In this blog we look at 7 reasons to STOP using swivels – and what to use instead!
Swivels have their place in fishing, especially for beginners.
But once you dive a little deeper and wanting to catch bigger and better fish, you may prefer to use an alternative.
But first let’s dive into the reasons why a swivel is a must and cannot be avoided.
Before diving into the 7 reasons to stop using swivels – and the solutions I’ve used as a charter guide for over 30 years.
Three main reasons to use a swivel.
1. Live bait/flesh bait fishing:
When using baits in shallow water with a big current, the rig to use is a running rig (find out why here). If the bait is not aerodynamic it will spin in the current which can be alleviated by a swivel. OR you can pin your baits like this to avoid spinning!
2. As an attachment only:
3. Using metal slices or spoons that spin.
Obviously, any lures that spin or tend to spin over time will wind up your line. Especially true if you also make this mistake with a spinning reel. This may result in wind knots and result in the loss of a good fish.
7 Reasons to STOP using a swivel!
1. EXTRA COST.
Using knots instead can save you $ in the long run, especially when they are not necessary.
2. SWIVEL FAILURE
If you use the cheap varieties they can fail and you’ll lose a good fish. I prefer to use nickel plated ball bearing swivels in preference to all other types.
3. Swivels add bulk and weight
The lighter and smaller the terminal tackle the less fish can see. More weight can also restrict the movement of lures. Plus they can create bubbles while trolling that encourage mackerel and toothy pelagics to bite, slicing your leader and losing your lure.
4. Snagging Risk
Weed and other debris in the water can get caught on bulky terminal tackle and inhibit the movement of your lure. And spook fish if a big bit of weed is hanging before your lure or bait.
To avoid this always get the nickel coated variety. Of course they are a bit more expensive than the cheap and nasty ones.
6. Chip the ceramics in your rod tip
This can lead to hairline damage and cracks which can snap braid during a hard fight. Or damage braid so it snaps during hook up.
7. Casting Accuracy
Using a small enough swivel to run through your guides can catch and reduce casting accuracy. Not to mention damage your guides (point #6).
THE KEY ADVANTAGE FOR NOT USING SWIVELS!!
The most important reason you want to get out of the habit of using swivels is so you can have a super long leader.
We cover the reason you’ll want a super long leader in this blog post.
It is imperative that you can wind your leader onto the reel and you just can’t do that using a swivel because a) you can’t cast or b) you have to wind the swivel into your guides.
The Alternative to Swivels?
We demonstrate the alternative in our previous blog called the wind on leader system.
And if you have microguides try the RMF knot to replace the albright.
I’ve been using this system for 30 years on charter and have caught thousands of massive fish including over 2000 metre plus saltwater barramundi using these exact knots.
So practice up (I give really helpful tips in the above links on how to tie them quickly in the boat).
And only use swivels when you really need to!
I hope you enjoyed our myth busting of citing the 7 reasons NOT to use swivels.
If you’re new here poke around on the blog for more tips and tricks.
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