To master the bait caster fishing, one must understand the baitcasting reels part and how these work. These reels are typically where fishes call for high precision, accuracy, and control. Baitcasting reels are widely used for bass fishing. Most professionals prefer this reel for better performance due to the integration of highly advanced parts.
The top components responsible for the high-end baitcaster performance include its spool, handle, brakes, drag system, line guides, and more. To enhance your baitcasting skills, you must understand the mechanism of parts of a baitcaster.
If you are a beginner, there will be lots of learning to reach expert-level baitcasting. Below is a detailed guide that will help you get acquainted with the baitcasting reel parts. As an experienced bass angler, I have relied so much on several baitcasters over the years.
Throughout the years, I have learned so much about what makes these reels incredible and one of a kind. Putting my knowledge and experience to use, below are the baitcaster parts explained. Let’s get to it.
How Does A Baitcaster Work? – Parts Of A Baitcasting Reel
All of the baitcasting reel parts play a vital role in its performance. It is an open-face gear in which the spool rotates in a parallel direction with the rod. This fishing gear is designed to allow you to fish in more crowded areas by dropping the line into the water strategically. These reels offer immense power and strength that some models can even be used for offshore or deep sea fishing.
Baitcaster Parts Diagram
In this section, you will see a baitcasting reel parts diagram indicating the important components of the reel. If you have a baitcaster right now, match it with the following baitcaster diagram and understand the parts with much more ease.
Below are mentioned the baitcaster parts name according to the image of parts of a baitcasting reel.
Baitcaster Reel Parts Explained
Here is a detailed explanation of every component highlighted in the baitcasting fishing reel parts diagrams above. Make sure you carefully understand the positioning as well as the working mechanism of each part. Once you do, you would know the importance of all the components, leading you to unmatched success with baitcasters.
The breakdown of top baitcasting reel parts is as follows:
The spool is housed within the frame of the reel and is potentially the most vital component. On the spool, a fishing line is held which flows out as the spool rotates. Unlike the spinning reel, the spool in a baitcaster itself rotates and hence is capable of handling more pressure. That said, baitcasting reels can go after large and heavy fish without any inconvenience.
It is important that you spool the line correctly for optimized performance. In addition to this, you must learn how to control the spool rotation, especially while you cast. When you are unable to get hold of it, the lure’s weight results in increasing the spool speed. This causes the unwinding of the line, leading to a tangled line called as bird’s nests and backlashes.
While setting up your baitcaster reel, don’t forget to line up the spool appropriately. A line that is not correctly spooled can result in less pressure and inaccuracy. Furthermore, it will also be susceptible to tangling and breakage.
Brakes are one of the most efficient baitcasting reel parts because they act directly to reduce backlashes. You can find these present at the side of the baitcaster. Because of their positioning, these are easily accessible for instantaneous adjustments.
There are two common types of braking systems that these reels i.e., magnetic braking system and centrifugal braking system.
- Magnetic Braking System
As the name suggests, this system utilizes magnets to prevent backlashes. This is done when the spool and magnets come in contact, resulting in a reduced speed of the spool. Generally, baitcasters with a magnetic braking system are best suggested for beginners.
- Centrifugal Braking System
On the other hand, a centrifugal braking system uses a set of pins that operate to provide the necessary power. The best thing about this system is that you can access every single pin used to adjust the braking power. You can do this by switching on or off the pins. Since it could be a bit tricky to use CBS, new anglers are not advised to go for these.
Note that both braking systems are extremely efficient and none is superior to the other. The choice is totally up to the user’s personal preference and experience. Once you have adjusted the braking power with either of these systems, don’t forget to adjust the spool tension knobs. As you alter both setting appropriately, you will enjoy the smoothest operation with minimal to no backlashes or bird’s nests.
The foot, which connects the reel to the rod, is found on the majority of baitcasting fishing reels. It is essential that a baitcaster’s foot is sturdy, firm, and long-lasting enough to withstand the pressure and torque of casting and retrieving. Its shape is sometimes rectangular or square to match the rod holder’s frame.
Its placement is on the top of the rod which is why the rod’s guide easily lines up with the reel. Foot makes the overall experience extremely comfortable and enables the anglers to use the reel for longer hours without issues.
Pro Tip: Before you begin fishing, make sure the reel foot is securely connected to the rod’s reel socket. Another name for the reel socket is the reel seat.
4. Line Guide
The line guide sits right in front of the spool and moves back and forth when the line is added or removed from the spool. It is one of the most useful baitcasting reel parts, allowing the line to move freely while casting and retrieval.
Line guides have a principle function of making sure that there isn’t any irregularity or tangling in the spool. Furthermore, these also keep the friction minimized, and hence, the chances of line breakage are diminished.
Always remember to insert the fishing line into the line guide and then slide it through the rod guides. It is foremost that you thread the lines properly into the line guides otherwise, it will impact the overall fishing.
It is the most obvious part of a baitcaster and has quite a straightforward working mechanism. You simply twist the handle in the forward direction and there goes your line out of the spool. The handle of a baitcasting reel features two knobs.
When we talk about handles, comfort is the top priority. Fishing isn’t a process that is done within minutes but takes several hours and even some anglers even spend their entire day fishing. That is when maximum comfort is needed.
Since baitcasting reels are designed with an aim to be ergonomic for every user, the manufacturers opt for comfortable hard plastic or EVA foam to craft handles. These not only offer a firm grip but are highly ergonomic. Anglers who use bait casters are less likely to complain about the strain on wrists, arms, or shoulders.
6. Drag Control
No fishing reel can operate without a drag control system and the same goes for the baitcasters. It is among the most vital baitcasting reel parts responsible for smooth operation. You can recognize the drag control just by looking at it. These are usually star-shaped and present on the right side of a baitcaster near the spool tensioner knob. That said, drag control of a bait caster is commonly known as a ‘star drag’.
Using the drag control efficiently adds to the better control of backlash. It also fixes the line tangling issues in lesser time. You must make sure that the drag is adjusted properly because a loose drag can cause the fish to pull off the line from the spool.
On the other hand, if the drag is too tight, a heavier fish can easily break off the line and run away. Therefore, it is important to practice adjusting the drag according to the pressure. The best way to do so is by using your hand to tug the line, pull it out yourself, and adjust the drag accordingly.
7. Spool Tension Knob
This knob enables the users to adjust the spool rotation speed and prevent backlash issues, resulting in perfectly smooth casting. You can find this knob beside the reel’s handle. This knob controls the spool rotation speel by slowing it down right when the lure is about to hit the water. As it does, the knob stops the spool from giving the line out. That said, it is also known as a cast control knob.
While braking systems are the foremost choice for every angler to avoid backlashes, the spool tension knob ensures the finest tuning. It is however suggested to first use the brakes to adjust spool speed. Whereas, for additional tuning, use the cast control knob.
8. Thumb Bar
At the rear of your spool is the thumb bar. It is known as a thumb bar because of its positioning i.e., right below where your thumb will be on the spool. This was for the low-profile models. However, on the round-profile baitcasters, it is located on the opposite side of the handle as a small button.
On low-profile baitcasters, it offers great manual spool control while fighting with fishes and during casting. As you press the thumb bar in the downward direction, it will disengage the gears and allow the reel to rotate freely.
The best time to use the thumb bar will be when you want your fishing line to release while casting. The positioning makes it quite handy, comfortable, and quick to use the thumb bar whenever needed.
In case the thumb bar on your reel stops working, you can get it replaced. Despite being inexpensive, it could be a bit challenging to do it yourself. The foremost reason is its placement from the inside of the reel so you would have to find one with accurate dimensions. Furthermore, you can only use a thumb bar from the same manufacturers that made the reel itself.
FAQs Regarding Parts Of A Baitcasting Reels
Following are some of the common and most frequently asked questions about baitcasting reel parts:
Why do baitcaster reels have adjustments?
These reels have various adjustments for brakes, drag control, and spool speed control. All of these settings must be appropriate for a backlash-free and smooth operation. In case of inappropriate adjustments made for either of the settings, the reel would fail to work up to its maximum potential.
Are handles of a baitcasting reel interchangeable?
Unfortunately, no. Unlike spinning reels where you can change the position of a handle in no time, baitcasters don’t allow this feasibility. Initially, these reels were designed only with right-hand orientation. However, in earlier times, manufacturers started to come up with left-handed reels as well. You will have to make a particular choice for the hand orientation since the handles are not interchangeable.
Why do bass anglers prefer baitcasting reels?
Bass anglers mostly rely on baitcasting reels due to several reasons. Most importantly, these reels offer incredible power and strength for heavier lures and fishes. Furthermore, these result in exceptional casting accuracy, enhanced ergonomics, more torque and better line holding capacity, and a lot more.
Where can I get baitcaster spare parts from?
In case any of your baitcasting reel parts get damaged and need a replacement, you can purchase the spare parts from any fishing shop. You can do the replacement yourself but, if you don’t have any idea about it, it’s best advised to get it repaired by a professional.
Using a baitcasting reel is an absolute joy but the step of learning is a bit challenging. You must learn some skills to tackle the complicated operation of these reels. These are extremely comfortable, lightweight, and great for various fishing techniques.
In order to master the art of fishing with this reel, you must carefully understand all of the baitcasting reel parts. From spool to handles, drag knobs to spool tensioner knobs, and brakes to line guides.
The best thing about these reels is that you will find the same parts, at the same location in every baitcaster regardless of the brand. Some top names such as Shimano, Daiwa, Lew’s, Abu Garcia, KastKing, Quantum, and Okuma baitcaster parts all have the same working mechanisms as mentioned above.
So, make sure you understand all of the baitcasting reel parts, look for them in your reel, and practice as much as you can to develop the skills.