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Opening Up Hollow Spectra line with a Loop Splicing Needle
Daho Needle Type Used: Loop Splicing
When you are working with hollow spectra line that is small for the size of needle you want to use in it, you can take a loop splicing needle that does fit well in the line and thread it through the line opening up the braid of the hollow spectra line. This procedure will double the interior size of the hollow spectra line so you can use larger needles that you need to do the ultimate job you are trying to do.
First, you have to insert a loop splicing needle that fits inside the hollow spectra line that you are working with. In the following picture you can see the loop needle inserted into the line. You will notice that the needle makes the line a little larger than the line without the needle.
You keep threading the loop needle into the spectra line. As you do, the line will bunch up on the needle. As this happens, hold onto the spectra and the needle close to the needle point and with your other hand, slide the bunched up line down the needle.
In the above picture, you can see the needle embedded in the line. You can also see the loop on the end of the needle and can see that the line in back of the needle’s loop is much larger than the line in front of the needle.
Keep threading the loop needle through the hollow spectra line as far as you want the open line to be. When you have reached your goal, stick the point of the needle out the side of the spectra line and remove it. You should not pull on the opened up spectra behind the needle as it will close down if pressure it put on it. As you can see from the following picture, the opened spectra line is much larger than the closed line. Now, your opened up hollow spectra line will accept larger needles and lines inside with much less resistance.
Splicing Hollow Spectra Lines Together
Daho Needle Type Used: Loop Splicing or Reverse Latch
One of the most valuable features of hollow Spectra line is the ability to splice two different hollow Spectra lines together, without any knots, and maintain 100% of the line’s strength. Besides the most obvious feature of being able to extend your line’s length to keep your reel’s spool full, you can also splice different sizes of hollow Spectra lines together to address specific needs at certain locations in the line. You can also splice on pre-built topshot or wind-on end sections with a minimum of effort.
In the example, we are going to splice a white line (coming from the left) and red line (coming from the right) together, so you can identify each line better in the pictures. So, to keep it simple, you should pick each line you are splicing as being the white or red line, when using the instructions below.
What we are going to do is basically insert the end of each line inside the end of the other line about 12″ on each side. When the lines tighten, this will cause two ‘Chinese Finger Cuffs’ in the spliced ends of the lines and will secure the two lines together.
So, the first thing we do is to insert the needle into the side of the red line about 15″ from the end of the red line. Insert most of the needle.
Once that is done, we put the end of the white line into the loop or latch, depending on which type of needle you are using.
When you have taken the needle and end of the white line about 12” up the red line, bring the needle out and pull the attached tag end of the white line out 3” or 4″ as shown below in the upper right of the picture.
Then, insert the needle tip into the white line, going towards the spool about 1″ from the red line. Put the end of the red line in the loop or latch of the needle and again thread the needle and the red line about 12″ up the white line.
When finished, remove the needle and pull the tag end of the red line out from the green line about 3 or 4″ and remove the line from the needle. The lines will look like the picture below.
As you can see in the above picture, there is a gap in the middle of our splice. The way you resolve that is to pull the tag ends of each line until the center of the splice is together and solid. Now, from the center of the splice, smooth out both outer lines with your fingers going away from the center splice. Once you have done this on both sides, we have to remove the extra tag end lines.
Holding the tag end of the line, pull down the line that it goes into about 1/2″ and cut off the tag end where it is now entering the other line. After you have cut the tag end off, you can smooth out the outer line going away from the center splice. The tag end of the line you just cut will disappear inside of the outer line you are smoothing out. Do this for both sides of the splice.
Splices can be mastered very easily and will save the average fisherman hundreds of dollars, over time. By using splices, you should never have to buy another full reel of line again, unless you want to go to a different type of line. If your line gets cut or damaged, you can just add to it, or cut out the damaged parts and your line will perform like new.
Making Hollow Spectra End Loops
Daho Needle Type Used: Reverse Latch
Many topshots and wind-ons terminate with a loop. You can also end your hollow Spectra line with a loop. Then, you can quickly and easily change the end section of your line with pre-made loop terminated topshots and wind-ons. This process requires a Reverse Latch needle to complete as the line holding mechanism must be able to open and release the line in the middle of the operation.
First, you must select a spot about 24″ from the end of your line. Insert your Reverse Latch needle at that location with the tip of the needle going towards the end of the line, as shown in the picture below.
Continue threading the needle into the line. When it is mostly in, put the line in the needle latch that will be about the size of the loop you want at the end of your line – usually 3-4″. Keep threading the needle into the line for a total of 12″.
When you have threaded the needle 12″, bring it out of the line, pulling the looped line in the latch with it.
As you keep pulling the needle and line out from the line, the line will begin to turn inside out.
You can slide the outer line down, toward the spool end and also use the tag end of the line to finish turning the 12″ of threaded line inside out.
At this point, remove the needle from the newly formed loop and smooth out the inside out line.
Now, insert the needle into the line about 1/2″ from where the tag end of the line comes out of the inside out line. Thread the needle about 5″ or so, and put the tag end of the line into the needle latch as shown above.
Thread about 12″ total and exit the line with the needle tip. Pull the needle and the attached line end out of the threaded line.
Remove the needle, leaving the tag end of the line out as shown. Now, using the loop, smooth out the threaded line and close up the gap between the two threaded parts.
Now, hold onto the tag end still exposed and pull the end out 1/2″ or so and cut it off. Smooth the line out and the cutoff tag end will go inside of the outer line.
Your splice is now done. You can attach any loop terminated extension to your line with 100% line strength.
Threading Mono/Flouro Lines Into Hollow Spectra
Daho Needle Type Used: Threading
One of the major features of hollow Spectra is the ability to thread mono/flouro types of lines into it. Spectra is very strong, but does has some limitations. It does not stretch, does not deal with abrasion well, and is very visible to the ‘locals’. Many fisher persons like to extend the end of their Spectra with a topshot or wind-on made of monofilament and/or fluorocarbon type lines. These lines can be threaded inside of the hollow Spectra line, without knots and with almost full line strength. You first select a hollow threading needle of the correct size so your mono/flouro line will fit inside snugly as shown below.
You then thread the threading needle, with the mono/flouro line in it, into the end of your hollow Spectra line as shown below.
Typically, you will thread the needle and mono/flouro line into the Spectra for 3 to 5 feet. While threading the line, keep sliding the Spectra line down the needle and attached line. When you have reached the desired length exit the line as shown below.
Hold the line in back of the needle and extract the needle, leaving the line end exposed as shown below. At this point, the end of the mono/flouro line should be prepared by removing any sharp edges so it will not cut or fray the inside of the Spectra line with use.
The point where the end of the hollow Spectra line and embedded mono line meet, AKA the join, must be secured so the inside mono line will not slip until the stretch on the Spectra line causes the braid to tighten on the inside mono line and binds the two lines together. It is called the ‘Chinese Finger Cuff’.
Many of the Securing Systems described below require that the line be held very tight. This is so the line/thread being wrapped around the line can be done tightly, and the end result is secure. The device normally used to hold the line tight is called a “Serving Jig”. Check with your DaHo needle dealer for a serving jig.
Other Securing Systems
- The Serving System – This technique requires that the line be held very tight in a serving jig. This system creates about a 2” long wrap of horizontal circles overlapping the end of the Hollow Spectra and start of the mono line – similar to the ‘serving’ that is done in the center of a bow string. Typically, a small 30# or so solid Spectra thread is used to wrap the join point. There are videos showing how to do this serving technique on the internet. When the serving system is done properly, with the right size of thread, the results are superior to the other systems. It has a very low profile, meaning it is very small in size, and will not cause any problems going through your reel or rod guides when finished properly.
- The Half-Hitch Knot System – In this technique, you tie a series of half-hitch knots in succession that will cover the end of the Hollow Spectra line and extend onto the imbedded line. This usually takes about 30 knots to compete. Usually this is done with the line pulled tight in a serving jig and light to medium waxed Dacron line is used – for lighter line sizes, you can use dental floss for this process. When using this technique, care must be taken to ensure all of the knots are of consistent pressure. This method leaves a larger profile than other techniques and can have some effects when going through the rod guides.
- The Sato™ Metal Crimp System – The Sato™ metal crimp system uses very precise sizes of metal sleeves. They are slid onto the end of the hollow Spectra line and crimped onto the lines about ¼” before the end of the hollow Spectra line, using special crimping pliers. This technique also produces a very small profile and will not affect your rod guides.
- The Nail Knot System – This technique usually uses a serving jig to hold the line tight, but it can be done without the jig. If you don’t have a serving jig, this is probably the best technique to use. You should use a 20# to 30# solid Spectra line to create your nail knot. If you are using Hollow Spectra over 200# in size, you may want to use 50# solid Spectra thread to tie your nail knots. You can find instructions for tying a Nail knot many places on the internet. You can use your DaHo Loop Splicing needle to complete the knot by holding it next to the line being wrapped, and wrap the knot loops over and around the Loop Splicing needle. Then, put the final tag end of the knot in the needle loop and pull the needle and line under the knot loops. It is very easy to do after you have done it a couple of times. You tie the nail knot about ¼” from the end of the Hollow Spectra line. Leave both tag ends, of the line being used to tie the knot, about a foot long. After the knot is made, the tag ends are tightened very firmly. Tighten the knot until the knot turns clear. This is how you know the spectra knot is tight enough. Then, the tag ends are trimmed. The Nail knot has a very low profile and is a very good way to effectively secure the join point.
- The Overhand Knot System – If time is critical and/or the lines are flexible, you can use an overhand knot at the end of the Hollow Spectra as a good way to hold the lines together. When used, place the knot leaving about a ¼” of the outer Hollow Spectra showing. Using the Overhand knot has a reasonable profile with lighter lines and is a good way to secure your lines together in a pinch. The overhand knot system is a very good and very simple system to secure a solid spectra line to your Hollow Spectra line.
- The Glue Only System – It is also possible to just use a glue that is designed for use on Spectra lines as the only technique to secure the join point of your lines. You should add an extra couple of feet of line being threaded to ensure there will not be any slippage of the threaded line. This is not normally recommended, and if used, should be checked often to be sure it has not come loose.
Completing All Securing Systems – Each of the above securing systems is effective and each of them requires different tools and parts to complete properly. The one addition, that should be used with all of the above systems, is to be finished with glue on the end of the Hollow Spectra line, as well as on all knots, and servings. There are many glues available that are designed to be used on Spectra lines. Check with your DaHo needle dealer to get such a glue. It should be applied to ensure that it has penetrated all of those parts and finished so that all glued parts are smooth and streamlined.
We recommend you ask your local DaHo needle or Hollow Spectra line dealer to recommend the best securing methods for your needs. They know the local fishery best and are most aware of what technique will best fit your needs. Also, you should use the product’s instructions that came with your tools to complete your securing tasks.
Below you can see the sleek, strong and knotless join that are a result of using hollow spectra line.
On this last picture, a professional wind-on connection is shown. This one uses a serve of about 2″ and glue to ensure a good knot-less connection.