Saltwater Spinning Reel Buyers Guide

Product Name Spinning reels are the most known reels and the most popular as well for fishing. Especially when it comes to easy usage and performance the spinning reel has been declared supreme. It is obvious that supremacy comes at a price – fame. So now there is a whole wide range of spinning reels to choose from and they can confuse any angler. So to help you out we have put together a buyer’s guide for those of you who want to buy spinning reels.

1. The Reel Body – First step to choosing the perfect spinning reel is to carefully examine the body of your spinning reel. Every spinning reel has a variety of parts and picking up a reel with the least parts is your safest bet for a long lasting spinning reel and avoiding a mechanical breakdown. A reel body can be made of aluminium, graphite or plastic components. The aluminium bodies are the strongest but heavier as well. It is a personal choice though if you would prefer strength or weight. If you choose saltwater fishing then a graphite body reel should be your choice as it has a quality of being corrosion resistant, a very vital quality in saltwater conditions. Another factor is a solid construction of the body. Flimsy parts are a strict no-no. There should be no back play whatsoever and performance should be smooth.

2. The Reel Size – Another dilemma is the reel size. Usually a 10 pound test line is the highest thickness and strength that is put on to a spinning reel. The lighter your fishing line, smaller should your reel of choice be. The reel you decide to buy should be rated as per the pound test line you use.

3. The Gear Ratio – What exactly does gear ratio mean? The number of complete revolutions made by your spool with one crank of the handle. A 6:1 gear ratio is a high speed line retrieve whereas a 3:1 gear ratio is slow but the benefit is that it gives more torque while reeling in the fish. So based on the style of fishing you prefer either a slow, medium or high speed retrieve can be chosen.

4. The Drag System – This is the most important system on the spinning reel. It is responsible for putting pressure on a hooked fish and releasing line during a battle. If you do not have a high quality, non constrictive and smooth drag then you risk breaking your fishing line and losing the big fish. The line should be able to be released steadily and without any constriction regardless of the tightness setting. Two types of drag systems are available: front drag and rear drag. This just indicates the positioning of the drag system. However, there are minor differences between the two. The front drag system has a larger and multiple drag washers providing increased performance and durability in contrast to rear drag systems. Rear drag systems on the other hand have controls that are easier to be accessed but cannot perform as well in the demanding conditions one faces while fishing or large fish.

5. The Ball Bearings – A big feature in spinning reels of any kind are the ball bearings because without them they would not be ‘spinning’ reels. Within the body of the reel are placed bushings or ball bearings to provide support, stability and smoothness. Most of the spinning reels contain a roller bearing as well in the line roller. The more the number of ball bearings the smoother the spinning reel becomes and performs in use and when it counts most. Try to pick out sealed bearings of stainless steel rather than bushings to get added control and durability. Make sure you are not stingy and trying to save while you pick out reels with most ball bearings. In fact as much as your wallet can handle is the best choice or you will be left cursing yourself. We suggest you buy a spinning reel with at least 4 stainless steel ball bearings. There cannot be anything worse than a reel that fails to perform well when most required or that is not smooth while retrieving your fishing line.

6. The Spool – The spool is very important for holding line as well as casting distance and also smoothness. Most of the spools in the market are either anodised graphite or aluminium. Though graphite is the lighter of the two as we mentioned before, the anodised aluminium spool provides much greater durability and strength. There are 2 types of designs in spools: internal spool or skirted spool. Internal spools are pretty extinct what with all the constantly evolving technology going around these days but some manufacturers still have some reels with internal spools even today though there aren’t many. This design is quite simple but the line often gets entangled in the reel housing and this poses a big flaw for the dependability of this spool. The skirted spool successfully eliminates this problem and keeps your line tangle free. Also another design available is the ‘long cast’ spool. As suggested by the name, these spools are shallower when compared to the regular spools but they are much longer length wise. The elongation in this spool provides lesser line friction and provides much more casting distance to the angler. These spools are beneficial especially for sight fishing and clear water fishing. A nice bonus would be spare spools as they let you outfit each spool with a different pound test fishing line. This is very helpful while changing applications as is as simple as alternating spools while you are out fishing.

7. The Anti Reverse Handles – These handles are a pre-requisite while you search for your perfect spinning reel. This handle has a simple function of not allowing the handle to spin backwards no matter what. This means the hook sets are more powerful and more accurate because there is a lack of play in your handle.
It is indeed a tough decision to choose a spinning reel but think of it this way – you will be a happier angler once you reel in those big game fish because you spent an hour excruciatingly scrutinising each detail in your perfect spinning reel. Not to forget you learned a thing or two about what is going on inside your reel while you are out fishing.

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