Tying the Lefty Loop or Non-Slip loop

lefty loop

i’m often asked which knots i use or recommend so the other night i pulled out some old mono and went through my repertoire to realize that there aren’t that many, maybe four, and even if this particular knot isn’t, most will be in one way or another based on the Duncan Loop.

this first one of a mini-series is a ‘loop-knot’ that doesn’t tighten against the eye of the hook which allows the fly to swing freely in a more natural manner than if it was tight against the eye. most often associated with streamers, this knot is equally at home with nymphs and even dries as the ‘hinge’ allows the flies to freely drift a bit better. every little bit helps ! the loop size doesn’t really matter with big streamers and such but with smaller flies we’ll try to get the smallest possible loop.

created by Lefty Kreh, this knot is a much stronger and more reliable alternative to the popular Rapala knot. the issue i have with the Rapala is that it’s another form of the Improved Clinch knot with it’s inherent excessive stretching and twisting of the material which may dramatically reduce it’s strength. the Improved Clinch twists the line along it’s axis, the results are often seen by the ‘piggy-tail’ on the tag end when the knot is finished. however, the real problem lies that the twists are inside the knot. even if it might look nice and clean on the outside, the inside might have been weakened in the process of tying the knot. not so good and an uncertainty i don’t want to have on what’s in most cases, the weakest link in the system.

-sorry, i can’t give credit to this great diagram’s author as i had pulled this from the net years ago to use as a personal reference without noting its source but a big thanks to whomever that may be !

11 thoughts on “Tying the Lefty Loop or Non-Slip loop

  1. Earlier I always used the duncan loop, but the last two years I’ve been using this one. I will never go back to duncan. Why?
    1) It slips, so you have to retie it after each fish (and I get a lot! :-)). If you try to pull it into shape using your nails it gets even weaker.
    2) I loose more flies/fish with duncan than with this Non-Slip loop.
    I have been experimenting with other kind of loop knots, but this one is the best so far. Perfection loop and Rapala loop is too complcated to tie. Another benefit with this one is the size of the loop. You can tie it really small.

    • hej Johan !
      well, the Duncan by it’s very nature can’t stay open after a sharp or strong pull.
      however, used as a loop, what it does is force us to re-tie our knots after a fish, which in itself is a good thing. 😉
      2) is interesting. i’ve never had any problems as you state with either one. of course i can’t pin-point down the exact cause but my first thought is you might be twisting the the mono along it’s axis during the Duncan’s construction, something that greatly weakens any knot. just a guess.

      the Rapala is just another version of a clinch knot so it’s shite ! :mrgreen:
      the Perfection Loop is another great alternative, have you seen this video ?

      i recently found another loop knot i hadn’t seen before that has a lot of good qualities and have been testing it with great success. i’ll have a post on it soon and will send you the link by pm so you can try it yourself 🙂


  2. That’s odd, because that’s the exact knot I know as the Rapala Knot :-). Great knot what ever its real name is!


    • hi Lars !
      nope, the Rapala is a variation of a clinch knot. i’ll find a nice diagram for you.
      great to see you here, thanks for stopping by ! 😀

  3. Seems to me that the improved clinch knot can be tied without any twisting simply by wrapping the tag end around the line instead of twisting the hook. Perhaps I am missing something.

    • hi Steve, yes, you are correct. however, a lot of anglers make twists in one way or another.
      to avoid any linear twist the tag end (of any knot) can be clamped in place with a free finger after a rotation has been made, releasing the wrapping hand’s hold (that’s where a twist starts and continues if it’s not let go) re-grabbed and wound over and over till finished.
      i hope that makes sense !

      thanks for your comment,

      • Yes, that makes perfect sense; I have always released the tag end in clinch and blood knots. Thank you for sharing your expertise.

  4. oh, i’m no expert but thanks.
    i was just consulting with someone who has a lot of knowledge on knots yesterday, will be adding input from others who do tests with industrial textile testing machines and i’lll write a piece on mono twist and it’s negative effects in the future. hopefully soon.
    stay tuned !

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