How to Put a Sinker on the Line When Fishing

How to Put a Sinker on the Line When FishingFishing sinkers attached to your line allow you to cast your presentations for more distance, and they serve to keep your presentations at a certain level in the water. While you can tie many types of sinkers directly to your line with any simple knot, the commonly used sinkers known as split shots are a bit trickier to get on your line. However, it is worth the time to learn how to attach split shots, as they come in many different sizes, permitting you to put on just the right amount of weight to suit your needs.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

How to:

Things You’ll Need:
  • Split shot
  • Rod and reel
  • Pliers
Step 1
Locate the best spot on your fishing line for the split shots. Attach them about 18 to 24 inches from your hook when you want to fish on the bottom. Place them much closer to your hook when using them to keep live bait in a certain zone in the water, as close as 3 or 4 inches.
Step 2
Pinch the two "fins" at one end of the split shot, which in turn causes the "mouth" of the split shot located at the opposite end to open. Employ pliers for this purpose rather than your fingers or teeth.
Step 3
Run the fishing line through the open mouth end of the split shot and hold it there. Once you close the split shot's mouth, this will enclose the line within the split shot, attaching the sinker where you wish to use it.
Step 4
Wrap the fishing line around the open split shot once or twice before you close the mouth to prevent it from slipping up and down the line. Hold the split shot between your fingers and carefully guide the line back through the fins and then once again through the mouth.
Step 5
Pinch the mouth of the split shot closed with pliers. The split shot sinker is now on your line; remove them if required by pinching down on the fins to open the mouth end and unwrap the line from the sinker.

Tips & Warnings

Choose the larger heavier types of split shot when fishing in fast moving rivers and streams or when you desire to cast for long distances with lighter baits on the hook.
Opt for the smaller split shots when you wish to add just a little weight to your line or to keep live bait from coming near the surface when suspended beneath a fishing float or while ice fishing.

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