Penn Reel Saltwater

Posted in Penn Fishing Gear by Penn Fishing Gear on November 8, 2011

Penn Reel Saltwater

Baitcasting Basics

Baitcasting without Birds Nest (2)


Fishermen who prefer to use lures larger than 1/4 ounce to 3/8 of an ounce often discover that bait casting reels are their best asset. On the other hand, those who tend to target trout, often use a very light line which bait cast reels do not handle well. One of the issues with bait casting reels is the backlash and the ability to create a birds nest out of your line. They are however some simple things that you can do to overcome this problem.


Bait casting reels use a revolving spool. When you cast a lure, the reel moves forward and the line feeds out until it hits the water. Typically lower weight and force are the final determinants in how fast your spool spins. What inevitably winds up happening, is the spool continues to spin after the lower is in the water. The end result is that too much line is sent out to quickly. The bigger issue is this line does not have any tension from the lower and it tends to bunch up around the spool which creates the bird nests. Here are some simple steps to correct this issue:


1.  Reel Quality – It is important to remember that quality does matter when you are purchasing a reel.  High quality reels typically sell in the $75 dollar and up range.  These reels can help you be more productive and enjoy bait casting.


Quality Line – The best line for bait-casting is 12 to 17 pound monofilament. This line is far more effective than its lighter counterparts. The heavier the line, the better the performance. Lighter lines are better suited to spinning reels.


Once you have prepared your reel you will need to test its effectiveness. First, tie your lure on, and raise the rod so that the tip is placed at where 10 o’clock would be.  Now, test your spool by releasing the line and dropping your lure. Once it hits the surface (acting as it would as it struck water), it should stop turning. If it does not, you need to make adjustments. This can be done by:

- Adjusting the spool brake – this is typically found on the right hand side of your reel. It’s generally a small knob on the side of the plate.  Turn it until the tension is tightened and try casting again. Repeat as needed until there is no motion after it strikes the surface.

Casting – Now you can start practicing your cast. Remember that you want it to be smooth and you don’t want to use too much force.  If your cast is not as long as you’d like it to be try releasing some tension until you have found the perfect length.  Don’t over-loosen your tension. Remember, you can use your thumb to slow the spool down during your cast.  Once the lure strikes the surface, use your thumb to stop the spool.  Continue practicing until it feels natural to you.


Check for secondary braking systems – these typically run via a magnetic system and slow down the speed of your cast.  Another popular braking system makes use of centrifugal brakes. They use small pins inside the spool and you can adjust them to adjust the speed of rotation.  They can help make adjustments making your main braking system more effective;


Lure weight matters – Remember that when you are learning to use a bait-casting reel that the weight of your lure does matter. 1/2 oz jigs or spinner baits are best. Another method is adding a ½ ounce sinker to your line and practicing with that.


Practice is the only thing that will help you be successful with a bait-caster. There is little doubt that many find them frustrating, but if you stick with it, it will soon become second nature.  Practicing a variety of presentations and you’ll soon discover that you’ll be casting like a pro and you will discover why so much effort was worth the time you invested!


When you are out saltwater fishing it is important to make sure you have the right supplies. Some of the most popular brands include Shimano Reels, Penn Fishing Reels, and Daiwa Reels.







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