How to Tie the Haywire Twist

If you’re going for big fish or even sharks, it’s important to know how to tie a haywire twist knot. It’s known to be the strongest connection for joining wire to a lure, swivel, or hook by big game fishermen.

Tying wire fishing lines can be a bit challenging if you’ve never done it before. The worst thing to do is wait to try and figure it out on the water…these large creatures (sharks, mackerel, wahoo, barracuda, goliath grouper, etc.) will break off a poorly wrapped haywire twist knot in an instant.

If you’re looking at how to tie the wire leader to swivel, you’ve come to the right place. Let’s show you how easy it is to tie a haywire twist knot so you can catch huge fish! We’re sharing a step-by-step guide from working the tag end to the barrel wraps.

Haywire Twist Knot Tying Instructions: Step-by-Step Guide

haywire twist
  1. Take your wireline and place it through the eye of your hook or another object.
  2. Bend the wire, so it wraps around the eye loop and forms a 90-degree rounded angle.
  3. Twist the wire around itself (these are called the haywire twist knot or haywire wraps) and give it five haywire wraps. Now that you’re done with your haywire wraps, it’s time to do your first barrel wrap.
  4. Take the tag end and do one barrel wrap, then two, until you have five barrel wraps around the standing line. These are single-strand tight loops that should be touching each other if possible.
  5. Work the tag end back and forth until the wire breaks at the last barrel wrap. It’s better to do it this way than to use a cutting tool, as this tool will leave a sharp, dangerous burr on the tag end, which could cut you when you’re trying to bring in the mackerel or other fish.
haywire twist sharks
A wire leader used to catch a shark. Source: Mrs. Gemstone
YouTube video

Haywire Twist Tips

Here are haywire twist tips to help you get it right:

  • It’s always best to practice rigging the haywire twist knot up at home before you get on the boat. You might find that the diameter wire you’re using is too thick and can’t be formed by hand. It’s nice to know that you need fishing pliers to help ahead of time.
  • The first 4 wraps are called the haywire wraps, while the next 4 wraps are called rolls or barrel wraps.
  • When done, the wire leader should look like a DNA helix that has been closed by tight barrel wraps.
  • When tying, ensure that the tag end and the standing part of the wire cross each other at more than 90 degrees angle.

Haywire Twist Knot Tool

If you’re going to be making a lot of these wire leader connections and barrel wraps, then it might be beneficial to invest in a haywire twist tool that can make the process easy.

Recommended haywire twist knot tool: This haywire twist tool has been shown to work on 45 and 60-pound Marlin single-strand wire.

American Fishing Wire Haywire Twist Tool, Black
  • For use with American Fishing Wire Tooth Proof wire sizes 3…
  • Makes perfect haywire twist connections every time
  • Small enough to keep in your pocket
Jon Stenstrom
Founder & Angler
Jon Stenstrom is a fishing enthusiast. He has over 25 years of fishing experience, and 6 years of spearfishing experience, and is currently learning how to boat. Jon has his Open Water PADI Certification and FII Freediver Level 1 Certification. Jon has traveled the world to fish and dive, most notably in the Great Barrier Reef, Baja Mexico, Thailand, and Malaysia. More Articles
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Articles » Fishing Knots » How to Tie the Haywire Twist