Understanding Mono

flyfisher222

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There's a really easy way to find out :)

On the degradation of mono. I've seen nothing that says nylon degrades with humidity or heat cycling - where does that come from?

UV does degrade nylon with time. Just keeping it covered prevents that.

Fluorocarbon is unaffected by anything we can normally expose it to.
I agree on the nylon. Other than UV (quite a lot of which comes though the average house window) there is no 'mechanism' for deterioration in a typical UK indoor environment if it's kept in the dark.

As for fluoro I can only make this comment. My 'early' Orvis Mirage went all sticky and came apart easily after about a year in a closed drawer in an unheated room.
(I've never purchased any fluoro of any brand since as after a couple of hours using the Orvis stuff I didn't like it so I put the spool in the drawer the next day.)
 

ohanzee

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You mean *you* won't. Can you get your head around this not being written just for you?

There will be people reading that thread for years to come and I bet you anything you like almost everyone will get something out of it.

There are people that know nothing at all that will hopefully learn how to use the stuff they buy without having to do it all the hard way.

What's with all this negative sh1t when you can't actually say that there's anything wrong with it? and that there's a lot there to interest even you?
My only issue is your narrative creep, for example I didn't say there is a lot there to interest me.

- - - Updated - - -

You mean *you* won't. Can you get your head around this not being written just for you?
And no, I meant everyone including you, your willingness to misrepresent is apparent.
 

Cap'n Fishy

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Looks like I didn't understand what a copolymer actually is. (At least I have that in common with most of the internet.)

I had it that because all nylons are combinations of at least two molecules - an acid and an amine - they are all copolymers..
Jeezo - I've tried to explain copolymers to you many times, including in that email with all the red pen in it! I tried to point out your bit about lines with added resins being copolymers was a total red herring and nothing to do with nylons being either homopolymers or copolymers. You said you read my email and took it on board.
 

Cap'n Fishy

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Bulk nylon.

The thing about buying bulk nylon - even desirable branded stuff, say Maxima, is that if it is not stored right; out of the light, or is subjected to humid environments and also might experience heat cycling (summer, winter hot days, cold days, central heating on/off etc.), it deteriorates quite rapidly.

So best to buy in alignment with actual usage. Rather than bulk?

For most fly fishers, a 100mtr. spool of each size used would likely last a year. Then chuck the remainder at the end of the season and buy fresh at the start of the next season...
I'm with Andy on this one. I never worry about how old the nylon or fluoro I am using is. I have a box with dozens of old spools in it of all different sorts - some of them date back to the 1980s. I got it out one day and tested them all. They were all every bit as good as they ever were with the exception of a spool of Orvis SuperStrong, which was goosed. So, I just avoid Orvis SuperStrong.

I like Damyl Tectan Premium Plus as my go to low-diameter nylon. Been using it for over 20 years. However, it is like hens' teeth to source. Any time I can find it, I buy about a mile of it (it comes in 300 m spools and is cheap as chips). That mile does me for many years and I can forget about trying to find it for the next decade. :thumbs:

Correct me if I am wrong, but a lot of folks rationale for using fluoro originally, mine included, was its incredibly thin diameter for its test strength.
I know a lot of people seem to think this. I don't know why, because it is prone to different brands being made thinner than others, exactly as with nylon. Compare the diameters on here...



Uncle Jack's 6 lb fluoro is the same diameter as Maxima, while 6 lb Stroft nylon is a lot finer than either of them. I agree a lot of people made mistakes with buying by breaking strain instead of buying by diameter, but as many of them made that mistake with low-diameter nylon as with fluoro. Low-diameter nylon is more prone to shock breaks too.

A perceived benefit of fluoro is that it sinks much faster than nylon, without a fly attached. With a fly, weighted nymph etc. the may not be that much of a fish catching difference at all, as a weighted fly will pull the nylon down pretty well.
There is a whole world of tactics that can be adapted to the faster sinking rate of fluoro... swinging buzzers, top-water washing lines, hogs and much more. If you don't fish those methods it is easy to wonder what the fuss is about. I was researching some leader materials on tackle websites yesterday, and I noticed that the marketing men realise that fluoro sinks 3 or 4 times faster than nylon, but they do not have the first clue of what advantages this might give an angler, so they just make up a load of drivel about it - "Its fast sink rate avoids spooking fish" :eek:hno:

Col
 
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Cap'n Fishy

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Buy from a retailer that has high sales turnover of spools, close to the time you will need it. Ask the shop keep, how long he has had the current spools on his retail display. More than a couple of months, ask if he has got something out back, that’s more recent.
Agree on this bit. I certainly store all my nylon in the dark. I do wish shops would not put all their nylon out on permanent displays under fluorescent lights (which contain a degrading UV component). One easy answer is to buy nylon off the internet, where it is unlikely to have been sitting out under fluorescent lights for months.

Col
 

tangled

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Jeezo - I've tried to explain copolymers to you many times, including in that email with all the red pen in it! I tried to point out your bit about lines with added resins being copolymers was a total red herring and nothing to do with nylons being either homopolymers or copolymers. You said you read my email and took it on board.
Everybody has tried to explain copolymers many times and I've read literally dozens of papers on it. None of them properly explained it. And, btw, I did remove lines with added resins etc. That's not the point.

All that's now changed is the statement that all nylons are copolymers, because they're not - which is a pity because that was a really clear message. But at least it's correct again now.
 

Cap'n Fishy

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All that's now changed is the statement that all nylons are copolymers, because they're not.
I don't know where you got that idea? What I have been saying all along is that we don't know which of the nylons we use are copolymers and which, if any, are homopolymers. I have never seen a spool with homopolymer on it, so putting copolymer on a spool is meaningless to us. It's all nylon. For all we know, it might be that all the nylon we are using is copolymer, but as we don't know and shouldn't care, all we need to know is that is it nylon, rather than fluorocarbon. Some marketers are finally realising this, and have started changing their spools from saying 'copolymer' to saying 'nylon' again... Orvis and Rio, to name but two. I also note that 'Trouthunter', a brand that seems to take it all quite seriously, calls their two products nylon and fluorocarbon.
 

tangled

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I don't know where you got that idea?
From the chemistry. I explained it here at the time and no-one objected. All nylons contain two repeating molecules - you can see them in the structure. But they're not monomers so their presence doesn't make the nylon a copolymers. (The two precursor molecules bond to create the single amino acid molecule which repeats to form the homopolymers). My bad, as the kids say.

What I have been saying all along is that we don't know which of the nylons we use are copolymers and which, if any, are homopolymers.
I know what you've been saying all along.

I have never seen a spool with homopolymer on it, so putting copolymer on a spool is meaningless to us.
I know that's what you say and I agree. It was even clearer when it seemed that all nylons were copolymers. It's sadly less clear now. But at least we're only back to where we where.

For all we know, it might be that all the nylon we are using is copolymer
That's probably the case with the brands we talk about here, though I do wonder about the older ones such as Maxima - but there's nothing to stop them changing their formula over time without telling us; it ain't Coca Cola.

btw, it's possible to bulk buy Chinese stuff that definitely isn't copoly because they say it's nylon 6 or nylon 66 in the blurb. They even tell you stuff like knot-strength. What a revelation. Still wouldn't buy it though.

but as we don't know and shouldn't care, all we need to know is that is it nylon, rather than fluorocarbon. Some marketers are finally realising this, and have started changing their spools from saying 'copolymer' to saying 'nylon' again... Orvis and Rio, to name but two. I also note that 'Trouthunter', a brand that seems to take it all quite seriously, calls their two products nylon and fluorocarbon.
I know all this Cap'n. It's all in the OP. It's just that for a week or so I thought I had a really clear cut way of dismissing the term entirely - it's just a pity I was wrong,
 

ed_t

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There's a really easy way to find out :)

On the degradation of mono. I've seen nothing that says nylon degrades with humidity or heat cycling - where does that come from?

UV does degrade nylon with time. Just keeping it covered prevents that.

Fluorocarbon is unaffected by anything we can normally expose it to.
Hydrolysis and thermodynamics. Elevated temperatures generally accelerate chemical reactions and thermal cycling will cause fluctuation in relative humidity and can lead to condensation.

Found this simple guide (much easier to digest than an old NPL one that I can no longer find):
Plastic Failure Through Molecular Degradation
 

Cap'n Fishy

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It's just that for a week or so I thought I had a really clear cut way of dismissing the term entirely - it's just a pity I was wrong,
I don't think you are wrong to dismiss it entirely. I dismissed it years ago. I only use the term nylon when talking about nylon. It's dead easy! :thumbs:
 

Cap'n Fishy

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Looks like I didn't understand what a copolymer actually is...
You complain that we don't read your posts. I posted this in #606 of this thread...

Monomer = one mer

Polymer = many mers (joined together)

Copolymer = more than a single polymer

There is more than one nylon polymer. If you make your nylon from a single nylon polymer, you have a homopolymer. If you make your nylon from more than one nylon polymer, you have a copolymer... a nylon copolymer.
 

tangled

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Hydrolysis and thermodynamics. Elevated temperatures generally accelerate chemical reactions and thermal cycling will cause fluctuation in relative humidity and can lead to condensation.

Found this simple guide (much easier to digest than an old NPL one that I can no longer find):
Plastic Failure Through Molecular Degradation
As always with this stuff it's really difficult to move from that kind of general information to the specifics of our mono.

One thing I did get though was that water can degrade nylon and unlike water absorption with nylon, it's not reversible. Probably not much of a concern for us though unless we use very thin nylon for a very long time?
 

Cap'n Fishy

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That's probably the case with the brands we talk about here, though I do wonder about the older ones such as Maxima ...
I have written to Maxima to ask them if their nylon is homopolymer or copolymer. I did not get a reply. Same for Drennan. Others, more modern, such as Rio and Airflo, did get back to me. They said all their stuff was (nylon) copolymer... though it was clear that the people I was corresponding with were 'tackle people' and really didn't have a clue what a homopolymer or a copolymer actually was, so I didn't put too much faith in what they said.
 

tangled

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You complain that we don't read your posts. I posted this in #606 of this thread...
I know all that. We've known all that for months.

You're not getting it. About a week ago I thought I was looking at two different monomers in the nylon 6 molecule so it must be a copolymer. You can see the two molecules - the Carbon and Hydrogen bonded molecule and the Carbon, Hydrogen, Oxygen and Nitrogen bonded molecule. Here:



They are two different molecules - an acid and an amine - but they've bonded into a single molecule - an amino acid. It's that whole group that's the monomer and is being repeated. So it's not a copolymer.

That's all folks.
 

tangled

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I don't think you are wrong to dismiss it entirely. I dismissed it years ago. I only use the term nylon when talking about nylon. It's dead easy! :thumbs:
Sure, nylon and fluorocarbon are all we've got.

But sadly we also have this stuff labelled copolymer - which we say is nylon. (I'm sure it always is.)

Nylon copolymers were developed after their nylon homopolymers (by definition) so some of them may well have a claim to be an 'improved' product, but not necessarily. Certainly they will be different than the earlier nylons.

But just calling them copolymer tells us nothing at all useful - agreed.
 

ed_t

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As always with this stuff it's really difficult to move from that kind of general information to the specifics of our mono.

One thing I did get though was that water can degrade nylon and unlike water absorption with nylon, it's not reversible. Probably not much of a concern for us though unless we use very thin nylon for a very long time?
It's not difficult to extend it to what we use- various people including some line manufacturers (spoolers?) do wet test and wet knot tests.

Water can degrade nylons and water is present in the air. Water adsorption may be reversible but you need zero humidity to reverse it fully and what of stray hydrogen and hydroxyl ions that have already done their damage. Then if you cycle high /low humidity you move water in and out and in and out, and increase the probability of damage.

Keep it in a fridge.
 

tangled

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It's not difficult to extend it to what we use- various people including some line manufacturers (spoolers?) do wet test and wet knot tests.
I'm not aware of any tests done over time?

Not knowing the material pretty much ends the discussion as you can't even say that MunchoMono is PA 6/66 so it is impervious to UV, or whatever.

Keep it in a fridge.
Not a chance. The kid would probably try to eat it and the wife would bin it.
 

Cap'n Fishy

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They are two different molecules - an acid and an amine - but they've bonded into a single molecule - an amino acid. It's that whole group that's the monomer and is being repeated. So it's not a copolymer...
Ah, OK. I hadn't realised quite how bad your knowledge of basic organic chemistry was. ;):eek::D:thumbs::p:joking:
 
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