The Clinch Knot is also called the Fisherman's knot and it is the most widely used knot in fishing. It is often the first knot that any fisherman learns and has applications throughout fishing in both fresh and saltwater.
There are really 2 versions of this knot, the clinch and the Improved Clinch. The Clinch knot is shown above in slow motion with heavy high visibility cord over a black background to make it extremely easy to see how to tie this knot.
The Clinch Knot, also called the Fisherman's Knot, is one of the most commonly used fishing knots. While commonly used, it is exceptionally strong and is used in both fresh and saltwater for a wide variety of gamefish.
There are a few versions of this knot. A simple Clinch knot is just 5 times around the line and then back through the hole above the hook eye. With heavier line, like 15-20 lb, this can work fine, an Improved Clinch is the same knot but the tag end returns back through another loop.
Many people find it difficult to tie a Bimini Twist and prefer a Spider Hitch. Some fishermen claim that the Spider Hitch is stronger than the Bimini Twist. I have tied both and use them both regularly. In my experience, they are both about the same in terms of strength
Both Fresh and Saltwater anglers find good use for the Snell. It is a simple but strong knot that wraps around the hook shank rather than just going through the eye of the hook. The snell positions the hook for a good hook set. Many bass fishermen like this knot and you will see pre tied rigs in bait shops. There is no need to buy pre-tied rigs. Watch this short video using high visibility cord and you will be able to tie your own Snell Knot.
The Two Turn Blood Knot is a knot designed to tie 2 different diameter lines together to form a very strong connection. This knot can be used with or without a Bimini Twist.
We use this knot quite often for tarpon leaders in the Florida Keys, but it could create a great connection anytime that you needed to tie a shock tippet or to attach two lines of different pound test or diameter together.
When doing seminars, I always leave time for questions. Over the years, the most frequently asked question is "How do I attach Braided Line to Fluorocarbon?"
There are many ways to make this connection successfully, but if my life depended on the strength of this connection, I would tie a Bimini Twist in the Braided Line and then use a Double Uni Knot to connect the two lines.
The Bimini Twist doubles the line making any knot you tie stronger than it would be with a single line. The Bimini Twist looks difficult upon first seeing it, but I assure you that it is not difficult. You can see how to tie it step by step in this article and video.
There are lots of ways to set up to tie the Bimini. Some people loop it around their toe, others find a hook and still others prefer the reel handle. I don't think it really matters what you use to anchor the loop, but what is more important is that you find a comfortable way to do it and make sure that you will be able to tie it the same way on a rocking boat in the middle of the ocean. The Bimini is a knot that you really need to know how to tie with your eyes closed.
The purpose of the knot is to double the line without losing any strength in the line. When you tie a knot with 2 strands versus a single strand it will be twice as strong.
The Slim Beauty Knot was created by Simon Becker and myself in a small apartment in Key West in an attempt to eliminate the Bimini Twist from our tarpon leaders and create an easier, faster and more compact tarpon leader. We had returned from dinner at The 5 Star Cafe in Key West. It has since closed, but that night will forever be remembered because our waitress had nicknames for all of us. They all started with Slim. One was Slim Slick, another was Slim Daddy and she called me Slim Beauty. Pretty funny...
To properly cinch down 80 pound mono, you are definitely going to need pliers. I really dont know if I could cinch down an 80 pound 4 turn uni with my bare hands and would probably not get it quite right with gloves on either.
I began using Blood Knots (also called Barrel Knots) when I was a trout fisherman and guide in the Rocky Mountains. I much preferred this connection to the Surgeons knot that many others liked. The Blood knot is a sleek compact knot that pulls straight and does not catch vegetation or the rod guides.
Whether it is towing, or simply needing to tie 2 lines together, the Sheet Bend is an excellentknot to be able to handle significant stress but also be able to untie after the load has been put on the lines.
Many trout fishermen love the Perfection loop for a loop to loop connection from the leader to the fly line. I like this knot because it is extremely strong. In fact, many others use this knot to tie a fly, lure, hook or jig to the end of the line. It is an extremely strong loop knot.
I use the Double Surgeon's loop for my loop in my tarpon fly leaders. I will do a double nail knot loop in the end of my fly line and then attach my butt section to the fly line with a loop to loop handshake connection.
The standard Clinch knot is tied by passing the line through the hook then turning it 5-7 times before putting the tag end back through the hole created between the hook and the first twist. This method works well on most lines, but with a few finishes...
The Clinch knot is definitely a knot you need to know. I know a lot of knots and still find myself tying a good, old fashioned Clinch Knot in many situations. The real key to making sure you tie it correctly is to inspect it and make sure that the barrels are stacked, not hopping over one another.
The J Knot was taught to me by Dave Justice and has been a standby in my fishing ever since. It is a simple knot, really, that combines the best of 2 knots to create a strong, reliable and quick knot for fluorocarbon to braid...
I use the Bowline to tie up my boat, or secure anything to anything in a way that it will easily be untied and used again. If you are an outdoorsman of any kind, you should be able to tie this knot blindfolded. Not blindfolded in a figurative sense, you should actually close your eyes...
In my years of guiding and fishing experience, I discovered one simple, easy to learn knot that you will be able to use in almost any fishing scenario. It is the best overall fishing knot for use at any skill level. Here is a video on how to tie the Uni Knot
The three knots are the Bowline (click here for video) , Trucker's Hitch and Half Hitch. With these knots you can secure anything for transport in a way that creates a mechanical advantage and truly secures your boat, cooler, bed, couch or whatever you are moving...
All in all the Palomar is a simple, easy to remember knot that is proven, strong and reliable. I use it is saltwater fishing when I want an extremely compact and small knot onto a bare hook and sometimes a jig. I also use a version...
The Haywire can be tied to the hook and also at the top of the leader to a swivel if your fishing situation requires it. I often use a swivel when shark fishing with dead bait because it sometimes spins in the current...