Which Type of Fishing Reel? Pros and Cons

Fishing reels are essential tools for anglers to effectively control and retrieve fishing line, making them a crucial component of the fishing setup. There are several types of fishing reels, each designed for specific fishing techniques and styles. Here, I’ll explain the different types of fishing reels in great detail:

1. Spincasting Reels:

Spincasting reels, also known as closed-face reels, are designed for beginner anglers due to their simplicity and ease of use. They have a closed cover that helps protect the line from tangles and debris. Spincasting reels are mounted on top of the fishing rod.


  • Easy to use, making them great for beginners and kids.
  • Minimal risk of backlash or tangles.
  • Simple push-button casting mechanism.


  • Limited casting distance compared to other reel types.
  • Less control over the casting distance and accuracy.
  • Not ideal for heavy-duty fishing or large fish.

2. Spinning Reels:

Spinning reels are among the most popular reel types due to their versatility and ease of casting. They hang beneath the fishing rod and feature an open-faced design. The line is wound around a spool, and a bail system flips the line over the spool during casting.


  • Versatile for various fishing techniques and line types.
  • Good casting distance and accuracy.
  • Less prone to line twists and tangles compared to baitcasting reels.


  • Some beginners might struggle with line management during casting.
  • Not as precise for pinpoint accuracy as baitcasting reels.
  • Larger spinning reels can feel heavy on lightweight rods.

3. Baitcasting Reels:

Baitcasting reels offer greater control and accuracy, making them popular among experienced anglers who seek precise casting and heavy-duty fishing. They are mounted on top of the fishing rod and require more skill to operate effectively.


  • Excellent casting accuracy and distance control.
  • Suitable for heavy lures, lines, and big game fishing.
  • Increased power and torque for reeling in larger fish.


  • Steeper learning curve for beginners due to potential backlash.
  • More complex setup and adjustments.
  • Requires proper thumb control to prevent backlash.

4. Conventional Reels (Overhead Reels):

Conventional reels, often referred to as overhead reels, are commonly used for saltwater fishing and trolling. They have a straightforward design with a rotating spool and handle. They offer high line capacity and power for battling large fish.


  • High line capacity for tackling big fish and long runs.
  • Powerful drag systems to handle heavy loads.
  • Ideal for deep-sea fishing, trolling, and heavy-duty applications.


  • Can be bulky and heavy, especially when paired with heavy rods.
  • Learning to control the spool during casting requires practice.
  • Generally more expensive than other reel types.

5. Fly Reels:

Fly reels are specifically designed for fly fishing, a technique that involves casting lightweight artificial flies using a specialized fly line. These reels have a large arbor design to hold the bulky fly line and backing.


  • Integral to the delicate balance required for fly fishing.
  • Help control the tension of the line during fights with fish.
  • Often feature intricate designs and high-quality materials.


  • Limited versatility for other fishing techniques.
  • More expensive, especially for high-quality models.
  • Not as focused on drag strength compared to other reels.

Each type of fishing reel has its own strengths and weaknesses, and the right choice depends on your fishing style, target species, and level of experience. Before selecting a reel, consider the fishing techniques you plan to use and the conditions you’ll be facing to ensure you choose the most appropriate reel for your needs.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *