There are literally scores of different braids for sea and freshwater fishing on the market and picking one that offers just that little bit more in performance in all situations is not easy. Here, the Tackle Talk testers take a look at Spiderwire Stealth Smooth, a medium-priced braid to find out its strengths and weaknesses.
Spiderwire Stealth Smooth is what is called an 8-carrier braid. A “carrier” is an individual strand of either Dyneema or Spectra, each carrier being made up of tiny strands of polyethylene that form the individual microfilament strands of the individual Dyneema or Spectra threads. The advantage of 8-carrier braid over say 4 or 6-carrier lines, is that it massively improves overall strength and sudden shock resistance. To some extent, a high carrier braid also retains more suppleness than lower carrier braids.
Spiderwire Stealth Smooth also features a high and tight-weave pic count. A pic is an intersecting point where one carrier crosses another in the weave. A pic count relates to the number of cross-overs within a one-inch length. A high pic count produces a smoother braid which is better for casting due to its co-efficiency when passing through the rod rings. The tight weave structure also reduces the chance of fraying.
This braid is coated with a thin coating of highly durable aqueous microcrystalline polymer. This special coating adds additional strength and smoothness, plus it helps reduce wind knots during casting.
The biggest advantage of braid is that compared to mono of comparable breaking strain it is much thinner. This means it suffers less tidal pressure on the line meaning less lead is needed to stay in contact with the seabed when boat fishing. When beach casting, the braid line being thinner offers less wind resistance and less overall weight for the casting lead to drag during the cast, therefore you cast further for the same physical force. Also, braid only has minimal stretch, so bite detection even at long range is easy to decipher, plus when drift fishing on a boat and tripping the lead across the seabed you can feel every little bit of sand ripple or pebble. Stealth Smooth is one of the thinnest braids available. For example, the 7.3kg breaking strain is just 0.08mm, the 9.2kg line has a diameter of 0.10mm, and the 15.8kg line is only 0.17mm.
Spiderwire Stealth Smooth is available in spools of 150-metres, 300-metres and bulk spools of 3000-metres in Moss Green, and in Red, Translucent and Yellow, in spools of 150-metres and 30-metres.
Spiderwire Stealth Smooth Fishing and Casting Ability
From a shore fishing viewpoint, the slim diameter and strength of this braid, but more importantly the smoothness of the line make it a good choice for general beach casting over clean sand, and for lure fishing, too. The line is really smooth to the touch and flies through the rod rings with minimum contact and friction gaining you those extra few yards. This is especially noticeable when casting lighter 12 to 20g lures, which seem to go noticeably further than with many other standard braids.
The line also sits on the spool neatly and travels off the spool cleanly during the cast, but like all braids, do not overload the spool otherwise you will increase the likelihood of wind knots.
The Tackle Talk testers also took Spiderwire Stealth Smooth boat fishing and found the braid excellent for deep water lure fishing over wrecks where less lead was needed to keep the line as vertical as possible, but also for downtide fishing where the thin diameter again minimises the amount of lead you need to use to stay in contact with the seabed, but the high bite detection qualities register the tiniest of bites from even small pin whiting and dabs. It can dig into itself a little on the spool of a multiplier reel, as most braids will when the line has been retrieved under very heavy pressure, but this is minimal and will normally simply pull out as the tackle is dropped back to the seabed due to the weight of the lead.
The knotting ability of this braid was a consideration due to its smooth surface, but in practice if you use Grinner knots with 10-turns inside the loop for lighter sub 10kg breaking strains and 6-turns for heavier 15kg breaking strains this line knots extremely well and shows no sign of slippage under pressure. If you fish braid with a mono shock leader, then use an Albright knot, which is slim and travels through the rod rings easily, but is also ultimately strong when tied with braid.
We recommend the use of a heavier shock leader for safety when shore casting, and for boat fishing, as the leader will protect the more expensive braid from any major contact with the seabed, which can result in excessive wear and potential weakness. Leaders also visually separate the coloured braid from the lure or rig, which in clear water conditions can be important.
- 8-carrier line for strength
- Micro coating for added strength and smoothness
- High pic count for smoothness
- Tight weave structure to minimise the chance of fraying
- Thin diameter compared to comparable mono
- Smooth and efficient casting performance
- Available in Red, Translucent, Yellow, and Moss Green
- Spool sizes 150m, 300m, and bulk spools of 3000m in Moss Green
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