NEEDLE KNOT - how to tie
How to tie a needle knot and why you should
The craze of superglueing braided leader loops onto fly lines is another in a long line of handicaps to flyfishing.
1/ they are unreliable, most superglues are not good in water, tales of lost leaders and fish are not happy reading.
2/ they do not pass through tip rings easily,
3/ they add bulk to the tip of the fly line, this affects casting but the main drawback is the disturbance they make on retrieve.
4/ they sink the line tip.
I could go on.
Nylon loops are better but this is the best way to attach a tapered leader to your fly line.
I tried drawing this but it looked more difficult than it is!
Pass a needle through the tip of the fly line, it should exit out of the side 3mm up the line.
Leave it (if possible) for ten minutes, the hole then forms around the needle.
Take a 9 foot tapered leader, cut the tip (thin end) at a slight angle, this helps it go through the hole in the fly line.
Remove the needle from the line, Pass the tip of the leader through the hole in the side of the fly line, it will exit from the hole in the end.
Pull the leader through so you are left with 4 or 5 inches of heavy butt sticking out of the side of the line.
Now throw a loop around the fly line with this thick butt and tie a simple over hand knot, you are tying the nylon in a knot around the fly line, pull tight. Repeat this three times, pulling tight as you go.
To finish the needle knot throw two loops around the fly line and pass the leader butt from the reel side of the fly line and then pull tight. You need to make the leader butt end point to the attached leader, this helps if using a long leader, the knot will pass through the rod rings easily.
This knot has none of the drawbacks of loops, it has never let me down the more you pull on it the tighter it becomes.
If you get in a tangle on the river bank just cut off the leader and tie an overhand loop in the thick butt of the leader, this is just like the braided loop with fewer problems