Learn More About Spinning Reels
Gear up for your fishing tradition with the great selection of spinning reels at Field & Stream. Make the perfect cast with spinning reels from the best brands, including Abu Garcia®, Daiwa®, Okuma®, Pfleuger®, Quantum®, Shimano® and more.
Match your new reel with the perfect spinning rod, or choose a dependable spinning rod & reel combo.
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Spinning reels are typically easy to use and tend to be more forgiving than baitcasting reels. There are several important factors to consider when buying a spinning reel, including:
- Construction: The housing and spool on a spinning reel is usually made of graphite or aluminum, or a combination of both. Aluminum provides dependability and superior strength, while graphite offers lightweight comfort and anti-corrosive properties—an essential feature for saltwater. Weight is a key consideration as well; if you spend a lot of time on the water, you might get tired of casting with a heavier reel.
- Line Capacity: Spinning reels are versatile, with the ability to handle everything from 2-pound test to the heaviest line weights. Make sure the fishing line you choose matches your reel’s specifications.
- Gear Ratio: On a spinning reel, gear ratio refers to the number of times the bail rotates around the spool on a single crank of the handle. A 4:1 ratio is considered relatively slow, 5:1 is medium and 6:1 is high-speed.
- Drag System: There are two main types of drag systems available on spinning reels: front adjustment and rear adjustment. Go with front-adjustment drag if you’re taking on big, aggressive fish. Rear drag systems allow for smoother adjustments on the fly and are also ideal for working ultra-light lines.
- Ball Bearings: Generally, more bearings mean better performance, but pay attention to the bearing quality. You’ll be better off with four high-quality bearings as opposed to 10 lower-quality ones.
Check to see if the handle has anti-reverse capabilities. Anti-reverse keeps the handle from spinning backward, giving you more control as you set the hook. It comes down to personal preference—some anglers appreciate the feature, and others find no use for it.