Home tools Buyer's Guides from tech enthusiast who loves technology and clever solutions for better living.
Best fishing reel 2018 – [Buyer’s Guide]Last Updated November 1, 2018
Best fishing reel of 2018
The table below summarizes features, and below you’ll find more detailed reviews of each good. Whether you’re looking to upgrade your comfort, style, or accessibility, we have picks to fit a variety of needs and budgets.
Here, I will review 3 of the best fishing reel of 2018, and we will also discuss the things to consider when looking to purchase one. I hope you will make an informed decision after going through each of them. I must say I am quite a fan of fishing reel, so when the question “What are the best fishing reel available on the market?” came to my mind, I excitedly started gathering information together with personal experience to write this article in the hope that it may help you find the suitable fishing reel.
Test Results and Ratings
Why did this fishing reel win the first place?
I was completely satisfied with the price. Its counterparts in this price range are way worse. The product is very strong. Its material is stable and doesn’t crack. I really enjoy the design. It is compact, comfortable and reliable. And it looks amazing! I don’t know anything about other models from this brand, but I am fully satisfied with this product.
Why did this fishing reel come in second place?
The design quality is top notch and the color is nice. Seems that the material is good. It has a very beautiful color but I don’t really like the texture. I like this product. For such a low price, I didn’t even hope it to be any better. It’s decently made. I really liked it. It is amazing in every aspect. It did even exceed my expectations for a bit, considering the affordable price.
№3 – KastKing Summer and Centron Spinning Reels Spinning Fishing Reel 9 +1 BB Light Weight Ultra Smooth Powerful
Why did this fishing reel take third place?
I hope that the good reputation of the manufacturer will guarantee a long-term work. This price is appropriate since the product is very well built. It doesn’t squeaks nor bents. Looks great in my apartment. I liked the design. We’ve been using it for 2 months and it still looks like brand new.
fishing reel Buyer’s Guide
Find Your Perfect Freshwater Or Saltwater Reel
Freshwater reels are for use around inland lakes, streams and rivers, while saltwater reels are for large bodies of water, including oceans and bays.
Reels come in three basic styles: casting, spinning and fly fishing. Whether you’re after a largemouth bass or a wiley trout, you should understand the way your fishing reel works.
Baitcasting Reels: These reels work with the weight of your bait or lure as it pulls on the line and turns the spool. They are typically preferred by more experienced anglers, especially when using heavier lures and lines for large game fish. Handles are usually located on the right-hand side of the reel.
Spinning Reels: These devices are great for beginners or novice anglers. They are simple to use and mount on the underside of a spinning rod. The handle of a spinning reel is usually located on the left-hand side instead of the right.
Spincast Reels: With these reels, the line comes off the top of the spool while casting. The spool, which runs parallel with the rod, remains enclosed by a cover that features a port, where the end of your fishing line exits the reel. The spool remains stationary until you use a thumb button to cast. As you release the button, your bait or lure will propel your line.
It’s easy to get confused when the time comes to buy a fishing reel. The reel’s inner workings may boggle the mind and there is a wide array of specifications that make different reels well suited for different circumstances.
Our aim today is to try and take some of the fear and frustration out of choosing the best fishing reel for bass.
While this is an essential part of your fishing toolkit, it’s key to know what works when. Let’s start by breaking down the two major categories.
Mechanically, with a baitcasting reel, the spool rotates as you cast, turning among multiple gears.
This is as opposed to a spinning reel, where the spool is fixed underneath the rod, and the line is drawn out by the weight of the lure or bait.
For example, baitcasting reels provide more strength and leverage. So if you want to bring in the bigger bass, this is going to be your best option.
In addition, there is a great deal more accuracy when it comes to your casts.
This can be very important when it comes to bass. After all, some of the larger bass favor living under plants or rocks or other cover.
A baitcasting reel is also capable of using the widest variety of lines, something to consider.
Spinning reels have a relatively simple function compared to some of the other reels out there.
These reels are mounted below the rod and don’t require wrist strength to hold into position. This is handy for longer fishing sessions.
The line is released in coils or loops from the leading edge of the non-rotating spool.
The major benefits of spinning reels are that they are easier to use than the other two options on this list.
Like spinning reels, the line on this reel is thrown from a fixed spool, so you can use relatively light lures and baits.
However, the closed spin-pin cast reel eliminates the large wire bail and line roller in favor of one or two simple pickup pins and a metal cup to wind the line on the spool.
In general, they are also fitted with an external nose cone that encloses and protects the fixed spool.
Many give spincasting reels a bad reputation. They say that they are not up to the same quality of the other reels out there or that they fall apart quickly. This is a bit of an exaggeration.
What is true is that they will not cast as far as the other two options on this list. The advantage, though, is convenience, with less backlash and tangles.
Shimano 200IHG Curado RH Baitcast Reel
Chances are that a more precise cast is exactly why you chose this type of reel in the first place. I can attest to the improvement firsthand.
Another great aspect to this reel is its size. Not only is it very light, but it is also very small.
As a result, I was able to fish for hours without feeling any added discomfort or fatigue. However, it is still very durable, so you won’t have to worry about any delicate inner workings being thrown off while you fish.
Note that this reel does have multiple internal brakes that you can set. While the variety is great, you’re going to want to spend some time testing to find the settings that work best for you.
This is worth the time, though, especially if you take your fishing seriously.
Overall, I have nothing but good things to say about this reel. While it is on the higher end of the price range, the fact of the matter is that it is worth the money.
Penn Battle II Spinning Reel
One of the most prominent spinning reels on the market.
Many people looking for spinning reels do so for the ease of use, and the Penn Battle II delivers in that regard, in both fresh and saltwater, and in a variety of conditions.
Also, in my tests where I focused on bass, I had no problem reeling in the larger catches with this reel.
I mentioned an issue in my last review. To explain the problem again, this reel has an anti-reverse switch, along with your standard roller bearing in a very delicate system.
To be clear, it works fine, but I have my concerns over the system’s longevity. Corrosion or other damage could lose you your anti-reverse capabilities. While you can order replacement parts, this adds more cost on what is not exactly an inexpensive reel.
If you are willing to shoulder the cost, though, this is perfect both for beginners and experienced anglers.
Sougayilang Spinning Reel
An amazing reel at a low price. Perfect for the fisherman on a budget.
As someone who’s done a lot of fishing, one thing I’ve grown to value a lot when it comes to reels is how smooth it is to use them.
This may sound a bit silly, but the more time you spend fiddling with your tools is less time you spend fishing.
I’m happy to say that the Sougayilang is one of the most user-friendly reels that I’ve encountered, especially for the price range.
Everything from setting it up on a rod to the actual operation was very smooth. This means that this reel may also be a good option for beginner fishermen who don’t want to purchase a reel and rod combo.
One thing to note is that the handle on this reel is a bit big. While I didn’t have much of an issue with it, those with smaller hands may find it a bit uncomfortable.
However, this is only one small drawback to a great bargain reel. This reel is cheap, easy to use, and still has quality comparable to more expensive reels. I highly recommend it to anyone on a budget.
Zebco Omega ZO3PRO
This isn’t to say that it was poor, but you can buy a better line for a low price, especially if you plan on catching heavier fish.
When it comes to bass, I recommend taking the extra money and buying your own line. But note, that braided fishing lines will not work on this reel, just like it doesn’t work with any spincasting reel.
Another thing to be mindful of when it comes to this reel is the added features that come with it. The reel offers a ceramic line guide, all-metal gears, Auto Bait Alert, and oscillating spool.
Seeing as it is in the medium price range, it’s nice to know you are getting some added value with your purchase.
Overall, I think that this as a base spincasting reel is great, though your opinion may vary on some of the accompaniments that come with it.
With that said, this isn’t an extremely expensive reel. I wouldn’t consider a weak line or a few superfluous features a dealbreaker for something that ultimately does the job.
The accuracy of a fishing rod relies on the action-ability of the rod. When a fishing rod works swiftly, an angler can catch fish easily. That means the main features of a fishing rod is its action. If the rod works without any trouble, the angler can catch fish without any trouble. So, you should choose the best effective fishing rod.
Rod length is the most significant features of a fishing rod. By a long fishing rod, anyone can catch deep water fish. But it is almost impossible to catch a deep and big fish by a short length fishing rod. So, the effectivity of a fishing rod fully depends on the length of a fishing rod. The length helps the angler to catch their expecting fishes. So, the length is one of the critical features of the best fly fishing rods.
The productivity of a fly fishing rod relies on the manufacturing materials of a rod. Effective rods are made of valuable materials. Resulting, angler get special facilities from this types of the rod. Before choosing a fishing rod, every angler should check construction material of the rod. The materials affected much during the fishing time. It also very durable and long lasting which are made by heavy and valuable materials.
To catching fly fishes, the fly line is very considerable.Without a perfect fly line, nobody can hope to catch fish. Fly line helps to the angler to catch all types of fishes. There are many other purposes of using a fly line. So, the fly line is also an important feature of a fishing rod.
Location of fishes
Different kinds of fishes lives in the different place. They are divided by various category in terms of lives. If you interested on sea-fish, you should choose same category reels. If you want to catch river or pond fish, you should make your choice in this categories.On the other hand, there are several layers in one living source for fish. If you interested in catching fish from a pond, you noticed that some fishes are in deep water, some are in the middle and some fishes are floaty.Mainly if you interested for deep water fish, you should choose large fishing reels.If you want floaty fish, small fishing reels are acceptable. So it is essential to consider the locations of fishes before choosing fishing reels.
Your interest on reels
It’s also very important to make your own interest to choosing a fishing reel.If you think this reel is suitable for you from others, then you should choose your desire reels.So always precedence your own interest to choose fishing reels.
Your fishing experience
These are the materials used to build saltwater reels Best fishing reels that are made of magnesium will easily corrode. Despite magnesium being lightweight and common in many fishing reels, you shouldn’t choose it for saltwater fishing because it easily gets damaged.On the other hand, is a great material for making saltwater fishing reels. It Is There are some other brands that are made of graphite because it is durable,Some fishing reels like are designed with a hybrid construction, which is a combination of graphite and aluminum components making it very strong and corrosion resistant.
All the parts of this spinning reels are made by strong metal things. As a result, it is very long lasting for use.Very high-quality stainless steel makes it stronger and reliable to users.
The spinning reels are very smooth and sharp. Steel ball bearing and stainless steel incredibly make it smooth.
Exact manufacturing tolerances, fortified brass gears, and carbon fiber drag system makes it one of the most powerful reels to the users. Everyone can use it easily and materialize their own dream.
Awesome: Hopefully this spinning reels is one of the heavy reels in the world. It is the best and last spinning reel you will ever need. So it is always regarded as its feature and special qualities.
Precise CNC Machined
5.Abu Garcia Ambassadeur CS Pro Rocket Black Edition Baitcasting Reel The Abu Garcia Ambassadeur CS Pro Rocket Black Edition Baitcasting Reel was designed to deliver high performance while on the water. spool while casting and allows you to make longer and more casts.It also has a great synchronized level wind system.which is made by the highest quality components.Specially brute strength meets refined style in this round bait cast reel.Especially the heritage continues with this update fishing reel.
Features of this effective products
STRONG AND DURABLE – High impact die-cast body, aluminum handle, and star button make the reel stronger.As a result, it helps angler to catch a fish easily. The Deep 606Tmachined aluminum spool provide increased durability.
SMOOTH – 1corrosion resistant stainless steel ball bearings with one roller bearing provides smooth operation.
This Zebco comes with no less than seven ball bearings and a multi-disk triple-cam drag system which gives the Omega an incredibly smooth cast and retrieve experience. The addition of ceramic line guides insures great casting performance that reduces line wear over long term use.
Some of the features of the Pflueger President
The President hits all the right criteria for anyone looking for an ultralight spinning reel. It has a titanium coated spool lip and line roller that ensure a smooth surface for the line to run over. It boasts an anti-reverse one-way clutch bearing and sure click bail.
Some of the features of the Penn Clash
It’s large arbor and simple tough design are it’s best selling points. It one of those dependable pieces of equipment that you won’t think much about unless you have to replace it.
Some people will argue that a fly reel is little more than a line store. To some extent they are correct however playing a fish on a fly reel is proving more and more popular especially for larger trophy fish. That’s why it is worth choosing the best fly reel that has a decent sized arbor and reliable drag system.
Abu Garcia Revo SX
Weight reduction over previous models has been reduced by almost 25% which can make a big difference at the end of a long day out on the water casting.
Some of the features of the Penn Squall
Penn have been at the forefront of high quality fishing reel manufacturing for decades. There name is synonymous with quality and reliability. One of the lightest reels in it’s class the Squall is still pretty tough due to it’s graphite sideplates and forged, machined aluminum spool.
Even though the Penn Squall is at the lower end of the range in terms of price I wouldn’t hesitate to pick one up as it is easily the match for some of the more expensive trolling reels out there.
Okuma Cold Water Linecounter
If you are trolling with lead core line for large lake trout or out on the deep water hunting large game fish then a line counter reel is vital. The Ocuma Cold Water Linecounter is our choice for best line counter reel.
The Ocuma is well built from quality components from the Titanium coated level wind right down to the coating on the inside of the line counter window to stop fogging.
Some of the features of the Daiwa M7HTMAG
This Daiwa surf casting reel is used worldwide to hit big casting distances by an array of anglers. These big distances are achievable in large to the Magforce-Z magnetic braking system. The Magforce-Z starts to apply a smooth magnetic brake to the spool once it approaches max rpm, thus reduces the chances of an over run.
Spinning reel is the common way to refer to as whats called an open face reel. They are the most popular type of reel and that is in part due to their versatility. A spinning reel consists of an open faced spool that the line is stored on. The line is wound around the spool by what if known as a “bail” or “bailing guide”. As you turn the handle of the reel the spool remains stationary and the bail rotates about it. It distributes the line evenly around the spool by oscillating up and down. On some spinning reel the spool actually moves up/down and the bail remains at the same height as it spins around the spool. On others the spool remains completely stationary and the bail does all the movement.
When casting with a spinning reel the bail is opened and the line is pinched or held usually by the index finger against the rod. Once the rod is whipped forward and the weight/lure moves quickly in a forward motion the line is released and allowed to fly naturally off the spool.
Spinning Reel Sizes
1000 – 3500 reels are generally used for ultralight spinning applications and are most likely paired with a light weigh rod of around 6-feet in length. Line is about 2-8lbs.
4000 – 5500 reels are for medium weighted rods and line somewhere around 10-25lbs.
6000 – 9500 reels are classed on the large size and are mostly used in saltwater application, however they can be used for larger freshwater fish. Line 25-50lbs There are some spinning reels classed much higher than that and are mostly used for specialist saltwater fishing.
When casting a baitcasting reel you release the lock from the spool by pressing down a trigger, the line is now free to run off the rotating spool. The rod is flipped forward and the weight of the lure pulls the line off the reel.
The main difficulty associated with casting a baitcaster is what is known as a “birds nest” or also an overrun. This occurs when the lure us cast out and the line is pulled off the spool. If the tension on the spool is too low the spool can run faster than the line as the lure slows down in flight. If the spool is moving quicker than the line then it runs over on itself on the spool thus creating a tangled mess known as a birds nest.
The line is wound onto the spool by what is known as a take up pin. The spool remains stationary the whole time as the pins do all the work. The line is released by either a push button or a trigger before the lure is cast.
Spincast reels are usually used for light fishing applications as they can generally only hold about 80 yards of light line. They are suitable for beginners and children due to the ease at which they can be cast.
Fly reels need to be matched to the rod and line to give a perfectly balanced fly fishing setup. They line, rod and reels all have a weighting specified on them. The type of fly fishing determines the line and rod and the reel should be matched to this.
For example for light dry fly fishing you would require a floating line of 4wt and a suitable rod to match. In order to balance the rod correctly the correctly weighted reel should be chosen.
There are three standard designs used in modern fly fishing reels; standard arbor, mid arbor, and large arbor.
Standard Arbor fly fishing reels are the best choice for beginners and most river fishing situations. The base is situated in the exact middle of the spool so it is simple to attach this to the reel seat.
Mid Arbor fly fishing reels located the base somewhat apart from the center of the spool, allowing for larger spools which in turn hold more line. Because the larger spool retrieves more line with each turn and is designed to have a faster retrieval rate, this is the reel to choose when in long-cast situations.
Fly Fishing Reel Weight
This category might seem somewhat misleading; this does not refer to the weight of the actual reel but rather the weight of the line the reel is meant to handle. Some reels can actually handle multiple weights, for example 5/weight fly fishing reels or 7/weight fly fishing reels. A 5-weight reel is paired with a 5-weight rod (pretty self-explanatory, eh?) and this is to ensure your system is matched for the line you are casting.
Fly Fishing Reel Material
Your grandfather’s fly reel might have used a wooden spool, but these days are long since passed! Modern fly fishing reels use molded plastic reels that can accommodate a variety of lines. These can be switched out quickly for line changes during your fishing trip.
Fly Fishing Reel Handedness
This is exactly as it sounds; which hand do you prefer to reel in your line with? While many modern fly fishing reels are ambidextrous, be sure you double check the specific reel before you buy to make sure you will be comfortable with the design.
Fly Fishing Reel Drag
Two types of drag systems are used in modern fly fishing reels. The first (“spring and pawl”) utilizes a system of internal gears to control the flow of line. Some of the higher end models use a closed system, protecting these gears with seals and o-rings so as not to allow water to enter. This system is normally recommended for fresh water and trout fishing.
The second type of drag system used in modern fly fishing reels is a disc brake assembly. These place tension on the line by use of a brake and are more resistant to salt water and harsh conditions.
Heavy spinning reel
A heavy reel is another kind of reel you can use for your grouper fishing. If you want to hunt in inshore waters, you may not require heavy reel because the fish are not large enough to require a heavy-duty rod. If you are hunting for fifty pound grouper, a bigger reel is needed and this why you need heavy reel. In deciding the type to buy, then you have to consider the fish strength and size. The bigger the fish the bigger the rod, this is very important.
Low gear ratio
Another important factor to consider when you want to catch grouper is the gear ratio. Low gear ratio gives more power, and when you talk about grouper, issue of power is paramount, and you need a reel with a great power to tackle the fish. Moreover, conventional reels and rods can equally be used for grouper. Whether you want to fish offshore, inshore, as well as bottom fishing, you must use strong reels. This is the best for grouper.
Conventional tackle has an edge over spinning tackle, especially when it comes to tackling of big grouper. If you compare the conventional rod with a spinning rod, you discover that their reels are differently located. For instance, in case of the conventional rod, the reel is on its top. This is not the case with a spinning rod, which has its reel on the bottom to be used with your grouper fishing rig which makes the line parallel to the fish. You are not going to find it difficult to catch the grouper because it would make it easy for you to pull away the fish from the rock where it could hide itself whenever it is hooked.
You have seen that both conventional and spinning rods can be used for grouper. It appears that many people are more conversant with conventional reels, and the reason for that is the benefit it offers, as well as the better fishing leverage it provides for its users. When you use them, it is going to force even the heaviest and the strongest grouper from its holes and hiding places. how to fish for grouper read here.
Penn US11US Senator Casting Reels
This is one of the best casting reels and it is perfect for different kinds of fish, especially grouper. The brand is popular because of the solid construction of a single aluminum frame which makes it very strong. Furthermore, because of the quality of materials used to make, it does not rust or corrode easily. Apart from the aluminum material, it is produced with stainless steel material.
It is machine framed. This serves two purposes. The first purpose is that it makes the product to be very durable. Secondly and very important, it makes for the complete alignment for easy catch.
These models are not the same and this means that they have features that are unique to them. They are designed in such a way that they would suit your saltwater need.
Any model of the product that you want to buy features backlight side plate, which makes this unique feature inbuilt in this product. They are designed to serve your needs and if you are looking for the best, you can opt for this brand.
When it comes to the fishing world, Daiwa has earned a reputation for the superior quality of their grouper rod and reels. This brand is simply designed so nobody would find it hard to operate it. It has a one touch gear shift system which offers enormous power and speed. Any grouper fisherman who requires a very powerful and strong product then this product is for you.
Baitcasting reels are often called baitcasters. Baitcasters have been known to be the reel of choice for experienced anglers. They are more difficult to learn on and has a larger learning curve before they can be mastered. The difficult issues with these reels are with back-spools or birdnests when casting. Baitcasting reels have a drag system which is sensitive to the drag or resistance generated from your reel spool. This is critical because when casting it controls the resistance needed to let the right amount of line off the reel. Its because of this that most anglers use baitcaster reels for large game fish. These reels have taken over the bass fishing world and are often prefered by offshore fishing saltwater anglers.
A simple reel that has a thumb button to cast. The spincast reels works like a spinning reel with a cover. The spool is enclosed by a cover with an opening that the line exits. When casting, press the thumb button and release. When you release the button your line and lure is propelled with the force from the cast. Often time these types of reels are perfect for teaching a young child how to fish. There is very little you can do to mess it and not be able to cast.
These reels are often either a spinning reel or a baitcasting reel. These reels are usually more heavy duty than your freshwater fishing reels. When it comes to saltwater reels, spinning reels are better than baitcast reels when required to cast long distances. Pier and surf fishing come to mind and often require a large spinning reel. If you are offshore fishing or fishing for large fish in general, then a baitcaster reel is prefered due to the man handling ability to pull a fish off the bottom or prevent one from going into structure. The better saltwater reels have extensive gear ratios in order to help aid in catching big fish.
If you want a reel to be able to catch large tarpon to big jewfish then the reel we would refer to you would be the Canyon Reels HS-1This reel will handle some of the largest fish with ease.
Fishing Reels are attached in the handle end of the fishing it. It is actually very purposeful and it gives a lot of advantages to you when you go fishing. There are several kinds and brands of reels but Penn spinning reels are mostly the best ones. So, why don’t you try using it during your fishing encounters as well? Here are some advantages why you should use a fishing reel.
Indeed, it is safe to say that fishing reels produced and designed by Penn deserves to be in the top. They all come with great durability and design so you can enjoy your fishing activities that are either professional or for leisure. So, what are you waiting for? Go ahead and order one Penn fishing reel for yourself or probably for someone you love today.
Why you should trust me
I’m a United States Coast Guard–certified master captain, and I have been fishing since I could walk. I grew up working on charter boats in and around Long Island Sound, and reliable fishing gear has been paramount not only to my profession but also to my life. Having fished on a budget in settings as varied and diverse as the spring brooks of the Adirondack Mountains, the brown sludge that is the Hudson River, and the emerald coastal waters of New Zealand, I can say that a careful selection of the most durable all-around tackle has been essential to me.
Your guide, Owen James Burke, testing our picks on a beach in New Zealand.
To supplement my own expertise, I enlisted the help of veteran spinning-reel reviewer Alan Hawk and also consulted Salt Water Sportsman editor-at-large and NBC Sports television host George Poveromo on what would be the ideal spinning-rod-and-reel setup for a casual fisher.
Who this is for
Like most fishers, I’m not able to carry, store, or afford a different rod and reel for every species of fish or method of fishing. So I picked an affordable, high-quality spinning-rod-and-reel combo that can work in as many fishing conditions and settings as possible—including saltwater and freshwater. This spinning-rod-and-reel setup is approachable enough for a novice to learn on, yet it performs well enough for a seasoned veteran to depend on.
This spinning-rod-and-reel setup is approachable enough for a novice to learn on, yet it performs well enough for a seasoned veteran to depend on.
If you’re more experienced and looking for a specific rod and reel, apart from the size of the fish you’re targeting, you’ll also have to take into account what kind of fishing you’ll be doing: Will you be casting artificial lures (objects designed to look like fish or other prey with a hook attached), or using bait (smaller fish, worms, or other natural prey, either alive or dead)? Most lure fishers will want a stiffer rod composed of graphite (or mostly graphite) so that they can “work” a jig or plug to imitate the movements of prey, while bait fishers might seek out a rod that’s a little looser or more sensitive, so as to detect the slightest strike. Our rod recommendation can do both things decently, but if you know you’ll be doing only one or the other, you should look into a more specialized setup.
How we picked
First off, I had to decide what kind of rod and reel we would focus on, which was an easy choice—if you’re going to own only one fishing rod and reel, a spinning-rod-and-reel setup is the most versatile and the easiest to use.
Compared with a baitcasting or fly-fishing setup, a spinning setup is more comfortable to use and is usually easier to repair; it also requires less finesse to cast. Think of it as the “automatic transmission” version of a fishing rod and reel. If you’re starting from nothing, a spinning outfit offers the highest chance of success. If you’re a beginner, it’s much easier to pick up than either of the other options, and it’s far less likely to become tangled than a baitcasting setup.
Key features of a fishing rod
In my 20-plus years of fishing, I’ve come to learn that when you’re shopping for fishing rods—as for any tool—paying a little attention to a few key features can be telling before you even pick up one. The rod’s material, flexibility, sensitivity, and line-guide construction all make a difference in how well the rod will perform and last.
As mentioned previously, bait-hucking fishers will want something that’s more sensitive and flexible, while lure fishers will want something stiffer (known as “fast action” in fishing jargon). Most rods are made out of fiberglass, graphite, or a mixture of both. The more graphite in a rod, the lighter and stiffer it is, but such rods are also more brittle, so you wouldn’t want to hand one to a 3-year-old. Fiberglass is heavier but more flexible (“slow action”)—like a whipping stick—and nearly impossible to break. For a beginner or an all-around angler, a combination of both materials offers the most versatile package: It gives you enough stiffness to adequately manipulate a lure, while maintaining enough sensitivity for detecting small bites.
The next most important specification you’ll want to consider is the material that makes up the guides—the loops that lead, or guide, the line from the reel to the tip (the skinny end) of the fishing rod. Lower-end fishing rods (and many higher-end ones, too) usually feature guides made of either thin stainless steel or aluminum oxide (ceramic) frames holding cheap ceramic O-ring inserts (rings designed to protect the insides of the guides and prevent line wear) that chip or corrode, and eventually fail.
The rest, including the grip material and the number of pieces the rod itself breaks down into, is up to you. I will suggest that, if you can accommodate it, a one-piece rod will almost always outperform a two- or three-piece rod. A one-piece rod offers better stiffness and more control—fewer pieces make for fewer problems with durability and performance, although portability suffers.
How we tested
We got into the weeds to find the best rod-and-reel combination for most anglers.
I tested all of the rods and reels from beaches, rocks, boats, and riverbanks. I fished with lures in rivers for trout and salmon, and I set 1- to 1½-pound live baits from my skiffs, catching ocean fish up to 20 pounds with each rod and reel. I also tested the gear on smaller bottom fish, including summer flounder, sea bass, and porgies (or scup), as well as red drum and spotted seatrout in Charleston, South Carolina. While I didn’t test much in lakes or ponds, I did spend several days fishing freshwater rivers for trout and smaller salmon, and a couple of days fishing private ponds and lakes for largemouth bass. I beat up these rods and reels, from the mouth of the Hudson River in New York to the Cook Strait of New Zealand.
Initially, I washed everything down well after each use as I usually do. Then, a week in, I decided to see what leaving salt and grit on and in them would do, which was extremely telling—especially after I took the gear apart.
Testing drags with a force meter.
After logging plenty of catches (and abuse) on each reel, I took them to Henderson’s Ltd. Tackle and Repair Shop in Blenheim, New Zealand, to get them disassembled so that I could examine the insides for signs of quality construction, design, and materials (or lack thereof). The teardown test made it easy to see why some brands earn reputations for lasting longer than others, and it allowed us to discover how some seemingly similar models are actually quite different inside.
Stiffer and lighter
If the Ugly Stik GXis unavailable, or if you know you want something stiffer for doing more lure fishing, the Ugly Stik Elite series is a good bet. These rods are available in the same wide range of sizes as the GX(for the most all-around versatility, we’d still recommend a medium to medium-heavy rod in the 6-foot-or 7-foot range), but they have a cork grip instead of an EVA foam grip and contain 3percent more graphite, which makes them a bit stiffer and lighter overall. The added stiffness makes the Elite ideal for manipulating lures and giving them “action” (a fishing term for making lures dance or hobble like wounded prey).
Who else likes our reel pick
When rinsing a reel, first tighten the drag, sealing it so that water doesn’t work into the washers. Lay the reel out horizontally so that any water that gets in has an easy path out, and don’t blast a reel with water to avoid blasting out the grease; just make sure it receives a thorough flow. If you want to be particularly diligent when cleaning your fishing gear (it will pay off in the long run), you can soak a cloth in freshwater (even with a little soap—boat soap works) and wipe everything down. Once finished, loosen the drag; if you leave reel drags tight, they tend to get stuck that way and lose their precision.
Additionally, keeping your reel packed with grease will reduce corrosion and improve longevity. You can find reel grease in almost any outdoor-sporting store, but if you’re not confident in taking your reel apart to apply grease, having it done in-store would be worthwhile.
For more tips, see expert reel reviewer Alan Hawk’s reel-care guide.
We also tested Shakespeare’s original Ugly Stik (now discontinued) alongside the GXjust to get an idea of the differences. While Ugly Stik loyalists familiar with the original series complain that the GXis not as flexible overall, I find that it is more applicable to a wider variety of fishing methods, which is good for people who want to buy one rod to do it all. Besides, the original is no longer being made.
We looked at Lew’s Mach II Speed Stick due to its popularity with bass anglers. The IMgraphite and “Carbon Nanotube Coating” make this rod ultra-stiff and, as the name states, speedy, but it’s so stiff that it would never serve as a bait-fishing rod. It’s a great rod for freshwater bass fishing and inshore saltwater fishing, though in all honesty, it’s so obscenely hideous that I would never want any of my fishing buddies to catch me with one in my hands—at least not in the light of day. The soylent-green decor on the handle and decal is a color that belongs only on a NASCAR vehicle. But if you can bear the coloring and graphics, it is a highly serviceable rod for casting lightweight artificials to spotted seatrout, redfish, and largemouth bass. Maybe I’ll sneak out with it for some low-lit night-fishing excursions.
We also tried the Penn Battalion and the Shimano Teramar, which are both great rods. I found the Battalion to be somewhat lightweight for its action and recommended line weight, which you could easily solve by ordering the next weight up (for example, if you want a “medium action” rod, order the Battalion in “medium heavy”). I’m also a fan of the Teramar, which is extremely well-balanced—both in weight and in guide placement—but Shimano rods come with only a one-year warranty, and I prefer the high-end cork on the Triumph and Battalion anyway. On the other hand, if you’re going to spend the majority of your time bait fishing, consider the Teramar, which offers a little more play and would be a delightful tool when you’re fishing cut bait for striped bass from a boat in Long Island Sound.
The Fin-Nor Lethal is another excellent reel that came highly recommended by expert spinning-reel reviewer Alan Hawk. I had never fished this reel before seeing his recommendation, and I was thoroughly impressed. With its all-metal body, it’s definitely a workhorse. The only real issues I had were that the line lay wasn’t even (line seems to bunch up in one place on the reel) and that the bail (the metal part that holds the line when the reel is engaged) was finicky. You have only one way to open it, and if you’re not careful to handle it right, it closes back over. This presents a hazard when you’re casting, as it can close midcast and stop your bait or lure short, flinging your hooks back at you or a nearby friend. One other problem was that the clicker on the drag (the noise that you hear when line is running off the spool of a reel) sometimes didn’t engage. Twice I looked over, and the line was spinning off the spool (a fish was on the other end), but I hadn’t noticed. Fish I had hoped to release had already swallowed the hook and had to be brought home. All in all, it’s a very strong reel, and I think it could live a long life, but after seeing both novice and avid fishers nearly knock me out while attempting to cast with it, I hesitate to recommend this reel for an inexperienced fisher or a child. According to Alan Hawk, Fin-Nor’s next model up is its best, but it’s much heavier and geared toward fishing larger game.
How to Choose a Baitcasting Reel
Those anglers who want to utilize a variety of fishing techniques and lures will need a good baitcasting reel. Well, it is undeniable that they are quite difficult to master. But on the other hand, you can guarantee that these coils provide extreme accuracy in casting.
On application, you can consider a 4:ratio as “slow.” Meanwhile, the 6:or higher ratio is already fast. Therefore, it is right for you to consider the type of lure that you should use before deciding for the gear ratio. For example, spinner baits and crank baits require a slow retrieval (we recommend a 3:gear ratio for this). On the other hand, soft plastics and jigs need a moderate recovery (somewhere around 5:1).
Buzz baits and other types of fishing lures will require will need baitcasting reels with high gear ratio. Specifically, it should be around 6:to 7:1.
Size of the Spool
It is also important that you check the spindle size of the reel. If you want to hunt large and active fish, then it is pretty obvious that you need a cumbersome and thick line. The latter will inevitably consume the space of your spool. If this is your common predicament, try to get a reel with an extensive and spacious area. In this way, you can accommodate any line, regardless of how thick or long they are.
Meanwhile, for those who are into bass fishing, using a light and thin line is acceptable. But at the same time, the line should have enough strength to handle the fish and water pressure, without losing versatility. Reels that have small spool can give you the advantage on these kinds of applications.
Baitcasting reels come in various grip dimensions. For example, you can expect that small coils have short handles. They work best for lures like jigs and worms. On the flipside, they are not applicable for swim baits and crank baits. You should treat the latter by a reel with a long handle. It can provide the right amount of torque to lift the fish from their struggle or thick covers.
Tension and Brake System
Essentially, the tension knob is the one that manages the line once you started casting. They have the same role as the brakes. However, the latter controls the movement of the line at the end of casting. Specifically, the brakes improve the mobility of the line even if you are casting in windy conditions. This particular scenario causes the spool to rotate faster than normal.
Therefore, the combination of tension and brake system will allow you to cast with stability, regardless of the external condition and lure you are using. Moreover, these can prevent the occurrence of backlashes too.
The baitcasting reel that you should choose should be durable and reliable. There is no exception for this. If you decide on a defective unit, you will have a hard time in the water. You might end up going home with a broken reel! As much as possible, look for reels that come with carbon composite, magnesium, or aluminum. They can guarantee that your reel will be reliable and comfortable to use.
Comfort is another thing that you should consider in choosing a reel. If you are not comfortable in the reel, you won’t maximize its full potential. Mainly, you should look for those models that have a balance reel-and-rod combination. The grip is crucial, too. They will allow you to cast accurately, even after multiple tries.
Daiwa Tatula is a name that you will certainly come across whenever you are shopping for a baitcasting reel. It is a professional-grade baitcaster, which offers guaranteed durability and stability on fishing. It is a premium reel that is using a sturdy aluminum housing. Meanwhile, the side plate is using a Carbon Drag UTD, which has a 132-pound dragging capability.
However, the best selling feature of Daiwa Tatula is its T-Wing System. It is an incredibly innovative design that topples all the traditional levelwind systems. With this technology, this reel has enhanced casting distance and performance. Moreover, it improves the overall functionality of the tool. In short, it is a novice-friendly choice.
Choosing a “Good” Rod
This rod is recommended for beginners, because it is often difficult to feel when the fish bite the hooks. This rod is sensitive, making it easy to feel slight movements. The Pflueger brand makes high quality fishing rods in all price ranges. The 2-piece Echelon (medium action) rod comes with a cork handle and graphite body, which provides a balanced feel when casting. Because it can break down into smaller parts, it can be taken anywhere. The cork grip makes a great handle, both comfortable and sturdy.
The rod comes with a spinning reel with stainless steel ball bearings, as well as a one-way clutch anti-reverse bearing. This is recommended for fishing in lakes and rivers.
This rod is good for fighting fish, and the overall outfit makes it great for making long casts. It is recommended for the casual fisherman due to its price and its quality. Its three-part cork handle allows for a firm grip and great control. The 6-ft frame is great for casting off the pier or from land.
The Long Strike spool allows smooth long casts, and the wonderful front drag allows you to fight fish during the longer fights. This characteristic allows for a fun sport fishing adventure. This combination comes with a spinning rod. Overall, if you do not plan on fishing a lot, but want a quality rod, this rod is particularly recommended for you.
Differences In Fishing Rods
There are many small, but very important differences in fishing rods that are designed to enhance the performance of the rod. Anglers should familiarize themselves with these differences and how they are designed to better your chances of successfully landing a whopper size fish.
Either way, knowing how to take advantage of the latest technologically advanced fishing rod and reels will enable even the novice angler an opportunity at a fish of a lifetime.
Differences Between Important Reels
In that respect there are just a few different categories of fishing rods and reels to choose from. You will find spincast reels which will attach on the top of a casting rod, fly rods and reels, baitcasting reels which additionally mount on the top of a casting rod and spinning rods and reels.
The primary difference between casting rods and spinning rods would be that a casting reel is situated on top of the rod as opposed to a spinning reel attaching to the underside of the fishing rod. The same will be for your line guides or ferrules. A wire bail apparatus is actually what enables your line to unspool throughout casting after it is disengaged and also on the flip side, coils your fishing line back on to the spool when it is engaged during retrieval. This type of reel may additionally be used as a right-handed or left-handed reel simply by relocating the handle from one side to the other.
Fly fishing is employed to catch trout, salmon and other fresh water species. The different fish species need different rod tautness and weight test line to counter the weight of the fighting fish. The rod size is another aspect dependent on the type of fish intended for fishing.
Fishing rods are numbered according to their weight. Smaller trout need rods with a smaller number while larger trout and bass require medium sized rods. Larger rods best accommodate the weight of salmon and tarpon.
The spin casting rods are used when the bait or lure is frequently cast and retrieved to unhook the catch. Being heavier, they are best suited for larger fish including the steelhead or the striped bass.
The right rods need to be correctly matched with suitable reels. The spinning wheels are hardy for vigorous freshwater fishing while remaining easy enough for beginners and seasoned anglers. While the original design was for fly fishing with trout and salmon, the newer models of these spinning reels are made sturdy to manage heavier baits and larger catches. They are also great with light tackles.
The line capacity of the reel needs to be suitable for the type of fish to be fishing for. Fishes such as trout and salmon tend to run more with the line, thus needing more line, unlike the bluegill or perch which are easier to catch with the cast length.
Another factor dependent on the type of fish caught is the line strength. A heavier line is necessary for heavier fish which also tend to be stronger at fighting. The ratings for the reels and the line can be found on the packaging. The gear ratio of the selected reels is also dependent on the type of fish being fished. The ratio indicates the number of times the fishing reels rotate when they are cranked each time. A faster ratio may not always be better, depending on the intended catch.
Choosing the right fishing rods and reels actually requires some understanding of the fish to be caught, so that the right tools are available for a fruitful fishing outing.
Unlike spinning rods, conventional rods have the guides of the rod mounted on top and have a gradual decrease in diameter as you approach the tip. Conventional rods have smaller guides because of the straight unwinding, with the spool of the reel in free-spool, of fishing line when casting from a conventional reel.
Conventional rods can also come with roller or rolling guides, typically used for big-game fishing or trolling. The reel should sit atop the reel seat, with the handle on the right side for right-handed anglers.
Lets Look At The Principals Required To Cast
Face your left foot in the direction of the cast, with your right foot in a comfortable position for balance. Twist your waist past your right foot as the more your body twists, the more power you will generate.
Extend your right arm so that the tip of the rod is far back therefore allowing you to load the rod more and generate more power.
Now its like a golf swing, Weight on the back foot, balanced on the left. Start moving your weight forward as you twist your body and cast. This action will provide more power.
Load the rod. You can either swing the rod in an arc from the desired end direction to behind you with the sinker loading the rod tip, or you can load the rod by swinging the sinker so that its beyond the rod tip and loading the tip as well.
The rod needs to be effectively loaded by beginning the cast slowly with a gradual acceleration until maximum speed is reached just prior to stopping the rod.
The sinker will now go in the direction of the rod tip just before it was stopped.
It is important that the rod tip is not lowered or raised again above the departure of the line from the rod tip.
The longer the rod and the longer the casting stroke, the more the rod can be loaded and the further you can cast.
Some Important Notes.
You will need to match your rod, reel and line weight. Check the guides normally printed on the rod and reel.
The terminal weight must also match the rod and line weight.
It will be a good idea to use a shock leader with at least a few turns on the spool. The greatest load is generated when the line starts leaving the spool.
Direction, accuracy and technique will come with practice.
Most fly reels take serious abuse, which is why I really like the Okuma SLV Diecast Aluminum Fly Reel(pictured at left). This is rugged and easy to operate.
Freshwater fly reels are more common still, and Okuma does make a large line of them. But my choice for freshwater is the Performance Freshwater Fly Reel. Its die-cast aluminum body and spool keep it lightweight, and it sports really terrific drag performance. This reel also features quick conversion to right- or left-handed winding.
One of the most important things I look for in fly reels is ease of use and convenience. Both the Okuma and Tailwater Outfitters models above have quick-change spools that are reasonably priced. This makes a lot of difference when many anglers today like to change lines often.
Choosing the Right Fly Fishing Reels
Are you into flyfishing, or interested in starting? If so, fly fishing reels are an integral part of the tackle you’ll need to catch fish like brook trout. This kind of angling is as much art as it is sport, and just like a painter needs brush, easel, and paint, you’ll need fly fishing reels as part of the tools to perform. With some practice, these types of reels are not difficult to master. You can be hauling in brook trout, rainbows, and brownies in no time.
Here’s the lowdown on fly fishing reels
There are three basic types of fly fishing reels: single-action, multiplier, and automatic. Each is appropriate for catching brook trout and other fly fishing favorites, but your choice should be determined by your level of experience with this kind of angling.
Single-action fly fishing reels are simple to operate and are therefore the best choice for novice flyfishing anglers. The handle of the reel attaches directly to the spool, where the line is coiled. This is the most common type among brook trout fishermen.
Automatic fly fishing reels feature a lever that can be flipped, which will retrieve all your line without any cranking of the reel. Many brook trout anglers prefer this style for its convenience, but flyfishing purists often shun it because it removes a lot of the challenge.
There are two basic styles of fishing reels in this category.
The first are closed face spin cast reels. These are good choices for kids and novice fishermen because the reels are simple to operate, inexpensive, and can take a pretty good beating while on the fishing boat. All of the sensitive parts of these reels are housed within the protective outer casing, usually made of aluminum, stainless steel, or hard plastic.
The second style of fishing reels in the casting category is the baitcasting reels. Harder to learn to use than the spin cast design, these reels are often the choice of more experienced fishermen who are fishing for larger prey, both in freshwater and saltwater.
Open-face spinning fishing reels are a bit tougher to get the hang of than closed face spin cast reels, but the payoff can be tremendous. The big fishing advantage is in casting distance. These reels are ideal for bank fishing from a boat, where you may not always be able to maneuver close enough to use short casting reels. And if you have a lot of area to cover quickly, as tournament fishermen often do, these reels is definitely the best choice.
Need a little help buying a new fishing reel, buying your first reel, figuring out whether you need a new fixed spool reel, free spool reel, front drag reel or rear drag reel? Well you’ve come to the right place as here’s a detailed article providing masses of help to ensure you purchase the correct reel.
Read on and you’ll be able to decide what style of reel to choose, what size, what number of ball bearings and what configuration of fishing reel you will need to help you cast effectively and catch a whole lot more fish.
Fixed spool reels
By far the most common fishing reel available – almost every single angler in the country has at least one fixed spool reel.
The reason why they are called fixed spool reels is simple – the spool of the reel, under normal fishing circumstances, doesn’t move. It is set in a fixed position and instead the rotor arm passes around the spool to wind the line back onto the spool. Years before fixed spool reels were invented anglers used centrepin reels that did have revolving drums.
This type of fishing reel makes for a great all round reel. It could be used for float fishing, legering, lure fishing, trotting, specimen fishing, pleasure fishing or match fishing – it really is the most versatile reel we have at our disposal.
Their mechanisms can be locked at a flick of a switch to ensure that the reel cannot turn backwards and this is brilliant when legering as it allows the angler to fine-tune a quivertip to help spot every single bite.
They can be used for close range fishing right through to 100-yard casts with a heavyweight feeder – they really are incredibly versatile.
You could pick up a new, budget fixed spool reel for as little as £5, and for only £30 you will be able to find a reliable reel that will last a good few seasons. Fixed spool reels that will last a lifetime cost upwards of £100.
Free spool reels
Free spool fishing reels are an advanced design of fixed spool reels. They are exactly the same as fixed spool reels but they have one additional feature – an extra drag system.
This system, when it’s switched on, will allow the reel’s spool to turn under a set amount of tension determined by the angler. So, if a fish were to pick up a baited rig and swim off with it, line can strip from the reel easily. All the angler has to do to stop the line coming off the reel is to pick up the rod and turn the reel’s handle to disengage the free spool mechanism.
This feature is widely used by specimen carp, barbel, pike and catfish anglers as those species are widely known to pick up baits and swim off with them.
If a normal reel is used for this purpose there’s a very high chance that the fish would simply drag the rod and reel into the water because the spool can’t revolve to pay out line – it’s happened many times before.
Generally speaking free spool reels tend to be larger and heavier than fixed spool reels because there’s more mechanics within the reel’s body, and they tend to be used for casting heavier rigs longer distances, so the spools are often on the large side.
There are some free spool reels on the market costing as little as £15, but pay upwards of £40 and you will have a reel that’s reliable, performs well, casts well and won’t let you down when a big fish is cranked back to the net.
Big pit reels
Big fish anglers often need to cast extreme distances with either their baited rigs or with marker rod or spod set-ups. These are the times when a big pit reel come into play.
These specialist fixed spool reels are huge. They have small bodies, large handles, great cranking power, but above all they have enormous spools capable of holding many 100s of yards of thick line.
They offer the same features as most fixed spool reels (anti-reverse, line clips, folding handles etc) but their massive spools allow the angler to cast far further than he has ever done before.
Line on these large spools can strip off easily and with very little resistance, ensuring that the baited rig, marker float or spod flies as far as possible.
Carp, catfish and pike anglers tend to use big pit reels when they are fishing, feeding or finding a swim at range.
Some big pit reels come with a free spool facility that can be used to let the fish swim off with a baited rig and this feature gives the specialist big-fish angler even more reason to want to own one or a set.
Cheaper big pit reels will cost around £40, but expect to pay in the region of £80-plus for a reliable model that will last for many seasons and through the fights of many big fish.
Although somewhat outdated, centrepin reels take some beating when fishing flowing water. A well looked-after centrepin that rotates well will give the angler years of superb river float fishing because the rotating drum will pay out line at exactly the speed of the current. And this ensures that the baited rig travels downstream naturally and enticingly.
A good centrepin reel will not only spin for long periods, it ought to stop and revolve in the opposite direction with the gentlest of taps on the drum or the handles. This ability will prove very useful when hooking into a fish as the reel will have to stop quickly and begin revolving in the opposite direction for retrieval of the fish or the rig.
There are two main types of centrepin – wide drum and narrow drum. If you intend to fish with fine lines for small fish using light float rigs then a narrow drum centrepin is best. But if you’re intent on using strong lines for heavy float work, stret pegging or rolling baits for barbel then opt for a wide drum model.
Some centrepins are supplied with ratchets. This is basically a spring-loaded switch that can be engaged to tighten the reel’s drum to hinder it from spinning – but it doesn’t lock it tight. The ratchet is useful when legering to create a tight line to the lead, and also to provide audible bite detection due to the ratchet clicking as the drum starts to revolve when a fish takes line.
Another feature that might be found on centrepin reels is a drag system. This simply allows the angler to tighten the drum a little, slowing the revolving drum. This again comes in useful when legering or when trotting a river and you need to slow the speed of the drum down to hinder the progress of your rig. Drags can be fine-tuned easily to provide the perfect speed of rotation.
Although very simple in their design, centrepin reels aren’t cheap. A good one from a reputable manufacturer will cost in the region of £150 to £250. But you’ll have a sound reel that will – if treated well – last a lifetime and beyond without depreciating massively.
All modern fixed spool reels have drag systems. Some of them are adjustable at the back of the reel (rear drag) while some are adjustable upon the spool (front drag reels).
Rear drag models are the most popular among pleasure anglers, while front drag reels are the favourite among lure anglers and increasingly popular among match anglers.
Both style of drags provide the same function – they tighten or slacken the movement of the spool. When the drag is set at its loosest setting, the spool will rotate easily and a fish will be able to pull line from the reel faster than you’ll be able to wind it in.
At its tightest setting the spool will lock tight and the line will snap before the spool gives and starts to pay out any line.
Once a rig has been made the drag should be adjusted to suit. To do this guess the drag required, hold the rod and reel in one hand, and hold your line and in the other. Flex the rod as far as you can to see if the line begins stripping from the spool.
You should adjust the drag so that the spool begins paying out line just before the line gives up and snaps.
Regarding the performance of the different types of drag systems – front drag reels have the edge over rear drag reels simply because the mechanics of the drag don’t have to run all the way through the reel’s body – they are positioned right on the end of the spool. This means that front drag reels are slightly more effective than rear drag models. Maybe this is why so many of our top-flight match anglers prefer front drag reels.
Most reel manufacturers code their front drag reels as FD, and their rear drag reels as RD.
Free spool conversions
If you have a large reel, but wish it was a free spool reel, there are companies that specialise in converting the spool assembly to transform the reel into a free spool model.
For much less than the price of a new free spool reel you could transform your favourite large fixed spool reel into a model that will let line strip from the spool if a big fish decides to take the baited rig.
The flatter the lay of line upon a reel’s spool the better the reel will perform when casting. You’ll cast further with less effort, and you’ll be able to cast with much more accuracy too.
A flat line lay will ensure that the line peels off the spool consistently and with less resistance than a spool that has a curved line lay.
If you’re not that bothered about accuracy when you’re casting then you don’t need to worry about whether the spool on your reel has a line clip or not. But you should be bothered as accuracy is everything when fishing.
If you keep casting feeders to the same spot every time you will catch more fish, and a line clip on your spool will help you achieve this.
All you need to do is cast out your rig to the chosen distance and then wrap the line around the clip. Retrieve the rig, aim it towards the same spot and chances are the line will shoot off the spool until it hits the line clip, making the rig stop. That will provide you with the accuracy you need to ensure you hit the same spot upon every single cast.
The choice of reel handle is a personal one. You won’t get much of a choice when deciding between centrepin, multiplier and closed face reels because they are all pretty much the same. But the three types of fixed spool reels offer a wide variety of handle shapes and lengths. Some of the higher range fixed spool reels also have double handles to provide better balance upon the retrieve and quicker use as it’s easier to locate a handle that has two grips than a single handle.
There’s no reason to have long handles upon any reel other than big pit reels – these reels demand long handles to enable the angler to power into large fish or to retrieve rigs that have been cast very long distances.
Responsiveness describes how fast a rod can release its energy and then snap back into place. Responsiveness depends mainly on the material of which the rod is made, as well as its weight. Some rods consist of layers of multiple materials, so their responsiveness can be misleading if you judge only by the outer layer. In principle, lighter rods are much more responsive, especially at the tip. Finding a rod with good responsiveness is a must because it will allow you to achieve further and more accurate casts with less energy expenditure.
The materials and the quality of the guides determine the durability of your rod and its ability to withstand corrosion. The best guides are made of silicon carbide putting very little resistance due to friction. This allows you to throw further and retrieve quicker. These guides will also prevent your line from overheating but are also more susceptible to breaking.
Titanium guides are also a decent choice because they are more resilient than stainless steel and less likely to break, ensuring the resistance to corrosion in saltwater. A rule of thumb is that the more guides a rod has the better its performance will be, distributing the pressure more evenly across the pole. This, however, will result in increased cost of the rod, so you should be very careful in deciding which your priorities are.
The gear ratio determines the speed and the power of the reel. Lower gears provide more power, while higher gears ensure an increased amount of speed. The gear ratio in most fishing reels varies from 2:1(the internal gears make two revolutions for every one revolution of the head crank) up to 6:The gear ration can be used as an indication of the kind of fishing you are most likely to do with your reel. For example, if you are planning to draw your line more rapidly than a higher gear ratio will be suitable for you. On the other hand, if you want a reel which can draw with a lot of power then you should choose a lower gear. Some reel models include multiple gears so that you can easily and swiftly switch between them.
Drag is the resistance which the reel requires to pull the line away from the spool. Sustaining an optimal drag amount is crucial because if the line is too rigid without enough slack, some big fish can break it by giving a decent amount of resistance. If a reel has a low-quality drag system the line may become jerky an in effect can easily break.
There are two main types of drag systems: star drags and level drags. A star drag system consists of a star-shaped knob placed near the handle with the help of which the resistance can be increased or decreased. Lever drag systems involve manipulating a bar or a button. Lever drag systems are capable of achieving a greater amount of accuracy when casting and have a smoother release. Their biggest disadvantage, however, is that they cost much more than the star ones.
Are you a fishing beginner? You may want to read my review of the best spinning rod and reel combos for beginners. I hope that it helps.
If you are a fishing beginner you may want to check my article about the best telescopic rod and reel for beginners, or best spinning rod and reel for beginners, my article about the best fishing rod and reel for backpacking, hiking and camping or my fishing rod buying guide. If you are a beginner you may find these articles very helpful.
Each of these categories comes with different specifications and have certain differences in terms of functionality and even from the outer appearance. Let’s take a look at the pros and cons associated with each category and some of the top rated products come under each category making it easy for you to decide which items match your purpose.
A.Pros and cons of Spinning Reels
Being a fishing reel category that delivers a higher amount of versatility, spinning reels are the most popular variety among the fishing enthusiasts. In fact, spinning reels can be used under different circumstances because of their versatile use. Be it a live bait or artificial lure, you can use spinning reels with no difficulty. These reels allow you to throw lightweight bait further. Most of the modern spinning reels come with swappable characteristics enabling both right-handers and left-handers to use them without a hassle. These reels are easy-to-use and therefore even a novice angler. If you are using a light bait, spinning reels can be the best choice for you.
B.Pros and Cons of Baitcasting reels
Baitcasting reels are known among the anglers for the power it gives you when fishing. In fact, this very feature is considered to be the most notable benefit when you use a baitcasting reel. Particularly, after catching a big the fish, baitcasting reel can help you to haul it towards you with significantly less effort. So, if you intend to reel bigger fish varieties, you should consider purchasing a baitcasting instead of setting for a spinning reel. Also, these reels give you more accuracy when it comes to luring.
When it comes to cost, however, baitcasting reels are recognized to be a very expensive variety and that is the major drawback associated with them. Compared to spinning reels, baitcasting reels are significantly high. So, if you are an angler who runs on a tight budget, the price might be a definite drawback. Also, if you are a novice level angler, without proper practice and knowledge, you will find it pretty difficult to use this reel.
C.Pros and Cons of Trolling reels
The most significant advantage of using a trolling reel is that it gives you the opportunity to reach longer distances and catch fish in larger areas. So, the anglers who fish in larger areas that have different depths should give prominence to trolling reels. Particularly, those who fish in deeper waters prefer trolling reels. If you have an intention of catching relatively larger fish varieties such as salmon and trout, you must have a trolling reel as it would help you a lot by giving you an additional dragging power.
When it comes to the usability, trolling reels are not the best option for novice anglers. You cannot make the best of this reel unless you have greater amount of experience as an angler. If you are a novice angler, it is better to try with a less complicated variety instead of using a trolling reel at once. However, with good training and hands-on experience, you can find these reels to be very useful.
Spinning reels is the best choice to catch bass fish too. Although baitcasting reels too can be used to catch bass fish, those reels demand you to have adequate experience to use them.
The most recommended fishing reel to catch salmon fish is trolling reels. However, even a baitcasting reel can be used to catch salmon particularly if you are an experienced angler who knows what you exactly do. You should omit spinning reels when catching salmon.
Since trout fish are not among the biggest game fish, you can use a spinning reel to catch them effectively. Spinning reels are easy to use with both live and artificial lure. There is no necessity to invest on a baitcasting or trolling reel to catch trout therefore.
Looking for the best ice fishing reels? Today we are reviewing some of the best ice fishing reels for a better and enhanced ice fishing experience.
It is important to have a proper ice fishing reel to make the most on the trip. If you fail to choose a ice fishing reel for your type of fishing, you will have a hard time catching fishes. Fear not, we have shared some of the best ice fishing reels in this post. Let’s start with a short chart of top ice fishing reels.
Fiblink Inline Ice Fishing Reel
FIblink is a popular fishing gear manufacturer with a wide range of fishing accessories. This is an inline ice fishing reel for ice anglers. Unlike most ice fishing reels, this one is available in both left-handed and right-handed size. It comes with a super smooth drag system with instant anti-reverse. The free spool release button make it easy for the anglers to operate.
With a 2:7:Gear ratio and 4+Ball bearings, you can rely on this ice fishing reel for having a good time. CNC machined aluminum body and spool ensures high durability and large line capacity. With a low price this is a great inline ice fishing reel for both starters and professionals. Available in both left-handed and right-handed.
Eagle Claw In Line Ice Reel
Best Cheap Ice Fishing Reel: Made of nylon body and spool, this is a great reel for ice fishing. With a smooth Teflon drag, you can understand why this simple looking ice reel has been loved so many ice anglers. You can adjust the spool tension, thanks to the brilliant design.
Eagle Claw In line ice reel is available in a very cheap rate. Despite the cheap rate, it is pretty sturdy and works great for ice fishing. This reel is primarily made for left hand retrieve, so you have to do some handwork if you want to make it right-hand retrieve capable.
Pisfun Spinning Fishing Reel : Freshwater & Saltwater
Made of rugged frame this spinning reel is great for ice fishing. The spool is made of lightweight double-anodized aluminum spool. It comes with a multi-disk drag system with oil-soaked drag washer. This reel used ball bearings and one quick-set anti-reverse roller bearing.
For extra durability the corrosion resistant construction comes very friendly. It performs very smoothly, so you can have a great time on the outdoor.
TICA SS500 Cetus Trout Fishing Series
A lot of people have never heard of fishing reels from tica. If you are into trout fishing, this is one of the best ice fishing reel for you. As the name suggests this is an ice fishing reel for fishing trouts. The precision stainless steel ball bearings of this reel make it a great gear to have on the fishing trip. The soft touch handle know comes with two stainless steel ball bearings. It also comes with an extra spool. It also features an instant anti-reverse and a balanced rotor for a smoother reeling. Best thing? The price is very reasonable.
H.T Enterprises Accucast Ultra-light Spinning Reel
Accucast is an ultra-light spinning reel for ice fishing. Unlike most ice fishing reels, this one comes with a very cheap price. This may not be the best ice fishing reels for hardcore fishermans, but a casual ice fisherman would surely appreciate it’s features and performance. You can choose from two different size of this ice fishing reel.
Choosing the best ice reel is pretty easy. I am not going to share a mega guide, but will provide you some factors to consider while making a purchase decision.
Penn Pursuit II Spinning Fishing Reel
The drag adjustment system in saltwater spinning reels works similarly as in other devices. An effective drag system make sure that the speed at which the line is pulled off the spool is regulated after the fish takes the bait. For example, if you are casting a large fish such as Tuna, the drag will assist you in preventing it from snapping the fishing line.
Fishing in saltwater can be challenging compared to freshwater as you are not sure what will you land by the end of casting. It’s quite possible that you reel a pound snapper and end up with foot barracuda. Frames can be constructed from both graphite and aluminum. These types of frames reduces the spin on the spool and reel while you are struggling with a heavy fish.
Fin-Nor Offshore Spin Fishing Reel
The Fin-Nor Offshore Spin Fishing Reel is designed with the idea of casting large fish clearly in focus. It features an unmatchable large dual drag system that provides up to 60 pounds of drag pressure. The system disperses heat to land heavy fish efficiently. The saltwater spinning reel is built for high level performance. The impressive durability and reliability makes this tool a versatile addition to the angler’s fishing kit.
It features an aluminum body, rotor and side plate. The drive gear and the center drive shaft are made up of stainless steel thus giving additional strength to the reel. Fin-Nor Offshore Spin Fishing Reel comprises of four dual shielded stainless steel ball bearings. Whereas the powerful line control system features a large multi-stack offshore drag system with the gear ratio of 4.4:1.
The heavy duty shaft is capable of handling pressure and keeping the solid feel while landing heavy fish. The oversized bearings on the shaft and pinion gear ensures a powerful base and full control over the landing fish. Overall, it’s a heavy duty saltwater spinning reel offering smooth, consistent and powerful performance.
Pflueger President Spinning Reel
Pflueger President Spinning Reel is one of the best saltwater fishing reels constructed from the highest quality components. It features nine stainless steel ball bearings with a one-way anti-reverse clutch bearing.
The spinning reel is equipped with an anodized spool and oil felt stainless steel drag system for resistance against corrosion and maintains pressure. Coming towards the construction, the body and rotor are made up of graphite thus adding minimal weight to the reel.
Pflueger President Spinning Reel offers soft touch knobs to enhance ease and grip. Additionally, it comes with an aluminum bail wire which is thick and prevents any mishap. Overall, it’s a great functional reel that you can purchase at extremely affordable price.
Wrapping It Up
After a thorough research and interviews from the professional anglers, we have listed our top Saltwater Spinning Reels. All these units are successfully leading the fishing market. They offer you superior and reliable performance every time you are out on water. However, if you are looking for a specific Best Saltwater Spinning Reel, we would recommend you Penn Spin fisher V Reel and KastKing Royale Legend Baitcasting Fishing Reel. Both these spinning reels are designed specifically for saltwater fishing. They have durable construction and effective functioning. These reels are corrosion resistant and can withstand high pressure without damaging themselves. If you are looking for best value for money investment, selecting any one of the reel listed above will be a wise decision that you won’t regret later. Hopefully, this buyer guide will help you in making a better selection. Purchase your best spinning reel and start casting heavy fish from today.
Fly Fishilicious, your site for learning everything there is to know about fly fishing and what you need to start catching fish with a fly rod! Find product reviews, talk to the experts and get yourself acquainted with this diverse and addictive style of fishing.
Different Fishing Casts
Fly fishing, or using an artificial fly (but really meaning fly fishing uses all types of food sources: worm, little fish, infant insect- artificially recreated anything that a fish might like) to catch fish is an old fishing practice. The style as we know it began in the mid 1800s with long bamboo or wooden rods supporting a simple silk or horsehair fishing line.
Luckily, today finicky bamboo rods has been replaced (though not always) with smash-resistant graphite and fiberglass technologies and the complicated lines of tied horsehair has been replaced with waterproof plastic fibers.
What to Look For in a Fly Rod
Fly fishing is a wonderful activity and can be enjoyed by people of all ages and around the world. The versatility of fly fishing makes purchasing your first fly fishing gear an exciting and memorable experience.
When looking for a rod, many factors should be considered. Price, versatility, quality and manufactures warrant are four major things to consider when purchasing a rod.
Before worrying too much about the specs, first think about where you are most often going fishing.
Saltwater and Coastal Fishing
Those fishing in brackish waters, coastal ports or inlets are also at risk to saltwater corrosion. Saltwater rods are also powerful casting rods, casting into the wind large, heavy streamers with a powerful quick stroke.
How to Take Care of Your Fishing Rod
With mild soap and water, the rod and fly line can be wiped down after each use or frequently between trips. Dirt and residue build up on the fly line can corrode and damage the line, causing irregular casts and in worse case scenarios, break-offs when you have a feisty, fighting fish on the line.
For saltwater anglers, more care is needed to fight the corrosive strength of saltwater on gear. Proper washing directly after use (not a month later!) with fresh water or dish-soap water will prevent rusty guides, reels and hooks.
Poorly designed rods will be difficult for the angler to cast- making even the best of pros curse like a sailor as their line tangles or their fly flops terribly onto the water.
However, when just getting into fly fishing, maybe a small investment at first is ideal before taking the plunge into top-quality gear. Beginner rods can teach all generations how to properly move the rod, back and forth into the typical fly fishing casts. Once you are hooked, a hand-me-down, well-loved rod always makes a treasured gift or priceless token.
Sage, a leader in the fly rod manufacturing world since 1980 is a top performer when it comes to casting rods and catching fish. Professionals or amateurs who pick up and cast a rod designed from Sage enjoy their easy casting ability and versatility. Proven to outcast rods of all sizes- from 00 to a 12wt, Sage fly rods have a bigger fanbase than The Beatles.
Generations of Experience
St. Croix knows fishing and what fishermen want. Building both fly and conventional fishing rods for over 7years off the shores of the St. Croix river in Wisconsin, their fly fishing combo, or fly fishing set is the best in the market.
Triple texture technology
Also included is a fitted case for the rod and reel. Take your rod across the world or store it safely at home with their well padded carrying case.
Wild Water Fishing Complete / weight Starter Package
Equipt with everything you need- even down to the fly, this package is ideal for anglers fishing in medium sized rivers, lakes or ponds for trout, small carp, barbel or bass.
Great for small streams
Offering a variety of rod and reel combos, a beginner fishing small streams or in lakes will find their ideal rod and reel through White River Fly Shop’s Dogwood Canyon fly fishing outfit. Starting at a two piece, weight, 7’ rod that’s ready to catch wild brook trout in the Appalachians, this rod is accurate, casts great and won’t break the bank.
For those fishing for steelhead, carp or pike, try out their weight, 9’ rod. Where quality and affordability meets, this fly rod and reel setup is it.
Another top rod from White River Fly Shop where good grip meets a lightweight, 7’10” rod. For a or weight, this rod is shortened down to 7’10” to allow easier casting, all day. Fight fishing fatigue with a shorter rod and comfortable casting design- your casting hand will thank you! Try different lines with this versatile rod- go low in lake fishing with a sinking line or cast a popper on a floating line; all types of flies and lines cast well with the The Heat, Stage Fly rod.
Great for Beginners
If you are interested in learning about fly fishing and want something to pick up quickly and go with, this fly fishing package is an affordable and useful tool to begin fishing with. At a price that won’t break the bank, a 4-piece fly rod, reel, line, fly box and flies is how to quickly learn about fly fishing, the hassle-free way.
This rod will teach you how to properly ‘load’ the rod and perform a variety of casts. This rod is accurate at a variety of distances and can load a great D-cast, or roll cast to your target.
Trusted as a leader in the fishing industry for many generations, Eagle Claw offers this lightweight, 6’6, two-piece fiberglass rod is perfect for teaching children or adults how to fly fish- affordably! It is truly the best deal in the fly fishing world.
Though not as quick as a typical medium-action rod, this fiberglass rod is a graceful medium-slow action rod. In addition, Eagle Claw offers a one year warranty on their rods, and stand’s by the quality of their products! At this price point, it wins the Best Discount Choice by us.
This slow action rod is a favorite among many fishermen when they just need a little rod for some easy fishing. Fishing for small panfish, saltwater bait fish, croppies or small wild trout is exciting and rewarding with a small fiberglass rod. This rod is particularly designed well through years of research and is an excellent fly rod to cast.
Perfect for Trout
If you ever dreamed of owning a bamboo rod that looks great on the shelf as well as it does catching fish in your local waters, the Orvis Penn’s Creek is the perfect partner for such a dream. Balanced through hours of meticulous work, this two piece bamboo rod is ideal for throwing small dry flies on a bushy stream, river or lake.
The beauty of a hand crafted bamboo rod shines in this series of bamboo rods offered by Orvis. As a premier rod maker in the business since the 1850s, Orvis knows a thing or two about rods- especially bamboo rods.
Before fiberglass and graphite rods, Orvis was reinventing the ‘bamboo wheel’, so to say, and the results are in their bamboo rods of today.
The Adirondack, a full flex, slow-action, 7’5” rod is ideal for casting accurate dry fly presentations in difficult fishing surroundings. At 7’5”, the Adirondack can easily cast to difficult pools or below branches- and looks darn good doing it, too.
Improved Machine Technology
Going out on the water with a Ross reel and you can never go wrong. One of the easiest reels to use, it’s large arbor and smooth drag system is reliable against a tough fish every time. Known in the fly fishing industry for their durability, Ross is at the top of the list when it comes to fly fishing reels- both in the salt or freshwater. Both easy to use and maintain, they are built to last a lifetime.
Easy to Use
Since a long time, this reel has been a favorite among light-tackle fly fishermen. Built without a drag, this lightweight reel is perfect for fighting and casting to small trout, panfish and other small freshwater fish species. Ready to send out or reel in fly line at any second, it is an affordable and dependable reel capable of all day fishing with any rod smaller than a weight.
Great Casting Control
Fishing a weight rod for trout, bass, panfish, or anything you can find in the backyard pond or lake is a delight with the Encounter, a weight 8’6” rod from Orvis. Balanced, well designed graphite gives you a lightweight rod and reel to cast without casting fatigue on an all day trip out fishing.
Lightweight Rod and Reel
You can fish for days and never get tired with this combo from Redington. Redington, known for their great fishing gear offers the Path fly rod combo at a very affordable price. Set up with a balanced reel, fly line and leader, this rod is good to go as soon as it arrives on your doorstep. A 5-weight, perfect for trout, panfish and small bass fishing can be ordered in either a 8’6” length, best for windy conditions, or a foot length; ideal for nymph fishing and typical fishing conditions.
First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.
Most important, have fun and choose your fishing reel wisely! Good luck!
So, TOP3 of fishing reel
- №1 — Abu Garcia Ambassadeur SX Round Reel
- №2 — Abu Garcia Revo STX Low Profile Fishing Reel
- №3 — KastKing Summer and Centron Spinning Reels Spinning Fishing Reel 9 +1 BB Light Weight Ultra Smooth Powerful