Casting vs. Spinning Reels

LivetoFish.com carries a large variety of fishing reels, including the top-performing Penn Reels. If you don’t already have a specific model in mind, it can be hard to choose the best reel for your needs. In most instances, before you make any other decisions about things like reel size or gear ratio, you’re going to be deciding whether you want a casting reel or a spinning reel. As such, it’s important to explore the characteristics of casting reels and spinning reels to determine which is best for you. Let’s get started.

Spool Rotation

Spool rotation is an important factor in choosing whether you want a spinning reel or a casting (also called “baitcasing”) reel. On a casting reel, the spool revolves and meshes with the gears as it moves. The spool stays in place on a spinning reel.

Line and Tackle Weight

If you are using light line and light tackle, you’ll want to choose a spinning reel. The spinning reel is perfect for 6-10 lb. line and lures up to 1/4  oz. in weight.  With a casting reel, you can use heavier line and tackle. Casting reels are better set up for baits that are larger than 3/4 oz. in size and line that is 14-20 lb. test.

Bait Type

If you prefer to use a certain type of bait when you head out on the water, you might want to tailor your reel choice to your favorite baits. Spinning reels are generally used for finesse like jigging or drop-shotting. Casting reels are better for baits that move, like crankbaits and spinnerbaits.

Precision Casting

This comes down to a matter of opinion, but the choice of reel is often dependent upon precision.  When you use a spinning reel, you are offered a wider range of motion than you are with a casting reel. This lets you get into a place where a casting reel can’t normally reach, like under structures or heavy cover. Casting reels are better for open water.

Skill Level

If you’re not interested in any of the above factors and it’s your first time on the water, choose the reel that matches your skill level. If you are a beginner, you’re going to have an easier time learning how to cast with a spinning reel than you are learning how to cast with a casting reel.

No matter what reel you choose, try to choose the reel that’s at the top of your pricing bracket. You want to have a quality reel that’s sure to last a lifetime.


Do you have any particular preference of casting vs. spinning reels? Let us know in the comments or get in touch. If you’re on the market for a new fishing reel, be sure to visit us at livetofish.com and check out the Fishing Reels section for a huge variety of freshwater and saltwater casting and spinning reels.

One thought on “Casting vs. Spinning Reels

  1. There are numerous reasons why you’d want a casting reel over a spinning reel, or vice versa. The article touches on some of the reasons, but there are many more. Both spinning and casting reels are available from livetofish.com Generally speaking, spinning reels allow you to throw lighter baits or lures easier; especially if you’re casting into the wind. Casting reels generally allow better accuracy and have a more efficient means of applying drag pressure when fighting a fish. Fortunately, the folks at livetofish.com can answer any questions you have regarding gear selection. Allowing you to make the most of your time fishing and give you the best chance of landing (rather than losing) that big one!

    Liked by 1 person

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