Should you buy a specialist casting braid? Cut to the chase…yes, you should, and here’s why.
Braid is constructed by many different manufacturers, and in various guises that will do the job.
Created from a number of weaves, it is generally accepted that the higher the weave number, the better quality and performance the braid, much like high thread count in fine fabrics.
A really solid, good quality braid will usually have at least an 8 ply (meaning it is woven with 8 main strands to form the one main line) and brand by brand will differ in strength and diameter.
Diving deeper again into the fibres, the number and size of the fibres that make up the main ply strands also makes a difference to strength, diameter and other properties.
The key here is, that all braid is not created equal, regardless of ply or diameter, braids from various manufacturers will exhibit inherently different performance factors, all of which can have a marked effect on your day out fishing.
Good braid can mean the difference between a fish in the net, or not
The right braid can mean the difference between, casting further, lasting longer, not tangling in your guides, or not soaking up water and/or delaminating to some degree.
The best braids, like much of the fishing gear today, we have found, are made in Japan.
There are several good quality brands available, but one we have been testing over the past season with great results, is Gosen, kindly supplied for testing by GoFish tackle https://www.gofish.co.nz/
Not only is this braid exceptional in quality, it provides a good example of the difference in real world usage, that specialist -purpose braids can make to your fishing experience.
Standard Gosen braid is a good benchmark, all-purpose braid created from SK60 fibres, considered to be the industry standard for a high quality braid. It will do the job well and is a dependable option.at the price point.
If you like it light weight, check out how incredibly fine the Gosen braid goes. Killer for casting and cutting through the current
The next level options feature 8 weave, created in a standard version and a slightly finer and stronger version more specifically for jigging, that utilises a superior SK71 fibre that is 20% stronger for its same diameter.
This braid, marked in 10 metre colour increments, would be a great choice if jigging is your thing. One particular reason that this braid is a good choice for the job, is that being stronger for a thinner diameter, means your jig has less drag on it. A critical property if you are jigging in 70 plus metres around currents chasing kingfish.
Finer braid will keep your line straighter and more in touch with the lure, with less of a bow in the line to take out once you hook up, meaning you get a chance to turn the fishes head that little bit earlier.
Now for the soft baiters and surface stick bait crew, back to that question about specialist casting braid.
Who has not had the infuriating braid line wrap around your runners as you crack your lure off and send it merrily on its way to see Davy Jones, or even better flinging your lure lethally around the immediate vicinity of the boat.
Next step: to be faced with untangling a tightly woven mess of limp braid jammed in your rod guides. The ugly downside of braid.
For some applications, stiffer is better. See how the casting braid from Gosen remains pretty perky. Here's why this can be good...
Well the good news is that there is a braid designed specifically for casting that won’t do this, and your lure will also sail another bunch of metres for the same casting effort.
Gosen casting braid is created with a stiffer profile, and a finer weave, that utilises 8 or even a 16 ply in its construction.
The surface of the braid is coated with a ‘Teflon-like’ treatment which performs several functions.
It keeps the line stiffer and more slick, which stops the braid soaking up any water and aids it to fire through the runners.
A stiffer, dryer braid spirals and does not ‘slap’ through the runners and against the rod as it is pulled through at high speed. Carrying less water means also carrying less weight, and you will notice a significant improvement on your casting efficiency.
It also knots up nicely and you can see the distinctive ‘clear look’ form on your knots as they cinch up correctly.
At 16 ply the line is still supple and smooth as silk once loaded up and is a joy to use under pressure, almost feeling like mono running over the guides.
We were not the only ones impressed by this line.
Gosen casting X16 braid won the EFTTEX Awards 2017 voted Best Braided Line.
If you are casting a lot, or having problems with wind knots, tip wraps, or just want to upgrade your braid to one that will give you a bit more confidence, the Gosen will not disappoint.
For more information, check out the range available at GoFish Tackle https://www.gofish.co.nz/