Where have you been fishing with the braid, ie general area, tide, time, conditions?
I have been fishing the X4 braid at the top of D’Urville Island, Stephens Passage and the west coast of South Island. I have mainly been using the braid for jigging so incoming tide is most common. At Stephens passage there is a lot of current and I generally fish up big banks for the kingfish which sit on the front face, so with the tide you move up the bank very quickly so if you are not watching what you are doing the gear can get caught on the bottom very easily. Having a good resistant line is crucial when fishing this area, and having a relatively thin line is also important to minimise the effect of the current on the line. There is lots of barracouta in the area too which will often have a go at the PR knot on the way down or up so the more abrasive resistant properties the braid has the better in my opinion, this is certainly one of the advantages of the X4 braid, and being so abrasive resistant. The conditions in Stephens Passage can be often unforgiving, especially when you get wind against tide, and this is where a good strong line is very important, as you need to pull the fish away from the shallow part of the reef and away from the pressure waves. So a lot of time you have to just lock the reel up and try to drive the fish off the reef and away from the waves. The 80lb X4 braid I used was good, I locked it up and had to drag a fish away from the reef and it turned out to be 25 kg and the line performed perfectly even with a lot of pressure on it. (see pics)
What techniques have you used and what's worked best for you?
I have used both mechanical jigging and conventional bait and ledger rig with the braid. Both methods have proven to be successful, with kingfish up to 25 kg and groper up to 38 kg.
Have you used braid before? How did you find the X4 J-Braid you received?
Yes, I have been using braid since about 1993 and I have largely used braid ever since then. I found the braid good, it is quite a stiff coarse braid and has a bit of memory resistance with it but I guess that gives it the resistance properties.
Any other thoughts on the gear - highlights/challenges etc?
The gear is a very good quality braid, especially for the price, so certainly good value for money. It would be good for charter operators too I am picking, as with the large amount of tangles that often happens on a charter boat, the extra resistance will save a lot of gear being lost
Is the Daiwa X4 J-Braid a product you would purchase in the future?
To be honest, I found the braid good, but I probably would not purchase it. I like my high end gear and I use the Daiwa Tournament braid on most of my other reels as it has a thin diameter and is very supple which I find much nicer to use. However, if I was spending to a budget then yes I would definitely purchase it as I think it is great value for money