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What’s a good baitcasting rod/reel setup for newbie?

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Hi everyone. New to the bass resource community. Great site with a LOT of info. I’ve done all of my fresh water bass fishing with spinning gear, but I’d like to try my hand at baitcasting. Most of my fishing is done with top water lures, shallow diving crankbaits, spinner baits and rubber worms. What I’m looking for is a good all around setup (if that exists). Not looking to break the bank, but would be fine spending up to $300 for the rod/reel setup. Any help sorting this out would be GREATLY APPRECIATED. Thanks.

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Many would say that a 6'6"-7' MF or MHF makes for a good all around rod.  I agree.  However, I would also argue that something like the Tatula 7' MR (Regular action) would also be a good choice.  It and a Tatula CT would run a bit over $200.  A Fuego CT would cut about $30 off that.  I think the Tatula would handle crankbaits better, yet still have the necessary power to set a hook with a rubber worm...although I don't think worms are made from rubber. :D

 

BTW, welcome to the forum.

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Got to Tackle Trap get a MegaBass rod on sale for 180-200. What $$ left get a Tatula CT 

 

I looked at Tackle Trap, MegaBass owners would the Tour Versitile work for him or too powerful??? 

This is description

"Ideally suited for casting and pitching jigs and worms, the Tour Versatile is also made to handle big spinnerbaits, crank baits, frogs and even some swimbaits. “This is a stiffer, faster action rod that is great for 6 - 7 in. worms on a Texas-rig. It is also good for small Carolina rigs, soft jerk baits and 4 - 5 in. wacky-rigged stick baits. This is a very versatile rod, and is a good choice almost anytime you are using 12 to 20 lb line for everything up to the size of smaller soft plastic swimbaits.” - Aaron Martens

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As far as the reel goes, within your budget I really like both the Curado 70 and Tatula SV TW - search around for a good deal, you can find the Tatula SV TW for about $120 brand new.  If you want more spool capacity I've also seen good reviews for the Curado K so far, but haven't handled one myself.

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The local wal mart has a Abu Black Max combo for 60 dollars . You could buy five of them .

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45 minutes ago, QUAKEnSHAKE said:

Got to Tackle Trap get a MegaBass rod on sale for 180-200. What $$ left get a Tatula CT 

 

I looked at Tackle Trap, MegaBass owners would the Tour Versitile work for him or too powerful??? 

This is description

"Ideally suited for casting and pitching jigs and worms, the Tour Versatile is also made to handle big spinnerbaits, crank baits, frogs and even some swimbaits. “This is a stiffer, faster action rod that is great for 6 - 7 in. worms on a Texas-rig. It is also good for small Carolina rigs, soft jerk baits and 4 - 5 in. wacky-rigged stick baits. This is a very versatile rod, and is a good choice almost anytime you are using 12 to 20 lb line for everything up to the size of smaller soft plastic swimbaits.” - Aaron Martens

I used to own a TV. IMO its more of a H than MH. If you are throwing 2.5s or bigger,  1/2 and up spinnerbaits, 3/8oz weight plus bait t-rigs rev it would be perfect. I would suggest traditional MHs or like new2cb4bass suggested regular actions.

 

My specific recommendation would be Irod Genesis II 723C Stone Cold Swim & Vibrating jig rod or a Genesis II 733C Harold's Lone Star Special paired with a Tatula SV in 6.3 or 7.3. The 723C is a little stouter but has a moderate action. 

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I found 2 places selling the Tatula 7' MR for $98 and change.  At least one was free shipping (Sears).  I don't think you will find a better rod at that price.  I personally feel they are a good value at full price ($150).  It is hard to beat the Tatula SV as a first reel for a beginner.  It will shorten the learning curve.  A little research will show they aren't just for beginners.  :teeth:

 

Another reel that will shorten your learning curve is a T3 with Magforce 3D braking.  Will have to buy used.  I have only used an Exsence DC, but if all Shimano DC reels handle the same way, then a DC is another great reel to learn on....but even used a DC reel will put you over budget when you add the rod.

 

We are lucky to have so many good rods in the $100-$170 range.  Reels in the same price range are very good.  New I can suggest a Tatula SV, Tatula CT or Lew's Tournament MB.  No doubt there are also other suitable reels in that price range, but I have no experience with them....even though I own more reels than I should. 

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Lee's American Hero combo at Academy $80

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Howdy and welcome aboard! Lew's American Hero is definitely a good rod and reel. The only baitcaster I own is a 6'10" MHF Lew's American Hero with a 7.1:1 gear ratio. I absolutely love it and will eventually get at least one more. In my opinion it's the best rod and reel combo for the price. 😎

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Thanks for all the input. I was kind of leaning towards the Tatula SV and based on the replies looks like a good choice. The Irod Genesis rods are now in the mix based on Finnz922 recommendation.

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I have fished dozens of rods over the years.

My favorites today are from Irod ( Genesis II ) Powell and Dobyns.

In the Dobyns lineup their most popular rod for all around use would be a 734C.  It is available in multiple series, but a Fury FR 734C matched to a Daiwa CT or SV TWS would be a high quality combo for around $240. It is not a Black Max combo that you will upgrade from later

 

In a Powell, I love my Max 683 CEF. It is my most versatile rod I fish. Go read the Tackle Tour review on it ( just do a google search for it). Now mine is the original version, not the newer Max 3Ds. If you prefer the longer version than a 723 CEF would be the choice. These rods run around $120 right now.

 

I really like the Irods I own, but mine are more specialized rods.  The 733c would probably work well. I have never had one in my hand, but the build quality in the entire Genesis II series are equally good.  

A friend of mine turned me onto the Daiwas and I ended up selling off over a half dozen Shimanos, BPS and Lews reels in favor of 9 Daiwa original Tatula, Tatula Type Rs, Tatula CT and one Exceller. The SV TWS did not exist yet.  I just prefer that braking system over anything else out there. It is important to adjust these reels properly and they do not adjust the same as every other reel out there.  If you get one I would be happy to help you get it set right.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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At 300 dollars I'd look around for a used Avid or Avid X for around the 130-150 dollar price marker. That'd be a good deal for a 200 dollar rod leaving you about 150 dollars left to play with. Then I'd look at a Lews Tournament MB Speed Spool. Or a Shimano Citica. I recommend a used rod because you can get pretty good discounts on them and easily identify flaws via picture. Reels can look great in picture and show up bound up when you buy them used so even though I take the gamble myself, I never recommend that. Also, the reel is extremely important. Especially in and around the difference between 100-200 dollar reel. A lot of newer users to bait casters go out and buy a black max combo, cast two feet, black lash for half a day and quit. At least in my experience. Learning on a quality reel will save a lot of frustration and spools of line.

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51 minutes ago, fishnkamp said:

 

In the Dobyns lineup their most popular rod for all around use would be a 734C.  It is available in multiple series, but a Fury FR 734C matched to a Daiwa SV TWS would be a high quality combo for around $240. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

^THIS

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14 minutes ago, Mjmj said:

^THIS

Agree, Dobyns is a good rod company to start and stay with along with Daiwa reels.

Tom

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I helped my sister pick out a casting rod and reel for my nephews xmas present.  He ended up with a G. Loomis E6X 783C MBR and a Daiwa Tatula SV TWS 6.3:1.  It came in right at $300 during BF sales, it will be around $400 at msrp, but with some hunting you can find them both for less. 

 

I went with a shorter loomis as he is 13 and bikes to his fishing spots, so a shorter rod with a decent warranty seemed like a good idea.  I have a loomis rod with a MBR taper and find it to be quite universal within it's weight range and he was able to cast my SV reels without too much issue, so I thought an SV reel would be a good starting point as well. 

 

 

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Welcome aboard!

 

So many opinions on the matter that it is really something

that boils down to you and what feels good in your hands.

For reels, I prefer Shimano. I've had great experiences with

their Stradic and Chronarch lines.

 

I'd not hesitate to pull the trigger on a Tatula, either, so I

think that's a fine choice. In the $100 range of rods there are

an awful lot of really good rods that could fit the bill for an 

"all purpose" combo. You don't need to drop a few large to 

make it work for you (unless you want to).

 

Get to a local store that has the Tatula, ask to put it on several

different rods to get the feel of the setup in your hands.

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My choice would be a St. Croix Mojo Bass Casting Rod. It’s got a 5 year warranty and it’s better than their Bass X. The model I would pick would be spinnerbait, it’s Mod.-Fast action and MH power which would be decent for cranks and good for spinners. Price: $130

Site: http://stcroixrods.com/products/freshwater/mojo-bass

 

As for a reel, stay I’d stay AWAY from the high speed reels. Some people actually prefer them but others haven’t done their research and just think faster is better. High speeds are good for burning spinnerbaits and chatterbaits but not for cranks. Since you are cranking and using spinnerbaits, I would suggest a 6.0-6.8:1 it has enough torque for crankbaits and you can speed up for spinners. I just bought a Shimano Curado 200K, very smooth. Buying a decent reel will save you money in the long run and since your budget is pretty good, I’d utilize it.

 

I think the Curado K would be a nice choice for you, I haven’t heard anything bad about it, it should last for years as well. Price: $180

Site: http://fish.shimano.com/content/sac-fish/en/home/products/fishing-reels/baitcast/curado-k.html

 

Estimated Total Cost: $340 

Best of Luck!

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New Tatula CT for $90

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Daiwa-Tatula-CT-Baitcast-Fishing-Reel-100HSL-LEFT-hand-7-3-1-TACT100HSL/142120774489?hash=item21170eeb59:g:S6QAAOSw8FtZf~3P

 

New Tatula SV for $133

https://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Daiwa-Tatula-SV-TW-103HS-7-3-1-Baitcast-Fishing-Reel-RIGHT-hand-TASV103HS/142450524598?hash=item212ab681b6:g:8A0AAOSwuFpZb4Qn

 

I have purchased from this seller with no issues.  I also own both reels.  If you throw light stuff get the SV.  If not just get the CT.  It is a fantastic, easy-to-use reel.   

 

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4 hours ago, Darren. said:

what feels good in your hands.

Darren’s advice is dead on. I own Diawa and Shimano casting reels at all price points and favor the new SV’s for their new spool and brake system.  

 

I own a bunch of 7’ M/F rods between $99 - $499 and my favorite is a 7’ M/F Abu Garcia Veritas, not because it’s the most sensitive or lightest, but because it just feels good in my hands and does everything I need.

 

My next favorite rod is Kistler’s Magnesium 2, in 7’ M/F.  It’s got a softer tip than the Veritas, but feels just as good in my hands.

 

Spend as much time as you can handling the rods you’re interested in.  Bring a reel with you and mount it on the rod if the shop lets you.

 

Best of luck choosing a setup.

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I think the recommendations of a Tatula CT or a Tatula SV for the reel are spot on and you’ll have a pretty comfortable learning curve with either one. 

 

Your lure choice seems to lean towards moving single hook and treble baits. Given that is true I’d suggest the Megabass Orochi XX Spinnerbait Special, it looks to still be available from American Legacy for 199. It’s a great rod and very versatile, and while primarily a moving bait rod it will handle lighter trigs a small jigs just fine. The only thing I don’t like using mine for is pitching jigs and trigs and wouldn’t throw a jig bigger then 3/8 or 5/16 on it. But the rod is money for spinnerbaits, swimjigs, chatterbaits, squarebills, topwater, and even medium cranks. Im amazed American Legacy still has it as it was one of the first to sell out so get it quick if you want it, it’s a steal to 199. 

 

https://www.americanlegacyfishing.com/megabass-orochi-xx-casting-rods.html

 

If you could find a MB Orochi XX Diablo Spec R that would also be a very versatile and slightly better optiom for light jigs and trigs.  Someone mentioned the Tour Versatile, that’s a heavy powered stick and not what I’d consider an all purpose rod like you’re looking for. 

 

Some other good rods like the Dobyns in a 3 or 4 power or the St Croix Mojo Bass Spinnerbait rod are good suggestions. I’d also look at a Kistler KLX those blanks are pretty versatile, even the CRT series in KLX can throw light trigs.  Also in the Kistler line the Helium 3 Light/Medium Heavy Fast in a 7’ or 7’3” would also be a great versatile stick. I know a Loomis MBR series, probably a 3power would be excellent as well, but the only one in your price range is the E6X and I think there’s better options in that price range. 

 

Good luck!

 

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Fuego/Inferno 7' MH. Spend the difference on some baits (or some BG)

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Thanks for all the input on a rod/reel setup!!! I ended up getting a Daiwa Tatula SV with a 6.3:1 ratio. Now to look into all the rod recommendations.

 

 

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On 1/1/2018 at 5:35 PM, TylerT123 said:

My choice would be a St. Croix Mojo Bass Casting Rod. It’s got a 5 year warranty and it’s better than their Bass X. The model I would pick would be spinnerbait, it’s Mod.-Fast action and MH power which would be decent for cranks and good for spinners. Price: $130

Site: http://stcroixrods.com/products/freshwater/mojo-bass

 

I can second the Mojo Bass Spinnerbait rod. I got one for my son for Christmas and he likes moving baits, pretty much crankbaits and spinnerbaits and the tip on the spinnerbait rod is on the slower side of moderate fast so it should work with crankbaits.

 

Alternatively, I use a Daiwa Tatula MH/R glass cranking rod for most of my moving baits -- it is a glass cranking rod that is ideal for deep diving crankbaits with fluorocarbon, but since I usually fish shallower areas from shore, I run 14-17lb mono and it still has enough backbone to use a spinnerbait. The flex isn't too dissimilar from the Mojo Bass spinnerbait rod, and the price generally fluctuates between $110 and $150 on Amazon.

 

For soft plastics, you would want something with a faster tip ideally. Because you use mostly shallow crankbaits and topwater, I would probably go with a slower tip for cranks.

 

For a reel, you can't go wrong with the Tatula SV for its improved braking system. You can get a new one for $135-155 on ebay.

On 1/1/2018 at 6:04 PM, BigAngus752 said:

New Tatula CT for $90

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Daiwa-Tatula-CT-Baitcast-Fishing-Reel-100HSL-LEFT-hand-7-3-1-TACT100HSL/142120774489?hash=item21170eeb59:g:S6QAAOSw8FtZf~3P

 

New Tatula SV for $133

https://www.ebay.com/itm/NEW-Daiwa-Tatula-SV-TW-103HS-7-3-1-Baitcast-Fishing-Reel-RIGHT-hand-TASV103HS/142450524598?hash=item212ab681b6:g:8A0AAOSwuFpZb4Qn

 

I have purchased from this seller with no issues.  I also own both reels.  If you throw light stuff get the SV.  If not just get the CT.  It is a fantastic, easy-to-use reel.   

 

I have as well, and would again.

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