How to Put Fishing Line on a Closed Face Reel?

Closed face reels, also known as spincasts, are a mainstay in the freshwater fishing community. They are compact, easy to use, and thanks to their enclosed design, reliable in even the most rugged conditions.

This article will demonstrate how to quickly and properly spool your spincast in a few easy steps. Read on to find out how!

Step #1: Check your reel’s specs

It is important to make sure the correct pound-test line is being used on your reel. The manufacturer will usually stamp their suggestion between the button and the reel seat that connects to your rod.

If the specs listed are not followed you risk adding excess stress to the bearings and gears, reducing the efficiency of the internal mechanism and shortening the lifespan of your reel.

Step #2: Attach the Line

Begin by unscrewing the cone from the base of the reel. Remove any old line that may still be attached to the spool and oil the mechanisms if it has been a while since last use.

Run your new line through the cone, but do not screw it back on yet, you first need to attach the line to the spool. Tie a simple cinch knot at the free end of your line and tighten it around the spool.

It is a good idea to add another small overhand knot to the line at the tail end as an extra precaution so that there’s something for the first knot to catch on if it slips.

Remove any old line – 2008 Ronnie Garrison licensed to

Step #3: Spool the Reel

Reattach the cone to the base of the reel. Begin slowly turning the handle so that line winds around the spool.

Be sure to keep the line taut through this entire process, otherwise, it may tangle itself or loop off the spool and into the compartment.

In my experience, it’s best to hold the line between your thumb and index finger about 6 inches from the eye of the cone so that there is no slack in the length between these two points.

Continue reeling until the length specified on the reel is reached. Do not overload the spool, it may cause line to slip off.

Step #4: Finishing Up

Once you have the line on the spool, go ahead and cut the line at some point past the smallest eye of your rod.

You are now ready to tie on a snap, hook, or your favorite lure. Stow your unused line somewhere away from direct sun and wind to keep it in prime shape for next time.

You are now ready to hit the water and hunt for your next big catch.

You can see it in action in this video…

Related video

Tips and Tricks to Put Fishing Line on a Closed Face Reel

#1 – After cutting the line from the packaging, make a small notch in the plastic disk. It will hold the end of the line in place to keep it from unwinding in your tackle box.

#2 – As a rule, it is good to leave about 1/8th of the spool exposed after adding line to your reel, this prevents line from slipping off during use.

#3 – Avoid using large diameter lines.

#4 – Having trouble getting your line to wind around the spool at first? Try putting a small piece of electrical or duct tape in the well before tying the knot around it, this gives it a place to hold onto.

Type of Line to use for Closed Face Reels

There are several types of line that are available on the market (click here for more details), though not all are ideal for closed face reels.

They tend to have shallow spool wells, and as a result, are not equipped to handle large diameter lines. Therefore, to keep your reel in prime condition, it is advisable that you follow these general guidelines:

Monofilament Fishing Line (Mono)

Monofilament is the last word in the world of spincast fishing. It is inexpensive, ties well, and can be trusted to perform in almost any situation you would find yourself in.

Best of all, though, it’s high stretch factor is fantastic for setting hooks and working top water.

 As a rule of thumb, try to keep your test under 10lbs. This works well for most situations where you are aiming to catch bass, catfish, or even walleye.

Cold water fish like trout or small fish like perch, crappies, and bluegill are often caught using smaller diameter line in the 2-6lb range.

If you need a test higher than what the reel calls for and you are set on using a spincast, cut the yardage you put on your spool in half and lower the drag. The bearings will thank you.

Fluorocarbon Fishing line (Fluoro)

Fluorocarbon is a rising star in bass fishing circles. It is nearly invisible underwater, is more abrasion resistant than mono, and tends to run thinner in comparison to a similar pound test monofilament.

I suggest using a fluoro line, though, only if you plan on jigging or want to get a light lure into deep water. Any test under 12 should be fine on a good quality spincast.

By the way, no matter what reel you use, fluorocarbon is useless to you unless you moisten every knot you make in it before tightening it. This includes the one you make in the spool well.

Braided Fishing Line

Braided line is the oldest variety on the market. It has no stretch whatsoever, tends to tie poorly, and is not quite as transparent as other lines.

When setting, the line can also dig itself deeper into the spool well and cause a jam. The only way to prevent this is to lower your drag setting.

Because of this, I don’t often recommend using braid with a closed face unless you are an experienced angler with a high bearing-ratio reel.

If you must, however, its thin diameter allows you to use test up to 20lbs. To minimize your risk of burying the line, do not over fill the spool!

Keep this in mind…

Spincast reels are great fishing tools because of their reliability and ease of operation. This article has shown that those principles extend to spooling as well as their performance on the water. Be sure to always spool your reel with a quality line that fits into its manufacturer’s specifications to keep it working for you for years to come. If you follow the instructions above, adding line to your closed face will be a quick and painless process with minimal downtime. Tight lines and happy fishing!

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