Last updated: August 10, 2021

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Welcome to our big fishing reel test 2022. Here we present all the fishing reels we have tested in detail. We have compiled detailed background information and added a summary of customer reviews on the web. We would like to make your purchase decision easier and help you find the best fishing reel for you. You will also find answers to frequently asked questions in our guide. If available, we also offer interesting test videos. Furthermore, you will also find some important information on this page that you should be aware of when buying a fishing reel.




Summary

  • Basically, two different types of fishing reels are sold. These are a stationary reel and a multi reel. In most cases, you are well equipped with a stationary reel.
  • Stationary reels are real all-rounders and ideal for beginners as well as passionate fishermen. A multi reel is the right choice for you if you are hunting fish with really heavy tackle.
  • The brake is one of the most important components of a fishing reel. You can choose between a front brake, a rear brake and a fighting brake.

The best Fishing reel: Our Picks

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying a fishing reel

What are the different fishing reels?

Fishing reels are a particularly important part of any fishing equipment. Basically, a distinction is made between stationary reels and multi-reels, whereby the stationary reel is more common. Stationary reels stationary reels are fixed fishing reels on which the fishing line is wound across the fishing rod. The line slides off the reel when it is cast, and is then rewound with the help of a line catcher.
Did you know that you can impregnate your fishing reel with gun oil or silicone oil? Before you bring your reel into contact with salt water, you should impregnate it with oil. This is especially true for aluminium parts. After use, rinse the reel thoroughly with fresh water, dry and re-impregnate.

In simple terms,freewheeling reels are a further development of stationary reels, because they also have an integrated freewheeling mechanism. When this is activated, the fish can pull line from the reel without resistance. The capsule re el is in principle also a free spool reel, where the fishing line is wound up under a housing. Capsule reels are ideal for fishing in wild places, as no plant parts can get caught in the reel. In addition, capsule reels can be operated with one hand. For widespread spin fishing, spinning re els are used, which are specially designed for the constant strain of active artificial lure fishing. Usually, spinning reels are stationary reels, but they can also be small multi-reels. With the Multi reel the fishing line is reeled parallel to the fishing rod. When the lure is cast, the spool always rotates with it, which is the main difference to a stationary reel. However, there is always direct contact between the reel and the lure.

Person hält Angelrute

Fishing reels are part of every basic fishing equipment. There are different types of fishing reels, such as stationary reels or multi-reels. (Photo: Free-Photos / pixabay.com)

In the meantime, lightweight multi-reels, so-called baitcasters, have also become popular fishing reels for inland waters. The correct choice of fishing reel is essential, as they are very different in handling. In addition, the fishing reel used has a considerable influence on the casting distance as well as the dribbling characteristics when fishing.

When is a stationary reel the right choice for you?

Stationary reels are real all-rounders. In many cases you are very well equipped with a stationary reel. The operation of stationary reels is relatively easy and can be learned quickly. Thanks to the line catcher, tangling of the fishing line is rare. Stationary reels are therefore ideal fishing reels for beginners. If you switch from monofilament to braided line, make sure that the braided line knot is not tied like a monofilament knot. Otherwise the line can slip or break. This is due to the higher surface smoothness of braided lines. Due to the low stretch of braided lines compared to monofilament lines, the braid is less forgiving of a messy knot tie than a monofilament, which benefits from the resulting rubber band effect. (Source: raptor-angelservice.de)

[/xadvice] With a freewheel reel you also have the advantage that you don't have to stand right next to the fishing rod when you bite. Thanks to the freewheel mechanism, the catch can effortlessly pull line from the reel until you press the reel brake to land it.

When is a multi reel the right choice for you?

Originally, multi reels were mainly used for sea fishing or trolling. Nowadays, however, they are also increasingly used in inland fishing to fish for really big fish. Because of their high stability, multi reels are ideally suited for the use of heavy fishing tackle. Another advantage of multi-reels is that you have a direct connection from the fishing reel to the bait or catch. However, the handling of multi-reels is somewhat more complicated than with stationary reels.

The strengths of multi reels include such advantages as high stability and direct connection between fishing reel and lure.

Multi-reels have a high stability and are therefore suitable for fishing big fish. (Source: 123rf.com / 34533919)

How much does a fishing reel cost?

The prices for fishing reels have a wide range. They are often highly dependent on the quality of the reel parts used. The cheapest fishing reels on the market are available for as little as 20€. Nevertheless, these can already offer sufficiently good quality for beginners. For a mid-range fishing reel, you should expect to pay between €50 and €100. High-quality fishing reels can easily cost up to 250€.

When buying a fishing reel, also pay attention to the material. There are many choices from aluminium to magnesium, which also plays a big role in durability and functionality.

Decision: What types of fishing reels are there and which is the right one for you?

Basically, you can distinguish between three types of fishing reels:

  • Stationary reel
  • Multiplier reel
  • Fly reel

Due to the type of construction, the respective functionality and area of application of these fishing reels is different. Therefore, there are advantages and disadvantages with each of these types of construction. Depending on the intended use, preference and the fish to be caught, a particular reel is best suited for you.
In the following section, we will briefly explain the differences between the various types of fishing reels so that you can decide for yourself which fishing reel is best for you and your intended use. We will also compare the advantages and disadvantages of each type.

How does a fixed spool reel work and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

The stationary reel is the most widely used fishing reel. With the help of a ball bearing, the rotation of the crank is transferred to the reel seat and thus to the line. Depending on the direction in which the crank is turned, the line can be wound or unwound.

Advantages
  • Flexible and simple
  • Relatively inexpensive
Disadvantages
  • Not suitable for heavy bait

The hill can be folded down after casting to allow the line to run free and prevent drag. This makes it much more likely that fish will bite.

The number of balls in the ball bearing is not a quality criterion and should therefore not be considered when buying.

Depending on the model, the brake is located either on the tail or the head of the fishing reel. Differences can be neglected here. Both the free spool reel and the spinning reel are merely further developments of the stationary reel and therefore not fishing reel types in their own right.

How does a multiplier reel work and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

The biggest difference between a multiplier reel and a stationary reel is its construction. The reel works with the help of a gear ratio that allows the spool to be wound faster by turning the crank. This makes ratios possible that are greater than the usual 1:1 transmission ratio.

Advantages
  • Suitable for heavy lures and mounts
Disadvantages
  • Tangle easily
  • Relatively expensive

The multiplier reel, also called a multi reel, can be divided into two different types. A distinction is made between ordinary multi reels and baitcaster reels. Ordinary reels are usually cast from a boat.

The gear ratio should always be chosen according to the fishing spot and the fish to be caught.

Baitcasters are mostly used for spin fishing. Both the baitcast reel and the electric reel are merely further developments of the multiplier reel and are therefore not fishing reels in their own right.

How does a fly reel work and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

The fly reel, or Nottingham reel, is mainly used for fly fishing. This reel is one of the very first fishing reels. Basically, the fly reel only consists of a spool on which the crank is directly attached and a line that is wound onto it.

Advantages
  • Suitable for fly fishing
  • Relatively cheap
Disadvantages
  • Not suitable for modern fishing

The Nottingham reel has neither a brake system nor an increased gear ratio. The fly reel is very simple in its construction and is not used for modern fishing due to its uncomfortable handling.

Buying criteria: Use these factors to compare and evaluate fishing reels

In the following we would like to show you which factors you can use to compare and evaluate fishing reels. This will make it easier for you to decide whether a certain product is suitable for you or not. In summary, these are:

  • Line capacity
  • Gear ratio
  • Brake system

In the following paragraphs you can read about the individual purchase criteria and how you can classify them.

Angelrolle Nahaufnahme

Depending on the target fish, you should pay attention to the appropriate strength and length of the line that can be spooled onto your fishing reel. (Photo: LUM3N / pixabay.com)

Line capacity

When buying a fishing rod, you should consider the line capacity. Usually, the products indicate how many metres of line of which thickness fit on the reel.

Did you know that you have a better feel for bites with a braided line? Above a certain water depth you will feel the bite much better with a braided line than with a monofilament line. At the same time you have less stretch in the line. With hard bites this can lead to the loss of the fish. That's why it's worth adding a fluorocarbon or monofilament leader.

There are no standard sizes here. It is important that you can spool enough fishing line of the preferred strength (depending on the target fish) onto your future fishing reel. Sometimes the line capacity is also given in Lb/Yds. With the usual conversions, you can also calculate the maximum length of fishing line that can fit on the reel. Also check whether the reel is already reeled with a suitable line or whether you need to buy the line separately.

Gear ratio

The gear ratio describes the number of turns the spool makes per turn of the crank. Depending on the bait used and the season, other gear ratios are optimal.
Fishing reels with a medium gear ratio are all-rounders that can actually be used in almost all situations. Basically, a distinction is made between low gear ratios (3.8:1 to 4.8:1), medium gear ratios (5.0:1 to 5.8:1) and high gear rat ios (6.0:1 and above).

Brake system

Braking systems are a fundamental part of fishing rods. For stationary reels, a distinction is made between the following braking systems:

  • Front brake
  • Rear brake
  • Combat brake

In general, the front brake can be adjusted more sensitively, whereas the rear and fighting brakes are easier to operate because they are attached to the lower end of the gear housing. In the meantime, more and more manufacturers offer fishing reels that are equipped with all three braking systems and are thus optimal for all cases. There are two different braking systems for multi-reels: The star brake and the disc brake. Star brakes are more common and less expensive than disc brakes. These in turn have a higher braking force, which is especially important when fishing for really fat fish. Image source: Pixabay.com / annca

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