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cmal227

Baitcaster vs another spinning combo

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Hey all, I know there are tons of threads probably about this topic but I might have a different situation. For the longest time I have wanted a St. Croix Avid rod. I just really like the simple look of them and the warranty they offer and I have heard very good things about that rod. I want to get into some flounder fishing every now and again but it will mainly be used for bass. However, my school is looking to start a bass club and might even compete in local tournaments and perhaps even nationally if we get that good by the time I am done. That brings me to the baitcaster. Since I am hoping to do some tourney fishing, the thought on my mind is: "I should get a baitcaster". I guess I just see it more on TV and my friends use em all the time and it seems really efficient. In the past I have looked at several baitcasters - bps pro qualifier/carbonlite rod retup, Lew's speedspool, etc... I have never used a baitcaster before so I am cautious on my approach to one. What are your thoughts/opinions? Do you think it would be necessary to have a baitcaster? Because I'd really like to have an Avid but for the price I'd be paying for just the rod I can pick up a pretty good Baitcast combo. Thanks for your time!

 

Chris

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I think that there's definitely a time and a place for baitcasters. What kind of lakes will you be fishing? Is there a lot of heavy cover? If there is, you may want to get a heavy action rod and a baitcaster with a fast gear ratio so you can flip into heavy cover and muscle some fish out of it. If you're mostly fishing open water/light cover, I would get a 7' medium action rod, a 6:4:1 reel, and some 12lb copolymer. This is a great setup for throwing crankbaits or topwaters with treble hooks. As far as reels go, you can't go wrong with the $99 speed spool. They're great reels. If you reel with your left hand while fishing with a spinning rod, get a left handed baitcaster. It will reduce the learning curve quite a bit.

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Well it is personal preference.  My wife can handle any spinning equipment fine, she can also handle a fly rod beautifully, but refuses to use a baitcaster.  A baitcaster is a very useful tool, but my experience tells me that "cheap" baitcasting reels hurt the learning curve badly so I would suggest you look at some Diawa or Shimano reels. All of the manufacturers will be releasing next years product soon. That is why reels like Diawa Tatulas are available for around $100 instead of  $150 and often the Diawa Exceler that retails for $100 is being sold for $60.  These are high quality reels that are being discounted not cheap reels that are hard to work.  As for rods the same thing goes.

The Avid is a really nice rod but take a look at the Powell Inferno series for $100. They are well made and light in your hand.  I would look at an Inferno 703. It is about the most versatile in their line up. It is 7 ft medium heavy with a xf tip. If you are working heavy cover you might want to pump up to the 704.  These are great rods for everything except crankbait fishing then you want a more medium action moderate taper rod or even a that same spec in a glass/graphite compoaite rod. The slower action help with treble hooks. I would consider the 6104cb. It is a weapon of a rod for traps and cranks.

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10 hours ago, mbtharp1 said:

I think that there's definitely a time and a place for baitcasters. What kind of lakes will you be fishing? Is there a lot of heavy cover? If there is, you may want to get a heavy action rod and a baitcaster with a fast gear ratio so you can flip into heavy cover and muscle some fish out of it. If you're mostly fishing open water/light cover, I would get a 7' medium action rod, a 6:4:1 reel, and some 12lb copolymer. This is a great setup for throwing crankbaits or topwaters with treble hooks. As far as reels go, you can't go wrong with the $99 speed spool. They're great reels. If you reel with your left hand while fishing with a spinning rod, get a left handed baitcaster. It will reduce the learning curve quite a bit.

Thank you for the response! I honestly do not really know what lakes I will be fishing. I am in South Jersey and there are mainly ponds around here and I fish from the bank but hope to get a kayak soon. If the Bass team at my college is able to grow a bit and fish tourneys I do not know what lakes we will be fishing. I mainly fish small crankbaits, some topwater and, most of the time, texas/wacky senko or a fluke. But I want to start doing more. There are also a ton of pressured lakes near me with lilly pads that I see people cast right into and pull some out. That is something I cannot do right now. I have a Carbonlite rod medium 6'6" with a Pflueger President. 

10 hours ago, fishnkamp said:

Well it is personal preference.  My wife can handle any spinning equipment fine, she can also handle a fly rod beautifully, but refuses to use a baitcaster.  A baitcaster is a very useful tool, but my experience tells me that "cheap" baitcasting reels hurt the learning curve badly so I would suggest you look at some Diawa or Shimano reels. All of the manufacturers will be releasing next years product soon. That is why reels like Diawa Tatulas are available for around $100 instead of  $150 and often the Diawa Exceler that retails for $100 is being sold for $60.  These are high quality reels that are being discounted not cheap reels that are hard to work.  As for rods the same thing goes.

The Avid is a really nice rod but take a look at the Powell Inferno series for $100. They are well made and light in your hand.  I would look at an Inferno 703. It is about the most versatile in their line up. It is 7 ft medium heavy with a xf tip. If you are working heavy cover you might want to pump up to the 704.  These are great rods for everything except crankbait fishing then you want a more medium action moderate taper rod or even a that same spec in a glass/graphite compoaite rod. The slower action help with treble hooks. I would consider the 6104cb. It is a weapon of a rod for traps and cranks.

Thank you for the response! All I know is spinning tackle that is all I've ever used. It works fine for me but I feel a draw to a baitcaster. I really do want to learn how to use one and I think I should if I want to fish tournaments. Thank you for the suggestion I have seen the Powell rods and they look good. I definitely want to try and get a rod with a good warranty too. How is customer service with Powell?

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You can do everything with spinning gear if
you want to. There's an FLW pro who uses
nothing but spinning.

If you want to learn a bait caster, then by all
means do so. But don't do it because TV
tells you to. It is not a necessity to the sport.

Both are tools, both work, I've got both, but
I've begun to move back to spinning more.

But hey, again, go for it. I'm not trying to tell
you not to! It's all personal preference :) 

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I just want object the comment you should get a Daiwa or Shimano.  I am a Shimano fan, but I have three Carbonlite/PQ combos.  The setups are rock solid, balance well and use them in my rotation.  I agree you shouldn't go cheap if you are learning to use baitcasters but when you say cheap, don't get a 20 dollar combo.  It will turn you off on baitcasters quickly, it will frustrate you as you will lose confidence while picking out your birds nest.  

Baitcasters in my opinion really increase your versatility and I find I am more accurate with them.  They are better for heavy line and lures when needed.

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9 minutes ago, Darren. said:

You can do everything with spinning gear if
you want to. There's an FLW pro who uses
nothing but spinning.

If you want to learn a bait caster, then by all
means do so. But don't do it because TV
tells you to. It is not a necessity to the sport.

Both are tools, both work, I've got both, but
I've begun to move back to spinning more.

But hey, again, go for it. I'm not trying to tell
you not to! It's all personal preference :) 

Thanks for the response! Yeah I have a 6'6" Carbonlite spinning rod and I really like it a lot. I can use it for just about everything (even if i technically should not use something on it I probably will haha) but I just feel like I wanna try a baitcaster. Thanks for your input :)

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Hold on now, you want an Avid, you want a baitcaster, so why not get......an Avid baitcaster? What am I missing here?

Also, if your bass team going to be sponsored, you may be able to get a good deal on another brand.

If it's a warranty you want, Fenwick has lifetime warranties on almost all their lines of rods, I think.

As it happens, I'm using baitcasters for the first time this year. With a little homework and a little practice (and a little patience), there's no reason to be intimidated.

 

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3 minutes ago, lmbfisherman said:

I just want object the comment you should get a Daiwa or Shimano.  I am a Shimano fan, but I have three Carbonlite/PQ combos.  The setups are rock solid, balance well and use them in my rotation.  I agree you shouldn't go cheap if you are learning to use baitcasters but when you say cheap, don't get a 20 dollar combo.  It will turn you off on baitcasters quickly, it will frustrate you as you will lose confidence while picking out your birds nest.  

Baitcasters in my opinion really increase your versatility and I find I am more accurate with them.  They are better for heavy line and lures when needed.

Thank you for the response! Yes I just really want to get into baitcasters - being able to thumb the spool and cast more efficiently definitely makes me want to try and I won't cheap out I really want to use something that will be a workhorse and something I can trust and hopefully allow a lot of versatility. Thank you again!

1 minute ago, MIbassyaker said:

Hold on now, you want an Avid, you want a baitcaster, so why not get......an Avid baitcaster? What am I missing here?

Also, if your bass team going to be sponsored, you may be able to get a good deal on another brand.

If it's a warranty you want, Fenwick has lifetime warranties on almost all their lines of rods, I think.

As it happens, I'm using baitcasters for the first time this year. With a little homework and a little practice (and a little patience), there's no reason to be intimidated.

 

haha I know right I wish but i would already have a reel for the Avid spinning but an Avid is $200 bucks and the baitcaster combo I would want to get would be $200 for a good rod and a good reel. I just don't really want to drop $300+ on my first baitcaster. I know it is only $100 more but as a College student I just can't really do that right now. Thanks for the response!

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A Powell Inferno is $99 to $109.  A Tatula can be had for $100.  That combo with some line and it is in your budget.  It will work fine.  Since your Avid spinning rod can easily handle all of the lite weight finesse techniques I would go for the  703 for an all purpose rod. You can throw a spinnerbait, a jig, worm anything like that.  As you grow you can add a dedicated rod for crankbaits and perhaps something to pitch or flip heavy cover. I own a Powell Max 683 which had almost the exact same specs as the 703. Do a google search on Powell Max 683 and read Tackle Tour's review.  Now the old Max series was a little nicer than the old Inferno, just the same as the Max 3D is a little nicer than the current Inferno. My Max is the most versatile rod in my 12 baitcaster arsenal.  The Tatula matches up nice with it and I know you will be happy with it. Also the reel has a very easy to adjust break system. 

 

 

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19 minutes ago, fishnkamp said:

A Powell Inferno is $99 to $109.  A Tatula can be had for $100.  That combo with some line and it is in your budget.  It will work fine.  Since your Avid spinning rod can easily handle all of the lite weight finesse techniques I would go for the  703 for an all purpose rod. You can throw a spinnerbait, a jig, worm anything like that.  As you grow you can add a dedicated rod for crankbaits and perhaps something to pitch or flip heavy cover. I own a Powell Max 683 which had almost the exact same specs as the 703. Do a google search on Powell Max 683 and read Tackle Tour's review.  Now the old Max series was a little nicer than the old Inferno, just the same as the Max 3D is a little nicer than the current Inferno. My Max is the most versatile rod in my 12 baitcaster arsenal.  The Tatula matches up nice with it and I know you will be happy with it. Also the reel has a very easy to adjust break system. 

 

 

Thank you so much for your help fishnkamp! I appreciate it! Yeah a dedicated crankbait rod will definitely be next! But for now I will definitely look into the Inferno I really like what I am hearing about it! Thanks again man I really appreciate it!

Just wanted to say thank you for everyone who responded! I really appreciate it! I decided to go for a baitcaster - probably an inferno with either a Tatula if I can find one for around 100 or a Lews Speed Spool. Thanks again everyone!

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Go get a Abu Garcia Black Max combo. Learn with a very good but cheap combo. If you decide that baitcasting is not for you, it was cheap and you can have it there just in case. Don't get caught up with brands, what the pros use or what friends have. Get what you can and as a college kid, books are more important. 

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Check out the Smallmouth Elite Tech and HMG series at FFO and see if any are the length, power and action you want.  They don't have many models left, but are a great deal if one is available with the desired attributes.  I happen to have all three models they have left in the Smallmouth series.  I am particularly fond of the first two.  The 6'9' MHF is a nice rod, but I prefer longer rods in that power rating.  The 7'3" MHF HMG wouldn't be a bad first rod.  I've got a few HMGs and like them.  Either model and a new Tatula will come in under your $200 limit.

Used can be a good way to go.  I would also post a WTB ad and explain your situation.  You might be surprised.  I've personally helped out youngsters like you and I know I am not the only guy to do so.

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Once you use a baitcaster it's hard to go back to a spinning rod regardless of the technique ;)

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Thanks everybody for your posts! Means a lot and I really appreciate all of your opinions! I wound up getting a Lew's lfs and a Powell Inferno for about 175 bucks! Again thank you all!

 

Chris

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You will be amazed with that rod.  If you just picked it up not knowing the price you would expect it to be much more expensive. Powell has gone after the mid priced rod market very nicely. I can not wait till you get a 5 pounder on that rod!

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3 minutes ago, fishnkamp said:

You will be amazed with that rod.  If you just picked it up not knowing the price you would expect it to be much more expensive. Powell has gone after the mid priced rod market very nicely. I can not wait till you get a 5 pounder on that rod!

haha I cannot wait to get started using it, thanks again for all your help fishnkamp!

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Necessity is what motivated me to learn baitcasters 35 years ago. I simply could not pull largemouths out of heavy cover with even heavy-duty spinning rods.  So it's a rod thing for my bass fishing.  There are more baitcasting rod selections than spinning.  Choose the patterns you like to fish best....select a rod to handle it...get your reel!  Now, I use spinning tackle for the gnarllyist docks, small/light plastic baits work and baitcasters for everything else.  Baitcasters are much more comfortable and efficient over a days fishing in most all of my lure choices. Good luck.

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On 7/3/2016 at 1:33 AM, Caliyak said:

Go get a Abu Garcia Black Max combo. Learn with a very good but cheap combo. If you decide that baitcasting is not for you, it was cheap and you can have it there just in case. Don't get caught up with brands, what the pros use or what friends have. Get what you can and as a college kid, books are more important. 

Great advice-if you like the baitcaster, it certainly will not be your last. I have a couple of Silver Max reels (essentially the same thing, just a little nicer) and I really like them. A reel like that will easily last you until you get started in your career and have the $$$ to toss at better equipment. I would be more than surprised if you wore out a Black Max reel.

 

***The same could be said for any of the lower end name brand reels. Bass pro and Cabela's house brands included.

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