Tested: New FireLine casts even better

IT’S fair to say that Berkley FireLine is one of the more popular “superlines” on the market. I use FireLine Tournament Exceed on most of my spin reels because I find its characteristic “stiffness” provides better casting performance. I personally find some of the PE braids to be a bit too limp for use on threadlines.

As a result, I reckon they tangle more than fused products like FireLine. It has to be said that FireLine is more affordable than many of its competitor products. Importantly, it has proven itself over several years to be a very strong and durable line.

Berkley has recently “improved” both the original FireLine and the Tournament Exceed version. The new lines are touted as being smoother and tougher, with improved colour retention and increased abrasion resistance.

Along with this info, Berkley also released some interesting statistics about its new and improved FireLines, including claiming up to 17 per cent better casting performance.

I decided to put this casting claim to the test. I personally doubted any improvements or modifications could increase FireLine’s already impressive castability. The results were interesting …

In order to to get the most accurate and unbiased testing possible, I used a Penn Conflict 4000 spin reel on a Pflueger Supreme PFLS-SP661M 4-8kg rod to test cast the improved FireLine Tournament Exceed line against the “standard” Tournament Exceed. I loaded two Conflict spools with the same amount of 10kg mono backing and then filled the spools with the same amount of 10kg FireLine in both versions, Flame Green colour for the new line and and Blaze Orange in the standard version.

Three test casts with the “standard” FireLine revealed an average casting distance of 34.6m. The improved version recorded an average over three casts of 43.6m. Both lines featured the same 1.5m mono leader tied to the mainline with a Double Uni Knot and both used the same hookless popper as a casting weight.

While acknowledging that this sort of test is open to discrepancies and variables, I did attempt to employ the same sort of casting stroke each cast in order to create as level a playing field as possible.

The casting results for each line are as follows:

“Standard” FireLine Tournament Exceed
Cast 1: 35m
Cast 2: 36m
Cast 3: 33m

“Improved” FireLine Exceed
Cast 1: 41m
Cast 2: 46m
Cast 3: 44m

While not achieving the 17 percent casting improvement as claimed by Berkley, the nine per cent increase the “improved” line achieved against the “standard” version as recorded in my backyard test was nonetheless quite impressive. In a fishing scenario, a nine per cent casting increase could well be the difference between reaching a fish in a snag in a river or lake or placing a bait in a gutter off a beach.

Much of this improvement is doubtless due to the new FireLine being noticably thinner and smoother than the previous version. I could quite clearly see the difference between the two lines when spooling up. It makes sense that a line will cast more efficiently if it has less friction and bulk.

At this stage I can’t comment on the other claims made by Berkley regarding the new FireLine’s improved abrasion resistance and colour retention. Those claims can only be assessed after time and use in the field … I guess that means I have to get out there and chase a few reds and kings with the new line …

Meanwhile, check out an advertorial featureding Adam “Mad Dog” Royter” demonstrating and discussing the new FireLines HERE.

The improved FireLines should be on display at your favourite tackle shop now. FireLine is available in 125 yard spools in 2lb to 30lb line classes; the Tournament Exceed version is available from 2kg to 24kg in 135, 300, 600 and 1500m spools.

See for more details.

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