How to

A Knot from the Net

THE Internet has become a tremendous source of information for anglers. Fisho’s own website,, has become a go-to place on the World Wide Web for anglers chasing up-to-date info and news on the Australian fishing scene. However, the Net can also be a confusing place to source information from, as I’ve found out recently. I don’t have much time to check out fishing related chat boards these days, but I do try and have a look at whenever I get a chance. This site has a really well run chat board and the knowledge being passed around by the regulars is second to none.

Anyway, I happened to look at it a while ago when US  fly fishing guru Lefty Kreh was describing a knot he’d been using for a while. He called the “Connecting the tippet with hemostats knot”. I really liked the look of this creation and when Lefty speaks I listen, so I decided to give it a run. However, things started to get confusing  when people began replying to  Lefty’s original post coming up with alternate names. I did a search on some of the other names suggested such as the “Seaguar” and “Ligature” knots and, sure enough, they were the same connection or quite similar. Anyway, my initial testing of this mainline to leader connection has been so promising that I wanted to share it with Fisho’s readers, even though I’m not really sure what its correct or even original title is. It’s quite similar to the Triple Surgeon’s Knot, which has become a personal favourite of mine in recent times, although it has a couple of significant advantages. In particular, it’s a very easy knot to tie, ideally suited to use in low light conditions or even in the dark. Many of the best opportunities in the world of fishing occur when the sun is low in the sky or below the horizon so you really need to be able to rig up quickly and effectively at these key times. So often if you wait till the sun is high in the sky to rig up or commence fishing you’ll find that the prime fish catching opportunity of the day has passed you by. This fact is doubly important in hard fished areas. 

The ease of tying of this connection makes it an ideal mainline to leader knot for those anglers with poor or deteriorating eyesight. With our ageing population of baby boomer fishos preparing to retire and spend their leisure time wetting a line, I can see  this knot has the potential to become quite popular. 

Lefty claims that his testing has found that the knot has proven stronger in static testing and his own jerk tests than more popular connections such  as the previously mentioned Triple Surgeon’s Knot or Blood Knot. It seems to have been originally developed  as a means of connecting Seaguar fluorocarbon leader to monofilament mainline. My initial usage of the knot for tying light fluorocarbon leader material to GSP braided lines has been very promising. It ties straightforwardly  and seems to be performing as well as the popular Triple Surgeon’s Knot in this role.

Tying this knot starts out in exactly the same manner as the Surgeon’s Knot. Firstly lay the leader alongside the mainline and make a circular loop large enough to put two fingers through  with both strands together. Next, with one hand pinch the lines together where they cross at the base of the loop and insert two fingers from the other hand inside the loop. Using those two fingers twist the loop three times. While you still have the two fingers inside the loop, reach through and draw the leader and mainline tag end through the loop. You now tension the knot up in the same manner as you would a Surgeon’s Knot, firstly lubricating the knot with saliva, then by pulling up both tag ends and lines evenly till the knot is fully formed. Lefty uses a pair of hemostats (which are medical clamps) instead of his fingers when tying the knot using lighter leader tippet material. The finished knot has quite a low profile and provides trouble free performance when casting. Regular readers will know here’s nothing I hate more than knots that hang up or clunk on the rod guides when casting.

So whether this connection is known as the Seaguar Knot, Ligature Knot or “Connecting the tippet with hemostats knot”, I really like it. My initial opinion  is that it provides as least as good a  light mainline to leader connection  as the Triple Surgeons’ Knot, but is considerably easier and quicker to tie.

In the August 2009 edition of Fisho I wrote about my Top 10 Knots in this column. Well, at the time I stated that the list was a work in progress and as new and superior connections came  to the fore they would get a guernsey  and replace any inferior incumbents.  So I think this connection looks  like it will probably be replacing the Triple Surgeon’s Knot in the original  line up, I just need to find out its  correct name! I’d be interested to hear any feedback on this knot from Fisho’s readers.

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