Best Baitcasting Reel Reviews

Best Baitcasting Reel Reviews For A Larger Catch

As any angler knows, there are two basic kinds of rods that are used when fishing- baitcasting and spinning. Whether you select one or the other is dependent on your choice of reel and what techniques you use while fishing. Another consideration is what type of fish you are trying to catch and how big they are. If you like to catch larger fish, then a baitcasting rod is what you need. These rods are made with the reel on top over a trigger grip that helps improve your ability to control while casting and fighting a large fish. This article should help you select the best baitcasting reel for you.

Product

Price

Rating

Shimano Curado 201 Left Handed Baitcasting Reel

$$

Daiwa Coastal TWS Saltwater Baitcasting Reel

$$$

Abu Garcia Revo MGXtreme Reel Review

$$$$$

Okuma Citrix CI Baitcasting Reel

$

13 Fishing Concept C 8.1 Baitcast Reel

$$$$

Line guides

A line guide is designed to align in descending order from the butt to the tip of the road. The baitcasting rod has smaller line guide diameters than a spinning rod as the line pays out more smoothly. The number of line guides on a rod is dependent on the length and the flexibility of the rod.

The materials that line guides are made of either metal, plastic or ceramic which determines their hardness as well as their cost. Plastic guides are on the cheaper end while ceramic guides are higher quality. There are also RECOIL guides which are the ultimate in guides and are made from a special nickel-titanium alloy that doesn’t need plating and doesn’t corrode. The quality of the guides does affect the rod’s casting distance so it is an important aspect to consider. Also, if you are using braided or super lines, ceramic guides will work the best since they are most resistant to wear.

Action

Action means how a rod performs when casting and reeling in fish and is described as either slow, medium, moderate or fast. If it is a fast action rod, it will bend at the top 1/3 of the rod, medium or moderate rods will bend around the middle and slow rods will bend the entire length of the rod.

The action of the rod will tell an angler what weight and size lure they can use when fishing. For example, with a medium action rod you will use smaller lures. Fast action rods are great for jigging, moderate action rods are great with casting middleweight crankbaits and slow rods are perfect for long, gentle casting when you are using live bait.

Blank materials

Graphite and fiberglass are the most popular materials to make quality rods from today. Graphite has improved over the years from a very fragile substance to a durable material that is flexible and has great fighting power as well as increased sensitivity for delicate bites.

Fiberglass rods are also very durable but they are less sensitive and heavier than a graphite rod. Fishing applications that don’t require casting or sensitivity like boat rods that are used for larger fish and heavier fishing are perfect for the more durable fiberglass material. It is also a great material for children that are learning how to use a baitcaster.

There are also rods that are a composite of graphite and fiberglass that are powerful, lightweight and sensitive.

Handle/Grip

The handle and grip can make a big difference in your comfort level at the end of a long day on the water. The shortest type of grip is the pistol grip and it is usually fitted to the shape of your hand. It can be made of either cork or composites mounted onto a metal frame plus a trigger to help improve your control. The extended length is good for two-handed casting and gives you more leverage in a fight.

The most common materials to make a handle from are cork and EVA foam. Imported cork from Portugal is the highest quality cork for handles. EVA foam is very durable and is more stain resistant and resistant to changes in temperature.

Reel seat

Tsunami Trophy Surf Spinning Rod 11' Heavy

You know how important it is to have a quality reel seat if you have ever had one work loose at the wrong time. The reel seat is where the reel attaches to the rod and there is a lot of torque applied to this component when you are fighting to bring in a large fish. A good reel seat will fit snugly when it is tightened.

Reviews

Shimano Curado 201 Left Handed Baitcasting Reel

Shimano Curado 201 Left Handed Baitcasting Reel

The Shimano Curado 201 Left Handed Baitcasting Reel is a good quality reel for those that are left handed. The Curado line of reels share the same specification except for their gear ratios. If you use monofilament line, the spool will hold 180 yards of 8 lb test, 155 yards of 10 lb test, and 110 yards of 14 lb test. If you used braided line, the spool will hold 190 yards of 30 lb test, 120 yards of 50 lb test, and 80 yards of 65 lb test. It has a max drag capacity of 12 lbs and uses 5 S-ARB (Stainless Anti Rust Bearing) bearings and RB (Roller Bearing). The gear ratio in the CU201I is 6.3:1and weighs an average 7.4 ounces.

Features include:

  • Shimano Stable Spool Design (S3D) is a thin aluminum spool made with uniform precision that reduces vibration while spinning for a smoother cast and retrieve.
  • Hagane Body is a rigid metal frame with no frame give.
  • Super Free Spool keeps the pinion gear from rubbing against the spool shaft when you disengage the gear for casting.
  • HEG Technology is a mix of the gears, set plate, handle side plate, and frame that works with the Hagane Body and brings all the parts together reducing stress inside the reel and providing more leverage when pulling in a heavy fish.
  • X-Ship Technology supports the pinion gear on both sides with ball bearings that are strategically placed to hold the pinions and the gear drives together adding durability and helping the gears maintain their position under heavy pressure.
  • SVS Infinity Brake System controls the spool speed when casting and helps prevent backlash.
  • An adjustment control knob provides tuning for your rig’s exact weight.
  • S-ARB bearings have anti rust protection and a stainless shield covers on each side which reduces grit, salt, or other tiny debris from entering the bearings.

Things We Liked

  • Great for left handed fishermen.
  • Features assist in operation smoothness, distance casting, durability and controlled casting.
  • Hagane Body protects the reel while the Super Free Spool gives it extra distance for lightweight casting.

Things We Didn't Like

  • Missing extra drag capacity which it should have with all the other technology that it has.

Click here for more information on the Shimano Curado.

Daiwa Coastal TWS Saltwater Baitcasting Reel

Daiwa Coastal TWS Saltwater Baitcasting Reel

The Daiwa Coastal TWS Saltwater Baitcasting Reel is aesthetically pleasing and functional. The Daiwa Coastal TWS Saltwater offers great distance when casting thanks to its branded TWS (T Wing System) technology. It has a smooth metallic blue appearance plus an aircraft grade aluminum spool. It comes with an eight bearing system and a 7.3 gear ratio. The Daiwa Coastal TWS Saltwater also has the power to bring in those big fish with the help of the patented Ultimate Tournament Drag System. It also has 15.4 maximum drag capacity and is enough to handle almost any target you will find inshore.

Features include:

  • TWS (T Wing System) reduces line friction from the reel giving you better line control and longer distance casting.
  • Ultimate Tournament Drag is made of high density woven fibers and is filled with a special heat reducing oil.
  • Has a maximum of 15.4 lbs of drag.
  • A7075 Aircraft Grade Aluminum Spool that is lightweight yet durable with a spool that spins easier on its bearings and last longer.
  • Eight Bearing System that outlasts normal bearings with up to 12 times the life.
  • Built with high strength gearing material that withstand the force held by the drag and is built to last.
  • Magforce Cast Control slows the spinning of the spool to easily avoid backlash.
  • 100 mm Swept Handle is made of strong steel to reduce weight.
  • The grips are comfortable and stick well to the hand while reeling.
  • EVA Custom Handle Knobs are built with 2 small bearings and there is room to add more.

Things We Liked

  • It is lightweight but extremely strong and made of durable aluminum material.
  • It has casting distance enhancement.
  • Has a drag that can handle heavy inshore fish.

Things We Didn't Like

  • Reviewers had no real complaints about the Daiwa Coastal TWS 200.

Click here for more information on the Daiwa Coastal TWS 200.

Abu Garcia Revo MGXtreme Reel Review

Abu Garcia Revo MGXtreme Reel Review

The Abu Revo MGX comes in black with red accents making it a great looking reel as well as a high performance one. It is made using a one piece X-mag alloy frame that is very lightweight and easy to handle. It is also strong and durable with a Carbon Matrix drag system that gives you consistent and smooth drag. The main gear is made of high quality aircraft aluminum that decreases weight and maintains high durability. The coated line guide decreases friction and increases its durability. The Infini II spool is designed to help with extreme loads and extended casting.

Features include:

  • Has a 7 HPCR stainless steel bearings + 1 roller bearing that allows for the best performance when you are pulling in a large fish.
  • Has two additional spool bearings that are Ceramilite.
  • Made of an X-Mag alloy one piece frame.
  • Sideplates are C6 carbon.
  • The brake design is a centrifugal IVCB-4.
  • Has a line guide that is Ti coated that decreases the friction and increase the durability.

Things We Liked

  • Great design and high quality.
  • Flawless casting with no backlashing.
  • Lightweight design and you can use it all day long without getting tired.
  • Has long casting distance with a smooth retrieval and breaking system that makes it a great baitcasting reel for bass fishing.

Things We Didn't Like

  • It is expensive compared to other rods.

Click here for more information on the Abu Garcia Revo.

Okuma Citrix CI Baitcasting Reel

Okuma Citrix CI Baitcasting Reel

The Okuma Citrix CI Baitcasting Reel is a great reel for an experienced angler that likes to catch bigger fish like salmon and bass. It has a precise lure placement and a 7.3:1 gear with an anodized aluminum frame, the graphite side plates, a roller bearing and seven ball bearings. The Okuma Citrix CI also has an externally adjusted centrifugal cast control system and a micro-click drag star and zirconium line guide inserts. The Okuma Citrix CI reel holds up to 130 yards of a 12-pound line.

Features include:

  • A6061-T6 machined aluminum, anodized spool.
  • Quick-Set anti-reverse roller bearing.
  • Graphite left and right side plates• Weight: 8.4 ounces.
  • Max Drag of11 lbs.
  • 9BB+1RB bearing drive system.
  • Gear Ratio of 7.3:1 gear ratio.

Things We Liked

  • Has a clean look while keeping the profile smaller.
  • Has an extended power handle that gives more thrown and pulling power.
  • Has oversized hand lobs.

Things We Didn't Like

  • Not very tweakable or customizable.
  • It sounds like It grinds with a clunking noise.

Click here for more information on the Okumu Citrix CI.

13 Fishing Concept C 8.1 Baitcast Reel

13 Fishing Concept C 8.1 Baitcast Reel

The 13 Fishing Concept C 8.1 Baitcast Reel is lightweight weighing just 6.7 ounces and it is easy to use for flipping and slipping. It will eat up line quick and effectively when you are trying to pull a huge bass out and away from the thick cover. It has a Bulldog Drag System that doesn’t slip or discharge the line even when cinched down. The 13 Fishing Concept also features a cast control clicker to adjust drag and cork paddles that give you extra support when fighting big fish. You will also notice a blue substance that is a simple grease used to lubricate and bind equipment parts.

Features include:

  • It has four stainless steel ball bearings that makes it smooth to operate.
  • Aluminum handle with Concept Cork Knobs.
  • Side Plate Construction is Airfoil Carbon.
  • Weight: 6.1 ounces.
  • Max Drag at 22lb bulldog drag.
  • Bearings include 4 Anti Corrosion+4 Stainless+1 A/R Clutch.
  • Has a 8.1:1 gear ratio.

Things We Liked

  • It’s well made, very smooth and is easy to hold.
  • Built with high quality performance in mind.
  • Great for beginners and professionals.

Things We Didn't Like

  • Poor line capacity.
  • Its spool is narrow.
  • Brass is heavy and erodes fast.

Click here for more information on the 13 Fishing Concept C 8.1 Baitcast Reel.

The winner of the Best Baitcasting Reel Roundup is the Daiwa Coastal TWS Saltwater Baitcasting Reel. It was the only rod reviewed that did not have any complaints that we could find. It has great casting distance and excellent fighting power to reel in those large fish. It has a 15.4 maximum drag capacity that will help you reel in pretty much any inshore target. Comfortable grips stick well to your hand while you are casting and the spool is designed to avoid backlash. You’ll have an enjoyable day out on the water with the Daiwa Coastal TWS Saltwater Baitcasting Reel which is why it is the winner of the Best Baitcasting Rod Roundup.