If you are brand new to fishing, consider buying a spincast reel to complete your first fishing rod purchase. Spincast reels are the best choice for beginners because they were designed specifically as a solution to a number of problems that can occur in spinning reels and baitcast reels. This guide will teach you everything you need to know to find the best spincast reel for your life.

Here at The Adventure Junkies, we know what it’s like to be the new kid on the block, or in this case, the water. We know that stepping outside of your comfort zone can be daunting, but we want you to stick with it! That’s why we’ve made it our goal to help beginners everywhere learn new sports, from finding the best gear to honing their skills.

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QUICK ANSWER – THE BEST SPINCAST REELS

  1. Pflueger President 10SCX
  2. Zebco Omega ZO3Pro
  3. Daiwa Goldcast GC120
  4. Abu Garcia Abumatic S15-C
  5. Abu Garcia Abumatic 170
  6. Zebco Authentic 33
  7. Zebco 404

 

 

 

SPINCAST REELS REVIEWS

PFLUEGER PRESIDENT 10SCX

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

BEST FOR: All-around fishing

ENGAGEMENT: Button

GEAR RATIO: 4.1:1

RETRIEVAL RATE: 18.5 in (46.7 cm)

MONO CAPACITY: 10.0/75.0 lb/yards (4.5/68.5 kg/m)

PROS: 4 ball bearings, rigid aluminum frame, perfect gear ratio for panfishing

CONS: Pflueger customer support can be difficult to contact

 

 

 

ZEBCO OMEGA ZO3PRO

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

BEST FOR: Medium/heavyweight fishing

ENGAGEMENT: Button

GEAR RATIO: 3.6:1

RETRIEVAL RATE: 19.0 in (48.3 cm)

MONO CAPACITY: 10.0/85.0 lb/yards (4.5/77.7 kg/m)

PROS: 7 ball bearings, 3x positive pickup, left-handed retrieval compatibility, multi-drag mechanism, pre-spooled 10.0 lb test line

CONS: Drag knob poorly located

 

 

 

DAIWA GOLDCAST GC120

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

BEST FOR: Bass fishing

ENGAGEMENT: Button

GEAR RATIO: 4.1:1

RETRIEVAL RATE: 21.3 in (54.1 cm)

MONO CAPACITY: 12.0/100.0 lb/yards (5.4/91.4 kg/m)

PROS: Fast retrieval, optimized line aperture for maximum casting distance, oscillating spool levelwind, smooth multi-disc drag, rotating tungsten carbide line pickup

CONS: Drag settings turn opposite to intuition, anti-reverse has audible clicking

 

 

 

ABU GARCIA ABUMATIC S15-C

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

BEST FOR: Fishing under bridges

ENGAGEMENT: Button

GEAR RATIO: 4.3:1

RETRIEVAL RATE: 28.0 in (71.1 cm)

MONO CAPACITY: 12.0/100.0 lb/yards (5.4/91.4 kg/m)

PROS: Tough graphite frame, stainless steel front cone, QuadCam pickups, ultra-smooth drag, pre-spooled with Berkley Trilene XL

CONS: Lacks sensitivity

 

 

 

ABU GARCIA ABUMATIC 170

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

BEST FOR: Inshore fishing

ENGAGEMENT: Button

GEAR RATIO: 3.9:1

RETRIEVAL RATE: 25.0 in (63.5 cm)

MONO CAPACITY: 12.0/140.0 lb/yards (5.4/128.0 kg/m)

PROS: Aluminum die-cast front cone, tough Duragear brass gear, 3+1 bearing system with instant anti-reverse, strong Carbon Matrix drag system

CONS: Some users report line gets hung up inside cone, right retrieve only

 

 

 

ZEBCO AUTHENTIC 33

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

BEST FOR: All-around fishing on a budget

WOMEN’S VERSION: Zebco 33 Purple

ENGAGEMENT: Button

GEAR RATIO: 3.6:1

RETRIEVAL RATE: 19.0 in (48.3 cm)

MONO CAPACITY: 10.0/110.0 lb/yard (4.5/100.5 kg/m)

PROS: Lightweight graphite frame, Bite Alert, dial-adjustable drag changeable right or left-hand retrieve, pre-spooled with 10.0 lb test line

CONS: Some users report low-quality performance and build

 

 

 

ZEBCO 404

Check out the latest price on:
Amazon

BEST FOR: Heavy-duty fishing on a budget

ENGAGEMENT: Button

GEAR RATIO: 2.8:1

RETRIEVAL RATE: 17.0 inches (43.1 cm)

MONO CAPACITY: 15.0/90.0 lb/yards (6.8/82.3 kg/m)

PROS: Price, super low gear ratio

CONS: Heavy-duty specific

 

 

 

COMPARISON TABLE – THE BEST SPINCAST REELS

PICTURE
SPINCAST REEL
BEST USE
RETRIEVAL
GEAR RATIO
PRICE
RATING
PICTURE
SPINCAST REEL
BEST USE
RETRIEVAL
GEAR RATIO
PRICE
RATING
Pflueger President 10SCX
Overall
18.5 in
4.1:1
$$$
4.6
Zebco Omega ZO3Pro
Overall
19.0 in
3.6:1
$$$
4.5
Daiwa Goldcast GC120
Overall
21.3 in
4.1:1
$$
4.2
Abu Garcia Abumatic S15-C
Medium
28.0 in
4.3:1
$$
5.0
Abu Garcia Abumatic 170
Medium
25.0 in
3.9:1
$$
3.9
Zebco Authentic 33
Budget
15.0 in
3.6:1
$
4.1
Zebco 404
Budget
17.0 in
2.8:1
$
4.8

 

 

 

HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST SPINCAST REELS

The spincast reel was invented by Zebco in 1949 to reduce line twist and backlash. To this day, the company continues to dominate the market. Apart from a handful of competitors, many of the spincast reels you’ll see will be made by Zebco.

 

LINE ENGAGEMENT

All fishing reels need to have some way to release the line from the spool and stop it when you’ve let enough out. While spinning reels have bails, spincast reels have buttons or triggers.

The effect is the same with pushing a button or pulling a trigger; both will engage the line. It’s during this time that you want to prepare your cast, whether it’s to the side or overhead.

As you crank the rod in the direction of the cast, release the button/trigger when the rod is in line with your body. The rod will stay in your hands, while the lure’s momentum will continue.

Almost all of the spincast reels you’ll shop for online will have button systems. These reels are mounted on the top of the rod and the button is pressed with the thumb. Trigger reels hang on the bottom of the rod and are meant to be pulled with your index and middle fingers.

 

GEAR RATIO

Understanding gear ratios can be confusing for beginners. There’s already so much to learn in the sport of fishing, but worry not! It’s a simple concept.

The gear ratio describes the number of times a spool turns relative to the number of turns the handle makes. It’s just like riding a bike. When you have your bike in high gear, pedaling is difficult and strenuous.

When our bicycles are in low gear, our feet can go around and around on the pedals at a speedy rate, but the tire turns slowly. That’s why we bike uphill in low gear because we want to utilize as much leverage as possible while completing a difficult task.

Low gear ratios increase leverage, while high gear ratios decrease it. With this is mind, it should be easy to understand fishing reels.

Low gear ratios range from 2.7:1 to 5.4:1. With the first setting, your spool of line will spin 2.7 times for every one turn of your handle. This is ideal for heavyweight fishing.

In low depths, most animals move slowly compared to shallow-water fish, just like divers move much slower than snorkelers. To trick the fish into believing your lure is real, the lure most blend in, moving slowly like all the other bait fish.

In deep water, it’s impossible for you to see to the bottom where you lure is. You won’t be utilizing your sight-fishing skills, which take advantage of your ability to know exactly when to set the hook — a task that would require you to have a high gear ratio. Instead, you’ll be relying on the signals you receive on the surface which may be a twitch of the rod tip or a vibration on your line.

Medium gear ratios range from 6.1:1 to 6.4:1. These are great for crankbaits in medium depth water and spinner baits in shallow water.

At medium depths, creatures are moving a bit more quickly than their bottom-feeder cousins, but not quite as fast as their friends hanging out near the surface. A medium gear ratio supplies enough stamina for fighting medium-sized fish.

The reaction time of the gears is slow enough for the fish to bite, but fast enough to set the hook. It’s a fine balance! Medium gear ratio reels are very versatile and make a great choice for your first reel purchase if you’re not quite sure what type of fishing you’ll be doing.

High gear ratios reels, which range from 7.1:1 to 8.1, are perfect for any lure that requires “working” or the fisherman’s manual swimming (dipping, diving, dancing, etc.) of the lure to get the fish’s attention. They offer a quick gear response to every turn of the handle.

Jigs, soft plastic worms, Carolina and Texas rigs, jerkbaits and topwater lures are all suited for use with high gear ratio reels specifically in lightweight fishing (panfish, small to medium bass, small trout, etc.).

 

RETRIEVAL RATE

Now that you understand gear ratios, we’ll move on to a related topic. The gears inside a fishing reel determine the retrieval rate.

Retrieval describes how fast a reel brings the line back into the spool when the handle is turned. This is measured by inches (also known as inches per turn). For example, if your reel’s retrieval rate is 17 inches, that means for every turn of the handle, 17 inches of line will wind back onto the spool.

Low gear ratio reels will have slow retrieval rates. High gear ratio reels will have fast retrieval rates. What you choose comes down to preference. It’s definitely possible to accommodate a fast retrieval rate when you need a slow lure, but it’s far more difficult to speed up a slow-moving reel.

Try to choose a reel that suits your favorite type of fishing and will allow you to get the fish into the boat/kayak quickly, and then swiftly back into the water.

 

MONO CAPACITY

Mono capacity is a dual rating. It first reports the test (in pounds). It then shows how much length of line will come spooled with the purchase (in feet).

Test measures how much weight the line can hold without breaking, thereby showing you the weight class of tackle (light, medium, or heavy). The heavier the test, the thicker the line. Keep in mind that thicker lines make thicker spools.

Thicker spools cast further and require less assistance from the drag system. If you want a heavy line, the first number should be 12 or more. If you want a line that can cast long distances, the second number should be 100 or more.

Best Spincast Reel - Kayak Fishing Gear and Accessories – Kayak Fishing Tips and Setup Ideas for Men and Women
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