If you’ve ever tried tying a fishing knot on a rocky boat, then you’ll know how challenging it can be. The constant back and forth motion makes threading a small hook nearly impossible, which often leads to frustration and giving up entirely.
The same goes for attempting to tie a knot in cold or low-light conditions. Hook eyes are nearly impossible to thread – leading to more frustration and annoyance. This is especially true if you’re getting up there in years, and your vision or finger dexterity isn’t as great as it once was.
A good fishing knot tying tool changes all of that. It will allow you to firmly grip a hook, jig, swivel, or lure in place while you tie any type of knot you prefer. Many have additional features like line cutters, hook sharpeners, knot pickers, and jig eye cleaners.
I’ll break down some of the best fishing knot tying tools on the market, plus the most useful features to look out for.
Quick Answer: 5 Best Fishing Knot Tying Tools
Top 5 Fishing Knot Tying Tools
How to pick the best fishing knot tying tool?
With so many types, features and designs, picking the right fishing knot tying tool (or tools) for your needs can be a confusing task. I’ll break down exactly what you need to know to select the right tool for the job.
It’s important to consider the size of tackle you’ll be working with. Do you typically fish for smaller species like crappie, perch, and smallmouth bass? Or are you more likely to target big bruisers like pike, trout, salmon, and larger saltwater species?
Most knot tying tools are suited for small to medium-sized hooks up to 5/0 or so. If you’re looking for something beefier, there are several models specifically built for handling larger hooks and tackle suited to bigger fish.
There are also specific models built to handle smaller hooks – which work well for smaller flys and the compact jigs used by ice fishermen.
How you plan to use the knot typing tool is another important consideration.
Some models are best suited to tying Improved Clinch and Blood knots, while others are designed for Nail and Needle Nail knots. Check to make sure any tool you’re interested in is able to tie your preferred knot.
Tools like the HOOK-EZE are great all-around choices, as they’re able to tie a wide variety of knots, and the built-in swivel enables you to make a Bimini twist with two hands.
There are a number of extra tool features that can be highly useful, depending on your fishing habits and style. Let’s take a look at a few of them briefly.
- Jig Eye Cleaner: Jig eye cleaners are handy little tools that allow you to clean out jig eyes of all sizes. These are especially useful if you paint your own jigs, and need to remove excess paint from the eyelet.
- Hook Covers: Several knot tyers also double as fishhook covers. These enable you to clamp the hook inside the tool and then use the attached lanyard clip to attach the other end to a guide or part of the reel. This is a super handy feature for transporting your fully rigged fishing pole inside a car or anywhere with easily damaged upholstery.
- Line Cutters: A good pair of line cutters always comes in handy when you’re working with fishing tackle. If you’re tying hooks, leaders, and swivels, then you’ll need a good way to cut line cleanly without fraying.
- Fish Hook Remover: Most fishing knot tying tools don’t feature hook removers, but several have this capability. If you fish often, I’d recommend getting a dedicated fish hook remover though. Check out my detailed review of the best fish hook removers here.
I’ve loved being in the outdoors for as long as I can remember. I grew up fishing, canoeing, and camping throughout the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia. It’s what lead me to start this site and share my passions for fishing, diving, kayaking and more. Nowadays you can find me writing about my passions or (preferably!) preparing for my next outdoor adventure.