Many people are in the same boat as you. They want to start fishing, but they don’t know what reel to get or what brands are good. This article will help narrow down your choices and make choosing the best baitcasting reel for beginners easier!
We have done all of the research and come up with our top 3 picks for the best baitcaster for beginners on Amazon. We’ve also included information about each one’s features, price, pros/cons, customer reviews, fresh and saltwater fishing differences and more so that you can find the best reel for you!
Quick Overview – Best Baitcasting Reel for Beginners
- Best All Around Baitcasting Reel for Beginners: Daiwa Tatula Type R
- Best Value Baitcast Reel for Beginners: PISCIFUN Phantom X
- Editor’s Choice Baitcaster for Beginners: Kastking Royale Legend Baitcasting Reel
Quick Comparison – Best Beginner Baitcasting Reel
What is a baitcasting reel? This type of fishing reel has a mechanism that allows the line to cast out away from the fisherman. Unlike a spinning reel, they are not self-spooling and require manual retrieval after each cast. Typically, baitcasters need to be wound with more power than spinning reels because they have to put up with greater resistance as the line casts out and back in for every set of hooks or lures on your line.
Baitcaster reels, especially with a high gear ratio, can be perfect for bass fishing. At the same time, even when you choose the best baitcasting reel, you can be sure to get a quality reel for the money. A new baitcasting reel is not generally very expensive.
One has to be meticulous when looking for a good reel. But, when it comes to a newbie, how should you know what to look for in the best baitcasting reel for beginners? There are so many options to choose from that it can overwhelm anyone. We have discussed a few features that will help you choose the perfect product.
Types of Baitcasting Reel Profiles
It is hard as a newbie to figure out what is best for you. This guide will help you go through all the checklist points that you should look for in a good baitcast reel and a few of our very own recommendations to help you.
Low-Profile Baitcasting Reels
Low-profile baitcasting reels are famous for their smaller size, and they can fit into your palm. Due to this reason, they are also easier to cast. They are usually used when you’re fishing for smaller fishes as low-profile reels do not have the same amount of spool or line capacity as traditional round baitcasting reels, but still more than your average spinning reels.
Not only that, but spools in these reels have a different shape than that used in round profile bait casting reels. If you’re just starting to go fishing or are still getting the hang of it, this might be the one for you.
Round-Profile Baitcasting Reels
Round-profile baitcasting reels are bigger and heavier than low profile ones as they usually have an all-metal construction. The metal construction not only gives them a sleek look but also provides anti-corrosion protection.
Due to this feature, they are mostly used for saltwater fishing, where there are more chances of corroding. Round profile reels also have a bigger size so that they can accommodate longer and even thicker
fishing lines like braided line as compared to the low profile one.
Due to this, they are mostly used when fishing for larger fish such as steelhead or salmon. Trolling anglers also prefer round profile reels due to their extended line capacity accommodation.
Number of Ball Bearings
The quality of a fishing reel is usually associated with the number of ball bearings. The higher the number of ball bearings, the higher is the quality of the reel. What needs to be seen is not only the quantity but also the quality of the bearings.
Sometimes, when product labels high quality, they mean the material used for the making of ball bearings is good. The bearings should also have anti-corrosion protection or rust-resistant coating.
If ball bearings corrode, it will hinder the extension of the line or retraction of the line and will eventually jam the whole reel itself. So, reels should be protected against rust. Words such as sealed or protected or shielded indicate the presence of rust resistance and them being corrosion resistant.
The Material of Line Guides
Line guides are made of 2 types of material.
Ceramic is the more affordable and sensitive material of the two. Ceramic line guides are very efficient and can work with all sorts of
braided lines. But, these are rather sensitive as they are prone to breakage when they fall. Due to this, titanium is a better option. Ceramics may be cheaper, but titanium, while it is more expensive, will also be more durable.
Type of Braking System
Braking is a very crucial function of a fishing reel. It helps you to keep your line in check and not become tangled or backlash. There are 2 types of braking systems.
- Centrifugal system
- Magnetic system
Centrifugal system takes less time to get adjusted to, while the magnetic system takes a while. Some companies have put out products that utilize both centrifugal and magnetic systems.
Centrifugal Braking System
The Centrifugal system works on the principle of friction. By the twist of knobs, the pins will come together to stop the line or by pressing the plates on the line to create friction to prevent it from extending.
Magnetic Braking System
The magnetic system works by creating resistance via magnets. In this system, pins or plates will not come in contact with each other but will apply strength with the help of magnets. You will be able to control the action of this system by a knob or a twist on the outer side of the reel.
Most baitcasting reels have 2 large knobs on the side that spin about the same axis. Larger paddles will be a safer option to go for so you can quickly grasp it in your hand. Handles with non-slip covers are an even better option.
The last thing you want is your fish slipping out on a hot summer day due to your sweaty hands unable to grasp the handle. Handles can also be placed either on the left or the right. The position of the handle is not changeable; hence it is essential to know beforehand which hand you want to use to reel in.
Material of Handle
Handles are made up of different materials such as:
Cork is not used very commonly but is a lightweight alternative for handles. It makes the handle easy to grasp.
2. Soft-touch rubber
Soft-touch rubber has a copolymer coating that allows a secure grip even in wet or hot weather.
EVA handles are the most commonly used handles, not only as reel handles but as rod handles as well. EVA is a foamy material that provides a good and firm grasp with minimal slippage.
Performance handles are not commonly used. These are made from the sticky tape that provides a firm grip.
The drag of the system is dependent on how much force is needed to reel in or extend the fishing line from the spool. If the pull is not working correctly, the line will be either too loose or too tight. If it is too loose, it will allow your fish to roam a bit further, and in the case of being too tight, it will enable the fish to snap the line. There are two types of drag system:
1. Star drag
2. Knob drag
The Star drag system is usually used in traditional round profile reels as they are easy to twist with wet hands or gloves. The knob drag system is generally used in low profile reels.
The Best Baitcasting Reels for Beginners – Our Top Picks
The Best Baitcasting Reel for Beginners
- Sleek design
- Smooth functioning
- Sealed ball bearing
- Only for right-handed people
The DAIWA TATULA baitcasting reel has a high drag power ranging up to 13.2 pounds. It also has a high-performance gear ratio of 6:3:1, which is pretty standard for a beginner baitcasting reel. It has 7 ball bearings plus 1 roller bearing.
The light and comfortable design come with high strength and power. It provides maximum cast control and has a high drag force capability, making it a great option if you plan to go for salmon!
In general, it is quite simply a very solid choice for a baitcasting reel for beginners.Amazon
The Best Value Baitcast Reel for Beginners
- Compact design
- CNC hollowed spool
- High-performance gear ratio
- Great Price / Value
- Not the best for Saltwater Fishing
The PISCIFUN Baitcasting reel contains a 4-disc carbon fiber washer that provides up to 18 pounds of stopping power. It comes with Hamai cut brass gear that ensures good reeling strength. It does have a low profile frame structure, which is great if you’re starting new.
It has a robust and non-slip carbon fiber crank handle. This means that if you’re wearing gloves or your hands get wet, your reel handle won’t slip from your hands. This reel is an all-in-one reel that has a high-performance gear ratio of about 7:6:1.
It has a dynamic brake that works on the principle of the centrifugal braking system. The braking system has 6 pins that enable jamming. It also has an adorable, small, and compact design that fits right into the palm and is easy and comfortable to use and comes at an amazing price, making it the best cheap baitcast reel for beginners.
Also, it has an oversized line guide that is helpful in long-distance throws. The oversized line guide helps to control the wiggles and shakes in the fishing line when the fish tries to get away. Possibly the best and unique feature is that it has CNC hollowed spool. The spool comes with the ability to move faster than average reels, so it handles light lines and lures better than traditional fishing reels.
The Best Baitcaster for Beginners: Editor’s Choice
- Anti-corrosion ball bearings
- Small structure
- Takes a while to get used to
This one has a compact design, and the advanced Royale legend reel claims to deliver pro-level tournament performance. The reel has a small frame structure and can easily be held in the palm when fishing. It also comes with a swing-wing twist open cap that can be removed or placed easily.
The different gear ratio models are color-coded with individual colors so that they are easy to distinguish. The ball bearings are made of stainless steel. Each bearing is coated with anti-corrosion coating, which ensures the longevity of the reel.
The product has hardened aluminum main gears that provide the durability of the reels. This reel has a drag power of 17.6 pounds. The magnetic brake system is pretty advanced. This product features brass pinion gears and worm drives for strength and better performance.Amazon
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
Low- profile is usually suggested for beginners as it is smaller and easier to get used to. Often, beginners do not fish for bigger fish or for a longer time, so the smaller reel is an excellent first choice.
It is okay to buy whatever you think fits your needs. One thing to do is not to invest in a cheaper material. Cheap doesn’t always mean harmful, but cheap/inferior material is a big no-no.
It might work perfectly fine a few times but will eventually cause trouble. The same goes for cheap baitcasting rods as well.
A braking system is a jamming system that will stop your fishing line so that it remains at the exact length that you want it to be.
More money doesn’t always translate to better quality. In fact, we wrote another article on baitcasting reels under $100 with some being even under $50. That being said, it is good to invest in a better quality product once and take care of it. This will save you from constant frustration when your reel doesn’t work as well as it used to or as you had hoped.
If you are planning to go for big fish, consider a conventional reel, that will really give you the power to reel your catch in.
The most probable reason for jamming reels is rusty all bearings. But, not to worry. If you opt for sealed or shielded ball bearings that have a coating of corrosion-resistant material, you most likely will not encounter jammed reels.
If you’re new to the sport, shopping for baitcasting reels can be an intimidating task at first but not to worry. Baitcasting reels are a crucial part of fishing. Not only do they keep the fishing line smooth but also give you extra control over your reel so you can keep the lure at whatever position you want. Reels come in all shapes and sizes, so; there is definitely something for everyone out there.
Hopefully, we have covered everything that you need to know before buying the top baitcasting reel for beginners. Keep these points in your mind, and you will be better prepared for going for the big fish next time. Want to know more about baitcasting? Check out this great resource!