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Understanding Reels

Wade BWade B Posts: 259 Deckhand
I think I'm starting to understand reels better. So am I understanding that you guys don't really use level wind reels down there and prefer conventional. I'm not talking big game stuff. I'm talking inshore grouper, shark, tarpon, etc. Input please.
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Replies

  • FibberMckeeFibberMckee Posts: 12,837 AG
    Curious what you consider "big game stuff" when you're "talking" - IF "grouper, shark, tarpon" aren't it?
    Wade B wrote: »
    I'm not talking big game stuff. I'm talking inshore grouper, shark, tarpon, etc. Input please.

    And NO, the Daiwa Sealine 47, level wind, line counter reels you mentioned before are not a good match for "grouper, shark, tarpon" down here.
  • Wade BWade B Posts: 259 Deckhand
    It's possible I don't know what I'm talking about or using my terminology right.

    I thought you guys referred to "big game" as Sailfish, Marlin, Goliath, Swordfish, etc.

    Also I'm not referring to my Diawa Sealines. But I did read an article where a guy suggests that modern quality level winds are capable of handling some good sized fish.
  • congoman775congoman775 Posts: 1,395 Officer
    When you say "inshore", those ARE the big dogs :fishing

    Conventional is more popular. Shimano Calcutta 700's are all over.
  • Wade BWade B Posts: 259 Deckhand
    When you say "inshore", those ARE the big dogs :fishing

    Conventional is more popular. Shimano Calcutta 700's are all over.

    So there is inshore big game and off shore big game?
  • bonephishbonephish Posts: 1,488 Officer
    Wade B wrote: »
    So am I understanding that you guys don't really use level wind reels down there and prefer conventional. I'm talking inshore grouper, shark, tarpon, etc. Input please.

    You guys? Hogwash! I love my Calcutta 700B for snapper, grouper, cobia, tarpon, big snook, big redfish... I prefer levelwinds on reels smaller than a 50 conventional.:fishing
  • Wade BWade B Posts: 259 Deckhand
    I've got a lot to learn.
  • reel stamasreel stamas Posts: 6,153 Admiral
    FYI- You'll get much better answers if you ask very specific questions (& try to avoid terms like 'Big Game' that might not mean the same thing to everyone)... IMHO...
    There should be NO Commercial Fishing for any fish species considered 'Over-fished' , 'Undergoing Overfishing' or Subject to Recreational Seasons, Limits, or Closures... Game Fish Status IS the Answer !!!
  • FibberMckeeFibberMckee Posts: 12,837 AG
    Sharks, Tarpon & Jewfish can easily go over 100 lbs inshore. You've got to ask yourself; Is that "big game" enough?
    Wade B wrote: »
    So there is inshore big game and off shore big game?

    Guess you dismissed my description of the problems with level wind? Even if there's no Nylon level wind gear to strip out, the cockeyed geometry of line playing out against out of phase level wind gate is at the very least awkward. At worst something has to give. Don't forget the itty bitty level wind pawl. You've got to ask yourself; How awkward?

    Wonder if anyone ever landed Marlin or Swordfish on "modern quality level winds"?
  • Wade BWade B Posts: 259 Deckhand
    Guess you dismissed my description of the problems with level wind? Even if there's no Nylon level wind gear to strip out, the cockeyed geometry of line playing out against out of phase level wind gate is at the very least awkward. At worst something has to give. You've got to ask yourself; How awkward?

    Wonder if anyone ever landed Marlin or Swordfish on "modern quality level winds"?

    Nope, not at all. As with anything a guy can get varying opinions when they ask a question. The article just confused me a bit. I thought nobody used level wind for saltwater.
  • reel stamasreel stamas Posts: 6,153 Admiral
    I know guys that use a Shimano Tekota 700LW for almost everything up to ~100lbs...
    Personally I only use LW Reels on rods that I use for CASTING...
    The only people that routinley use LW Reels (on MY Boat) for Trolling &/or Bottom Fishing are Newbies, some Women & most Children...
    There should be NO Commercial Fishing for any fish species considered 'Over-fished' , 'Undergoing Overfishing' or Subject to Recreational Seasons, Limits, or Closures... Game Fish Status IS the Answer !!!
  • lifegoesonlifegoeson Posts: 338 Deckhand
    If I'm casting I want a level wind, if I'm just pitching a bait or dropping a bait down I would rather not have it. Line size gives a pretty good idea of cutoff to , I use level wind for <20lb mono and <50lb braid.
  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 3,985 Captain
    Wade what you really need is lots of hands on experience down here instead of trying to learn and understand from a distance.

    On my skiff we use spin, conventional (particularly plug casting gear -not much different than any bass angler would use -if I have anglers skilled enough to use them....) both small and much larger, as well as fly gear. All of that is depending on my angler's preferences and skill level (for anyone that's never used fly gear -it's like learning to fish all over again.... but it's not for everyone...).

    Each kind of gear provides different advantages depending on the situation you find yourself in. Plug casting gear takes a good bit of skill to use properly so most beginners will shy away from it. That same gear in the hands of a skilled angler allows him (or her) to put a lure very precisely right where a fish is holding (ten feet away from a downed tree means no bite -put your lure six inches from where that fish is holding up under that tree and you're in business...). I build all the rods my anglers use and keep a half dozen plug setups ready to go - but seldom have anglers skilled enough to use them. That same gear used with bait and left in position until a fish strikes -anyone can use but the casting part - that takes some skill....

    Most days I'm set up with spinning rods (I occasionally fish anglers who've never held a rod and reel before -you can teach anyone to use a spinning rod in just a few minutes so I rely on them a lot - by end of the day I can have an absolute beginner making their own casts, working artificials and hooking their own fish... something that's just not possible with plug casting or fly fishing gear). Now for the fun part -we routinely go after and beat big fish with that same gear..... Fish up to 300lbs on only 20lb line are a daily possibility with a bit of skill... As you can guess the rod I build for 20lb line and big fish is pretty stout (blank rated for 20 to 40lb line). The lightest spinner on my skiff is designed to toss nothing but a live shrimp or small pilchard with no addtional weight at all (and a lightweight rod will make a 3lb trout seem like a monster).

    Lots and lots of mis-information about what's needed in the gear that folks use on the salt. Most of the mis-information comes from both manufacturers and TV shows that are designed as selling platforms for every bit of tackle you see in a big shop....

    Like I said, go hands on... hit the water with whatever you have and see how it performs for you. Fish with as many different anglers as possible since all will have things they do that will improve your game (and joining a local fishing club can be a big boost in the learning process...).

    Lastly... be a hero -take a kid fishing!
    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • Wade BWade B Posts: 259 Deckhand
    Thanks for that. I feel I'm a pretty accomplished freshwater fisherman as far as my skills with a stick. My two favorite fly rods are a 5wt and a 10wt (Musky and Pike).

    I'm looking forward to running some fly gear down there.

    I used to be the treasurer for our local walleye club/league. We put on many community events and tournaments. I'm looking forward to getting into a club down there and finding a community that shares my common interests. I agree. That's the best way to learn new techniques and tactics as well as deciding what you like and what works. The hard part is just finding guys willing to let you jump in the boat with them.

    I will admit I am one of those anglers that loves the new gadgets and has piles of shiny gear. I am probably a tackle suppliers dream.

    We don't have many big fish up here but I have managed to find a couple.
    Pulled this Paddle Fish out of 35' of water (tail hooked) with a 6'6" medium weight rod and 6# test mono.


    Pulled this River Sturgeon shore fishing with a medium weight rod and 6# or 8# test mono.


    I would say casting plugs with a bait caster is my weakest point. I know how but I prefer a good spinning outfit for precision casting.
  • johnDjohnD WC FLPosts: 6,419 Admiral
    lemaymiami wrote: »
    Wade what you really need is lots of hands on experience down here instead of trying to learn and understand from a distance.

    On my skiff we use spin, conventional (particularly plug casting gear -not much different than any bass angler would use -if I have anglers skilled enough to use them....) both small and much larger, as well as fly gear. All of that is depending on my angler's preferences and skill level (for anyone that's never used fly gear -it's like learning to fish all over again.... but it's not for everyone...).

    Each kind of gear provides different advantages depending on the situation you find yourself in. Plug casting gear takes a good bit of skill to use properly so most beginners will shy away from it. That same gear in the hands of a skilled angler allows him (or her) to put a lure very precisely right where a fish is holding (ten feet away from a downed tree means no bite -put your lure six inches from where that fish is holding up under that tree and you're in business...). I build all the rods my anglers use and keep a half dozen plug setups ready to go - but seldom have anglers skilled enough to use them. That same gear used with bait and left in position until a fish strikes -anyone can use but the casting part - that takes some skill....

    Most days I'm set up with spinning rods (I occasionally fish anglers who've never held a rod and reel before -you can teach anyone to use a spinning rod in just a few minutes so I rely on them a lot - by end of the day I can have an absolute beginner making their own casts, working artificials and hooking their own fish... something that's just not possible with plug casting or fly fishing gear). Now for the fun part -we routinely go after and beat big fish with that same gear..... Fish up to 300lbs on only 20lb line are a daily possibility with a bit of skill... As you can guess the rod I build for 20lb line and big fish is pretty stout (blank rated for 20 to 40lb line). The lightest spinner on my skiff is designed to toss nothing but a live shrimp or small pilchard with no addtional weight at all (and a lightweight rod will make a 3lb trout seem like a monster).

    Lots and lots of mis-information about what's needed in the gear that folks use on the salt. Most of the mis-information comes from both manufacturers and TV shows that are designed as selling platforms for every bit of tackle you see in a big shop....

    Like I said, go hands on... hit the water with whatever you have and see how it performs for you. Fish with as many different anglers as possible since all will have things they do that will improve your game (and joining a local fishing club can be a big boost in the learning process...).

    Lastly... be a hero -take a kid fishing!

    / thread.
  • FibberMckeeFibberMckee Posts: 12,837 AG
    I can assure you, when fighting large powerful fish, that "the cockeyed geometry of line playing out against out of phase level wind gate is" NOT one of your "varying opinions". Do not be "confused".
    Wade B wrote: »
    As with anything a guy can get varying opinions when they ask a question. The article just confused me a bit. I thought nobody used level wind for saltwater.

    Countless people have "used level wind for saltwater". A far smaller number have hooked large fish & experienced the severe design limitations of level wind. If you never set the hook in a really big fish, with a level wind, you may never suffer the issue. Losing a bragging rights fish to level wind issues can result in "varying opinions" - almost all negative.

    Note: That I've fished the Great Lakes & was startled by how little fight there was from respectable sized fish. A disappointment only amplified by the trolling methods.
  • Wade BWade B Posts: 259 Deckhand

    Note: That I've fished the Great Lakes & was startled by how little fight there was from respectable sized fish. A disappointment only amplified by the trolling methods.

    That is exactly the comparison I was looking for. Thanks. Many up will say a big Steelhead or King Salmon on the Great Lakes is as close as a person can get to saltwater without actually hitting the salt. I've always thought that can't be true.

    My brother's steelhead is pretty big. The king my buddy is holding and my creek steelhead are nice but not huge.
  • reel stamasreel stamas Posts: 6,153 Admiral
    I'll bet 'pound for pound' almost everything that swims in the Great Lakes will outfight a Speckled Trout...
    IMO they fight about like a Crappie...
    Not all Saltwater Fish are 'Tackle Busters'...
    There should be NO Commercial Fishing for any fish species considered 'Over-fished' , 'Undergoing Overfishing' or Subject to Recreational Seasons, Limits, or Closures... Game Fish Status IS the Answer !!!
  • bonephishbonephish Posts: 1,488 Officer
    Countless people have "used level wind for saltwater". A far smaller number have hooked large fish & experienced the severe design limitations of level wind. If you never set the hook in a really big fish, with a level wind, you may never suffer the issue. Losing a bragging rights fish to level wind issues can result in "varying opinions" - almost all negative.

    Not true with modern reels. I once caught a 100# striped marlin on my Calcutta 700 with 65# powerpro. The levelwind still works flawlessly. Okuma makes a 50, the largest reel available with levelwind, as far as I have found. Tekota is a really good levelwind for large saltwater gamefish. Now a Tekota will most likely blow up catching a big yellowfin but the reel is not designed for that kind of punishment. I suppose the reel makers could put a levelwind on a 80-wide, but nobody would buy it.
  • TarponatorTarponator Under a BridgePosts: 17,010 AG
    I've caught more than a few 100lb+ tarpon on a Calcutta 400 -- with a levelwind....and in under 15 minutes.

    I've never had the first problem with the levelwind -- and I've been doing this for almost two decades now. Don't believe everything you read.

    The reason I use a casting reel with levewind is simple -- casting accuracy.
  • FibberMckeeFibberMckee Posts: 12,837 AG
    Since "modern reels" now seem to have reversed the conventional wisdom, no pun intended, please be so kind as to extend the teaching moment.
    Tarponator wrote: »
    The reason I use a casting reel with levewind is simple -- casting accuracy.

    Would enjoy learning how "a casting reel with levewind" will enhance "casting accuracy"?

    Conventional fishing wisdom says that level wind significantly reduces casting range. Also thought level wind enhanced the chances of getting a bird's nest trying to get distance.

    My last level wind reels are Daiwa Sealine 27H & 47H, used shore fishing. The Nylon level wind gear broke twice fighting fish on 47H. Last time some never seen leviathan bent the dead level wind gate. The 27H level wind pawl went, ate worm shaft, jammed reel & lost bragging rights fish, presumably big Redfish.
  • reel stamasreel stamas Posts: 6,153 Admiral
    I suspect he meant that most fishermen who are proficient at casting a Conventional reel can make much more accurate casts than most fishermen can make w/a Spinner. Casting w/a Conventional is more like throwing a dart vs. Casting a Spinner which is much more like a lob into a general area. I am quite proficient w/Both, but if I were in an Accuracy Contest I'd take a Conventional 100 out of 100 Times...
    It's not the Level-wind that helps w/accuracy, but almost all small Conventional Reels designed for Casting do have LWs...
    There should be NO Commercial Fishing for any fish species considered 'Over-fished' , 'Undergoing Overfishing' or Subject to Recreational Seasons, Limits, or Closures... Game Fish Status IS the Answer !!!
  • FibberMckeeFibberMckee Posts: 12,837 AG
    We trolled for Salmon on the Great Lakes using down riggers. Skinny rods sat in holders, the forward motion of the boat yanked the fish to the surface & you basically just cranked them in w/o much of a fight at all. As I said "was startled by how little fight there was from respectable sized fish". Had caught tons of big Cod, which aren't noted for their fight, but Great Lake Salmon still surprised me.

    Had a lot of experience bottom & drift fishing for Bluefish & Stripe bass that size up North & they fought hard. For Grouper & Redfish that size I use 6/0 size reel & 80 lb line, on 'extra heavy' rod, b/c I don't want to lose the occasional bragging rights fish that might strike.
    Wade B wrote: »
    That is exactly the comparison I was looking for. Thanks. Many up will say a big Steelhead or King Salmon on the Great Lakes is as close as a person can get to saltwater without actually hitting the salt. I've always thought that can't be true.

    Tarpon & King mackerel have nearly spooled me on many occasions. Big Cobia & Amberjack have forced me to leverage the rod on the railing. Have seen guys who are more athletic than me nearly yanked overboard by big Grouper. Caught a **** Gag that had 5 hooks w/lengths of 50 lb mono busted off in its face, on 80 lb.
  • FibberMckeeFibberMckee Posts: 12,837 AG
    Curious qualification? Aren't "fisherman who are proficient at casting (by definition) more accurate than most fisherman" - especially "in an Accuracy Contest"?
    I suspect he meant that most fishermen who are proficient at casting a Conventional reel can make much more accurate casts than most fishermen can make w/a Spinner.

    When I was introduced to "a Spinner" way back when I got my 1st Mitchell 300, it immediately made casting easier, more accurate & with longer distance - over the Pflueger & Shakespeare conventional level winds reels I was already "quite proficient" with.

    When I'm casting/prospecting inshore or from shore I use spinning gear. Will still occasionally soak bait with Sealine 47H from shore/pier, but mostly use a 30H or 50H.

    Believe me, it's NOT just on the REEL STAMAS Boat.
    The only people that routinley use LW Reels (on MY Boat) for Trolling &/or Bottom Fishing are Newbies, some Women & most Children...
  • Reel TealReel Teal Posts: 3,962 Captain
    We trolled for Salmon on the Great Lakes using down riggers. Skinny rods sat in holders, the forward motion of the boat yanked the fish to the surface & you basically just cranked them in w/o much of a fight at all. As I said "was startled by how little fight there was from respectable sized fish". Had caught tons of big Cod, which aren't noted for their fight, but Great Lake Salmon still surprised me.

    Had a lot of experience bottom & drift fishing for Bluefish & Stripe bass that size up North & they fought hard. For Grouper & Redfish that size I use 6/0 size reel & 80 lb line, on 'extra heavy' rod, b/c I don't want to lose the occasional bragging rights fish that might strike.



    Tarpon & King mackerel have nearly spooled me on many occasions. Big Cobia & Amberjack have forced me to leverage the rod on the railing. Have seen guys who are more athletic than me nearly yanked overboard by big Grouper. Caught a **** Gag that had 5 hooks w/lengths of 50 lb mono busted off in its face, on 80 lb.
    You put the rod on the railing? And havent snapped a rod? Ive broken one that way and line goes pop usually every time....
  • reel stamasreel stamas Posts: 6,153 Admiral
    Curious qualification? Aren't "fisherman who are proficient at casting (by definition) more accurate than most fisherman" - especially "in an Accuracy Contest"?



    When I was introduced to "a Spinner" way back when I got my 1st Mitchell 300, it immediately made casting easier, more accurate & with longer distance - over the Pflueger & Shakespeare conventional level winds reels I was already "quite proficient" with.

    When I'm casting/prospecting inshore or from shore I use spinning gear. Will still occasionally soak bait with Sealine 47H from shore/pier, but mostly use a 30H or 50H.

    Believe me, it's NOT just on the REEL STAMAS Boat.

    Thanks for reminding me why I had quit participating in threads where you're already the self proclaimed expert... I'm out... It's all yours...
    There should be NO Commercial Fishing for any fish species considered 'Over-fished' , 'Undergoing Overfishing' or Subject to Recreational Seasons, Limits, or Closures... Game Fish Status IS the Answer !!!
  • bonephishbonephish Posts: 1,488 Officer
    It's not the Level-wind that helps w/accuracy, but almost all small Conventional Reels designed for Casting do have LWs...

    Some baitcasters' disconnect the levelwind on freespool, which extends casting distance they say.
  • FibberMckeeFibberMckee Posts: 12,837 AG
    Did not "put the rod on the railing" it was "forced" by the combo of big strong fish & the limits of my own strength. And no "havent snapped a rod" b/c the fulcrum of the lever was on handle close to reel seat.
    Reel Teal wrote: »
    You put the rod on the railing? And havent snapped a rod? Ive broken one that way and line goes pop usually every time....

    Won 2 Party Boat Pots this way by boating conspicuously larger Amberjack & Cobia. Had I fished w/lighter gear it's a safe bet I could only report the "line goes pop usually every time...."
  • FibberMckeeFibberMckee Posts: 12,837 AG
    Am never intimidated from "participating in threads where (you or anyone else attempts to be) the self proclaimed expert".
    Thanks for reminding me why I had quit participating in threads where you're already the self proclaimed expert... I'm out... It's all yours...

    A forum is a place to ask questions, present opinions, share experiences & discuss topics openly.

    If your skin is too thin & you need "reminding" of why you "quit participating" you're entirely welcome.

    This thread is NOTHING like being "all" mine. It's Wade B's thread.
  • johnDjohnD WC FLPosts: 6,419 Admiral
  • Reel TealReel Teal Posts: 3,962 Captain
    Did not "put the rod on the railing" it was "forced" by the combo of big strong fish & the limits of my own strength. And no "havent snapped a rod" b/c the fulcrum of the lever was on handle close to reel seat.



    Won 2 Party Boat Pots this way by boating conspicuously larger Amberjack & Cobia. Had I fished w/lighter gear it's a safe bet I could only report the "line goes pop usually every time...."
    Dam, you lift bro? Sorry i wrote "put". Here ill give you a "hand". Come down off your "high" horse
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