Best Saltwater Spinning Reels

A proper saltwater spinning reel is a potent tool for serious anglers who are primarily into hunting tuna, marlin, sails, and mahi-mahi.

These reels can hold around 600 yards of the 80-pound braid. And have a typical stopping potential of 60 pounds of drag and more. 

The most suitable spinning reels for saltwater are designed for typical big-runs, and they can tame a charging billfish with little effort.

Best Saltwater Spinning Reels

If you're serious about fishing and want every edge you can get, you need to know your best options for purchasing your ultimate spinning reel. But don't worry we have got you covered.

Given below is a guide you need to see before you buy a saltwater spinning reel along with the 5 best saltwater spinning reels you can go for right now!

Top 5 Best Saltwater Spinning Reels

OUR TOP PICK

Daiwa BG8000 BG Saltwater Spinning Reel, 8000, 5.3: 1 Gear Ratio, 6+1 Bearings, 53.30' Retrieve Rate, 33 lb Max Drag

The Daiwa BG Saltwater Spinning Reel comes in 10 models, from 1500 to 8000, with three different gear ratios 5.3:1, 5.6:1, and 5.7:1, allowing you to catch any fish you like, be it a trout, or a mighty shark. It is one of the best mid-weight saltwater reels under $100 and offers a smooth performance.

Its black anodized machine aluminum housing not only gives it a premium look but also stands up to scrapes and bumps, making it durable and long-lasting. 

This surely is a product for those who would love to have a reel, which they can practice for months.

Its over-sized CNC machine cut gears, or the DigigearTM System, allow the teeth to be in contact with each other at all times, giving you a smoother retrieve, and at the same time, reducing the stress on the gear system, making it long-lasting.

Its air rotor design, while being 15% lighter than the conventional ones, distributes the stress across the entire reel and makes it more balanced. This feature helps make sure that the reel is more comfortable to hold on, be it for a newbie or the pro, people of any expertise would love to have a reel with these features.

Its dynamic cut Aluminium ABS Spool lays the line perfectly, working excellently with all kinds of fishing lines. It offers a greater casting distance and forms fewer loops and wind knots.

This saltwater spinning reel’s Carbon ATD Drag System is waterproof and offers a smooth drag performance. It has seven stainless steel, anti-rust ball bearings allowing a creamy performance.

Pros:

  • The reel holds an infinite anti-reverse system that is present in all models.
  • CNC machined DigigearTM System for smoother retrieves.
  • Black anodized aluminum housing for durability.
  • Dynamic cur Aluminium Spool offers a greater casting distance and works with all kinds of lines perfectly.
  • Carbon ATD Drag system offers a silky-smooth drag performance.

Cons:

  • Stainless steel ball bearings are not shielded for protection from water.
Daiwa BG8000 BG Saltwater Spinning Reel, 8000, 5.3: 1 Gear Ratio, 6+1 Bearings, 53.30" Retrieve Rate, 33 lb Max Drag
  • Black Anodized Machined Aluminum Housing ("Hard Bodyz" Body & Side Cover), Over-sized Digigear (Digigear System)
  • Solid Screw-In Handle, Air Rotor, Dynamic Cut Aluminum ABS Spool
  • Braided Line Ready Spool, Waterproof Drag System, Carbon ATD, Line Per Handle Turn: 53.3"
  • Manual Return Bail (4500 and Larger), 6BB+1RB, Gear Ratio: 5.6:1, Drag Max:33
  • Line Capacity (Lb. Test / Yards): 20/550, 25/440, 30/370 J-BRAID: 50/730, 65/590, 80/440

EDITORS CHOICE

Shimano Torium 16 HGA Saltwater Star Drag Fishing Reel; Left Hand

It is a solidly built and lightweight saltwater reel, and is available in several models, for both left and right-handed people, with gear ratios of 4.3:1, 6.2:1, and 6.3:1.

When you would choose among the various gear ratios, it's upon you to make sure that they are as per your expectations. While each gear ratio has its advantages, each also has its disadvantage.

It has a strong and rigid, one-piece HAGANE metal body that offers high impact resistance, and keeps the moving parts perfectly aligned, thus providing more significant support while catching a big game. The advanced painting, anodizing, and plaiting techniques give it a durable and premium finish.

It comes in three different gear ratios, with the lowest and highest being 4.3:1 and 6.3:1, allowing you to catch a fish of any size you prefer. The slow gear ratio is used to catch large-sized fish for better control.

The product offers an excellent drag system, with a maximum of 24 pounds, but even works for up to 30 pounds. Forget your fishing line breaking, or also losing a fish, when you are using the Shimano Toruim Saltwater Fishing Reel.

To facilitate smooth operations, three stainless steel ball bearings along with a roller bearing are caged inside the reel. This also helps in the accurate performance of the reel. Its cross Carbon star drag system, which is a multi-waster drag system, provides a smooth drag performance.

Pros:

Durable fishing reel with premium aesthetics.

Three ball bearings and one roller bearings offer smooth retrievals.

Higher gear ratios offer faster retrievals of the fish.

Available for both left and right-handed people.

Cross Carbon Star Drag System provides a smooth drag performance.

Cons:

  • A maximum drag of only 24 pounds, which is low.
Shimano Torium 16 HGA Saltwater Star Drag Fishing Reel; Left Hand
  • A lightweight; solidly-built; star-drag saltwater reel that is perfect for live bait or bottom fishing applications and is packed with awesome features
  • Equipped with a high efficiency gearing system that delivers exceptional strength and rigidity and greatly increases the leverage and power for years of reliable fishing
  • Offers specially treated anti-rust bearings that are at least 10 times more corrosion-resistant than standard stainless steel bearings and promote smooth; even line flow
  • Features cross carbon drag which provides long lasting smoothness to withstand fast; powerful runs from pelagic and large inshore species
  • Max drag: 24 lbs. / gear ratio: 6.2:1. / weight: 18.9 oz. / line retrieve: 46" / bearings: 3bb + 1rb – powerpro line cap: 50/530; 65/330; 80/250 – mono line cap: 16/450; 20/320; 25/260 – retrieve: left

BEST VALUE

Shimano Saragosa 5000F Saltwater Offshore Spinning Reel

Use this reel if you want to tackle the toughest species in the harshest conditions with power and elegance. The Japanese manufacturer makes sure that the reels meet exactly the need you wish to use it for. 

To make sure that you can have the best feel while hunting for your fish, the company provides the users with options ranging from 5000 to a massive 25000 when it comes to the size.

The product delivers long-lasting smoothness, durability, strength, and reliability owing to the HAGANE Drive Gear System, produced by Shimano's cold forging technology. Both these together makes the product one of those that you can use extensively and is also recommended if you are interested in daily use.

The body of this beautiful reel is made up of high rigidity magnesium or aluminum. The aluminum helps make the reel stiff and makes it impact-proof. To add on, it also eliminates the flexing of the body, which is quite an essential feature when targeting the biggest fishes. 

This results in greater efficiency, along with rock-solid support and housing for the internal moving elements

The XShip technology is used to provide higher efficiency. The pinion gear is placed close to the centerline of the gear with the largest diameter, enabling a higher power transfer from the handle to the rotor, more efficiently.

The product provides gaskets and dependable sealing structures at the necessary points like the lid joint, and the contact point of the drag knob and spool to prevent the ingress of water. This provides a high degree of protection to the reel, increasing its life.

Pros:

  • Super Stopper technology prevents backward movement when the reel is in anti-reverse mode.
  • The bearings are corrosion-resistant and have an extra protective covering.
  • Its body is made from a combination of Aluminium and XT17, offering maximum strength.
  • Its patented ARC spool has an angled tip that makes the line leave the spool with lesser friction.
  • Sealing and gaskets at necessary points block water ingrain, increasing the product's life.

Cons:

  • The product is not fully waterproof.
Shimano Saragosa 5000F Saltwater Offshore Spinning Reel
  • Tackle the toughest species and conditions with elegance and power using the Saragosa saltwater spinning reel
  • Equipped with a Propulsion Line Management System that provides longer casting distances while preventing backlashes and wind knots from forming
  • X-Ship technology provides improved gear durability and eliminates friction between the spool shaft and gear enhancing the casting performance and allowing for longer casts
  • Shielded roller bearings on both sides reducing the possibility of salt or sand from obstructing the bearing's rotation while the waterproof drag uses rubber gaskets to protect against intrusion of the elements
  • Max Drag: 22 lbs. / Gear Ratio: 5.7:1. / Weight: 16 oz. / Line Retrieve: 38" / Bearings: 5BB + 1RB – PowerPro Line Cap: 20/245;30/225;40/175 – Mono Line Cap: 10/240;12/195;14/165

RUNNER UP

Penn 1292936 16VS Squall Lever Drag 2 Speed Reel, 725/20

Big game fishing gets a lot easier with this. The Penn Squall Lever Drag 2-Speed Trolling Fishing Reel offers heavy-duty performance in a sleek design. It offers smoother startups, and the line capacity rings show the amount of line remaining at all times.

Its frame and side plates are constructed from lightweight graphite and are reinforced with stainless steel, making the reel extremely strong and durable.

The frame houses the CNC machined stainless steel pinion and main gears, which are drilled out to reduce the weight of the reel. The product also offers a higher gear ratio for faster retrievals.

 Machined and forged aluminum makes up the spool. The spool also features line capacity rings that let you know the line remaining in the spool at all times. It also includes a double dog ratchet anti-reverse system, which is twice as strong as the single anti-reverse system and eliminates back-play in the handle. Its four ball bearings are well-shielded and deliver a smooth cranking performance.

Its Dura-Drag system is also shielded, and eliminates hesitation, even in extreme drag settings.

Pros:

  • The graphite frame is lightweight and strong.
  • The spool is made up of forged and machined aluminum and features line capacity rings.
  • The stainless steel main and pinion gears ensure durability and reliability.
  • The double dog ratchet anti-reverse system eliminates back-play.
  • The ball bearings and drag system are well-shielded.

Cons:

  • Clicker system sometimes causes problems.
Penn 1292936 16VS Squall Lever Drag 2 Speed Reel, 725/20
  • Reel, RH, 3BB + 1RB, 4.5:1 / 2.1:1
  • Alum spool, Braid 1490/30 1040/50 865/65, mono 1090/15 725/20 540/30
  • Reels saltwater lever drag
  • Lightweight yet powerful lever drag fishing reel with graphite frame and sideplates ideal for big game saltwater fishing
  • Quick Shift 2-speed system easily shifts into high or low gear

RUNNER UP

Lew's Fishing Mach Crush SLP Speed Spool MSB MC1SHL Reels

This powerhouse reel has an outstanding performance, as much as its bold orange design. This reel has a durable graphite frame and side-plates, and features Lew's exclusive Super Low Profile compact Speed Spool design, offering a high-end performance.

It features a whopping ten stainless steel ball bearings, all double-shielded to protect from extreme conditions, giving the product an amazingly smooth performance.

The U-shaped spool is made up of machined and double anodized aluminum, which, along with a bold orange color, gives the product a premium design and look.

Its main gear and crankshaft are made up of high strength solid brass offering strength and durability. Its rugged drag system is made up of carbon fiber and offers up to 20-pounds of drag power.

The zero-reverse one-way clutch bearings prevent the dreaded backlashing. The product also features, externally adjustable, Multi- setting Brake system, using both magnetic and centrifugal force, adjusted using a click dial and brake shoes, respectively.

Pros:

  • Carbon fiber drag system offering up to 20-pounds of drag power.
  • Ten double-shielded stainless steel ball bearings for a smooth performance.
  • A multi-setting brake system that is adjustable externally.
  • Double anodized aluminum spool for added durability.
  • An oversized 95 mm handle makes it comfortable to use for a longer time.

Cons:

  • May start making noise after a few uses.
Lew's Fishing Mach Crush SLP Speed Spool MSB MC1SHL Reels
  • LEW'S MACH CRUSH SPEED SPOOL: Baitcast reel features a strong and lightweight, Super Low Profile (SLP) graphite frame and side plates; RPT: 30 inch
  • SPEEL SPOOL FISHING REEL: Reel features a machined and double anodized aluminum U-shape 32 millimeter spool and a high strength solid brass main gear and crank shaft
  • ZERO REVERSE: Premium 10-bearing system with double-shielded stainless steel ball bearings and Zero Reverse one-way clutch bearing
  • MULTI-SETTING BRAKE (MSB): Externally-adjustable dual cast control system utilizing both an external click-dial for setting the magnetic brake, plus 4 individually disengage able disk-mounted internal brake shoes that operate on centrifugal force
  • BAITCASTING REEL: Reel features a double-anodized aluminum spool tension adjustment with audible click and a rugged carbon fiber drag system which provides up to 20 pounds drag power

Best Saltwater Spinning Reels Buying Guide

Spinning reels are the favorites for many anglers, no matter what they are fishing. Its name is derived from the way the reel spins as you reclaim your line.

When the metal bail is flipped up, pitch a spinning reel, which in turn helps free the line for a cast. To secure the cord in place, you flip the metal wire down.

  1. If you would like to buy an excellent spinning reel, note the following points:
  2. It must be even, placid, user-friendly, and have ready to handle braided fishing lines. It should be able to cast a long-range.
  3. It must have a well-built, lightweight body, with the housing by aluminum or graphite. Lightweight reels deter you from getting exhausted after throwing repeatedly.
  4. Gears should have a minimum of four stainless steel ball bearings and be precision welded from stainless steel
  5. You can also search for beefy knob rivets that won't weaken or slacken. 
  6. It is recommended that you always aim for a waterproof tight drag system along with carbon fiber washers, and a front-drag which would easily prey upon even the largest fish in the waters.

How To Choose A Saltwater Spinning Reel?

So, how do you decide if a saltwater fishing reel fit for buying? The traits that make any spinning reel sound and perfect for the task are a steady drag, quality build, and versatility.

You need to contemplate a few saltwater distinct characteristics when acquiring a spinning reel for saltwater fishing. The factors are listed below:

Corrosion Resistance

The first and most important point to consider among all, is a reel's capacity to withstand corrosion. For metals, saltwater coupled with sand and coarseness in the reel is a harmful situation. 

Saltwater reels use materials, for example, treated steel, aluminum, and others explicitly to diminish erosion. Legitimate care and preservation are advisable.

Drag

There are a lot of fish out there in the sea. While you can and must expect to lay hands on some of these fishes, ensure that the drag in your reel supports you. Make sure that you do not fall prey to the overhyped drags in a system. 

In most of the cases, it is seen that a drag with anything over around a 20 lb drag leaves fishers exhausted over extended periods. Unless you are planning to hunt on some of the biggest fish in water, there is no reason that you must upgrade to a reel with better drag.

Braided Line Compatible

Some of the reels available are well compatible with the braided line, and there are a few that are not. If you want to put in the braided lines in your arsenal, be sure you buy a reel and rod that will allow the braided line.

Line Capacity

You need to ensure you have enough wire to let the fish run alongside sufficient drag to slow large fishes. If you are planning your fishing in the saltwater, then line capacity becomes a critical feature. Also, you must make sure that you do not run out of reels when you bait in a long-running 

Gear Ratio

Contingent upon the sort of angling you do, you ought to look at gear ratio. A higher apparatus proportion, a 7:1 and increasingly significant, is magnificent for brisk retrieves on enormous hauls. On the other hand, if you are looking to hook in some of the biggest fishes in these, well, then you should try out with reels having lower gear ratios.

Best Saltwater Spinning Reels - FAQ's

If you have understood the factors given above to buy saltwater fishing reels but have a few questions on how to maintain or repair your reels, look at the FAQs below.

During use, how to reduce damage to the reel?

Saltwater is your adversary, followed intently by earth and sand. Prevent saltwater and salt to peep into your gear as much as possible.

Support your rig in your arm and don’t put it on the sand. Set your apparatus aside while cruising in a vessel to maintain a strategic distance from meeting saltwater spray.

Is maintenance of the reel necessary?

Truly, unquestionably. Mellow upkeep will delay your reel's life and assurance that it keeps on working with ideal execution.

Can I use WD40 on fishing reels?

WD-40 is a light machine oil with some Stoddard Solvent added. There is no fish oil in WD-40, but it removes Grease and should never be used on reels.

Can I apply for any reel in saltwater?

The simplest one-word answer to this question is well; you can. However, if you want to know more about it, I would definitely suggest that you go saltwater fishing with the saltwater reels. The saltwater reels are perfectly placed to match the expectations in the seawater and have the perks needed in the seawater.

Conclusion

Our listed options above are handpicked and can suit anybody from a beginner to seasoned professionals. Choose one that suits your requirements the best!

One thing that is worth mentioning at this point is that most of these products were selected from the fishing reel brands on Amazon. Consequently, if you follow the links above, you’ll be led to the individual saltwater fishing reel sales pages. 

From there, you can ask more questions to get a high level of clarity on the factors that matter most to you before making the final purchase.