I‘m a liberal leaning outdoorsman attempting to open the minds of right wingers to the idea that libs fish too. Anglers come from all walks of life, left, right, and center. Not everyone who fishes for bass is a redneck fond of Nascar, country music, and religiosity. Expect posts about largemouth bass fishing, techniques, reviews of lures and other products, but not any condemnable conservative rants. I hope to inspire the online angler community to dial down rhetoric which will do more harm than good to our sport.

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Wednesday, February 17, 2010

• My Loop Knot Revisited

Those who read my blog might be vaguely familiar with the line I use and the knot I tie at the end. If you're new around here or have forgotten, let me introduce or reintroduce you to it. The knot itself is simple, yet somewhat uncommon, very reliable for me, and in a way, a family tradition.

In a post about my three main fishing knots, I highlighted a loop knot passed down from my grandfather. The knot served him well and has yet to really disappoint me. It is nothing more than a loop tied from doubled line in an overhand knot pattern with an additional overhand knot at the free end to prevent slipping. There is no official name for the knot, unless some obscure knot-tying web site has it listed, so for the purpose of this blog, I'm just going to call it a loop knot.

While every angler has a preferred knot they tie, whether it be the ever popular Palomar, Uni, or any number of other fancy contortions, I implore you to indulge me while I explain this loop knot. You can learn to tie it and decide for yourself. The rule of thumb is to use the knot we are most comfortable and confident using.

In my previous post where I introduced you to the knot, my illustration showed how to tie it free of any lure or terminal tackle because all it requires is to run the loop through the eye, around whatever you're tying to, and back up to the eye again, fitting snugly in place. In many instances, the loop makes swapping out some items, like terminal weights for drop shotting, an easy task. No retying is necessary. But this approach does not mean much to anyone tying to hooks, jigs, and many other lures. That's why this knot deserves being revisited.

In order to use the knot for these other applications, it needs to be tied in a different fashion than I previously described. Another thing to consider the style of eye you'll be working with. This knot has an angled kink to one side, so tying an eyelet that faces side to side will not align properly, leaving the lure to favor one side over the other. This knot is perfect for cross eyelet style line ties. In the following image, you can see what I mean. The second eyelet in the photo cooperates with the knot I'm about to show you while the first does not.

So let me go through the steps with you.
(In some images, you'll see tips of hemostats. Imagine them as fingers instead. I only used hemostats to secure the line in place for taking photographs.)

1. Run the line down through the eye of your hook.

2. Bring the end over and around the neck/shank.

3. Then behind the neck/shank and back up through the eye from underneath.

4. Pull to bring the loop up against the eye.

5. Tie an overhand knot with the hook, the doubled line, and the main line.

6. You're left with a very classic overhand knot.

7. Carefully roll the overhand knot down towards the hook along the main line, but don't cinch it down just yet. At the same time, make sure the loop stays somewhat snug up against the eye of the hook.

8. Pinch the overhand knot between two fingers. At the same time, pull the doubled line away from the knot and slowly cinch it down. It may help to use a fingernail to slide it closer to the eye of the hook.

9. Grab the doubled line and the neck of the hook. Give a firm tug from both ends to really tighten the knot down.

10. With the free end, tie an overhand knot on itself. This knot will serve to secure the loop knot.

11. Roll it down to the loop knot as close as you can get it. Again, pinch it with two fingers as you roll it along.

12. Snip the loose end above that overhand knot with scissors

13. With one hand, pull the hook by the bend. With the other hand, pull the main line. this will cause the overhand knot to slide up against the other knot, securing both in place so as to prevent the whole thing from slipping loose.

14. Done

The knot is a strong one, but admittedly not invincible. It can break. Don't get me wrong. I just know I've pulled on logs for a long long time before one of two things happened, those two outcomes being a break off or recovery of my lure. My only concern has to do with sensitivity. Unlike other knots, the loop does not stay in direct contact with whatever I'm tied to. A Palomar knot, for instance, is a knot that I consider being in direct contact with a hook. Aside from that, the knot has served me well and I highly recommend giving it a try. It takes me the same amount of time to tie this knot as it does a Palomar knot.

Tying Same Knot to a Cross-Eyelet Style Jig

1. Run line through eyelet from front to back

2. Bring end of line around to the front side, down, and under the main line

3. Bring the end up and around to the other side of the jighead

4. and behind the eyelet, then through the eyelet to form a loop that slides snugly up against it

Then follow steps 5 through 14 above with the jig instead of a hook.


MNAngler said...

Interesting knot. Seems like it should be strong since it has the same concept of a polymar knot with it's loop around the terminal tackle.

I'll have to tie a couple of them and test them out.