Snelling hooks harkens back to the days of eyeless hooks, but savvy anglers know it offers distinct advantages. Not only does snelling offer a linear pull on the shank, creating better hooksets, it also dramatically reduces stress on the connection, leading to a more secure hook.
And while there are several options for snelling a hook, the easiest by far is the aptly named Easy Snell knot.
Secure in all line types, the easy snell is a quick, super-strong knot that every angler should know.
Table of Contents (clickable)
Related: Snell Knot (Uni Version)
How to Tie the Easy Snell Knot
- Pass the tag end of your line through the eye of your hook from the front.
- Pull your line through to the back of the mouth and form a small loop.
- Wrap the tag end back around your line and the shank 5 to 7 times, moving back toward the eye.
- Pass the tag end back through the loop.
- Wet your knot and cinch it down.
Why Rely on the Easy Snell Knot?
- Strong - Snell knots distribute force really, really well. This makes them among the strongest possible connections for a hook.
- Easy - The Easy Snell is roughly as hard to tie as the Uni. You can learn this knot in just a few minutes.
- Fast - This is among the fastest possible hook-to-line connections out there, and even on a pitching boat, you can tie this knot in seconds.
What’s Not to Love About the Easy Snell Knot?
Snelling a hook provides superior hooksets because it forces the line, shank, and point into alignment, but the downside to old-fashioned snell knots is that they’re complicated and slow.
The Easy Snell knot does the same job--and just as well--but it’s fast and easy.
The Easy Snell Knot in Braid and Fluorocarbon
Nylon monofilament is known for its propensity to bite against itself, exhibiting what scientists and engineers call a “high coefficient of friction.” That makes it forgiving to tie, and a well-executed knot in mono is about as strong as they come.
It’s no surprise that the Easy Snell holds well in mono.
Fluorocarbon, like mono, also produces friction against itself, but it tends to be less pliable and thus less forgiving of knot design. The Easy Snell can handle stiff, large-diameter lines pretty well, and until you start tackling tests over 80 pounds or so, this knot won’t give you any trouble.
Above that point, I’d recommend crimping to knotting for most applications.
Braided superlines, woven as they are from Spectra and Dyneema fibers, are infamous for knot failure. That’s because these materials, while super strong for diameter, are as slick as fish slime. Their low coefficients of friction demand lots of turns and bends, extra wraps, and all the pressure a knot can deliver to get them to hold.
The good news is that the Easy Snell delivers this in spades, and it’s an excellent way to attach a hook to braid.
When Do Easy Snell Knots Fail?
The quick answer is not often.
But if they do, these are the most common culprits:
- Tying the knot in frayed or damaged line - Compromised line will never exhibit the strength it should, even in a knot. If your line is frayed or damaged, it must be replaced.
- Forgetting to wet your knot before cinching - Spit or water provides lubricant to your line, allowing the knot to slip into place. That provides maximum integrity, and this is a step you should never skip in a knot.