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Since I do very little fishing, and when I do, I am fishing for rainbow trout with a simple rod and reel, can someone explain in detail what exactly "drag" is? Specifically, what is actually happening when it's in use, how much should you use, the be

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  • Since I do very little fishing, and when I do, I am fishing for rainbow trout with a simple rod and reel, can someone explain in detail what exactly "drag" is? Specifically, what is actually happening when it's in use, how much should you use, the be

    Since I do very little fishing, and when I do, I am fishing for rainbow trout with a simple rod and reel, can someone explain in detail what exactly "drag" is? Specifically, what is actually happening when it's in use, how much should you use, the benefits of it, and any other info so I'm never clueless on it. Since most trout I catch are like 2 pounds and don't fight as much, I keep my drag off. Thanks!

  • #2
    Pretty simple really. "Drag" simply refers to how hard it is to pull line from the reel.I haven't disassembled a lot of reels, so someone who has might be more qualified to tell you how the drag physically works. How much you should use depends on two main factors; what size of fish you anticipate catching, and how long you want to "play" the fish. If you're fishing for small fish, or if you like to prolong the fight, you use less drag. But for bigger fish you need progressively more drag or you won't be able to reel them in. Another time you should use a heavier drag is when fishing around heavy structure or weeds which can cause your line to tangle up if the fish gets into them. I personally primarily fish to put food on the table, so I generally use a heavy drag and get them out as quick as possible. That is actually optimal if you practice catch-and-release too, to prevent tiring the fish too much.

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    • #3
      Simply put, the drag is the amount of pull it requires to move the spool of line. In other words, if the drag is set at 5 pounds you could start pulling line off the spool with 5 pounds of pull. This is why some people are able to catch 100+ pound fish on 10 pound test line. As long as the drag is kept below the breaking strength of the line, theoretically the line will just be pulled off the spool without breaking.
      -
      -
      -
      Situation 1:
      Using 6 pound test line and have the drag set at 10 pounds. You hook a big fish and he makes a big run. Since the drag is set above the line breaking strength, as soon as the fish surpasses 6 pounds of pull the line snaps and you lose the fish.
      Situation 2:
      Using 6 pound test and you have the drag set at 4 pounds. You hook a big fish and he makes a big run. Since the drag is set below the lines breaking strength, as soon as the fish surpasses 4 pounds of pull the line starts coming out of the spool. You lose some line, but as soon as the fish starts pulling with less than 4 pounds of pressure you can start reeling it back in, tiring it out in the process.

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      • #4
        It's the feature that lets line out while fighting a fish, if you fish for trout just put it on low.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by JM View Post
          Simply put, the drag is the amount of pull it requires to move the spool of line. In other words, if the drag is set at 5 pounds you could start pulling line off the spool with 5 pounds of pull. This is why some people are able to catch 100+ pound fish on 10 pound test line. As long as the drag is kept below the breaking strength of the line, theoretically the line will just be pulled off the spool without breaking.
          -
          -
          -
          Situation 1:
          Using 6 pound test line and have the drag set at 10 pounds. You hook a big fish and he makes a big run. Since the drag is set above the line breaking strength, as soon as the fish surpasses 6 pounds of pull the line snaps and you lose the fish.
          Situation 2:
          Using 6 pound test and you have the drag set at 4 pounds. You hook a big fish and he makes a big run. Since the drag is set below the lines breaking strength, as soon as the fish surpasses 4 pounds of pull the line starts coming out of the spool. You lose some line, but as soon as the fish starts pulling with less than 4 pounds of pressure you can start reeling it back in, tiring it out in the process.
          JM, I get what you're saying, but how do I know what my drag is set to? My rods all just have a knob that makes clicking noises on it and no visible numerics or anything.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by JM View Post
            Simply put, the drag is the amount of pull it requires to move the spool of line. In other words, if the drag is set at 5 pounds you could start pulling line off the spool with 5 pounds of pull. This is why some people are able to catch 100+ pound fish on 10 pound test line. As long as the drag is kept below the breaking strength of the line, theoretically the line will just be pulled off the spool without breaking.
            -
            -
            -
            Situation 1:
            Using 6 pound test line and have the drag set at 10 pounds. You hook a big fish and he makes a big run. Since the drag is set above the line breaking strength, as soon as the fish surpasses 6 pounds of pull the line snaps and you lose the fish.
            Situation 2:
            Using 6 pound test and you have the drag set at 4 pounds. You hook a big fish and he makes a big run. Since the drag is set below the lines breaking strength, as soon as the fish surpasses 4 pounds of pull the line starts coming out of the spool. You lose some line, but as soon as the fish starts pulling with less than 4 pounds of pressure you can start reeling it back in, tiring it out in the process.
            Well, the reel should have a minimum and maximum drag. This should be available if you know the reels model to look up. What pound line do you usually use?

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by JM View Post
              Simply put, the drag is the amount of pull it requires to move the spool of line. In other words, if the drag is set at 5 pounds you could start pulling line off the spool with 5 pounds of pull. This is why some people are able to catch 100+ pound fish on 10 pound test line. As long as the drag is kept below the breaking strength of the line, theoretically the line will just be pulled off the spool without breaking.
              -
              -
              -
              Situation 1:
              Using 6 pound test line and have the drag set at 10 pounds. You hook a big fish and he makes a big run. Since the drag is set above the line breaking strength, as soon as the fish surpasses 6 pounds of pull the line snaps and you lose the fish.
              Situation 2:
              Using 6 pound test and you have the drag set at 4 pounds. You hook a big fish and he makes a big run. Since the drag is set below the lines breaking strength, as soon as the fish surpasses 4 pounds of pull the line starts coming out of the spool. You lose some line, but as soon as the fish starts pulling with less than 4 pounds of pressure you can start reeling it back in, tiring it out in the process.
              Well put JM. The easiest way to see what your drag is set at in my opinion is to tie the end to a fishing scale and see how many pounds of pressure it takes to pull line out.

              Comment


              • #8
                Hi...


                "Drag" is simply a reel's provision to keep the reel from free-wheeling when a fish is on...!!


                I recommend keeping a minimal amount of drag on at all times (drag differs for different types of fish)...larger fish should have more 'drag' than you would use for smaller trout, for example...!!


                That drag prevents you from constantly having to control line release with a finger...rather than using the 'drag' on your reel...!!

                Comment

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