Surf fishing reels – Buying Guide, Reviews, and Comparison
In case you’re looking for the best reel for surf fishing but have no idea where to start, then we’re here to help. You’d probably rather go straight to fishing than read countless reviews until you decide which model to go for. Many reels you can find for sale nowadays come with a multitude of designs, drag systems, and other features, and choosing one that’s right for your fishing style is anything but easy. The good part is that we’ve studied the market, so you don’t have to. When it comes to great performance at a low price, then the Penn Battle II 3000 is definitely our top choice. With an all-metal design, a high-performance HT-100 drag system and heavy-duty bearings, this fishing reel can provide you with the strength and flexibility you need. In the unfortunate event that this model runs out of stock, then our second recommendation is the Daiwa BG.
Our Top Choice
The Penn spinning reel features a full metal body, side plate, and rotor with a heavy-duty aluminum bail wire that offers exceptional durability and longevity. The use of durable materials makes it ideal for conquering big saltwater gamefish. The drag system gives the control and power that anglers need to keep the line smooth and tense no matter the conditions on the water.
The spool flexes a bit when the line is under tension and that causes a clicking sound when jigging, making it hard to detect a bite.
This model uses only high-quality materials and offers excellent performance for a low price point. It also has a very smooth motion.
The strong body and cover made of black anodized aluminum allow this reel to handle even the heaviest of loads. The special treatment gives it better resistance against seawater corrosion and discoloration caused by prolonged sun exposure. It feels very smooth in the hands and the screw-in handle makes assembly and disassembly very simple.
The reel is not sealed and saltwater can mess up the gears and render the product unusable. Not many users had this problem, fortunately.
All in all, with this alternative, you get fast retrieve, solid construction, and good looks. The drag is also extremely smooth.
You can enjoy your time fishing without having to worry about your gear since this spinning reel features an IPX5 sealing which prevents saltwater from getting into the gearbox. The HT-100 drag washers are built to give the stopping power needed for catching big saltwater fishes. Furthermore, the line capacity rings will let you know how much line you have left with a simple glance.
Customers have reported an irritating clicking noise when reeling in and turning the handle, which might be a sign of poor build quality.
This option offers the low weight and the smooth drag you need to make reeling in or working a fish feel effortless and fun.
Our top choices
If you’d like to read some surf fishing reel reviews but don’t have enough time to sift through dozens of them, then you’re in luck. We have prepared a list of the most critically acclaimed products so that you get to choose from the very best.
The Penn Battle II 3000 is a powerful fishing reel that’s meant for both enthusiast and experienced anglers. With a full-metal body, this reel will resist the elements as well as seawater corrosion to provide you with smooth operation, further casting and a new drag system that will help you reel in the heaviest catches.
Because the main body, side plates and other components such as the rotor are made from durable metal, this reel can hold its ground even under extreme loads. Its strength lies not only in its metal body but also in its stainless steel bearings which aren’t there just for smoothness. They allow the reel to resist heavier side loads while also making sure that you get to cast further away.
Thanks to the carbon fiber HT-100 Versa-Drag, you get a much more efficient drag system which gives you more power and control while keeping the line smooth and tense. This comes in handy when fighting fish that pull hard, particularly as it also prevents pullback with the anti-reverse bearing. The spool is equipped with a strong rubber gasket which prevents the line from slipping, while the line capacity rings tell you how much line you have left.Buy from Amazon.com for ($99.99)
The Daiwa BG is one of the most popular fishing reels in its price range, which is quite accessible. With a strong body and cover made of black anodized aluminum, this reel can keep you with heavy loads while withstanding the elements. Thanks to its special treatment, you also get higher resistance against seawater corrosion as well as discoloration due to prolonged sun exposure.
All BG models come with screw-in handles which make for easy assembly and disassembly while also providing you with a solid and firm grip for the best possible leverage. The drive gears are the largest ever produced by Daiwa, providing increased smoothness and precision thanks to the larger contact points between the gear teeth. With larger gears, you also get more power and torque, which is excellent especially when out to catch large fish species.
Thanks to advanced engineering technology, the air rotor of the Daiwa BG spinning reel is 15 percent lighter than normal designs while also being stronger, thanks to its ability to evenly redistribute stress. With the large core diameter of the ABS spool, you get to use 100 percent of the line while eliminating the dreaded tangles.Buy from Amazon.com for ($107.82)
Penn Spinfisher V
The Penn Spinfisher V is a great choice for anglers who want a sturdy and durable fishing reel. Made entirely out of metal, the body is strong and resistant to mechanical shocks, dents, and scratches, able to take a lot of punishment in the long run. The drag system is sealed beneath the frame, which prevents water from corroding interior parts even in case of accidental drops in seawater.
With an all-metal design, the body will resist flexing even under heavy stress while also keeping components perfectly aligned. With the HT-100 drag system, you get a robust and smooth drag regardless of drag level. This versatile reel can provide you with the flexibility you need to catch various fish species while also giving you a lot of crank power even at maximum drag so that you don’t risk a line break and losing the fish you fought so hard to catch.
Thanks to the convenient line capacity rings, you’ll never run out of line again, because now you can tell just how much you have left at only a glance. You also get to use braided lines, and you don’t need monofilament backing for them either.Buy from Amazon.com for ($159.95)
Before you go looking for the best surf fishing reel for the money, there are some things you might want to know first about these modern mechanical wonders. You need to understand what their features mean for your fishing style, what to look for and, of course, what’s a good price for a good reel.
Some essential features to look for
A good surf fishing reel should have at least 3-4 bearings, as these provide a smoother feel, improve casting distance and drag performance, as well as make the reel stronger against side loads. You also want the reel to have one of the latest drag systems, so that you get to catch even heavier fish without putting too much effort, or worse, having the line break.
You also want a solid crank with a comfortable grip, especially if you plan on fishing for long periods of time or catching heavier fish.
All-metal or graphite?
Most fishing reels are made of aluminum or graphite, with some additional stainless steel components such as bearings and rotors. Aluminum is a strong and rigid metal which is perfect for anglers who want a solid reel they can rely on even on extreme drag settings.
Graphite is lighter than aluminum, making the reel easier to maneuver and hold for prolonged periods of time. It is highly resistant to corrosion, yet somewhat more fragile than aluminum. Aluminum is usually more expensive, especially anodized variants which increase their resistance to corrosion and mechanical wear.
The best reel is the one you use the most
When looking for a proper reel for surf fishing, you also want to think about what sort of fish you have in your area, or which species you plan to target. This is very important, especially if you only have one fishing rod with only one or two gears because gear ratio will dictate what you can do with it.
And as always, the best fishing reel is the one you’ll use the most, so make sure it’s comfortable, easy to use, and appropriate for the fish you are planning to catch.