3 Best Spinning Reels for Bass Fishing

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Hey there my fellow fishing enthusiasts. Today, for those looking to get themselves started on their bass fishing adventures, I have had a good look around and come up with my 3 best spinning reels for bass fishing in 2021. Bass fishing is known as an exciting activity (since they’re aggressive fish) and of course, you don’t want to go fishing without any gear. This article will serve as your fishing guide when it comes to picking the best reels for bass fishing.

To start your bass fishing journey, let’s first discuss what type of reels are best for you. You don’t want to go fishing unprepared, right? The fact that bass fishing is quite challenging and considered as game fish in North America means you will need to make sure you have some good gear with you.

So, let’s see if the below can get you started on the right track in terms of a good reel for bass fishing…

My 3 recommended spinning reels for Bass fishing

I will review these in more detail below but if you just want to get moving without all the carry on, my 3 are listed here for your convenience:

 Bass Fishing ReelPriceGet it
spinning reels for bass fishing - option 1Piscifun Flame Spinning Reel$CURRENT PRICE
spinning reels for bass fishing - option 2PENN Battle II Spinning Fishing Reel$$CURRENT PRICE
spinning reels for bass fishing - option 3SHIMANO Stradic FL Spinning Fishing Reel$$$CURRENT PRICE

Types of Bass fishing reels

Generally, there are three types of bass fishing reels; spinning, baitcasting and fly reels. All of them have their own advantage and disadvantage that can affect your fishing. What are they?

Spinning Reels

Spinning reels are composed of a fixed spool on their shaft and don’t revolve. One of the best details of spinning reels is that they have handles that can be placed on the side of the reel – you can set it up depending on your preference. This will help right and left-handers to adjust their grip for a better fishing experience.

These types of reels usually wind the line onto a front spool which is held on by a ‘bail’ that’s why they are known as ‘open face’ reels or ‘eggbeaters.’ Spinning reels’ lines are wound in via handle on the side that brings the line faster than the handle.

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These are very recommendable for beginners as they are easy to cast, rarely tangle and their inner parts are housed within a waterproof case that makes them easier to maintain.

spinning reels for bass fishing - spinning reel

Baitcasting Reels

The next type is the baitcasting reels that are known for their revolving spools. Many Bass fishermen use baitcasting reels since they have a great reputation for their durability and strength. This type of reel provides exceptional casting control and accuracy.

Compared to the simple spinner reels above, baitcasters are upside-down models where the reel sits on top of, rather than underneath the rod.

Baitcasting reels’ base models can be good for casting in kayaks etc. since you’ll simply press down on the thumb button on the back to cast the line. However, in my experience, these are harder to use and tend to tangle a little more so are not really suited to beginners.

spinning reels for bass fishing - baitcaster reel

Fly Reels

Fly reels are the simplest yet quickest reel compared to other reels which makes them user-friendly and great for catching Bass. Instead of a spool, fly reels have a trigger that allows the line to zip back to the reel that’s very helpful when it comes to Bass fishing especially if you are using super light lure/flies.

These are good if you are chasing Bass species (such as Smallmouth) that feed on surface sitting insects etc.

spinning reels for bass fishing - fly reel

Rod type

Before purchasing your spinning reel, just make sure that you match your rod. Rods for baitcaster reels for example are not interchangeable with those for a baitcaster so you just need to make sure that they match.

What should you be looking for?

Now, as is usual when it comes to all things fishing, there are a number of different equipment options when it comes to general day to day use. And of course everybody has an opinion on what is best. I will run through some things to check for below:

Composition

In general, spinning reels are made from a corrosion-resistant metal, carbon fiber, and/or aluminum body with variations of the following:

  • Bearings – As with a car wheel, the spinning mechanisms inside a spinning fishing reel generally incorporate ball bearings for smoother operation. From my experience, most come with between 3 and 10 and I was always told that the more you can get for the price, the better. If the specifications are listed as 10 + 1 for example, this means that there are 10 ball bearings in the main housing and also a roller bearing incorporated into the bail to make line retrieval easier.
  • Rotation – One advantage of a spinning fishing reel is the winding rotation. This is usually set anywhere for 3:1 up to 6 or 7:1 (often listed as 6.0:1 etc.) This simply means that for every time the user turns the handle a full rotation, the spool holding the line has actually turned 3, 4, 5, 6, or 7 times meaningless winding for faster line retrieval. Higher ratios are good for fast retrieval fishing such as with a lure or if there are a lot of snags etc. Lower rations assist with the big fish catches. For a beginner, I like a ratio anywhere in the 5 – 6 range myself.
  • Drag – The drag of a fishing reel is its ability to release a little bit of line when a fish strikes or is being pulled in. This is in place to reduce the chances of a bigger fish snapping the line as it fights. As with anything, the more you pay for a reel, the better the drag system should be with the more expensive models containing precision setting capabilities. Most reels have a drag capability to match the line capabilities so regardless, even for a beginner, if the reel you are looking at doesn’t have a drag system on it – put it down.
  • Casing – This is the part of the reel that contains the springs, levers, gear cogs, etc. that make much of the stuff above work. For a beginner, avoid any reel that doesn’t have this all housed in a sealed, waterproof casing. These are low maintenance and the components will not rust.
spinning reels for bass fishing - man with spinning reel and bass

Line capacity

In this section, we will actually discuss two elements: spool size and line capacity. This is because the size of the spool generally determines the strength of the line that you can load into it. The problem we face here is that manufacturers don’t use a common specification when it comes to their reel capacities.

There is however a simple way to work this all out via the first number. You see a fishing reel may be rated as a ’20’ or a ‘2000’. If this is the case, the ‘2’ is the common denominator and what you match the line to (this is not an exact science but it works for me). So, then all you need to do is match the line kilogram/pound strength to the spool. To make this easier, I have whipped up a little table below:

Reel SizeSuggested MonoSuggested BraidSuggested Rod Length*
10 or 10001- 2 kg/2 – 4 lb4 – 8 lb6-7 ft (line rating 1-4kg)
20 or 20002- 3 kg/4 – 6 lb5 – 10 lb6-7 ft (line rating 2-5kg)
25 or 25002.5- 4 kg/5 – 8 lb5 – 12 lb6-7 ft (line rating 2-5kg)
40 or 40004- 6 kg/8 – 12 lb8 – 12 lb8-10 ft (line rating 3-10kg)
60 or 60006- 8 kg/12 – 16 lb12 – 30 lb8-10 ft (line rating 4-10kg)

The main thing to keep in mind here is that regardless of the size, you really do need to make sure you are matching the correct line size to the reel. If the line is too big, you will generally enter the painful world of birds nest city (when too many spools off at once and tangles) and too small and you will be lamenting a snapped line every time you try and cast with a bigger sinker – or worse – if you catch a bigger fish.

At the end of the day, unless there is the possibility of a really big fish, or the need to add a heavier sinker if the current is strong, I would recommend anything that starts with a 2 or 3 as this simply means everything is a little lighter.

Other Influences

There are some other areas to consider as well when looking at a Bass fishing reel. These don’t affect the outcomes as much as the above however they are worth considering:

  • Handle – Most are plastic but make sure it fits comfortably in your hand (more expensive models are carbon fiber).
  • Weight – The lighter the reel, the better.
  • Anti-reverse switch – These are usually found in the underbelly of the reel and simply put, will stop the reel from going backward. Some like to reel in reverse to let line out slowly but don’t want this to happen with the rod is in a holder.
  • Line holder – This is the little tab on the side of the reel housing that holds the end of the fishing line if it is not rigged up. These are not often thought of when a reel is purchased but something that is really missed if it is not there.
  • Interchangeable winder – there are not many that don’t do this these days however this is the ability to swap the winder handle around to allow for left or right-handed use.

My three recommendations broken down

So, based on the information above, and my own experience, I recommend the following:

1. Piscifun Flame Spinning Reel

First on our list is the Piscifun Flame Spinning Reels, these reels are lightweight (0.32 kg) and made from aluminum and graphite. It has a matte black body and features an incredible drag power of up to 19.8 lbs. to help you fight and pull giant Bass.

The Piscifun Flame Spinning Reels have different varieties, you can choose from the 2000-5000 series. If you’re planning to go on freshwater fishing, the 2000 and 3000 series are very much recommended while you can purchase the 4000 and 5000 series for chasing huge fish or if you plan to chase saltwater species with it as well.

Lastly, these reels feature a reinforced metal main shaft, triple drag washers, high-quality drive gear, and machined brass pinion gear perfect for bass fishing. It specs are as follows:

  • Size: 2000 – 5000
  • Bearings: 9 + 1
  • Ratio: 5.2:1
  • Composition: Aluminum, Graphite
  • Drag: 13.2lb/6.0kg – 14.3lb/6.5kg – 18.7lb/8.5kg – 19.8lb/9.0kg
  • Anti-reverse switch: Yes
  • Interchangeable winder: Yes
  • Line Holder: Yes

Other advantages include:

  • Lightweight composition
  • Braid ready spool
  • Anti-corrosion zinc drive gear
  • Crisp Click sound

Why have I chosen it?

This is a good little reel for a good price. It has all the general specifications that make it a good one for beginners and experienced fisherman alike to use in most settings without too much trouble – especially if you ensure that the line weight is matched to the reel size. It will take a good range of line strength (the larger models would also work on the beach or even general ocean fishing) with fast wind speed ratio and comfortable handle. And most importantly it is super light weight and versatile enough to work in both fresh and saltwater conditions with a number of target species.


2. PENN Battle II Spinning Fishing Reel

My second reel is a popular and well-known option for those looking for something of quality with great durability and usability that won’t cost the earth. The component manufacture is of the highest quality with reinforced CNC machine cut drive, pinion, and oscillation gear with shielded stainless steel bearings and a lightweight full metal casing. It is an all-round high-quality option with specs including

  • Size: 3000 – 8000 (I would suggest something in the 4000 – 6000 range).
  • Bearings: 5 + 1
  • Ratio: 6.2:1/5.6:1/5.3:1 depended on the size
  • Composition: Full metal waterproof
  • Drag: On the front of spool – HT 100 carbon fiber drag system
  • Anti-reverse switch: Instant
  • Line holder: yes
  • Interchangeable winder: Yes

Other advantages include:

  • Lightweight composition
  • Fully sealed components and bearings.
  • Superline braid ready spool requires no backing with line capacity rings marked at 1/3, 2/3, and full capacity

Why have I chosen it?

I listed the Battle II reel in another post for surf fishing rod and reel combos as I have used several Peen reels in my time and found them all to be excellent in terms of durability and smoothness of use and this option has been manufactured with CNC technology for an ultimate smooth fishing experience. For Bass fishing, stick to the medium to higher range around the 4000 – 6000 mark unless you need to chase bigger species.


3. SHIMANO Stradic FL Spinning Fishing Reel

Last but not least is the SHIMANO Stradic FL Spinning Fishing Reels, these reels have metal bodies specifically made of HAGANE steel. This means that it eliminates body flexing and transforms your actions directly into cranking power.

Their gear is supported by pinion gear on both ends to make sure that it stays in the same position even under the heaviest load – this will enhance the reel’s casting performance as well. They also feature a “CrossCarbonDrag” that provides a wider range of drag and a G-Freebody that shifts the reel’s center of gravity closer to the rod. Specifications are as follows:

  • Size: 1000 – 5000
  • Bearings: 6 + 1
  • Ratio: 6.0.1 – 6.2.1 – 6.4.1
  • Composition: HAGANE body (metal reel body)
  • Drag: 6.6lb -19.8lb -24.3lb
  • Anti-reverse switch: Yes
  • Interchangeable winder: Yes
  • Line Holder: Yes

Other advantages include:

  • Long-stroke pool
  • Shimano’s A-RB Bearings
  • Cross Carbon Drag

Why have I chosen it?

have used a number of Shimano reels in my time and found them all to be excellent in terms of durability and smoothness of use. This is a great one for those who a looking for a little quality over price with specifications that make it a very versatile option for most conditions and needs with the ability to handle most applicable line strengths as well. This is the reel to try if you are going for the big large mouth monsters as well.

Conclusion

And there it is – my best spinning reels for bass fishing in 2021. I hope it has been helpful and as usual, please let me know of your experiences with them.

Also, please do not hesitate to comment below if you have any questions, concerns, corrections, or would like me to check anything else out for you.

Until next time

Have fun

Paul

3 Best Spinning Reels for Bass Fishing - Pinterest
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5 thoughts on “3 Best Spinning Reels for Bass Fishing”

  1. I don’t consider myself an avid fisher by no stretch of the imagination, but you sure make it look fun. I have been fishing maybe 10 times in my entire life and I am 58 years old. But I can say this with certainty, I enjoyed everytime I went. I use to go fresh water fishing with my Uncle Tommy in Suffolk, VA and saltwater fishing with him in the Cheaspeake Bay. I ‘ve wanted to go since those many years ago, just haven’t found the time. What a shame. Thank you for jogging my memory of good times.

    Reply
  2. I don’t consider myself an avid fisher by no stretch of the imagination, but you sure make it look fun. I have been fishing maybe 10 times in my entire life and I am 58 years old. But I can say this with certainty, I enjoyed everytime I went. I use to go fresh water fishing with my Uncle Tommy in Suffolk, VA and saltwater fishing with him in the Cheaspeake Bay. I ‘ve wanted to go since those many years ago, just haven’t found the time. What a shame. Thank you for jogging my memory of good times.

    Reply
  3. This article was really informative! I didn’t know that so much thought was put into choosing a reel. Based on what you said, I think I prefer the Piscifun Flame Spinning Reel the most. It’s light weight and the gear ratio is in not the highest nor the lowest either. It also has an anti-corrosion zinc drive gear, which I think makes it a big plus; and hey, who doesn’t want a crisp click sound. This article was very informative and it helped me learn more about the important qualities of reels we should look out for. Thank you for this article, and kudos to you! 

    Reply

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Hi, I'm Paul

I am a passionate fishing hobbyists who researches, tests and educates around issues and equipment relevant to fishing.

I am by no means a professional however my passion is to assist you in making informed decisions about buying and using awesome fishing gear that will give you the best chance of catching a fish for the best price.

Please get in touch if you have any questions.

Paul

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