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REVIEW : SCIENTIFIC ANGLERS KNOT 2 KINKY WIRE

By Vagabond Fly

In July, during the 2016 rendition of the International Fly Tackle Dealers (IFTD) tradeshow we stepped onto the Scientific Anglers booth and received a welcome liken to long-lost family showing up for Sunday lunch. Yeah, maybe biased, but we also think we are rad guys and would be happy to see us but quickly the real reason for this jovial welcoming was revealed as their Marketing Manager, John Van Vleet, waved a packet of their new Knot 2 Kinky Wire in our faces. Perhaps we were all on the same wavelength but standing there as a collaborative-brainstorming-tripod we simultaneously exclaimed, “TIGERFISH!”

Editors’ Note: For those of you that are unaware, our basecamp is Johannesburg South Africa and we are fortunate to have Africa and its wilderness and Tigerfish at our doorstep.

The Review Lab

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If you had to pick a prime freshwater specie you can target on fly as the pin-up to Scientific Anglers Knot 2 Kinky surely the Tigerfish will be in the running. Let us give you the low-down:

  • Hit Like a freight train – CHECK
  • Big flies – CHECK
  • Big rods – CHECK
  • Long & Countless of casts – CHECK
  • Gnarliest of wire crushing teeth – Double CHECK

Our destination – Ichingo Chobe River Lodge on Impalila Island just before the confluence of the Chobe & Zambezi rivers and where Zimbabwe, Botswana, Zambia & Namibia meet. A battlefield befitting the clash of titans! Though a tad late in the season we went there ready to make it happen and come back with a solid review on Knot 2 Kinky. Fishing off boats we fished the main Chobe River and the Kasai Channel that joins it to the Zambezi River.

Targeting Tigerfish requires an immense amount of full-line casting with 8-weights and up, predominantly with fast-sinkers and heavy flies to get down into the currents where the Tigers ambush unsuspecting baitfish. We were fortunate to be armed to the teeth with the new Loop Tackle Evotec Cast Fast rods & happy to encounter great visibility (sadly due to the drought) at the business end we used 7 ½ ft of 20lb Scientific Anglers Fluorocarbon Tippet and used an Albright Knot to join this to 8-inches (20cm) of 25lb Knot 2 Kinky. Flies were attached to the Knot 2 Kinky wire (Yes! Wait for it, but it is knotable) using a Perfection Loop.

What Scientific Anglers Claim

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Scientific Anglers Knot 2 Kinky comes adorned with features and marketing claims that will make any apex-predator-chasing fly fisher sit up and pay attention, as per their website:

  • Super-elastic nickel titanium (NiTi) alloy single-strand wire
  • Stronger and more durable than pure titanium
  • 100% corrosion proof
  • Easily knotable
  • Superior kink resistance
  • Holds up against fish with sharp teeth and strong jaws

Each packet of Scientific Anglers Knot 2 Kinky contains 15ft of wire and is available in 25lb, 35lb and 55lb.

Over time we will get to test each of these claims, but for this particular trip we were fixated on:

  • Is it flexible
  • Is it easily knotable
  • Superiority of its kink resistance
  • Will it hold up against Africa’s Tigerfishd

Where did Scientific Anglers Knot 2 Kinky Shine

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During our first session we had our rods rigged with their new Predator Leaders that comes pre-rigged with 15-inches of 1×7 stainless steel wire that was notably thicker than the almost stealthy 0.014” (0.36mm) of our 25lb Knot 2 Kinky. After coming off the water without a bump, pinned on the great water clarity, we instantly switched all our rigs over to Knot 2 Kinky.

At first glance you mistake it for standard piano-wire but that is where the similarities end.

We wouldn’t call it overly flexible, but post a 1,000 casts we are extremely happy to report that Knot 2 Kinky does not add to the rigidity of the leader and most certainly does not cause an aggressive and plummeting hinge in the cast.

Wrapping the wire around your hand as you pull as hard as possible to make sure your Perfection Loop seats properly and will withstand the impact of a Tigerfish, you fully expect it to be a kink-fest requiring extensive straightening. But this is immediately put to bed. Whilst reviving and releasing one of the fish, instead of being focused on us, our guides gawked at this “amazing wire”; several Tigers in and the Knot 2 Kinky was as straight as it came out of the packet. Between them our guides, Anton and Felix, had over 27-years experiencing landing clients’ Tigerfish and this revolutionary product had them dumbstruck. Don’t believe us? That is why we shot this quick video back at the lodge before departing…

Additional Comments on Scientific Anglers Knot 2 Kinky

Is Scientific Anglers Knot 2 Kinky 100% kink proof? Not entirely – after a double-figure Tiger decided to take Vagabond Fly co-editor Colin’s fly down DEEP, it took some creative plier work as we navigated around the razor sharp teeth of this killing machine. The only grip we could get was directly on the wire and after employing extreme angles and some force the wire came out mangled at the end. This would be an extreme situation and most certainly the exception.

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It takes some getting used to how Knot 2 Kinky seats when tying a Perfection Loop (more open than with mono as an example) but all our concern was dispelled after it held true after being pummeled by several of Africa’s Tigerfish.

Closing Comments

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Scientific Anglers Knot 2 Kinky is the game changer we were searching for. We suck at haywire twists and the brutal abuse you put wire through whilst fishing for Tigers means that, when using piano wire, you end up having to go through several mandatory changes during a day on the water due to kinks. Using other knotable wire was always the alternative but their thick diameter is limiting when faced with crystal clear water and weary predators. Scientific Anglers Knot 2 Kinky negates all of this and manages to strike the perfect balance between flexibility, durability and stealth and now has a permanent place in our gear bags when heading out to tackle any toothy predator on fly. Scientific Anglers Knot 2 Kinky…Tigerfish proof! ‘Nough said.

 

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