Best KastKing Reels
Best KastKing Reels

Best KastKing Reels Reviewed – Can KastKing Compete with the Big-Names?

Best KastKing Reels Buyers Guide

Best KastKing Reels: KastKing is a standout among the major names in fishing. Their entry-level pricing makes good reels affordable for almost anyone. They have also developed a number of reels for the mid-priced market.

You may now be curious about the best KastKing reels. Let’s find the answer!

Best KastKing Spinning Reels

  • KastKing Valiant EagleOur Choice!
  • KastKing Brutus
  • KastKing Sharky III
  • KastKing Summer

Best KastKing Baitcasting Reels

  • KastKing Speed Demon Pro —Our Choice!
  • KastKing Crixus
  • KastKing Kapstan Elite
  • KastKing MegaJaws
  • KastKing Royale Legend II
  • KastKing Spartacus

Best KastKing Spinning Reel Reviews

KastKing Valiant Eagle  – Our Choice!

KastKing Valiant Eagle Spinning Fishing Reel,Bold Eagle,Size 2000

Drag:Maximum weight: 17.6 and 22 lbs. Maximum
Ratio of gears: 6.2:1 (31.4″, 33.2″, 35.5″, 38″ per turn)
Line capacity:8/115;8/150;8/210;8/285
Bearings 10 + 1 roller bearing
Weight: 8.3, 8.4, 9.6, 9.8 oz.

KastKing’s Valiant Eagle line up offers affordable pricing and a significant upgrade over its other spinning reels including the Sharky III.

Available in four sizes, each model has a high ratio of gears (6.2:1), a large spool that provides plenty of capacity and high retrieval rates per turn. This is good news as KastKing’s spinning gears can’t keep up to large fish.

You’ll probably need more drag settings than you ever will, but the core of this system is made up of carbon fiber discs which provide smooth release even at lower settings. These reels have a very effective drag mechanism, which is even water-tight. This is probably the main reason for the higher price.

Every increase in size results in a heavier spool. The Valiant Eagle line goes from ultralight to light-to-medium-light with its 1000. This is a great choice for anglers who fish with spinning tackle for steelhead, walleye, pike and pike. But if you are looking for a lighter reel for panfish, then look elsewhere.

The reel runs smoothly, and everything works as it should, from the crank to bail.

This reel has a price tag that is very close to Penn Battle II. I would give it my best, but not because of the quality or performance.

Why?

Because of its larger size, the Battle II offers better retrieval speeds and greater capacity. You can also get it in larger sizes than the Valiant Eagle. The Penn’s maximum drag settings are slightly higher than the Valiant Eagle. Overall, I think the Penn has a better build quality.

Pros

  • Excellent drag
  • Excellent gear ratio
  • Amazing capacity in any size
  • There are many smooth things

Cons

  • Casting will be affected by a heavier line
  • It is not comparable to the Penn Battle II at a similar price.

KastKing Brutus

KastKing Brutus Spinning Reel,Size 3000 Fishing Reel

Drag:12, 13, 17.5 lbs. Maximum
Ratio of gears: 5.0:1 (21.3″, 22.4″, 23.6″ per turn)
Line capacity:8/300, 8/370, 10/350
Bearings 4 + 1 roller bearing
Weight: 7.6, 9.2, 9.5 oz.

There are three sizes of the Brutus series: 2000, 3000 and 4000. The Brutus series is a heavy spinning reel with a maximum drag of 12 pounds, a 300-yard test capability of 8 pounds and a weight of 7.6 ounces. The gear ratio remains at 5.0:1, although larger spools can hold more line and retrieve more per turn.

You’ll find the drag handle at the end of your spool. I was impressed by this reel for its price. For anglers who don’t like the idea of a baitcasting reel or want to chase large fish with spinning tackle, the maximum settings are perfect. The drag is smoother at lighter settings.

Casting will be affected if you throw heavier line. You can expect that and blame KastKing.

The gears are made of a zinc alloy instead of brass to save money. However, they are a significant improvement over plastic. They aren’t as smooth or as durable as the ones from Shimano, Cadence and Penn but you will pay more for the gearing upgrades they offer.

Remember, too, that even with the largest spool, a 5.0 to 1 gear ratio is not ideal if your red runs straight for you and you are fighting a 30 inch red!

Despite this, the crank, bail, and other components are very smooth. If you have realistic expectations for a reel at such a low price, you will be happy with the Brutus line up.

This is a Penn Battle II! You can get three to four of these for the exact same price, but it is not a Penn Battle II.

Pros

  • For anglers who do not like baitcasters, a big spinning reel is ideal
  • It’s very affordable!
  • Amazing capacity
  • Good drag
  • Excellent gears, smooth and affordable

Cons

  • Casting will be affected by a heavier line
  • Reels are not as capable or smooth as reels that cost more.
  • For large fish, the gear ratio is quite low.

KastKing Sharky III

KastKing Sharky III Spinning Fishing Reel,Size 2000

Amazon

Drag:33, 39.5 lbs. Maximum
Ratio of gears: 5.2:1 (26.2″, 27.5″, 29.4″, 31.5″, 33.4″ per turn)
Line capacity:8/170; 8/190, 8/220; 8/220. 10/220. 12/220.
Bearings 10 + 1 roller bearing
Weight: 6.9; 9.2; 9.4; 10.5 oz.

KastKing’s Sharky III, another all-purpose spinning lineup, almost skips the ultralight section. It focuses on line weights between 6 and 16 pounds with all reels accommodating at minimum 10-pound test.

The Sharky III is approximately half the cost of a Penn reel or Cadence like one.

How does it perform?

The 1000 is the smallest series and has a 33-pound maximum drag. It’s not likely that you’ll use it, as it cannot hold line that can be used in that setting. Although the largest reels are rated at 39.5 pounds, it’s not clear why this is a selling point. These reels won’t hold 120-pound braid or mono.

Carbon fiber disks make up the drag system. It’s extremely secure and smooth, as you would expect.

The line capacity of the series is large and surpasses the Cadence CS8 at every size. Even though the models are geared for 5.2 to 1, larger spools will allow for more line retrieval per crank. These reels are made for larger fish and may not be fast enough for a steelhead or red running at you.

It would be wonderful to have a higher gear ratio, but these reels are unable to match theirs.

The performance is excellent and the anti-reverse function works well.

Overall, I rate this as a great choice for anglers looking to save money who find the Penn and Cadence a little too expensive.

Pros

  • For anglers who do not like baitcasters, a big spinning reel is ideal
  • Great price
  • Amazing capacity
  • Excellent drag
  • There are many smooth things

Cons

  • Casting will be affected by a heavier line
  • Not as well-equipped for large fish as the Brutus, but still better than the Brutus.

KastKing Summer

KastKing Centron Spinning Reel,Size 500 Fishing Reel

Drag:11, 12, 13, 17.5 lbs. Maximum
Ratio of gears: 5.2:1 / 4.5:1 (19.7″, 24.4″, 25.2″, 28″, 29.1″ per turn)
Line capacity:6/155; 6/310, 8/330; 9/330; 10/310 and 12/330
Bearings 9 + 1 roller bearing
Weight: 7.3, 9.1, 9.5, 12.5, 13.9 oz.

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KastKing’s Summer series spinning reels are an entry-level model that offers an ultralight option in a bigger-than-average package.

The 500, which is the smallest in this range, weighs approximately 16% more than an ultralight. The 500 has a larger spool than the average, which gives it a lot of capacity.

However, spinning reels won’t cast well after the spool is empty so that’s basically wasted weight and size. Unless you aren’t using this reel for 4-pound lines.

Each size increase in size also increases the retrieval rate and spool capacity. However, the reels with the largest capacities, 4000 and 5500, have a gear ratio just 4.5 to 1. The Penn Battle II, which is sized at 5000, takes up 36 inches of line per turn and has a gear ratio 5.6:1. The summer of 5000 sized seems positively insignificant compared to the 29.1″ of line required for the same crank.

These reels have great drag settings and work well, keeping in mind the low price. They are relatively smooth to release and can be cranked up.

The Summer series was very smooth, especially considering the price. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Summer series is not up to your expectations.

Here’s the problem: The larger Summer models, the 3000, 4000 and 5000, don’t have the right gear ratio or spool size to provide the performance you need if you want to catch walleye, pike and reds or any other species of real size.

The 500 and 2000 are my favorites. I also recommend them to anglers with tight budgets.

Pros

  • Amazing price
  • Amazing capacity in any size
  • Excellent drag
  • There are many smooth things

Cons

  • Casting will be affected by a heavier line
  • For larger fish, you are definitely under-geared. Stick to the 500 or 2000!

Review of Best KastKing Baitcasting Resel

KastKing Speed Demon Pro –Our Choice!

KastKing Speed Demon Elite Baitcasting Reels,10.5:1 Gear Ratio Fishing Reel,Right Handed

Drag:13.2 lbs. Maximum
Ratio of gears: 9.3:1 (35.2″ per turn)
Line capacity:12/160, 14/140
Bearings 12 + 1 roller bearing
Weight: 6.5 oz

KastKing’s baitcaster lineup has a flaw. It’s the fact that retrieval rates are slow and spool capacities are low. Both move together because the gears cannot spin a small spool as fast as they can.

According to my knowledge, this is a cost-saving concession. KastKing reduces the spool size in order to decrease weight without using expensive materials. Their reels are often less reliable than the best names in the industry when compared head-to-head.

Speed Demon Pro is different.

The Speed Demon Pro is powered by manganese brass gears that have a 9.3 to 1 ratio and a standard-sized spool. It retrieves at a speed that rivals the top brands. Although this gearing may not be as durable and efficient as the Hagane micro gearing from Shimano, it still delivers excellent performance.

This reel features a carbon-fiber drag system that provides 13.2 pounds of maximum grip. As you can see, KastKing’s high end drag components are outstanding, and this reel is no different. Even in low settings, you can expect smooth, consistent release.

This reel has a great spool and holds more line than other KastKings. I’m very pleased with this reel! You can easily load up 140 yards of 14-pound mono braid and this spool will not let you down in any circumstance.

Speed Demon Pro has a high-quality magnetic brake. It’s simple to adjust and dial in the right settings for your skill level, lure weight, and other factors. This is a great feature and easier to use than the more complex centrifugal systems Shimano prefers.

Casting is easy, and the reel is large enough to provide all-day comfort. This reel is KastKing’s lightest baitcaster reel, but it also has the most capacity and speed.

Overall, I think this reel is the best, surpassing the Kapstan Elite’s performance, and improving on the otherwise excellent MegaJaws.

Pros

  • Amazing drag
  • Great gear ratio
  • Excellent capacity
  • Very smooth
  • Excellent braking system
  • For all-day comfort, great weight and size

Cons

  • N/A

KastKing Crixus

KastKing Crixus Baitcasting Reels,Dark Star,7.2:1 Gear Raio,Left Handed Fishing Reel

Drag: 17.64 lbs. Maximum
Ratio of gears: 6.5:1 (24.2″ per turn)
Line capacity:10/130, 11/110, 14/90
Bearings 5 + 1 roller bearing
Weight: 7.7 oz

KastKing’s Crixus aims to provide anglers with a low-cost, high-performance baitcasting rod that is comparable in price and performance to the Shimano Curado K.

Does it deliver?

Let’s begin with the drag. The Crixus has a strong, carbon fiber drag system. It’s smooth and powerful. It’s simple to use, and easy to set even when you need it. It offers a higher maximum than the Shimano and a smooth, continuous release on lower settings. I have to say that I am impressed!

Although the spool is extremely smooth-spinning, it has a lower capacity for reel size and weight than more expensive reels. The Crixus can hold 130 yards of mono (10-pound) line. The Curado K holds 155 yards, which is about 19% more. It’s not an issue, but the Shimano’s offer more line for the same amount of money.

The 6.5:1 gear ratio allows you to run crankbaits and topwater well while keeping a tight line during a tough fight. The Crixus’ smaller spool won’t pick-up as much line than the Curado K. It has a minimum RPT 26″ and maximum RPT 36″.

Does that make it a deal-breaker for you? It’s not a deal-breaker, but it’s something you should keep in mind.

The Crixus uses a magnetic brake system that can be adjusted via a knob located on the opposite end of the crank. The system is easy to use and offers many setting options. This reel is easy to cast with and I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

Anti-reverse works instantly and can help you get your hooks back.

Bottom line: The Crixus is a great reel for the price.

Pros

  • Amazing drag
  • Excellent gear ratio
  • Acceptable capacity
  • Very smooth
  • Excellent braking system

Cons

  • You can expect slightly less capacity from smaller spool sizes than the more expensive counterparts.
  • The retrieval per turn is a little slow

KastKing Kapstan Elite

KastKing Kapstan Elite Baitcasting Fishing Reel,Size 300,Right Handed Reel

Drag:35 lbs. Maximum 35 lbs
Ratio of gears: 5.4:1 (25.31″ per turn)
Line capacity:14/230
Bearings 8 + 1 roller bearing
Weight: 10.8 oz

KastKing’s Kapstan Elite baitcaster is designed to compete with reels such as the Curado K. It is priced very similar, so this is a true head–to-head battle for supremacy.

How does the Kapstan Elite compare?

KastKing outfits this reel in a carbon fiber drag system that has a powerful max and allows for controlled release at lower settings.

Is it a real rival to the Curado K’s drag? Yes!

The spool of the Kapstan Elite is huge, surpassing that of the Curado by around 200%. This is not something to be ashamed of, but it does come at the price of significant weight gain, approximately 3 ounces or 50% more than the Shimano.

The Curado K is the Kapstan Elite’s choice for reels that disappear on your rod and into your hands.

The Shimano is driven by a gear ratio just 5.4:1, but with a solid-brass main, so the larger spool has trouble keeping up with it. The smallest Curado K model is within striking distance. Higher gear-ratio models pull away without any hope of the KastKing staying up.

The Curado is the KastKing for larger fish, particularly in-shore.

The KastKing Kapstan Elite’s braking system uses brake shoes similar to the Shimano. Casting is easy for both beginners and professionals.

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This reel is impressive, but it seems a little short of the competition.

Pros

  • Amazing drag
  • Good gear ratio
  • Amazing capacity
  • Very smooth
  • Excellent braking system

Cons

  • This reel is not an entry-level reel and is up against strong competition at this price point
  • The retrieval per turn is slower than its competitors.
  • Due to its large size, the spool is heavy.

KastKing MegaJaws

KastKing MegaJaws Baitcasting Reel,7.2:1 Gear Ratio,Right Handed Fishing Reel,Blacktip

Drag: 17.6 lbs. Maximum
Ratio of gears: 5.4:1; 6.5:1; 7.2:1; 9.1:1 (20.2″; 24.2″; 26.8″; 33.9″ per turn)
Line capacity:10/128, 12/110 and 14/91
Bearings 11 + 1 roller bearing
Weight:7.6 and 7.5 oz

The MegaJaws from KastKing are available in four colors: the Great White (Pelagic), Black Tip (Predator) and the Predator (Predator). This entry-priced reel is a great choice for novice or experienced anglers on a budget.

Overall, I believe this reel is a winner and you can count on me being impressed!

Let’s begin with the drag. The maximum setting for all four models is 17.6 pounds. The carbon fiber discs that drive this crucial component provide great holding power and a smooth release at lower settings. KastKing is an expert in drag design and production, so you get a great deal.

These reels have spools that are quite small. This allows for a reduction in weight and size. These reels are still quite large and much more comfortable than the Kapstan Elite, which is larger and heavier.

There are four gear ratios available, but they are a little behind the more expensive options due to their smaller spools. You’ll have to work harder in tough fights and may have trouble keeping up with big fish who decide to torpedo your boat. The main gear is made of manganese brass alloy. It promises durability season after season and lots of teeth to give you the strength you need.

The eight-magnet braking system has ten settings options and provides nice casting. It is not as good as Shimano. It’s not as good, but it’s much cheaper!

Overall, I would consider this to be among the top KastKing baitcasters, especially considering the price. It is priced at a price that’s comparable to the competition.

Pros

  • Excellent value for money
  • Amazing drag
  • Great gear ratios
  • Capacity:
  • Very smooth
  • Very nice braking system
  • For all-day comfort, great weight and size

Cons

  • Due to the small spool, retrieval per turn can be a little slow.
  • Due to its large size, the spool is heavy.

KastKing Royale Legend II

KastKing Royale Legend II Baitcasting Reels, Gear Ratio 7.2:1, Right Handed Fishing Reel

Drag:17.64 lbs. Maximum
Ratio of gears: 7.2.1 and 5.4.1 (26.8″ & 20.2″ per round)
Line capacity:10/130, 11/110, 14/90
Bearings 5 + 1 roller bearing
Weight: 7.2 oz

KastKing’s Royale Legend II baitcaster is an entry-level model that’s very affordable. It is available in two gear ratios, which are 7.2:1 or 5.4:1, and offers all the features you would expect for much less than you might think.

But how does it work?

As with many KastKing reels, you can expect carbon fiber discs, a high max setting, and reasonable smoothness given the price. While I doubt that any angler will think that a cheap reel is the best, it’s clear that this baitcaster’s drag works well.

Royale Legend II’s Spool isn’t large. This allows for weight reductions and smaller reels. Expect a lower-than-average capacity and slower retrieval rates due to the gear ratio.

Magnetic braking systems, which are controlled by a dial on the sideplate, help to control over-runs as well as backlash. The system has been proven to be more than capable. If you have realistic expectations, you will not be disappointed.

Overall, I would recommend this cheap reel. This reel is a great choice for beginners or anyone who just wants to get into the baitcasting world. The Royale Legend II is a great value for money. You get a lot of reels for your money.

This is my favorite budget baitcaster.

Pros

  • Amazingly low price
  • Good drag
  • Nice gear ratios
  • Capacity:
  • Excellent for the price
  • Very nice braking system
  • For all-day comfort, great weight and size

Cons

  • Due to the small spool, retrieval per turn can be a little slow.

KastKing Spartacus

KastKing Spartacus Plus Baitcasting Fishing Reel,Rubber Cork Version,Right Handed Reel

Drag:17.64 lbs. Maximum
Ratio of gears: 6.3:1 (25.5″ per turn)
Line capacity:10/125, 12/100, 15/85, 18/65
Bearings 11 + 1 roller bearing
Weight: 7.4 oz

KastKing’s Spartacus Series is a step up from the Royale Legend II. It offers what I believe is the same drag system, but with a smaller spool and brass gearing. There are also more bearings and both a magnetic brake and a centrifugal brake.

Are you willing to spend a little more money to get up there?

Yes!

The drag system on the Spartacus is–if not identical–essentially the same as on the Royale Legend II. It’s strong, capable, and smooth for the money.

These reels have an aluminum spool to reduce their weight. However, it is a little too small. This reel weighs in at 7.4 ounces and holds less line than the Curado K, which weighs in at 10/125, compared to the Shimano’s 10-155. It’s not as expensive as its more expensive counterparts, but the gear ratio is slightly higher.

It is a speed demon. It is not. But, will you really feel outgunned. That would be a problem, too.

Casting is easy if you adjust the spool tension and set the magnet and centrifugal brakes correctly.

I believe the Spartacus fills the gap between mid-range and entry-level. The MegaJaws reel is better overall and less expensive.

The Spartacus still outperforms reels at a reasonable price, which is why it is so popular with anglers.

Pros

  • Amazing price
  • Good drag
  • Nice gear ratios
  • Capacity:
  • Excellent for the price
  • Excellent braking system
  • For all-day comfort, great weight and size

Cons

  • Due to the small spool, retrieval per turn can be a little slow.

Our Picks — The KastKing Valiant Eagle, and the KastKing Pro Speed Demon!

It turns out that KastKing has some real winners, especially in the baitcasting category.

Overall, I believe the Valiant Eagle spinning reel is KastKings best. The Valiant Eagle is probably the best quality of the brand-name competitors, Penn and Cadence. It has a lot of capacity, a great drag, excellent retrieval rates, and a smoothness that is quite impressive for the price.

Despite this, reels such as Penn’s Battle II seem like better investments.

KastKing is a surprise on the baitcasting side. The Speed Demon Pro and MegaJaws are great reels for the price. I would not hesitate to fish with either one.

The Speed Demon Pro won the top spot. A smooth drag, paired with a high ratio of gears and a large spool, combines all the best KastKing’s has to offer in one reel. This gives you an unbeatable combination for price and performance.

KastKing Spinning Reel Basics

Before you pull the trigger, it pays to be familiar with spinning reels.

Spinning reels can be used to catch panfish, trout and bass on monofilament lines less than 10 pounds in diameter.

The mechanism of these lines is simple, with a fixed spool and spinning bail capture and release line. They are almost foolproof and easy to use. This combination is a great option for beginners.

Casting is as easy as grabbing the line with your index finger. You can retrieve the lure by closing the bail with your hands (the crank will make the mechanism wear) and then you open the bail again with your other hand.

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This simplicity has real benefits in bad conditions. Wind gusts don’t really affect the performance of a spinning rod, and wind-blown knots do not pose a problem. They cast well in the wind, with light lures, and don’t need to be adjusted when changing lure weights.

This is a strong reason to use a large spinning reel for inshore fishing where the conditions are often sunny.

However, they do have a disadvantage.

The fixed spool holds line with a large forward lips. Casting heavy-diameter lines or not having enough line on your spool will cause friction and make the line slip. Casting distance will suffer in both of these cases.

It is important to follow two rules when spinning a reel.

  • Never run monofilament that is more than 10 pounds in diameter.
  • Keep your line at least 1/8 inch from the end of the spool. Your spool should be full.

What to Consider when Buying a KastKing Spinning Resel

Drag

The drag is what I first look at when looking at any reel.

First, I evaluate where it is. The best drag systems are situated directly over the area they will be working. Therefore, drag knobs are often located at the end of the spool.

While some spinning reels may have dials located elsewhere, these require a more complex mechanism that doesn’t work as well as it does not last as long.

Second, I look closely at the maximum setting to see if it slips at this weight. For spinning reels I look for a maximum setting that is appropriate to the species and the weight of the fish. I test the drag by putting some weight on the line and testing it with the weight.

This is about assessing the drag’s quality, not testing the maximum. I won’t set the drag that high.

I then spool up some medium-weight line, adjust the drag to about a third, and see how easily it lets me take line. I like a steady, smooth release, no jerking, catching or slipping.

Ratio of gears

The reel’s gear ratio is the relationship between the crank, the spool and the crank. It tells you how many turns the crank makes. A gear ratio of 5.2 to 1 means that one crank turn spins the spool 52.2 times.

This is important for two reasons.

Some lures require a slow, medium or fast retrieve. A reel’s gear ratio should be matched to the intended purpose of the reel in order to improve action. A fast reel with a gear ratio greater than 5.2:1 is ideal for topwater lures and shallow crankbaits.

You should also care about the gear ratio because it shows you how fast it picks up lines. A medium to fast ratio is important, regardless of whether you are jigging deep and casting far out to cover the water.

Smooth operation

A reel of high quality should have a tight bail, a crank that spins freely and a drag knob that adjusts the setting. To encourage solid hooksets, the anti-reverse system should also lock up quickly.

Capacity

It is important to have a line capacity.

A properly filled spool will ensure that you don’t cast your line too far. Over a day of fishing, however, you may need to cut the line to either reduce abrasion or recover from a poor cast.

Your reel should have enough line to last you the entire day without having to re-spool.

I will be reporting line capacity using monofilament weights. You can change to braid to get more line on your reel, or increase the weight to a mono equivalent of 4 or 6 pounds.

When I decided to use my ultralight to record big bass, I did exactly that!

KastKing Baitcasting Basics

Baitcasting reels can be made from a variety of materials.

Spin spool. They are designed for heavier lines and struggle to cast the typical ultralight and light tests, but they excel with heavier lines. Here, it’s not the diameter that matters but weight.

This is because the spool spins to release line and friction resists this motion. This design will cast more effectively with heavier lures and lines. A baitcaster is able to cast heavier lures with less line than a spinning reel. Casting will not change regardless of how long you run the line.

Casting with a baitcaster is easier, however. Many anglers find it easier to cast once they get the hang of it.

Casting is as simple as depressing the spool release button and holding the spool simultaneously with your thumb. You can release the line by simply lifting your thumb off the spool and applying pressure until your lure hits the water.

This is possible with practice. It’ll be frustratingly hard to do the first time.

Baitcasting reels have brakes that help to prevent backlashing. These must be properly set to match your skill level, the lure weight, and the line weight.

Baitcasting reels generally have heavier drag systems, which are actuated behind the crank by a star-shaped knob.

They are designed to catch larger fish and can cast in windy conditions, but they aren’t as easy as a spinning reel. They are well-suited for any fish you would catch with a 10-pound test.

How to Choose a KastKing Baitcasting reel

Drag

As with spinning reels I first look at the drag.

As with all reels, I look carefully at the maximum setting to see if it is slipping at that weight. These settings are usually high for baitcasters. I will test them by attaching it to the rod and spooling up line. Finally, tie-off to a substantial weight.

I want to see real stoppage at high ends. This is because I might run very heavy line where a near max setting would be appropriate. Then I will dial it back to ensure a smooth, consistent release with no jerking, catching or slipping.

However, reels with higher settings are not suited for very light drag weights.

Ratio of gears

As with spinning reels the gear ratio is the relationship between the crank, spool and crank. How many revolutions of the crank produce a spool? A gear ratio of 6.2 to 1 means that one crank turn spins the spool 6.2.

This is the same as spinning reels. However, it also matters for one more reason.

If you are fighting a large fish, it might turn toward you and run straight towards your boat. It’s important to keep your line tight when this happens. You also need to be able quickly retrieve your line.

For larger fish, it is important to have high gear ratios and large reels.

Smooth operation

The spool release on any reel of quality should make a soft click and then reset with a gentle touch of the crank. The spool should spin as freely and reliably as possible.

The brake system should be easily adjustable and accessible. If the side plate opens, it must have a mechanism that prevents it falling out.

Capacity

The line capacity is important, especially for a baitcaster as almost 100% can be used.

Baitcasters don’t care how much line is left on the spool. Casting is the same regardless of whether you have 10% or a full spool.

Your reel should be able to hold enough line, just like spinning reels. It’s important to allow large fish to run and strip yard after yard under drag.

I tend to care more about the capacity of these reels and that will be reflected in my review.

Lewis Mark is a vastly experienced fly fisher. His encyclopedic knowledge of fly tying has led to start blog on fishing. He also review Fishing equipment based on his knowledge and experience.