Baitcast Reel – Spinning Reel – Spincast Reel? What’s The Difference?
Walk into any fishing outlet and head over to the reel section. Chances are you’ll be surrounded by different types of fishing reels. Baitcasting reels, spinning reels, and spincast reels in their various brands and models line the shelves. The experienced fisherman can immediately jump into the details of any specific reel, but the angler that’s just starting (or has only ever used one type of reel) can find this experience overwhelming.
This quick guide will discuss the differences between baitcaster, spinning, and spincast reels. It will explain the advantages of each reel type along with the challenges presented when using each different design. Equip yourself now with the basics of these three fishing reel designs and ensure an educated purchase.
Reel Comparison Chart
|Ease Of Use||Moderate||Difficult||Easy|
|Spool Type||Fixed Upright/Open||Inline||Fixed Upright/Covered|
Baitcast Vs Spinning Reels
The main difference between a baitcasting reel vs. a spinning reel is the placement and direction of the spool. Baitcasting reels have a spool that’s inline with the fishing rod while spinning reels have a spool that’s perpendicular to the rod. What does this mean?
Simply put, the line on a baitcaster comes off the spool directly in line with the rod while the line on a spinning reel first heads directly away from the rod then turns at the bail to follow the line of the rod.
Advantages And Difficulties Of Baitcaster Vs Spinning Reels
Baitcasting reels offer advantages over the spinning reel once you’ve learned the technique. The drag system works much better because the line never turns but rather comes straight off the spool. Spinning reels without exceptional drags can tighten on their own or slip and catch at the bail making it easier for the line to break.
Spinning reels don’t have the quite the learning curve that baitcasters do. They’re easier to cast and much better suited to the beginner or moderate that wants to get fishing. Not to say that spinning reels don’t come with their own set of challenges. Here’s some examples in each type of reel.
Baitcasting reels are famous for bird’s nest knots formed when the spool travels faster than the release of the line. Two things can happen here! First, the entire wrap of line can come loose from the spool. Second, the line can wrap over itself until it catches, tightens, and forms a slew of knots in your spool. Neither are desirable.
The Wind Knot
Spinning reels make casting easy until this happens. The issue presents itself due to the manner that line comes off the spool. Line isn’t rolled off the spool in a controlled manner with a spinning reel. Instead it flies off the top lip of the spool which releases the line quickly. Any twists in the line will have the opportunity to curl during the cast and form knots in the air. A knot in the line is a compromised breaking point when fighting a fish. Not good.
It’s easy to see when comparing baitcaster vs. spinning reel that each has pros and cons. The baitcaster is harder to learn but does have clear advantages while the spinning reel can be very effective once you know what to watch out for.
Spincast Reels Vs Baitcaster & Spinning Reels
The spincast reel is perhaps best known by those children’s fishing starter kits though today’s top models are far from being toys. Spincast reels have covered spools unlike the open spools of baitcasters and spinning reels where you can see the line. They are cast by pushing and holding a switch or button then releasing it at the last moment of the casting motion. Pushing the button again will stop the cast where you want it.
Advantages Of Spincast Vs Baitcast & Spinning Reels
Spincast reels are designed for line control and can do away with both the backlash of the baitcaster and the wind knots formed by twisted spinning reel line. The line is easily cast and easily retrieved. The line on a spincast reel is protected inside its covered housing.
Concerns When Using A Spincast Reel Vs A Baitcaster & Spinning Reel
Spincast reels although great for easy casting can develop wraps in the line inside the housing. The fact that baitcast reels and spinning reels get knots has already been covered but when it happens in a spincast reel it’s often harder to fix and tougher to notice before it’s a big mess. The mechanisms inside the spincast reel can also damage the line more so than when knots plague a baitcaster or a spinning reel.
Baitcast Vs Spinning Vs Spincast – The Choice Is Yours
There’s a lot that goes on when you’re trying to handle your fishing rod, reel, and line. Add to this water conditions like current, tide, bottom structure, reeds and eelgrass, and any number of other factors. It’s best to choose a reel style within your skill set until you master these other aspects of fishing.
Learning to use a drag to battle fish, getting familiar with handling the line, and knowing how to prevent the inherent problems associated with each type of reel design are all important aspects to consider before making a purchase. The spincast reel is easiest vs. the spinning reel which is in the middle vs. the baitcast reel with the highest level of difficulty. Whichever reel fits your abilities, it’s not a bad idea to take your time to learn it and enjoy before moving on to the next type.