned about longevity.
Your angling’s success depends on how your fishing line reacts when you swing that fishing rod over water to throw that bait in it. It determines whether you will hit the right spot in terms of distance and depth.
Casting techniques also vary with the kind of fish involved. Fly fishermen use light lines and rods as they cast out artificial flies to lure in their prey.
Saltwater anglers, on the other hand, use heavier rods and lines to cast their bait, which often heavier than flies. Surfcasting requires even heavier lines.
A 12lb test mono fishing line will cast farther than a 20lb line using the same rod and reel. The lighter line also attains steeper and deeper curves for your plugs. However, on the flip side, if you go too light, you may experience breakoffs since the lines are not as strong. A balance should be achieved depending on your specific needs.
Low memory fishing lines soon ‘forget’ about the coils they were restrained in on the spool, the knots tied previously, and any tangles or kinks that may have suffered.
This is the ideal position as far as fishing lines go. It allows the line to retain its shape for the next fishing run and makes for accurate casting.
If the memory is high, the line will try to maintain the shape it was in on the spool while you are uncoiling it for casting. It also retains all the kinks and is prone to tangles and breakage. The irregular shape also interferes with casting as your swing will not be accurate.
This term is used in reference to the flexibility of the line. You will hear terms such as limp and extra-limp. It is a measure of how stiff the line is.
Limpness is good because it makes maneuvering of your fishing line less cumbersome. You can tie those knots, undo them, and cast with minimum effort.
The issue with ultra-limp lines is that the same knots might not hold underwater with pressure from the fighting fish. Your optimum limpness depends on what you are dealing with.
Stretch or Elasticity
The elasticity of your monofilament fishing line acts as a shock absorber and will help prevent the fish from tearing itself off the hook. It also protects your line from snapping due to sudden increases in stress brought about by dodging fish.
Too much elasticity is not recommended, as the line will lose its sensitivity. There should be a compromise position, depending on your type of fishing.
Your mono fishing line is undoubtedly exposed to external elements that cause it to age faster. As the fish struggle to get away, they drag the line against rocks, underwater vegetation logs, and stumps.
The UV light mentioned above also contributes to this. The line’s construction determines how much it can resist abrasion, and it is usually declared. It is a key consideration when deciding on your purchase.
The best mono fishing lines come in various colors, from the practically invisible to very vibrant colors. It can be confusing to settle on one if you don’t have criteria. Some even have fluorescent material that makes them in a glow in the sun.
When your fishing technique involves the fish staring at the lure and when using live bait, low visibility is ideal as you want to catch the prey unaware. This is achieved by clear color lines or by blending the color with the background.
If it is dependent on reaction bait like in jig fishing, the color doesn’t really matter because the jig itself is colorful enough, and the whole point is to capture the interest of the fish.
Color is also important for those instances where you have to watch your line for a bite. All you need to do is to ensure the color you pick can be seen.
We sincerely hope the information shared will be useful as you replace your line and that you end up with the best mono fishing line – the one that suits your fishing style, the one that is durable, and the one that gives you the best service.
Monofilament lines sink slowly, making them the best lines for angling using top water lures and subsurface presentations where you prefer the bait close to the water surface. This is attributed to the low-density formulation that renders them almost 100% buoyant.
Ease of Use
On top of many reviews from fishermen of varying experience levels, a combination of all the above has led us to conclude the monofilament line is the easiest to use.
The many improvements made over the years have made the mono fishing line an even better tool beyond your basic fishing needs.
The monofilament line is being applied beyond fishing as we keep uncovering new ways of exploiting its versatility.