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Understanding the Label of Fishing Reels

Aug 1, 2008
Before you start comparison shopping for fishing reels, you might want to learn a little bit of the industry jargon so you can understand all of the terminology you'll find on those boxes. If you're new to fishing or if you've never really tried your hand at buying fishing reels before, then you'll probably feel like you're lost in a world of strange terms that may or may not be important clues about the quality of the purchase you may or may not be making.

Don't worry though. That's a natural reaction to what you'll see on the box. Now let's try to understand the basics of the box so you can start searching for the best fishing reels possible.

Bearing Amount in Fishing Reels

One of the main numbers you'll see on the side of the box and one that you should pay attention to is the number of bearings. The bearings contribute to the smoothness of the reel. The general, although not universal, rule is that a larger number of bearings are going to give you less resistance when you're turning the reel and that will make fishing a lot easier and less strenuous for you. However, sometimes other factors can enter the picture and cause fishing reels with fewer bearings to be just as smooth as or smoother than ones with more bearings.

While those numbers can act as a guide, the only real way to know the smoothness of your fishing reels is by testing them yourself. Only when you have them in your hand and can feel them in action will you know for sure. That's why you should do plenty of tests with other fisher's rods before you make decisions and start buying.

Fishing Reels & Line Capacity

The line capacity number is meant to tell you how much line can be held by the fishing reels. However, this usually isn't consistent for all lines. Different sizes of line can change the basic numbers. If you see a line capacity such as 10/(155) that means if you're using a 10 pound line you'll be able to hold about 155 yards of line.

Gear Ratios and Fishing Reels

This number is probably not going to mean much to you but understanding its meaning may help give you an idea of which fishing reels you're more partial to after some hands-on testing. Basically, these ratios tell you how many revolutions the spool or line winder is going to make each time you turn the handle on the reel. Obviously, the more turns it makes the less cranking you have to do and the easier your job is going to be overall.

When you're reading the ratio, the first two numbers represent the number of revolutions. The last number is almost always going to be a 1 which stands for the one time you have to turn the handle.

Shopping for Fishing Reels

When you begin shopping for fishing reels, you should start your search online so that you can have the biggest selection. Sites like Sea Isle Tackle are good starting places.
About the Author
Fishing Reels Sea Isle Tackle has been proudly serving the saltwater fishing community for over 45 years. Since opening day in 1962, we have dedicated ourself to providing the finest fishing tackle and Shimano Reels the industry has to offer. Sea Isle Tackle has a great selection of Fishing Reels Accessories.
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