Tying Knots


November 21, 2014 

Neil Taylor www.strikethreekayakfishing.com and www.capmel.com

One of the first things to learn: Line to leader connection knots and knots for connecting hooks or lures to leaders. One overall theme, find knots you like and learn how to tie them well. Below are a collection of choices for you to consider for mastering these connections. If you would like to connect line to hardware, you may want to research other knots. With the “Knots List” it is more complete. The individually listed “Connection Knots” are the most commonly used and are strong options for you to consider learning.

Find some help in learning but the very best way to learn a knot is to tie it. Cut it, start over and tie it again. Test your knots for strength. Tie it, test it. Tie it again, test it. Start over. Your goal, to be able to tie strong knots fast and to do it by “feel” instead of by sight. You want to be able to get it done in tougher light situations and in the wind.

There are different kinds of lines. There are many thicknesses of the lines and the leaders. Not every knot is right for different combinations. Some time reading about these knots and you should determine different knots you will want to master to cover the needs you have. I can’t emphasize it enough: Find a knot you like and learn it well. There are different knots for different uses. Here are some choices and some ideas on using these particular knots.

There are many more links within the links. I have listed direct links to illustrations and videos of

Connection knots (line to leader)
Loop Knots
“Knot Lists”


My own personal favorite has come to be known as The Neil Knot. Born from my sheepshead fishing days, I combined a simple clinch with a full clinch. There is a video below. What was not properly shown in the video is the details on what you do with your fingers, particularly when you are finishing the knot.

It’s basically all-purpose for all kinds of lines to fluorocarbon leader connections. It will work fine with mono to fluorocarbon connections just fine. It’s tough to catch 100% of what I’m doing with my hands moving around and blocking the camera. I can do this fast because I know it so well. Once you poke the braided line through the “spin hole”, pinch it with your thumb and forefinger to hold everything in place. Take it through the large look to complete the “full clinch” on the braided line side of the knot. “Massage the knots down, holding tension on both sides and mashing the knots down together (rather than just pulling hard on both sides which may cause the leader line to curl a little). Four turns on the leader, eight or more turns on the main line. I’ve been timed doing this knot in twelve seconds.

Below are some links to other knots to consider.

The Neil knot is three simple twists of the fluorocarbon leader, braid through that loop at the top. Five to seven twists to the braid then “full clinch it” (through the first loop then up through the loop that creates). “Massage it down” and trim off the tag ends of braid and fluoro.

The Neil knot is three simple twists of the fluorocarbon leader, braid through that loop at the top. Five to seven twists to the braid then “full clinch it” (through the first loop then up through the loop that creates). “Massage it down” and trim off the tag ends of braid and fluoro.

Multiple loop knots are listed below. The one that I use is the Mirrolure knot to connect lures to leader line. This knot is one of the ones to learn and use for all of your light leader uses. It is just a couple of half hitches. From the diagram, I do one extra step and I do a second wrap around the leader. See Mirrolure Knot below.

The Slim Beauty


Slim Beauty Video

The Slim Beauty is fairly popular, the concept is a smaller diameter knot.

Uniknot 1:
The Uni-Knot
Uniknot 2:
One of the most talked about, popular choices, it is not difficult to tie and a good option for smaller diameter main lines to the lighter leaders.

Midnight knot




Spider Hitch



The Mirrolure Knot, a loop knot for connecting lures to leaders

The Canoeman

Perfection Loop

Modified Rapala

Homer Rhode

Non-slip Loop Knot


1) The capmel.com list

2) Knots Rigs

3) Animated online videos

4) NetKnots.com

5) If you are a book type, look for this one: Practical Fishing Knots II by Mark Sosin and Lefty Kreh

Tip: Are you farsighted? Many people I know will carry some reading glasses that help them with the action of tying a knot. The small tag ends are not easy to see if you have visual challenges. Consider this if you do have a tough time seeing things that are this close.

Neil Taylor
Owner and guide: www.strikethreekayakfishing.com
(Cell) 727-692-6345 LivelyBaits@aol.com
Owner and site administrator: www.capmel.com


Neil Taylor

Neil Taylor

Full time kayak fishing guide, Neil was an advocate for conservation since before the time he started guiding.Outdoor writer, speaker and radio show host, Neil connected closely with Captain Mel Berman and did many positives with Mel to promote ethical angling. After Mel passed away, Neil managed www.capmel.com and eventually became that web site’s owner.
Neil Taylor

Latest posts by Neil Taylor (see all)