Bait casting reels are suitable for all types of fishing environments, and can be used to catch various types of fish species. However, bait casting fishing reels are the most advanced reel style and are much more difficult to use than spinning or spin-casting reels.

As such, bait casting reels for fishing are best used by veteran fishermen or anglers who already know how to use spinning or spin-casting reels.

A bait casting reel can tangle more easily than other types of fishing reels, creating a troublesome “bird’s nest” effect. But, to use a bait casting fishing reel is often worth the hassle, as these reels can be used to catch a variety of saltwater and freshwater species. To learn more about how to use bait casting reels and to discover the many benefits of doing so, review the information below.

What are the characteristics and features of a bait casting reel?

Bait casting reels are also known as conventional reels, revolving-spool reels, casting reels or baitcasters. These reels are mounted to the top of a fishing rod (similar to a spin-casting reel), but they differ from spinning and spin-casting reels in several ways. For instance, bait casting reels for fishing feature revolving spools that are perpendicular to the rod, rather than parallel. The spool turns as anglers cast and retrieve the line, and feeds line on and off the pole in a straight motion, while its braking system controls the speed at which the line feeds off the reel.

When anglers set the braking system correctly, they will have more control over the line, which will help them to avoid dreaded line twists. Moreover, the reel contains a line spool, an adjustment drag and a reel foot and handle. While many baitcaster reel handles are made of carbon fiber or graphite materials, others are made of aluminum or alloy. The grip is generally made of cork, rubber or EVA.

What kind of rod is a bait casting reel used with?

A bait casting fishing reel is used with a casting rod, rather than a spinning rod. These reels can also be used with multi-piece casting rods, telescopic rods, surf casting rods, and light or ultra-light fishing poles. Additionally, small bait casting reels pair well with certain types of pen rods, as well.

What kind of fishing can bait casting reels be used for?

With a bait casting fishing reel, fishermen can target fish in freshwater and saltwater environments. Below, review some facts about bait cast reel fishing:

  • Bait casting fishing reels work best with monofilament lines of at least 8-pound test or larger.
  • Anglers can also use lightweight bait casting reels, as low as 4-pound test.
  • Larger bait casting reels for fishing can handle heavier saltwater and freshwater fish species.

What types of fish can I catch with bait casting reels?

Bait casting fishing reels can be used to catch larger fish species. They can catch the following fish:

  • Bass
  • Muskies
  • Salmon
  • Stripers

Note that a bait casting reel can generally be used to catch any fish species in any type of fishing environment.

How do I use a bait casting reel?

The process of how to use bait casting reels takes plenty of practice. To use a bait casting fishing reel, you must first press your thumb onto the spool (or “thumb button”) to release the line. Next, you must face your target area and aim the tip of your fishing rod toward your target. As you cast your line, you must remove your thumb from the spool.

What are the advantages of using a bait casting reel?

Bait casting fishing reels are ideal reels if you are targeting larger, heavier fish species, and you are looking for a reel with excellent casting accuracy and line control. Since they feed line off and on the rod in a straight motion, you can cast your line greater distances, while avoiding line twists. Bait casting fishing reel can handle stronger, heavier lines, which are necessary when targeting larger fish species. Many newer models also pair well with lightweight terminal tackle and light lines.

What are the cons of using a bait casting reel?

While bait caster reels are excellent reels for experienced or professional anglers, there are several drawbacks of using them. With bait casting reels, you need to practice patience as you learn how to cast with this type of reel and release the fishing line with your thumb. If you do not use the reel correctly, you will experience spool backlash and line tangles. Also, these reels are generally more expensive than other types of reels.

Who should consider using a bait casting reel?

Since bait casting fishing reels are so difficult to master, they are best when used by experienced fisherman. To effectively this type of reel, anglers need to get plenty of practice as they learn how to control the line, cast and avoid tangles. Furthermore, bait casting reels are the preferred reel type used among professional bass fishermen.

How much do bait casting reels cost?

Popular brands of bait casting reels for fishing include: Abu Garcia, Okuma, 13 Fishing, Daiwa and Shimano. Prices do tend to vary widely by brand name. For instance, Daiwa options from FishUSA range from $64.99 to $199.99, while Abu Garcia reels range from $49.99 to $499.99. Reels from 13 Fishing range from $119.99 to $229.99, while Okuma reels range from $49.99 to $319.99.

Where can I find bait casting reels?

Bait casting fishing reels are available through a wide variety of merchants, including Amazon, Cabela’s, eBay, Bass Pro Shops and Walmart. If purchasing a bait casting reel online from Amazon, you may consider the following options: