Best Fishing Reels for Sale in 2017

best fishing reels

Picking a fishing reel that fits your needs can be tough with so many fishing reels hitting the market every year. Even the most skilled and professional anglers have problems keeping track.

We wanted to make things a little easier for you, so we tried out a number of different fishing reels in real situations. Our conclusion is that there are a couple of excellent products and a few of them stand out in the fishing reel market. The year 2016 has been strong for the reel manufacturers, and we will talk about the best products a little later on.

Choosing the Best Fishing Reel

Fishing reels are an important part of every angler's fishing equipment because your success depends greatly on the performance of your fishing reel. There are plenty of reels to choose from on the market, but how can you find the best one for your needs?

The best option would be to take a dozen of them fishing and try out each one, but since that is not possible, there are still some basic guidelines which you can follow to get the best fishing reel you need.

  • Shimano Spin Reel Clam
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pound
  • Penn Battle II Spinning Reel
  • Shipping Weight:1 pound
  • Daiwa Tatula Baitcasting Reel
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pound
  • Avet SX Reels
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pound

There are all kinds of fishing reels that were designed for a particular use. For example, there are fly fishing reels, baitcasting reels, spinning reels, spin casting reels, and so on. Think about the type of fishing you are going for and start narrowing down your search from there.

You will also need to consider features like the material they are made out of, the drag they produce, their size, and a couple of other important things you have to think about before making your final decision.

Continue reading, and you will find out more information on what makes a fishing reel good and reliable. Choosing the cheapest option is not always the best move.

Benefits of Having a Good Fishing Reel

Having a good fishing reel can make a huge difference in your angling career. The spinning reel is as important as the rod you are using when fishing, but many people are not aware of that. A good fishing reel will let you reel in the fish that's hooked much faster, and you won't have to use your entire body strength to get her to shore.

Also, try to buy a reel that is made out of sturdy and durable materials like aluminum because they will last much longer and they can be used in both salt and fresh water.

The size of the reel also plays a really important role. For example, if you want to catch big, heavy fish, you need a big reel that can handle the strain and still perform as it should. The worst thing that can happen to you during a fishing trip is having your equipment give up on you.

You need a reel that won't tangle your line, and that is fast enough to enable you to catch the fish before it breaks loose. Because of these reasons, you should consider getting a fishing reel that is in the medium price range at least. Cheap fishing Reels often cause problems that make fishing very hard.

choosing a fishing reel

Get a model that includes a mount and that supports your arm. Fishing reels with two handles are also a good choice because you can reel the fish in with greater ease. Gears and bearings are also very important so try to avoid reels with plastic parts gears because they tend to break and damage very quickly. If you are aiming to invest some money in your equipment, the fishing reel should be a priority, right after the fishing rod.

Things to Consider

Getting the best fishing reel that fits your needs can be hard with so many products available these days. That is why you need to consider a couple of factors before buying a reel. We will go through the most important factors you should look at when purchasing a fishing reel.

Reel body

The body of a reel is also called reel housing, and it is made out of aluminum or graphite. Aluminum housing is stronger, but graphite is more flexible. Always make sure that the reel is nice and firm. The moving parts should be working smoothly.

Reel size

Choosing the right reel size is important, and it's not that hard. The size of the reel is determined by the size of the line. If a line is light, you need a smaller reel. This depends on the size and kind of fish you are after.

Reel handle

The handle of a fishing reel can make a huge difference in your success. Most quality reels feature a handle that can be moved from the right side to the left.


The spool is the part of a fishing reel that holds the line. They are made from aluminum, polished graphite, or plastic. A good spool contains at least 150 yards of line.


Bails allow and prevent the line from spooling out. They are mounted on the reel, and they are controlled either with a button or manually.


Drag is one of the most important features of a fishing reel because it allows the line to play out with almost no resistance. Quality fishing reels need good drag to function properly and to enable the angler to use the fishing rod in the best possible way.

These are the most important things you need to keep in mind when buying a reel, but the most important thing that almost always tells you about the quality of the reel is the material it's made off. Reels with plastic parts are not that good at all.

Types of Fishing Reels

To be a successful angler, you need a right combination of rod, reel, and line. You need to know that there are different types of reel designed for a particular type of fishing. If you want to fly fishing, you need a reel designed for that.

Fly Fishing Reels

Fly fishing reels are unique in their design and use; they are entirely different from all other reel types. They are made up of a very large spool that has a grip attached to the outer side, and there are no internal gears.

These reels are made to be durable and light so that anglers can whip the rod to mimic the natural movement of insects. Some fly reels are fitted with an automatic winding mechanism.

They are designed without handles, and the line is pulled with a spring loaded mechanism.

The reels that are used for fly fishing are not the best option for a beginner because they demand the use of advanced fishing techniques. The design of the fly fishing reel makes it light and easy to hold in your hand, but the whipping action can cause snarls for a novice.

Baitcasting Reels

Baitcasting reels include a streamlined housing, and the spool is exposed. A line guide moves the line from side to side to prevent it from snarling, and the handles almost always have two grips.

Baitcasting reels come in many sizes and are often used by anglers in both saltwater and freshwater. Baitcasting demands equipment that is made of materials that are robust and sturdy and the same goes for reels are controlled with a button. Baitcaster reels are meant for anglers that want to catch large fish because they can handle over 80-pounds of fish.

These reels often include multiple bearings and variable gearing. They also feature an anti-reverse system that allows the spool to turn the other way and spool the line out slowly. You can shut that off with a small lever that is located next to the spool.

Spinning Reels

Spinning reels are also known as open-faced reels, and they are meant for all types of fishing (except fly fishing). Super light spinning reels can handle light and heavy lines without problems.

The biggest problem with a spinning reel is the possibility of your line getting snarled. That can happen when the bail doesn't close quickly after casting which causes the line to loosen up and slip off the spool and tangle up.

That makes it hard to cast a line or reel in the fish. In most cases, the anglers just cut the snarled line off, but if they flip the bail manually after casting and before they turn the handle, the chances of snarls are reduced to a minimum.

The spool on a spinning reel can't be moved, and the bail can move around it to wind the line. Most spinning reels feature a handle that can be switched from the right to the left side.

Saltwater Reels

Saltwater reels are spinning reels that can be used for saltwater fishing. The difference is the fact that they are designed to be used in saltwater.

They are made out of materials that can withstand the corrosive effects of the water. Most of the models that fit in this category are big and robust because they have to stand up to the pressure of big fish. If you are a saltwater angler, you know that you need a dependable reel if you want to catch a whopper.

The market for saltwater reels is huge, and that only makes it harder for you to pick a reel that is not too expensive but still gets the job done. Saltwater reels vary in size and strength, depending on the kind of fish and it's weight.

Fishing Reel Brands

The fishing reel market is enormous, and there are a lot of different brands available. Daiwa, Shimano, Penn, and Avet are among the top, and we had the chance to try a couple of their models. They are all well-built, and they perform and feel great.

Shimano Fishing Reels

The Shimano company was founded by Shozaburo Shimano in 1921. He was a Japanese inventor and designer, and he was always aiming to come up with the best products. He's aim was to be the best in the world, and the Shimano company certainly is. They have been one of the strongest names in biking and fishing equipment for more than 80 years now, and they are responsible for numerous patents that are still widely used.

Shimano is focused on precision engineering, and that is exactly what their products offer. The materials used in their production are sturdy and durable, and the products are made with finesse. Shimano is a strong fishing reel brand with many models to offer. Fishing reels that come out of their factory are always among the best choices you can make because they will last you for years to come.

Shimano Spin Reel Clam

The Shimano Spin Reel Clam offers a smooth action. The drag system works great and can be adjusted very easily. This reel is lightweight, and it can handle 12-pound fish without problems. The fishing reel works great in saltwater and freshwater and it is a good choice for beginners. Many anglers have Shimano reels as their backup if something goes wrong because they are highly dependable and effective.

The Shimano Spin Reel Clam comes with implemented rear drag with a graphite frame and side plates. The QuickFirell feature lets you cast the line with one hand easily.

The reel works great in saltwater and it is immune to corrosion. This is a fishing reel that offers many great features, it is very dependable, and the price is not too high. In fact, the Shimano Spin Reel Clam is so popular and well-built, we couldn't find any negative reviews or remarks about it on Amazon.

The Shimano Spin Reel Clam was not designed to be a first-class reel, but it is well-worth the money you pay for it. Getting used to this reel is simple and it's durable, lightweight, and dependable. It is good for beginners, and it is great for advanced anglers too.

Penn Reels

Penn is one of the oldest and most popular brands linked to saltwater fishing. They produce fishing rods and reels that are top of the line. Their models can be used for bass fishing, big game marlin, and tuna fishing. The company was started in 1932 and Penn has been going strong ever since. Penn is a leader in innovation, and they have made a couple of world records. The best anglers in the world use their equipment because of its quality and durability.

Penn Spinning reels are among the most recognizable reels in the world. They feature a graphite body, and many models can be upgraded. They are durable and long-lasting and were designed to withstand pressure caused by the drag. Some models were designed specifically to catch big game saltwater fish. You can be sure you got the best no matter which Penn reel you own.

Penn Battle II Spinning Reel

Penn Battle II Spinning Reel is one of the legendary models that come from Penn. It features the Penn's HT-100 Versa-Drag washers keyed into the spool which allows both sides of each drag washer to be used. This increases the maximum drag that Battle II can handle, but it also adds more range. Battle II starts up smoother than most other spinning reels in the market which is one of the reasons why it's so popular.

You can see right away that Penn Battle II Spinning Reel was made to last. The entire body is made out of metal that can withstand the corrosive effects of saltwater.

The drag washers are carbon fiber and the model also features an instant anti-reverse bearing which stops the life from tangling up. The bail wire is made out of heavy duty aluminum, and it also features line capacity rings.

This particular model comes in a couple of different sizes to tackle fish from all sizes. Penn Battle II is made to be strong because it's mostly used to catch big game fish that weight hundreds of pounds. It is a relatively cheap option, and it is well-worth the money.

Daiwa Reels

The first Daiwa spinning reel was created in 1955. Since then, the company has worked hard to produce top products which helped it to become one of the most popular and influential fishing gear companies in the world. The first Daiwa store in the United States was opened on September 26, 1966, in California. They are still one of the most popular and dependable fishing reel brands in the world.

Daiwa was always striving for perfection which has driven them to many innovative inventions that fit right at the top of the market. The list of their products is long, and they all have unique features and designs. Durability is one of the primary qualities of Daiwa fishing reels as they are made out of the best materials. Daiwa fishing reels are regarded as one of the best choices, and the company is still working hard to improve them even further.

Daiwa Tatula Baitcasting Reel TATULA-R100XS 8.1:1

If you are looking to buy one of the best baitcasting reels on the market, Daiwa Tatula Baitcasting Reel TATULA-R100XS 8.1:1 is an excellent choice. This model was designed to be durable and to be good enough for professional anglers. 

It offers a rugged gear train that is fully supported in a rigid aluminum housing. Fishing in salt water will not damage or corrode the reel because of the materials used in its assembly.

The Tatula Baitcasting reel features two handles that work very smooth. The handle can be switched from the right to the left side at any time. It also features air rotation; a large 90mm swept power to handle that has a lightweight design.

The UTD or Ultimate Tournament Carbon Drag offers 13.2 lbs of maximum drag, and it was meant for professional anglers that compete in sport fishing tournaments.

Seven ball bearings and one roller bearing are placed in the aluminum house, and they offer an 8.1:1 gear ratio for smooth reeling. The Daiwa Tatula Baitcasting Reel TATULA-R100XS 8.1:1 fits in the medium price range, but it offers much more features and quality than it costs. It is a good choice for advanced anglers.

Avet Reels

Avet is one of the newer names in the fishing industry. The company was started in 2002 by two brothers who were into catching big saltwater fish. Before that, they were working as mechanics for other anglers, and that is where they learned everything about fishing reels. Their products are high-performance new line reels meant for salt-water fishing, and they cost less than their competition.

Avet Reels allow you to completely stop and spool to adjust the drag while the fish is still on, or you can just break the line off if it gets snagged. This feature is unique, and it's called a spool lock. Another feature that can be found only on Avet reels is the casting control that is performed with a lever. It allows the angler to reduce drag and prevent over spooling and backlashing when casting a bait.

Avet SX Reels

The Avet SX Reels can take up to 25lb pounds of drag. They have a slightly wider spool than most other models, and they represent a compact and very durable reel. Avet reels are known for their quality and durability, and the SX reels are the same. 

Avet Reels were invented by two brothers who wanted to create the best possible fishing reels, and that is what they did. Every reel has a cast control system that reduces backlashing to a minimum while providing 9 pounds of drag and a flawless spool.

The components used to create SX reels are all corrosion resistant and extremely durable. The AveBrake drag system is one of the best and lightest lever drag systems in the world.

The single speed reels are used to fish with heavier lines because they are very durable, but most other models feature at least six different speeds.

The casting system is probably the most praised feature on the Avet spinning reels because it works without problems and every cast is successful. With a little practice, anglers can improve their casting distance even further. The Avet SX Reels outperform other fishing reels in the same price range.

Related Posts: