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Baitcasting Reels

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Learn More About Baitcasting Reels

Selection

Baitcasting reels are ideal when using heavier line and lures, and they provide greater control over the speed and distance of casts. You’ll find a great selection of baitcaster reels at Field & Stream. Choose from the best brands, including Abu Garcia®, Daiwa®, Lew’s®, Quantum®, Shimano® and many more.

Find the perfect match for your new reel in our great selection of casting rods, or try a baitcasting combo.

Buying Considerations

There are several factors to consider before investing in a baitcasting reel, including:

Frame

Most baitcasting reels feature an aluminum or graphite frame. Graphite is lightweight and easy to handle, while aluminum is extremely durable. Top-of-the-line reels often feature a one-piece aluminum frame.

Design

  • Low-Profile Baitcasting Reels: Low-profile models are the most popular type of baitcasting reels; they feature an ergonomic design and are perfect for bass and crappie fishing.
  • Round Baitcasting Reels: Round baitcasters are workhorses—they hold more line than low-profile reels and are great when using large baits and heavy line.

Gear Ratio

Gear ratio indicates the speed and power of your reel. For example, for a reel with a gear ratio of 6.4:1, the spool spins 6.4 times for every one crank of the handle. A gear with a lower ratio, like 4.1:1, will provide more cranking power, while a ratio like 7.1:1 indicates a very fast retrieve

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.

Quick Tips

Baitcasting reels can be tricky to master. If you don’t stop the spool from spinning before your lure hits the water, you’re likely to face a bird’s nest—a nasty tangle of fishing line that can make for a frustrating day on the water. Many beginners prefer spinning reels over baitcasters because they are more forgiving, and easy-to-use spincast reels may be the best option for children. One key to avoiding a tangle: make sure you don’t release the line too late.