This is perhaps one of the sneakiest areas to really stretch the bang of your buck. Line spools vary in length because of the diameter of the line. As the pound test goes up, the diameter goes up and the number of yards the company puts on a spool goes down. But most of the time, you can spool up two reels with the smaller spools of line that companies offer. But you’ll need to use a little backing to do this.
In other words, you use some cheaper line like monofilament to start spooling your reel and then add the more expensive fluorocarbon or braided line over top of it, knowing that the mono is deep enough in the spool that you’ll never be able to cast down to it.
However, figuring out exactly how much backing to put on two reels and exactly where to split the smaller spool so there’s enough line for both reels can be quite tricky and you’re almost always left with a little bit of waste on the spool when you’re done. You can run the numbers and work out the math to eliminate this or you can simply buy a bulk spool of line.
I especially recommend this for pound tests you use a lot. For instance, in my personal fishing, I use 15-pound fluorocarbon most of the time as well as 40-pound braid. So I just get a big spool of each and spool my reels until they’re full. In the event I make it to the bottom of a bulk spool and there’s a little bit of waste, I’m okay with that since I would have run into the same issue 5 of 6 times with smaller spools.
In addition to that side of it, you also pay less per yard when you buy bigger spools. So for instance, a spool of Sufix 832 40-pound braid costs $0.10 per yard when it’s on a 150-yard spool and $0.09 per yard on a 1,200-yard spool.
A 200-yard spool of 15-pound test Seaguar InvizX costs $0.13 per yard, where the same line is $0.11 per yard on a 1,000-yard spool. Again, it doesn’t sound like much but when you factor in the price difference per yard and wasting 20 to 30 yards per small spool, you’re looking at a savings of 10- to 15-percent and that could equate to another $200 to $300 of cash in your pocket over the course of the year.
The last thing most of us want to talk about when it comes to fishing is the money we spend on it. If we sit down and think about all the money that goes into tricking a little green fish into biting a piece of plastic, it can get a little nauseating. But this is our pastime and as my dad has told my mom before, it’s cheaper than therapy—though I don’t know if anyone really wants to run the numbers on that one, either.
Still, being cognizant of several ways to save a little here and there can add up to hundreds and even thousands in savings at the end of the year. Planning ahead and stocking up on all your favorite baits goes a long way in doing that. Buying baits in bulk, when given the option, helps too.
Also, don’t forget that you’re paying 10 percent more on average for the same amount of line on smaller spools and likely wasting 10 percent of those spools on top of that. Applying these simple principles, you can stretch your dollar further and spend more time on the water for less this year.