How to Put Fishing Line on a Fly Rod Reel

How to Put Fishing Line on a Fly Rod Reel
Fly lines are typically 100 feet long and require backing so you can fish deep waters. Adding new line to your fly reel is a simple task that must be done every season. Aside from the fly line and backing, you won't need other tools to complete the task. Spool new fishing line on your fly rod reel before the season starts and check your other tackle to ensure all your equipment is in proper working order.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Fishing line cutters
Step 1
Assemble your fly rod and reel. Work the free end of your backing through the rod guides. Loop the backing over the arbor. Create a loop. Lace the right end through the loop. Tighten the knot. Trim excess line behind the tag.
Step 2
Wind the backing onto the reel. Hold the line with your free hand to minimize slack and maintain tension as you wind the backing on the arbor.
Step 3
Tie the backing to your fly line using a surgeon's knot. Overlap both lines and pull them both into a 6-inch loop. Wet the line with saliva or water from your fishing hole. Pull both ends in opposite directions to close the surgeon's knot.
Step 4
Wind the fly line onto the arbor in the same way you wound the backing. Distribute the fly line up to ¼-inch of the arbor wall.

Tips & Warnings

Backing is a type of leader for fly reels that extends the length of fly lines, which are typically 100 feet long.
All fishing lines can tangle, so spool your fly line and backing on slowly and check frequently for tangles.

Article Written By Charlie Gaston

Charlie Gaston has written numerous instructional articles on topics ranging from business to communications and estate planning. Gaston holds a bachelor's degree in international business and a master's degree in communications. She is fluent in Spanish and has extensive travel experience.

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