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How to Remove Wind Knots and Snarls from Leaders and Tippet

These quick tips can save you heartache when fishing is hot.

How to Remove Wind Knots and Snarls from Leaders and Tippet

Start by sharpening the rounded edge of your hemostats. (Joe Mahler illustration).

Sharpen the rounded edge of your hemostats to help remove wind knots and snarls from leaders and tippet. With the jaws closed, use a fine-tooth file to shape the tip of the hemostat into a fine point, tapering the jaws to meet the original contour of the tool. The newly formed taper and tip should be from an eighth to a quarter inch long. Next, polish the taper with fine emery cloth to remove any burrs and smooth the taper. Finally, to prevent cutting the leader, open the jaws and dull any sharp edges that may have been created between the inside of the jaw and the newly formed taper on the outside of the jaw.

To remove knots and snarls, prick the knot slightly open with a needle or hook point. Open the hemostat, and with your fingernail press the slightly loosened knot down onto one of the pointed jaws, spreading the knot further open. Then pull the jaw out of the knot, close the hemostat, and insert its point into the knot, again pressing the knot down onto both jaws with your fingernail. Finally, open the jaws of the hemostat, expanding the knot to a point where you can pry it apart with your fingers.

—Skip Renchler
Hines, Oregon 

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