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Both at the same time. Kind of hard to use one without the other. 

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If I am buying new I will have a specific rod and reel in mind. However, when something special pops up

in our Flea Market I might buy it and then look for a match.

 

:easter-119:

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Same time - one of my recent purchases was a pre-matched combo, the other I matched up and bought together.

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Never really thought about it. I guess it depends on what sale I am taking advantage of at the time. If I see a great deal on a rod I will buy that and get a reel for it at a later date and vice versa.

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I buy rods and reels independently of each other and move them around from one to another. Once in a while I find a combination that I keep together, but that's the exception.

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This is the budget anglers 3 rod system for cheap effective and long lasting gear.

If you want all purpose rigs the 6'6" M action F tip with a 6.2:1 reel with 8lb Trilene XL(best casting distance for the price) is for everything you have, so two things a stout 7' Medium Heavy action Fast tip rod with a 7.1:1-6.2:1 reel ratio baitcaster with 12lb Berkeley Big Game mono(or flouro but this is cheap it works fantastic and lasts longer). This rod covers jigs, worms, spinnerbaits, smaller swimbaits, bigger jerkbaits and more, but can be used for frogs, flipping and pitching light cover if you want to swing that way(joke intended) until you want to upgrade to a 7'6" Heavy action Xtra fast tip for the 2oz artillery weights for really punching through thick grass. And after that personally I would recommend a 7' Medium Heavy action Moderate tip for crankbaits and a few odd baits. With a 5.4:1 gear baitcaster spooled with 10-12lb FLOUROCARBON(absolute must for deep crankbaits). 

 

S 6'6" M action F tip with a 6.2:1 6-10lb(8 is best from much experience)

C 7' Medium Heavy action Fast tip 7.1:1-6.2:1 10-12lb

C 7' Medium Heavy action Moderate 5.4:1  10-12lb

 

Now the crankbait rod can be a Medium action but if you plan to throw any crankbait deeper than 12ft or a squarebill over an ounce then stay with the MH  or else you will have a  workout and possibly break a rod or reel(strips the drag). So initially a Med. Mod isnt advised. Moveover, look for a very "noodley" rod with a very moderate tip but with a decent backbone so you can fish smaller cranks and not have them pop out and fly toward your face. All this being said I reccomend 

 

Lews Laser MG Speed Spool baitcasters

 

they run about $80 but are hands down the best bang for your buck reel in the medium price range of $50-100 and they last forever. 

 

For the rods I reccomend 

 

Lews David Fritts Perfect Crankbait rod

 

also $80 (they actually have a new combo out called the Crankback for $100 with the right reel instead of a $160 set up) They are very limber, light and set hooks very well again a great bang for your buck.

 

Lastly an Abu Garcia Vendetta 7' MH Ftip rod is very stiff, has a solid backbone and if you catch it right you can get them for $30 but normally about $70. 

 

All of these rods will fish pretty much anything you want besides alabama rigs. The spinning and the worm rod are really all you need but if you like crankbaits at all and will fish for hours at a time, if you have the money just get a crankbait rod they help so much and make it more fun instead of a chore. 

 

This is all suggestions and just an opinion. Hope that I helped. You should most definitely buy your reel first then a rod or buy them together. The reason is so that you get a good feel for the rig instead of having a giant reel on a small rod or visa versa.

 

-Will

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Neither.  I look for good buys.  Seems easier to find them on reels.  Therefore I have more reels than rods.  I don't mean to imply I'll buy anything that is a good deal.  I do need to be interested in the item.

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I buy whatever I can afford at the time first. Or whatever I decide upon earliest first...

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3 hours ago, TylerT123 said:

Do you buy the reel first, rod first, or both at the same time? And why?

Initially, I'll determine that I need a rig to present a bait or technique.

This almost always includes knowing in advance of the purchase where, when & how I'll be fishing it. 

Type & size of line expected to be used can also dictate rod & reel choice.

Then it's just a matter of choosing the right tool for the job.

 

A-Jay

 

 

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As it's uncommon for me to find both the desired rod and reel on sale at the same time, they are almost always purchased separately.  In recent memory, I've only purchased one combo but that was a Pflueger President combo which was marked down to only $30.00.  Hard to pass that up.

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Initially I purchased both cuz, you can’t fish with just one, next combo did the same, first I got spinning, next I got bc; from that moment on it really didn’t matter, actually I’m more of a reel kind of guy, I got way more reels than rods.

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I have enough rods and reels to cover the basics.  Not all are ideal matches.  So this year I decided I wanted to fill a gap.  I bought one heavily clearanced rod to fill that gap and another very discounted rod because I wanted to try it.  I have older reels that will work fine on these rods, but I'd eventually like to try different brand/model reels that would be a better match.  Mrs O has "convinced" me that I am done with new purchases for a while.  However, if the right deal comes along, the Baitmonkey may still get a new reel:)

 

In summary, I buy the best rod or reel based on the best value at the time.

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I look for reels first, but based on what I need it for.  Then match a rod later.

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