Jump to content
Black Knight

Should I Try A Baitcast Reel?

Recommended Posts

I have been using closed face spincasting reels most of my life. About 25-30 years ago I tried a biatcast reel and had so many bird nests before I ever used it on the water that I gave it away. I was wondering if I should take the plunge again and try a bait cast reel?  If so which reel under $100 would be the best for no bird nests (back lashes) with a 12-15 pound mono line or better braid? Most of my rods are the old pistol grip casting rods. There are some Zebco, Southbend, Shakespeare rods and a Browning SilaFlex rod ranging anywhere from 5-30+ years old. Does anone offer a class on how to cast with the bait cast reel? For the last 30 years I have been mostly concerned with the shooting sports since I carry a gun each day (police officer).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yes you should.

I would say BPS Pro qualifier. They're on sale for $80 fairly often. Or Abu Garcia black max or silver max. They seem to get decent reviews.

I don't know of any classes, but there are plenty of videos on YouTube or probably around here.

The way I learned was just by following the directions that came with the reel and practiced general casting in the yard/street. I also watched a lot of videos to learn different casting techniques.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If funds allow it I would give it another shot. The pro qualifier is a good reel to purchase for under $100. If you choose this reel don't forget to adjust both breaking systems. You will have the external magnetic break on the exterior side plate with numbers from 0 - 9. Also you have an internal centrifugal breaking system which operates using pins. Also on the exterior you have a casting control knob... smaller circular piece used to help fine tune the reel.

Best advice would be this:

Purchase the reel when it goes on sale for $80 (it happens fairly regularly)

Select a good castable mono in 12# test. Spool it up on the reel making sure the line lays tight on the spool. Lots of good mono lines for under $10 a spool, just pick one.

If you don't have one select a good Medium Heavy 7 foot +/- casting rod in either a full or split grip depending upon which you prefer. Having a good rod will help with casting over say a more parabolic ugly stick for example. Bass Pro Shops or most local stores will have a good supply of under $100 rods. Might even be able to track down a close out or in house brand that fits your budget.

Now you are pretty much ready to fish. Your local store should sell yellow casting plugs which are great to use in the backyard. I would set your internal breaks with 2 or 3 pins engaged or in the outward position. Set your magnetic break to about 8. Then set your spool cast control knob to where the plug slowly falls when you push the thumbar release. If set properly your reel should not overrun or backlash when the plug hits the ground. These settings should help ease you into casting reels.

Don't forget your thumb acts as an additional break during the cast and most importantly at the very end before the plug reaches the ground or your lure hits the water. As you become more comfortable add more force to your casts and slowly back of the brakes and relaxed the spool cast control knob.

Note: not all reels feature the same dual breaking system as the PQ, so it may just have one to use depending upon reel and brand selected.

Hope this helps...

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To answer your initial question, Black Knight : .........YES DEFINITELY !.......Don't be discouraged with it, we've all been there. Once you learn how, You will be amazed at how well they work.  These newer reels are so much esasier to use than the ones I tried as a young fella.  These days I seldom use a spinning reel for anything other than dropshotting or Sluggo type baits. Good luck .

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd venture that modern baitcasters are a little more user-friendly. I'd pick a reel that has centrifugal braking system. I'd also buy an used reel. That way, if you don't like the experience, you can sell it and not lose too much money, As for "classes", check out some of the videos hosted on this site.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Black Knight....same thing here....I've always used closed faced spinning reels (Diawa Gold Casts) but have tried baitcasters a few times, got frustrated and gave them away.   Decided the other day to give it one more shot.   After reading a ton of reviews and threads on this forum, I zeroed in on the H2O Express Mettle baitcasting reel (maybe the best entry level reel on the  market at $50) and the Tournament Choice Premier 6'6" MH casting rod ($20) from Academy Sports.   I've watched the videos and am in the process of practicing and teaching myself to use it...wish me luck!!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

When I was younger, I got myself a baitcast reel. I had to get one that a 12 year old kid could afford so it was not a very good one. I had the same problems that you described. I couldn't ever cast it without getting a backlash. This was solved both by experience and getting a better quality reel. Mind you, this was when braking systems were not commonplace. Now, pretty much every price range of reel has some sort of braking system and baitcasting is much more accessible to beginners.

 

I have heard lots (and lots and lots) of good things about the H2O Mettle at Academy as a more than sufficient beginners reel. It is next on my purchase list. Also, the Abu Garcia Black Max. I am never at all one to advocate "spend more money" (I am the opposite, rather), but in this case it does pay, so to speak, to shell out a bit more dough. Your experience will be far more pleasant.

 

When you do make the investment, try some mono WITH LINE CONDITIONER! KVD Line and Lure is an utter life saver. There are other brands that other people attest to, but I have not used them so I cannot speak to their efficacy.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can't go wrong with the BPS Pro Qualifier and when you find them on sale even better. Buy some cheap mono and a couple practice plugs and just start casting away.

There is great info on here for setting up and casting a great video or 2.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Did you read the 2 stickies on how to cast a baitcaster, and how to set one up a baitcaster?  Search and you will find several threads on this forum about learning to cast with a baitcast reel.  I grew up using spinning gear, but switched over to baitcasters when I got back into fishing 4 years ago.  Read first, set reel up as described, and I think you will be casting well enough to hit the water in no time.

 

I love fishing, but fishing with a baitcast reel is even more fun.  Besides the reels already mentioned, you could keep an eye open on various "For Sale" sites for used reels such as the Citica and older Curados.  I feel 12# mono is an excellent choice to learn on.

 

My personal choice for an all-around bass rod is a 7' MH Fast.  You have gotten bit by the Bait Monkey at a good time.  There are several good rods at the $110 and under price point.  Used gives even more options.  New:  Berkley Lightning, Academy H2O Ethos, Abu Veritas, Falcon Original and HD, Powell Deisel, Daiwa Jupiter (at Walmart), Daiwa T rod, Fishing 13 Black ***, Shiano Compre and Sellus, St. Croix Premier, Mojo or Triumph, Field & Stream Tec Spec and Tec Spec Elite at Dick's, and Denali Jadewood just to name a few.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Do you need a baitcaster? No.

 

Is it worth trying out the modern models? That's up to you. Me? Yes it is. But you definitely want to enjoy fishing, and if you have a tool that just doesn't cooperate with you, then the task at hand isn't as enjoyable.

 

So ball is in your court :smiley:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Should I Try A Baitcast Reel?
 

 

Only if you want one.  I prefer spinning, I wouldn't consider a b/c.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you all for your responses. I am a federal employee and the Sequestration has severely limited my funds but when they come available again I'll look into the ones mentioned. It seems the Pro Qualifier or the Black or Silver Max may be in my line up in the next year. Thank you all again.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Pistol grip short handle spin cast outfit, the last time I knew anyone used that combo was Woo Davies with his Zebco 808!

You can snap cast a spin cast reel and that motion will blow up today's bait casters just like it did 25 years ago! The retrieve ratio and drags on the best spin casters is slow and poor at best.How you have managed to bass fish with a spin cast combo all theses years is amazing.

A good friend of mine uses the same stuff and when I took him out to teach him some basic bass fishing presentations he was lost, the reels tangled up a lot under the spin cast hub, the line capacity was minimal and the drags simply didn't work worth a hoot. Bo used one of my spinning outfit and learned to cast effectively and catch bass within a few hours. Today Bo only fishes with spinning tackle and loves it, you might want to considered a medium price range Shimano Sedona spinning reel and medium heavy 6'6" spinning rod. You can snap cast the spinning outfit and not have any issues back lashing. If Gary Yamamoto can bass fish using only a spinning outfit...you can.

Putting a entry level bait casting reel on your older pistol grip slow action rods will work, just not as well as a spinning outfit....IMO.

Tom

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To me, it's mostly about being able to put a lure where you want it.  If you are a spinning rod master and can put a lure in a dixie cup 50 ft away, why switch?  I use 80% baitcasting gear because that's what I can cast most accurately and most reliably.  I also like that there are fewer line handling problems, especially line twist, with a baitcaster.  But if I fished mostly on Lake Erie in high wind, I might never pick up a baitcaster again.  Likewise, if all I ever did was dropshot, I would never need heavy line or a baitcaster.  I have a closed faced spincast rig that I use for some presentations.  It works great.  And if I have an inexperienced fisherman out on the boat, it's a great option for them.  They can have fun, catch fish, and not tear their hair out with backlashes.  If you are catching fish like you want using whatever gear you have, don't be intimidated by yahoos kidding you about "fairy wands" or "Barbie rigs".  But if you're into fishing enough that the art of casting and different kinds of bait presentations are becoming important, you might want to branch out into gear including baitcasting to see if it gives you more satisfaction.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you want to be firing off a bunch of casts over and over and hit tons of little targets really quickly then I would sugjest one. Spinning reels just dont cast as fast or acurately. I would get something with centrifical brakes and use braided line. You can always pick out braid and your line will stil be fine to fish with even if its all knoted and terrible after you backlash. You could actually set it to a point where it is basically impossible to backlash and then work from there.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Get a split grip handle rod and a BPS Pro Qualifier baitcaster.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The only answer to the OP's question is YES. Baitcasters are easy to use and are much better for Bass fishing OVERALL than anything else. That said..Use what you like. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Once you get the hang of a bc, that will become your main rig.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The last two times I went out, I used my spinning rod/reel exclusively so yes, it's very possible to get by without a baitcasting rod/reel.  But I also use my baitcasting reel pretty regularly and there are times when it's nearly irreplaceable.  So, if money becomes available and you want to get one, sure, why not?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Absolutely!

 

I use them whenever I can now. There is the d**n learning curve though. I think if you are taking the plunge, take another plunge and buy at least a $100 one, no less. I think for the most part this is where you start getting significantly better quality. Also, just crank up the brakes until you get the hang of it, and slowly turn them down as you learn.

 

All the luck to you.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Only if you want one.  I prefer spinning, I wouldn't consider a b/c.

 

im with him spinning reels for life! :D lol but really the only time i use a baitcaster/conventional is when im throwing heavy lead like 6+ oz because after a few of your hands getting wet and soft skin from bait and such like this braid cuts your fingers up very easily casting a spinning rod...other than that i only use spinning

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was wondering if I should take the plunge again and try a bait cast reel?  If so which reel under $100 would be the best for no bird nests (back lashes) with a 12-15 pound mono line or better braid?

Dive in, especially if you go after bigger fish.  The gearing is amazing when reeling in a bad boy.

 

Spool up, tie on a yellow casting plug, and then pull out about 50 ft. and put a piece of tape across the line on the reel.  Now reel it back in.  You won't be able to get much or a birdsnest and if you do and you cannot pull it out, you will only lose that much line.

 

Your thumb is your brake.  Don't trust the reel not to overrun.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • fishing

    fishing forum

    fishing rods

    fishing reels

    fishing

    bass fish

    fish for bass
    fish

×