How to Thread a Fishing Rod

If you like fishing or are thinking about taking up the hobby, you'll need to know how to put line on your fishing pole. Many times, if you buy the rod and the reel together in a combination pack, the line is already threaded. If you purchase the reel separately, more than likely there will be no line on it.

Buy the fishing line for the type of fishing you plan to do. Fishing line comes in different strength tests. The bigger the fish you plan on catching, the stronger pound test you will need. If the line is not strong enough to handle the fish, it will more than likely break. A 10 to 12 lb. test line is an average size line, and you can catch a vast array of fish with it. If you are unsure of the exact size test you should use, consult the person working in the fishing department of an outdoors store.

Unwrap the end of the fishing line and begin stringing it through the rod's eyes. Start at the tip of rod and continue until the line is through every eye. The tip of the rod has the smallest eye, and the eye closest to the reel is the largest. Do not cut the line, but leave the other end attached to the spool.

Attach the end of the line that was just strung through the eyes to the small rod in the center of the reel. Make sure the line goes over the top of this rod. The line should go through the eyes in a clockwise position as it comes out of the reel. Tie the end of the line securely to this rod. Trim off any access line that may be left over after you make your tie.

Use this step if you are putting on the line alone. If you have a helper, skip to Step 5. Place a hardcover book on the floor approximately 10 feet from you. Pull out approximately 10 feet of line from the end of the pole from the spool. Place the spool on the floor behind the book with the line going through some pages of the book. Slowly start reeling in the line as the book holds the spool in place and slows the rate of speed of the line exiting it. Continue until the reel is two-thirds full of line.

If you have another person to help, have him hold a pencil through the center of the spool of line so it can unroll while you reel the line in. He can control the speed of the spool by placing light pressure on the side of the spool while it spins.

Leave approximately 4 feet of line at the end of the pole when the reel is full. Cut the end of the line when you are finished. You can now place hooks, weights or any other type of fishing tackle on your line.


  • Change your line/thread after each season, since it can become brittle.

About the Author

For over 25 years, Joyce Starr has owned businesses dealing with landscape & design, lawn maintenance, specialty herbs and a garden center. She holds certificates in landscape design and xeriscaping. Starr shares her passion for nature in her writing, publishing articles on horticulture, outdoor recreation, travel as well as business.