How to Respool a Fishing Line

How to Respool a Fishing Line
Properly installed fishing line is an essential part of the overall tackle setup, as the line is the only connection between a reel and the lure. Enormous stress can be placed on a fishing line while fishing, especially when a large fish is hooked. During the course of a trip, fishing line can sometimes be spooled loosely on a reel. Line that is not tightly spooled is more susceptible to issues such as backlash.


Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Bait or spining reel with matched rod
  • Empty filler spool
  • Scissors
  • Electrical tape
Step 1
Cut the hook or lure from the end of the fishing line with a pair of scissors. Connect the free end of the fishing line to an empty filler spool with electrical or similar tape.
Step 2
Open the bail of a spinning reel or press the spool release button on a baitcast reel. Pull line from the spool of the reel and wind it onto the empty filler spool. Continue pulling line from the spool until you reach the end of the line that's connected to the spool with a knot. Inspect the fishing line to look for signs of wear such as cuts and nicks. Replace the line completely with new line if damaged.
Step 3
Examine the knot connecting the line to the spool to determine if it's loose or has been weakened from use. Cut the line free from the spool of the reel with scissors and attach it with a new knot such as the Arbor knot. Also use this method if installing a completely new line.
Step 4
Thread the line through the line guide on the front of a baitcast reel if necessary. Form the Arbor knot by wrapping the line around the spool of the reel with several inches of the free end, extending it past the spool. Tie an overhand knot around the main line with the free end of the line and tie a second overhand knot in the free end below the first knot. Pull both knots tight against each other and the spool.
Step 5
Close the bail on a spinning reel and apply tension to the line in front of the spool. Turn the handle of the reel to begin winding line onto the reel spool. Fill the spool to within 1/8 inch on a spinning reel and 1/4 inch on a baitcast reel.

Article Written By Keith Dooley

Keith Dooley has a degree in outdoor education and sports management. He has worked as an assistant athletic director, head coach and assistant coach in various sports including football, softball and golf. Dooley has worked for various websites in the past, contributing instructional articles on a wide variety of topics.

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