Baitcasting vs Spinning Reels – Detailed Guide {Pros & Cons}

Baitcasting vs Spinning Reels

Reels (Baitcasting vs spinning) are mostly the confusing part for anglers, mainly for the ones who are new to the field. Fishing is one of the best ways to vile away your time and has a relaxing period. There is a wide range of options to choose from when searching for a reel for fishing. The fishing reels are the most important criteria when it comes to fishing.

Reels are pretty simple devices that have to be understood. They play a significant role in your fishing success.

There are several levels of anglers, and it does not matter whether you are a beginner level angler or the advanced level angler.

You always go for either bait casters or the spinning reels. Anglers should go for the one with which they are incredibly comfortable working.

In this article, we will be seeing Baitcasting vs. spinning reels. 

At the end of this, you would be able to differentiate bait casting methods and spinning reels methods in detail.

People who are new to fishing generally choose the spinner reel as it is easy to handle and requires less practice.

However, there may be complaints of backlash on your first casting that may drive the anglers away from fishing.

If you are well-experienced with the sport, then it is better to invest in a baitcaster. If you want to know more about the reel types that are the best for your fishing needs, then here is our review with pros and cons.

Difference between Baitcasting vs Spinning reel:

Baitcasting vs Spinning Reels

The baitcasting reels and the spinning reels hit differently in several criteria. The spinning reel opts if you are an intermediate-level angler, and the baitcasting reel is chosen if you come under an advanced-level angler.

The backlash risk is very high in the case of baitcasting reels and low in the case of spinning reels. In spinning type, the spool is fixed upright and open, and it is inline in baitcasting reels.

Coming to the line capacity of the reels, overall, the capacity is average in the spinning reels, and the casting distance is average and is compatible with various types of lines.

In a baitcasting reel, the overall line capacity is high since the casting distance is high and works well with heavy lines.

Moreover, spinning reels are flexible to snatch small and medium-sized fishes, whereas baitcasting reels pull in big-sized fishes. 

The maintenance level and durability of the spinning reel and baitcasting reels are low and high, respectively. The speed is low/medium in spinning reels and high in baitcasting reels. The pricing of baitcasting reels is higher compared to spinning reels.

You would have analyzed the overall differences between the two types of reels before you jump into a decision; let’s see the baitcaster vs. spinning reels in the most detailed manner.

Spinning Reel :

When you are casting a fishing rod using a spinning reel, it is named spin casting. This is because the spin-casting reels are easy to use and maintain. The position of the spinning reel is under the rod, which is perpendicular to the spool.

The spinning reel is cast by using the “opening the bail” move first; in this move, the bail arm is moved up to free the line, and it is unspooled. In some spinning reels, the amount of resistance applied to the line by the reel can be adjusted.

This reel allows more line control while casting the line, and they are fewer chances for rope twisting to occur. Low-quality drags can tighten or slip, which can break the line. 

By using this type of casting method, your preferable hand holds the rod, and the other hand operates the reel. There is no need to keep steady pressure on the line while casting; this is one of the reasons why anglers like spinning reels.

In addition, the spinning reels are more durable. Most anglers learn fishing by using the spinning reels before jumping into the baitcasting reels because it is suitable for medium-sized fishes; it is the easiest one to handle and cheaper when compared to baitcasting reels.

When a Spinning Reel Should Be Used:

A Spinning reel can be used in various types of situations; some of them are listed below:

  1. It is well suited when you are aiming for small or standard sized fishes or targets 
  2. Spinning reels go well when your lures and tackle are lightweight
  3. It is under budget when you can’t afford the high price of a baitcasting reel
  4. You can loan your rod to beginner-level anglers who find it easy to handle it
  5. It quickly switches between left and correct orientations while providing gears

Spinning Reels Pros:

  • More line capacity can be added using an additional reel
  • Left and right-hand orientations can be easily switched
  • Easier to handle
  • Suitable for lightweight lines
  • No backlash
  • Cheaper compared to others
  • Easier to cast near the shoreline with a sidearm cast
  • Straight-forward construction 
  • Best for youngsters and new anglers 

Spinning Reels Cons:

  • No control of distance
  • The heavy and bulky device
  • Lines can be twisted, torn or tangled
  • Not durable and strong
  • Dragging ability is less
  • Frail construction
  • Less line capacity 

Also recommended: 10 Best Spinning Reels Review

Baitcasting Reel:

When you are casting a fishing rod using a baitcasting reel, it is named baitcasting. However, they are also called conventional reels, and it is the first choice of experienced anglers as they provide a direct connection to the target.

A baitcasting reel is on top of the rod where the spool is parallel to the rod, unlike perpendicular in the spinning reel.

A baitcasting reel works with fluorocarbon, braid line types, and monofilament. While baitcasting, the spool moves with the casting of the line. Keeping things under control requires an experienced angler to handle.

If not, it leads to backlash, and this can be avoided or prevented with practice. This makes it a more complex type of casting method. 

Experienced anglers control the line as they are casting by using their thumb to break. The dominant hand is used to hold the rod to cast, and it is switched to control the reel as well. In the United States, it is named conventional reels, and in Europe, it is called multiplier reels.

Like a car’s brake, the brake in this reel controls the rotation of the spool when the line is being cast. The feature, the anti-reverse system, is the most admired in the bait cast system.

Everyone can use this with gears that can help the handle from backward spinning.

However, it is necessary to be precautious while snatching a big fish; it may damage your knuckles.

When a Baitcasting Reel Should Be Used:

You can use the baitcasting reels in various situations; it is more suitable,

  1. When you’re going for the heavier fish 
  2. When you’re a more experienced angler 
  3. When you can manage to invest in high prices
  4. When you cast very frequently, you’ll appreciate the lightweight nature 
  5. When the conditions are harsh and in a tough weather 

Baitcasting Reels Pros:

  • this can snatch heavier fishes 
  • Drag capabilities are stronger 
  • Casting is long
  • More precision and distance control
  • Highly durable
  • Light in weight 
  • Can hold more lines and heavy lines 
  • No line twists 
  • Multiple casting can be done
  •  Greater line capacity

Baitcasting Reels Cons:

  • Quite expensive
  • Experience and learning are required 
  • Backlashes 
  • Left and right orientations are challenging to be switched
  • Spool tension has to be adjusted often
  • Learning is difficult

Fishing Reel:

Baitcasting vs Spinning
Photo by Brent Keane on

Fishing reels are mechanical devices that are designed to collect through the fishing lines with the help of a rotating arm.

The fishing reels are now the most standard equipment for most anglers. Before the introduction of the fishing reels, it was not an easy task to fish from a very long distance.

The visible places were only accessed as the line was just tied to the end of the rod. This eventually leads to difficulty in catching a variety of fishes as some parts of the water are out of reach.

By using a reel, anglers can reach distant parts and can cast their baits and lures at adequate distances. Once you get the desired area, you can keep the line under your control very efficiently by using the reel. 


By this time, you would have briefly seen the differences(baitcaster vs. spinning), advantages, and disadvantages between the baitcasting reel and spinning reels. Before choosing one, you should analyze your requirements and needs and go for the one that truly matches your preferences.

They excel uniquely in their designs and the ability to perform in various situations. Now let us consider a few conditions and circumstances that you can consider before jumping into options,

  • Light or heavy line and tackle

If you are a person who opts for heavy lines rather than light lines, then Baitcasting reels are the ones suitable for you.

Light and heavy differ from angler to angler. If your lures or line is serious, a baitcasting reel is going to be the best for you, and if you think your tackle is in a lesser weight, you can go for the spinning reels.

  • Experience in fishing 

If you are a beginner in fishing, then choosing the spinning reels would be the best option for you to gain experience and success.

However, experienced anglers can use more of their time by using the baitcasting reels to improve and train themselves more.

  • Power or finesse techniques

If you’re using power fishing techniques, you will find a baitcasting reel as the best option for your fishing. However, if you are a finesse-oriented angler who chooses lighter lines, then you would opt for the spinning reels. 

  • Size of the fish

The option depends upon the size of the target also; if the size of the target is small or medium-sized it is better to use the spinning reels whereas if your target is huge or large it is always wise to use a baitcasting reel.

  • Active fishing 

Some people actively fish which means they have their rods in their hands the entire time while they fish. But some anglers when they have a different types of targets, they leave their rods in the water for a more extended period.

They take time, sit back and relax. For these types of anglers, the simplicity of the spinning reels suits their needs most aptly, and they have fewer technical issues when compared to a baitcasting reel.

  • Pricing of the reels 

The spinning reels are affordable when you cannot invest a high price on baitcasting reels as they are costly. Whereas when you don’t have to worry about your price, you can quickly go for the baitcasting reels.

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The choice is going to be entirely yours, where you can decide at what level you are in and what your preferences are.

Once you get the reels you prefer, the next step is to choose the gear that makes you fish for a longer time.

All the differences are mentioned and show-casted. It is you who have to analyze and decide upon a variety of options.

The significant differences that have to be outlined between baitcasting vs. spinning reels are your experience level and what you are expecting out of your fishing adventure. Keeping in mind the techniques and methods of casting which would be suitable for you.

Choose the reels which you can afford, and there are newer models in each type, so durability comes as an essential point that has to be kept in mind. Overall, it entirely depends on your choice. Choose wise, choose best!

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