Depending on your desired fishing technique and the type of water, you must make a choice for fishing reels i.e spincast vs baitcast reel and rods. A fishing reel with the right specifications and decent performance can help you catch what you want. There are numerous types of fishing reels including baitcasting and spincast as two common ones.
When it comes to spincast vs baitcast reels, it is not possible to state any one of the two as a better choice. This is because both have a unique set of features and their own advantages and disadvantages. Baitcasters are expensive, complicated to use, and great for bass fishing. On the other hand, spincast reels are extremely affordable, user-friendly, and hence a great choice for beginners.
Apart from the aforementioned factors, there are several more dissimilarities between these two reels. Based on the variations in working mechanisms and specs, you can determine the better choice for yourself.
Here is when the main question arises i.e., what is the difference between baitcast and spincast? To figure it out, I have tested a variety of these reels and understood unidentical working mechanics myself. Find out about it in the detailed guide below.
How To Choose The Best Fishing Reel? – Spincast vs Baitcast
While the debate for spincasting vs baitcasting reels never ends, you can still determine the best-suited choice easily. All you need is to make sure of your nature of fishing, study the features of both reels, and pick the one that best suits your requirements.
The chart below provides an overview of the top differences between the two reels:
|Ranges between 2.5:1 to 4.5:1
|Ranges between 5.0:1 to 9.1:1
|Two types i.e., internal and external
|Single and efficient
|Up to 100 to 120 yds. max
|Up to 345 yds. max
|Double-shielded and corrosion-resistant
|Easy to manage, decent accuracy
|A bit tricky but exceptional accuracy
|Two types and highly efficient
Below are the details of aforementioned differenced along with an answer to the most common query i.e., what is the difference between baitcasting and spin casting? Let’s check it out.
These are the simplest fishing reels that one could ever use. That said, are best suited for beginners and children as well as to test various water. Speaking of the price, you can purchase it for as low as $20 or as high as $1000+. The price varies according to the specifications of the reel.
You can use a spincasting reel to catch different types of fish such as walleyes, panfish, catfish, trout, small-sized bass, blue gill, and more
Types of Spincast Reels
Just like baitcasting reels, the push-button spincast reels sit on top of the rod. These are extremely simple to operate i.e., press and hold in the thumb button to cast. Once done, release the button as the cast swings and allow the line to feed in.
2. Underspin or Trigger-equipped
Similar to the spinning reels, this type of spincast reel sits under the rod. You can operate this just like a push-button model but the pressure is applied on the trigger rather than a button. Hold the trigger with your finger and release right when you want the reel to cast.
Spincast Reels Key Features
Following are the top features that help in the differentiation between spincast vs baitcast reels.
As we know, gear ratios represent the number of times the line would spool per every turn of a handle. Spincast reels don’t have very high gear ratios as compared to the baitcasters. These could range between 2.5:1 to 4.5:1 max.
Spincast reels can have either of the two drag systems. The first one is similar to that of a baitcaster i.e., star-shaped and present on the side. Since it is located near the handle, it is easier to operate quickly.
Whereas, the other type of drag system is integrated on the internal side of the reel. You can see its edge sticking out of the reel cover from where you can adjust it.
When we talk about spincasting reel vs baitcasting reel, the line capacity is different in both. Spincasting reels relatively have a smaller line capacity. Some premium models are capable of holding up to 100 to 120 yds. of fishing line. The reel comes pre-spooled with a mono line and is incompatible with braided lines.
The heavier line you would choose, the more line capacity would decrease. So, make sure you only choose the line which is rated suitable with your spincast reel. Using a heavier line than your reel’s capacity will result in line tangling inside the housing.
The line spooling process in these reels depends on the pickup pins. These are located within the housing of the reel with great complexity. Remember, these pickup pins will only work at some particular level.
That said, the retrieval rate of your reel will be based on the level at which these pins operate. The lesser the pickup pins, the slower will be the retrieval rate and that is what the majority of the models offer.
These are probably the most important make-or-break components of any reel. Having poor quality or fewer numbers of ball bearings will adversely impact the reel’s performance. In some modern reels, the number of bearings isn’t that important but their placement and quality matter the most.
The easiest way to determine the quality of your reel’s bearing is to check the product description. Every renowned manufacturer who uses top-notch bearings would definitely mention it. But, if you encounter difficulty in finding out the number and material of the bearings in your reel, it’s shady.
Because of the fixed spool design, spincast reels are a lot more convenient to manage and cast. Due to this, you will face minimum to no backlash or line tangling issues at all. Best Zebco reels are famous for spincasting.
- Great for new anglers and kids
- Easy to use
- Easy maintenance
- Can be used with one hand
- Not long-lasting
- Unsuitable for saltwater fishing
- Can’t be used for large species
- Limited line capacity
The baitcasting reels, on the other hand, are incredibly popular among expert anglers despite their expensive price. These are ideal for fishing in rigorous waters and to reel in some huge species, particularly bass. Since baitcaster reels are complicated to use, new anglers usually don’t prefer these.
Baitcasting reels are ideal to catch numerous large fish including largemouth bass, striped bass, walleye, trout, salmon, and more.
Baitcaster Reels Key Features
Here is a breakdown of factors that make it unidentical from spincast reels.
This is probably the most major baitcast spincast difference that makes baitcasting reels a great choice for larger species. These reels are available in a wide range of high gear ratios, ensuring an exceptionally fast retrieve rate. The gear ratios range from 5.0:1 to 9.1:1.
In terms of spincast vs baitcast reel line capacity, a baitcasting reel wins. It is capable of holding a huge amount of line depending on the reel size. For example, a small 100-size reel can hold up to 130 yards of line. Whereas, a large 400-size baitcaster has the ability to hold up to 345 yards of a fishing line.
Speaking of the ball bearings, those used in these reels are a lot more durable. Most of the reels come with double-shielded and corrosion-resistant ball bearings. This property makes baitcasters excellent for saltwater fishing too.
Baitcasting reels have the most efficient braking systems to overcome backlash and bird’s nest issues. There are two types of braking systems used in these reels. The first one is the centrifugal braking system that utilizes pins to adjust the brake power. It is a bit tricky to adjust therefore is better suggested for expert anglers.
Whereas, the magnetic braking system uses a set of magnets that work in a rhythmic manner to control brake power. If you are a new learner, baitcasters with a magnetic braking system would be a better choice. You can start with best anti backlash baitcast reels if you are a beginner.
These reels offer impeccable casting accuracy, making them ideal for inshore and offshore fishing. To excel in the casting skills, hit the release button and press your thumb against the line on the spool. Doing so ensures smooth and precise casting.
- Efficient braking and drag system
- Offers high accuracy
- Precise casting
- Great for catching heavy fishes
- Works with every type of fishing line
- Best choice for expert anglers
- Complicated for beginners
- Backlash issues
Baitcast vs Spincast For Bass
For bass, fishing the comparison for spincast reel vs baitcasting reel is pretty much the same. Both reels can be used for bass fishing. However, the main difference between Spincast and Baitcast reel is the performance, spincast reels are less accurate and can catch small bass. Whereas, baitcasters offer impressive performance with high accuracy for large bass.
Following are the top spincast vs baitcast-related frequently asked questions.
What are spincast reels good for?
Spincast reels are a great choice for fishing small species in freshwater. Because of their easy usage, spincast reels are best advised for new anglers and children.
Spincast vs baitcaster, which one is a better choice for experts?
Expert anglers look for high-end reels with premium performance that ensure accuracy and smoothness. That said, baitcasters are a better fit according to these requirements.
Can I use any rod with baitcasting and spincast reels?
For the baitcaster vs spincast reel compatibility with rods, make sure you make the choice carefully. While both the reels would sit on any rod, it isn’t recommended at all. Baitcasting rods are designed exclusively for baitcaster reels. Whereas, for spincast reels, look for none other than the spincasting rods also known as spincasting tackles.
In the end, the debate for spincast vs baitcast reels ends on everyone’s personal preference. The choice depends on the type of fishing you’re interested in, your experience, and water conditions.
Spincast reels are best suited for newbies who want to reel in small species with a user-friendly and inexpensive reel. Whereas, baitcasting reels are an excellent choice for experts who love experiencing different water conditions and catching a variety of huge fish.