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Baitcasting 101

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I've always used spinning gear my entire life. I want to get a baitcasting combo, something for bass but could also handle some bigger fish. I'll also want some braided line with it. Maybe 20lb test? I've always used spinning gear with mono so this is a whole new world to me. Any suggestions? I don't have a budget yet so suggest away.

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Bigger fish, do you plan to use this rod/reel combo in salt water?

Tom

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I've always used spinning gear my entire life. I want to get a baitcasting combo, something for bass but could also handle some bigger fish. I'll also want some braided line with it. Maybe 20lb test? I've always used spinning gear with mono so this is a whole new world to me. Any suggestions? I don't have a budget yet so suggest away.

 

I say go for it, but realize there's just about no freshwater

fish spinning gear can't handle. There's even an FLW pro

who only uses spinning gear, even for flipping/pitching

in thick slop.

 

I learned baitcasting because I wanted to, but i could do

everything I do on BC gear with my spinning gear.

 

Just saying... :smiley:

 

For my BC gear, I use 20lb PowerPro, but there are many

here who believe that to be too thin and cause of digging

in. But I don't have any issues that I can't easily overcome.

 

That said, look for a quality BC that has a good braking

system. Overruns/birdsnesting can ruin a great day on the 

water.

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Yeah, I'd either say use a higher test braid or stick to Flouro or Mono.  The problem isn't the pound test, but the actual diameter of the braid, combined with the fact that braid seems to dig into itself if things aren't spools tight enough. If you must use braid, I'd be apt to start somewhere in the 40 pound range, maybe more.  I tried 30 lb. Power Pro on my one baitcaster, and while it wasn't too bad, I could tell it wanted to dig in, like mentioned, at times.

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Bigger fish, do you plan to use this rod/reel combo in salt water?

Tom

Yes it may see saltwater. But for the most part bigger fish would be pike or musky. Although i realize they don't live in florida i would love to catch them up north next summer. Also, with pike in mind, heavier line would be a good idea wouldn't it?

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7' MHF  40# Braid of choice.  Inexpensive = Sufix Performance  Expensive = Daiwa Samurai  Somewhere in the middle Sufix 832 or PowerPro

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I say go for it, but realize there's just about no freshwater

fish spinning gear can't handle. There's even an FLW pro

who only uses spinning gear, even for flipping/pitching

in thick slop.

 

I learned baitcasting because I wanted to, but i could do

everything I do on BC gear with my spinning gear.

 

Just saying... :smiley:

 

For my BC gear, I use 20lb PowerPro, but there are many

here who believe that to be too thin and cause of digging

in. But I don't have any issues that I can't easily overcome.

 

That said, look for a quality BC that has a good braking

system. Overruns/birdsnesting can ruin a great day on the 

water.

Excuse my ignorance, but, dig in? Are there problems besides birdnests that i should be aware of?

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You need to look at reels made for inshore use.

Daiwa Luna

Quantum PT Smoke Inshore

Shimano Calcutta and 300 series Curado

All the above work well, the Quantum PT being the smallest 100 series reel and lightest at 6.7 oz.

The Calcutta the highest end and Daiwa Luna and Shimano 300 are also a good choices for larger size reels.

I wouldn't go less than 30 lb braid with a bait caster.if you plan to use braid, start out with 1/2 the spool filled with mono, top shot of 60 yards of braid, then couple wraps of plumbers Teflon tape where you join the 2 lines with a blood knot. The tape helps to reduce deep backlashes with braid.

Take a look at the instructional vedio's on this site for learning to use a bait casting reel.

Musky fishing requires a heavy swimbait type rod with the 300 series reels and 50-65 lb braid.

Tom

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Excuse my ignorance, but, dig in? Are there problems besides birdnests that i should be aware of?

 

Digging in is when say you have a snag and you

pull/reel in the log or whatever. The thinner line

will dig in to itself - think of dental floss going in

between your teeth, but your teeth are the rest of

the line on the spool...

 

Make sense?

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Start out with a solid entry level reel with external brakes like a citica or tatula. That way if you find out you don't like it you didn't spend a ton of money and should have no problem selling it.

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Any "fresh water" reel will be fine in saltwater; rince well after saltwater use.

I use my bass tackle for chasing Specks & Reds with no adverse effects.

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Your best bet may be to do some more (alot more) reading / research regarding casting gear.

 

 Otherwise, the bit's & pieces of information you'll recieve here may only seem confusing and make it hard to get the full picture.

 

There's a TON of Very Useful information in the "Fishing Articles" section - click on the tab at the top of the page.

 

Good Luck.

 

A-Jay

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I'm with Darren, I use 15-40lb braid on baitcasters....no digging in issues. I posted the question why such heavy braid a few years ago and most of the responses were dia size of braid.  If you're snagged bad you simply wrap the line around something else instead of digging it into the spool when you're pulling it free....user error and mistake there. Most of mine are fished with lighter leaders so the mono or FC will break before the braid will anyways.  Look for a reel in the $100 range, this way you have a nice reel which will give you years of performance.  BPS has some decent  reels and combos (pro qualifier/carbonlite rod) under $200 which will not be on the cheap side but not too expensive or you could piece it.  I wouldn't put braid on until you got casting down first.  Go practice, if you want to fish smaller braid, practice with 6-8lb mono casting for a few days till you get it dialed in....then strip dow and re-spool it with braid.   

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If it is something you are just gonna TRY but may not stick with, go with a cheap combo so if it doesn't work out, no big deal.

 

If it is something you want to LEARN and stick with, spend a bit more to have something that will last longer and perform a bit better. I prefer this route.

 

I was always so resistant to using bait-casters, but now only after 1.5 years, I can't imagine throwing certain lures, or fishing in certain cover with out them. It will feel very foreign for a while, but after enough time and practice, you'll learn to love it as another tool in your arsenal.

 

I personally would go with an all around rod and reel to start. Something you can throw both moving baits and bottom presentations comfortably.

 

Rod: 6' 6'' to 7' medium heavy fast action

Reel: 6.4 to 6.8:1 ratio

 

This way you can throw jerkbaits, jigs, spinnerbaits, texas rigs, etc.

 

I personally prefer braid but would recommend 30lb to 50lb for ease of use. Those braid sizes are the same diameter as 8lb and 12lb mono. I would also recommend an 8-carrier braid though it is not required. I use sufix 832.

 

To get started, the easiest thing to do is use a heavier bait, it makes learning a bit easier. Start with high brakes and medium spool tension and gradually reduce the brakes as your thumb gets acquainted. The spool tension tends to be tighter for heavier baits and looser for lighter ones, though that is just a guide. Starting with high brakes will typically reduce casting distance but give more spool control and prevent more overruns while learning.

 

Practice in your backyard, your den, your kitchen, your pond, your boat. Just keep practicing.

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Any "fresh water" reel will be fine in saltwater; rince well after saltwater use.

I use my bass tackle for chasing Specks & Reds with no adverse effects.

Not always the case.  Some reels have magnesium frames, which aren't recommended for salt water fishing.

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I'll chime in here with my two cents.  I started baitcasting with a 7' M/F Ugly Stick and 7.1:1 BPS Tourney Special reel.  I spooled it with mono at first because it was cheap and I figured I'd be picking out nests.  By the end of the first season I felt proficient enough to buy a Pro Qualifier and Johnny Morris M/F rod that were on sale.  It turned out to be a great upgrade.

 

I found practice was the key to learning, starting with the reel's brakes set heavy enough to prevent ALL backlashes, and easing them up little by little as my comfort level increased.

 

Three years later I own Shimano Cores, 14-1 Concepts, various Diawas mounted on different brand rods (BEWARE of the Tackle Monkey!).  Depending on your budget, I'd say start with a BPS Pro Qualifier or Shimano at similar price points.  I find the PQ was great to learn on, and the Shimano's the best overall reels I own.

 

As far as rods, a medium-heavy / fast rod in your budget that feels good in your hands is the way to go.  You might look for sales too.

 

Best of luck taking up bait casting.  Once you get the hang of it, you'll likely stow your spinning equipment.

 

ADD: I ended up giving my first setup to a electrician friend's 1st year apprentice so he could get hooked while saving for his first house.

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For my BC gear, I use 20lb PowerPro, but there are many

here who believe that to be too thin and cause of digging

in. But I don't have any issues that I can't easily overcome.

 

 

 

I'm with Darren, I use 15-40lb braid on baitcasters....no digging in issues... [...] ...I wouldn't put braid on until you got casting down first.  Go practice, if you want to fish smaller braid, practice with 6-8lb mono casting for a few days till you get it dialed in....then strip dow and re-spool it with braid.   

 

What these guys said. Casting a small diameter braid is fine, but you will backlash during the learning process (and if you're like me, all the time after years of use :P). Because of braided line's cost and tendency to knot up when backlashed, it is not the line that you want to learn with, grab 8-12 lb mono to learn with, and be OKAY with the thought that you might have to cut out backlashes a few times before you get it down. As you learn, the backlashes will become less frequent, less severe, and you will have had plenty of practice picking them out!!!!

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Not always the case. Some reels have magnesium frames, which aren't recommended for salt water fishing.

Fresh water will cause corrosion in untreated magnesium!

Corrosion does not form on the surface of magnesium, it forms intergranular (between the grains)

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The Shimano Calcutta reels are designed for use in salt water, the anodized coated aluminum alloys and 18-8 series stainless steel perform good as long as the dissimilar metals are not in direct contact and subjected to the salt water electrolyte. Rinsing the salt off the wet reel and drying it helps to prevent corrosion of any exposed aluminum alloys in contact with dissimilar metals.

Not all fresh water bass reels are designed to be used in salt water, some work OK, others corrode. Air circulation helps to prevent corrosion, sometime rinsing with fresh water the outer reel surfaces doesn't remove the salt water entrapped inside reel and the result is corrosion.

Tom

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Anodizing - The formation of a hard, airtight, unbroken film of oxide on the surface of a piece of aluminum alloy by an electrolytic action.

The aluminum in all reels both domestic and foreign is anodized!

Corrosion can not take place until this film is broken!

This film also prevents corrosion formed by dissimilar metals!

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Catt, there are 3 types of anodizing, types 1 & 2 are sulfuric, very thin coating used to provide minimal wear protection and can be colorized in wide range of colors, it's primary use. Typec1& 2 are used for most fresh water reels because the process is inexpensive. Type 3 hard anodize is used for wear protection, over 0.001 thick and can be clear or colored in shades of gray and black.

My point is not all anodic coatings are equal and aluminum alloys have widely disparate resistance to corrosion depending on grade.

For the purposes of this topic, not all fresh water reel are designed for use in salt water.

Tom

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What are some rods that have multiple (atleast 2) pieces? I'd prefer something that could fit in a car trunk.

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Saltwater can ruin an expensive magnesium reel in one outing, I personally wouldn't use a reel containing magnesium in the salt, even if it was treated/rated for the salt.  A nick in the reel from dropping it or scraping it against something could compromise the reel.

 

Are you going to stick with left hand reel for baitcasters?  If you're using them for the first time, you might consider just sticking to LH retrieve.

 

Look at the Curado E series for sure.  Like a 301E - spool it up with 20-25lb fluoro and you could use it for crankbaits, swimbaits, and it's sturdy enough for some inshore/surf fishing.

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Tom,

There are two processes used!

Anodizing - The aluminum alloy is the anode of the electrolytic cell, and chromic acid is used as the electrolyte.

Alodine - The registered trade name of the Amchem Products Inc, for corrosion coating chemical which forms a hard, unbroken aluminum oxide film on a piece of aluminum alloy. The oxide film produced by Alodine servers the same function as the film produced by anodizing but does not require an electrolyte bath.

Most reel are manufactured from 7075 bare aluminum.

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Tom,

There are two processes used!

Anodizing - The aluminum alloy is the anode of the electrolytic cell, and chromic acid is used as the electrolyte.

Alodine - The registered trade name of the Amchem Products Inc, for corrosion coating chemical which forms a hard, unbroken aluminum oxide film on a piece of aluminum alloy. The oxide film produced by Alodine servers the same function as the film produced by anodizing but does not require an electrolyte bath.

Most reel are manufactured from 7075 bare aluminum.

Catt, I spent 50 years in aerospace manufacturing aluminum parts for hazardous environments and developed several plating combinations to 20+ years of service life from shipboard to space applications, this is one of my areas of expertise as the company I retired from (Glenair Inc.) is a manufacturing company that has a state of the art plating facility. Composite/ high strength thermal plastic materials are ideally suited for corrosive environments and the materials used to replace aluminum alloys, where possible, aboard ships and aircraft.

Alodine is a chemical film, (14-2 Iridte) provides a non-oxide film, no wear protection. Your Calcutta's are machined from 7057-T6 aluminum allow, excellent reels. Other reels maybe have die cast 380 aluminum, stamped 5052 or 6061-T6 parts or 2011-T3 screw manchineel parts, etc.

We are the only 2 people interested in this level of detail, so let's move on.

Peace

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