Types of Fishing Reels

  • By: fishlovers
  • Date: July 15, 2023
  • Time to read: 6 min.
Types of Fishing Reels

For the past fifteen years, technological advances in alloying and mechanical engineering have revolutionized the fishing reel industry. The number of reels offered on the market has grown exponentially to the point that today there are thousands of highly specialized references to practice our favourite hobby, from the entry-level model at less than 10 euros to high-end model offered several hundred euros. Faced with an ever-increasing number of references, and prices that vary from simple to a hundredfold, the neophyte often has trouble finding their way when it comes to choosing a reel for fishing. Here is an overview of the world of sea fishing reels which should allow you to better target your choices.

Which reel for which fishing?

The reels offered by the manufacturers are classified by family of use: surfcasting reels, spinning reels, trolling reels, jigging reels, etc. This allows you to target your choice according to the technique you wish to practice. . In use, reels prove to be more versatile than fishing rods and it is possible to practice several different techniques with the same reel.

The different types of reels


The Casting reel differs from the traditional Spinning reel used in France by the fact that it is the spool that spins, whether during casting or during recovery. The reel can only be mounted on a Casting rod. The advantages are mainly compact sets, great fishing comfort, precision and discretion. It is very comfortable and very pleasant on all heavy, strong or with fishing lures. Still, Casting is not necessarily to be preferred for fishing with lures that are too light (less than 5 grams), because this requires some training. There are two profiles: round like Shimano Calcutta or profiles also called “Low Profile” like Shimano Curado.


Reel traditionally used in France, it is a reel with a fixed spool and the wire is wound around. It excels in all fine peaches and very fast peaches but the center of gravity being a little lower it can be less comfortable than a casting set.

The addition of the letter C to the reel reference means that it is a “Shallow” spool (example with the ShimanoVanquishC3000F), the spool being slightly less deep it will be easier to fill in braid!

See Also:  Best 2023 Shimano Spinning Reels

Check out our article complete guide to using spinning reels

The characteristics of a reel

The weight, the force of the brake, the recovery ratio, the type of winding of the line, and also the quality of the non-return, are all elements to take into consideration when choosing your reel.

The weight of a reel is expressed in grams and allows it to be classified in fishing style from the finest to the heaviest.

Light reel: less than 400g for all fine fishing such as light casting, rockfishing, fine fishing to support, float, …

Medium-heavy reel: from 400 to 600 g for intermediate fishing such as surfcasting, bubble fishing, Madai Jig fishing, vertical fishing, etc.

Heavy reel: more than 600 g for strong fishing like classic jigging, exotic or not heavy surfing, tropical fishing,…

The right balance to find?

In all cases, the reel must be chosen in relation to the rod that you wish to use. The whole thing must be balanced so that the fishing is as pleasant and efficient as possible. The point of balance is to be sought just after the foot of the reel, the ideal being that the center of gravity is no more than ten centimeters thereof.

5 Most Used Types of Fishing Reels

  1. Spincast Reels

If you have a good memory, the coil (spincast) was the first that we took between our hands with our children in their learning part, cheap and fail to take in hand, so for beginners and fishermen who practice occasionally, this coil remains a very good choice, with its minimal investment cost and its ease of use.

One of the easiest reels to untangle, simple to use, with its push button, this reel offers maximum precision during launching, especially if there are tangles .. you can pull tightly on the line by opening the bail.

Spincast Reels

But like any usable object, this reel also has some drawbacks, the good accuracy is directly linked to its line capacity, i.e. you do not have a good lacing capacity, and you cannot launch as much you want, it is again to say that this reel is made for beginners and occasional fishermen.

Another disadvantage linked to the use of this reel is that of its line which will certainly not support game of high weight, a good reel for the amateurs and the children, but not for the refined fishermen who wish to fish big fish , it is reserved for small fish

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2- Baitcasting Reels

Baitcasting reels are becoming more and more popular as more and more fishermen practice predator fishing in Europe. Their ultra-light design combined with exceptional direct contact makes the use of lures with a “Baitcasting” or a small spinning reel extremely effective and motivating. Now, almost all Shimano reels are equipped with casting control technology allowing a smooth use. Baitcasting reels are spinning reels specially designed for lure fishing. They are now very light and more and more efficient in throwing lighter weights.

There are two profiles: round and said “low profiles” (flat profile). It is important to choose the right ratio to associate your reel with your fishing. It should also be noted that some reels are specially designed for strong big bait peaches, and that others, on the contrary, are specific to very fine peaches.

3- Spinning Reels

It,s the one with the most followers. Often recommended for beginners, the spinning fishing rod is indeed quite easy to handle. It can launch lures of around 10 g, and send them over long distances; which makes it more suitable for shore fishing. A spinning set is versatile and suitable for fishing for all predators (with some reservations).

Spinning uses a fixed drum reel which is positioned under the rod.


– A large selection of equipment available online and in stores.

– A price that can range from 10 to several hundred euros depending on everyone’s budget.

– Versatility in all tests in terms of different fishing techniques.

– A facility for handling lures of small grammages.

– Throwing distances, generally longer with a fine braid.

– Ease to start and learn the workings of fishing.

– Easy disassembly for maintenance.


– Assembly can be heavy depending on the size of the mill, even if the evolution of the material tends to eliminate this drawback.

– No real big drawbacks hence the popularity of this technique in Europe!

4- Conventional/Trolling Reels

Conventional Trolling Reels

For big fish, it is highly recommended to use conventional or trolling reels, or trolling reels, thanks to its resistance, it is made of a robust graphite body, it is designed for fishing in water deep and for big fish fishing for lovers of big game fishing, A loud audible clicker will also be useful so that you can hear the line drawn on the noise of the engine. Among the criteria to check for this type of fishing is good resistance, this type of reel is known for its resistance and its body made of graphite and machined aluminium, a soft and powerful multi-disc drag system and a large capacity line to support the counter force of big fish like tuna and marlin, this reel is equipped with a drag system with lever which gives it more charm and simplicity,

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5- Centerpin Reels

Centerpin Reels

The oldest reel still yet alive and efficient today, is the central spindle, which dates back to the beginning of the 19th century is a type of fishing reel which turns freely on its “central spindle”, or its axis, a very large diameter spool, which is also perpondicular to the fishing rod, it is a reel without drag and free winding, which allows a throw long distances, which means that instead of the mechanical drag it is the thumb of the fisherman does the job, by controlling the fish on the line, easy and efficient mechanisms and above all solid, intended for carp fishing, and other large fish, thanks to its central axis which gives an advantage of control compared to other reels.

Does the reel make the fisherman?

If we can say that it is not the reel that makes the fisherman, it should however be specified that he actively participates in the success of the fishery. A good fisherman will always fish better with good equipment, let it be said !!! All techniques combined, fishing has become considerably more technical and today requires the use of high-performance equipment for a minimum of success.


Fishing is an activity that interests many people. It requires a certain physical effort on the part of those who practice it, and allows them to cultivate the spirit of competition, but also patience. The equipment necessary for predator fishing varies according to individual tastes and preferences. Indispensable, the fishing rod for predators must be chosen with care.

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