Words & Images: Kosta Linardos
Black Magic are well renowned and respected for a number of products, such as hooks, pre-made rigs, skirted lures and – of course – their world-class harness and gimbal system, the famous Equalizer. It seems that when they plan on doing something, they do it properly, and a case point in was the egi rod they recently released. They’re certainly not known as a company that produces rods, but they got it right.
I was therefore keen to test out their new Hyperglide braid. Black Magic had told me about it midway through 2021 and sent me a sample around October letting me know it wouldn’t be ready for release until early 2022 but to start using it. This was going to give me plenty of time to test this new braid out and really get an understanding of its durability. While some braids feel great when first out of the pack and fresh on the reel, they can start to get issues after extended use.
Before we get to how it performed, let’s talk a little about Hyperglide. It’s a 13 carrier braid- made up of 12 strands of Japanese PE wrapped around an inner core. I have used braids before that are made with this method (never a 13 strand) and I’ve always really liked them. Hyperglide is made in Taiwan (to Black Magic’s specifications), a country becoming very well renowned for excellent braid manufacturing. As soon as I pulled some line from the spool it was instantly apparent this was a slick, smooth and a very round braid with a premium feel and not what I was expecting. I wasn’t expecting it to feel bad, but just not this good – it has the feel of a high-end Japanese braid that would usually retail for $100+.
I was given PE1, which breaks at 16lb, with diameter of .165. I spooled it on a Daiwa Cerate (one of my favourite reels), which I use for squidding. Now, many might believe that you don’t need anything special in a braid used for targeting squid, but you do. I fish for squid regularly so I wanted it on reel that gets used very often. I tie FG knots as my join knot and it knots with both mono and fluoro beautifully, while it’s slick and soft, it can still cut into the fluoro well enough without slipping. You’ll note when you cut Hyper Glide, even with average scissors it doesn’t fray easily.
Hyperglide casts beautifully and (as the name suggests) glides through the guides and over the line roller. It’s quiet, smooth and supple and the density of the 13 strands holds that round shape. I don’t think I changed my knot for at least three weeks after heavy use. The blue colour is visible for those requiring visual aid for their line and it has faded minimally after four months of use. I often use my squid outfits for all kinds of bait collecting which includes spinning and trolling for species such as pike, couta and salmon, this style of fishing will often cause a line to twist but I’ve noted the line has held its shape and is highly impervious to line twist or any kind of distortion.
It’s copped a heap of saltwater use and spent hours in the sun on my open boat without any breakdown of fibres, fraying or dramatic loss of colour. Not only is Hyperglide an amazing braid, it’s ultra-durable. I look forward to using this for tuna and kings in heavier breaking strains when I get my hands on some.
As I said at the start, Black Magic aren’t the first, second or even third brand you think of when you it comes to braid, but they have really produced something special with Hyperglide. If you like soft supple lines that offer premium feel and performance, this is definitely worth purchasing. It isn’t cheap, with 300m around $95 and 150m around $60, but you won’t be disappointed.