Best Saltwater Spinning Reels

Without a doubt, saltwater spinning reels are already quite crowded in the market. In just one click, you’ll be given hundreds of options to choose from. However, the same thing can cause intimidation to some especially if you’re only a beginner angler.

But do not fret, let this article guide you to knowing what saltwater spinning reel works best for you. Read until the end to see the eight of the best saltwater spinning reels in the market.

Saltwater vs Freshwater Spinning Reels

Have you ever wondered why saltwater anglers use different equipment from freshwater anglers? Perhaps you’ve also been curious if it’s okay to interchange both.

Well, it is not advisable and they are different for a reason. Saltwater is notorious for corroding most types of metal components. This is why saltwater fishing gears are often in full metal body with special castings to protect it from any damages. These things are not present in freshwater fishing gears.

Using freshwater reels in saltwater does not only risk them from corrosion but also makes them vulnerable to sand. When sand and corrosion mix, the internal parts of the freshwater reel is bound to serious damage. You can replace it for sure but it would definitely cost you a lot. Hence, making it important to choose the right equipment for the right type of fishing.

Are Spinning Reels Ideal for Saltwater Fishing?

In the past, most fishermen believed that salt water can damage spinning wheels. Even with its great use, they opt not to use it in fears of damaging it. But during the last 10 to 20 years, a lot of manufacturers have discovered ways to make spinning reels usable even in saltwater fishing.

The spinning reels we see now are already designed to withstand the harsh and damaging environment of saltwater fishing. Their size has also been adjusted and made bigger. Many developments have been made that these reels can even handle powerful species like big tuna, sailfish, Pacific halibut, marlin and tarpon.

A Quick Glance of the Best Saltwater Spinning Reels

Shimano Baitrunner D Spinning Reel
– Has a secondary drag system with free spooling 
– Works with dyna-balance technology to remove wobbles during the retrieve
KastKing Megatron Spinning Reel
– Most powerful transformer in fishing
– Has an aerospace aluminum alloy skeletal design frame
PENN Battle Spinning Fishing Reel 
– Fluid cranking with 5 sealed stainless steel ball bearings
– Has multi stop anti-reverse and ball bearing
KastKing Sharky III Fishing Reel
– Complete with K.I.S.S. (KastKing Intrusion Shield System)
– Has a reliable triple disc carbon fiber drag
Dr.Fish Long Shot Spinning Reel
– Has 13+1 Rust-resistant ball bearings
– With high density, corrosion resistant reel body
Sougayilang Spinning Reels 10000 Series Surf Fishing Reels
– Propulsion Line Management System as the unit’s Propulsion spool lip design
– Strong oversized shaft, compact self-balanced system rotorsl
Daiwa BG3500 BG Saltwater Spinning Reel
– Black Anodized Machined Aluminum Housing
– With Braided Line Ready Spool and Waterproof Drag System
Penn Pursuit III & Pursuit IV Spinning Fishing Reel
– 4 plus 1 stainless steel bearing system
– Lightweight and corrosion-resistant graphite Body

Choosing The One: A Spinning Reel Buying Guide

When you’re still building your fishing experience, it can be hard to choose which equipment will suit you best. Unlike choosing clothes, there are quite a lot of factors that come into play when choosing fishing equipment.

In the same way, picking the right spinning reel for you is totally dependent on things like: the type of fish you’re targeting, its size, location, and even fishing techniques. Larger catches will naturally need more powerful reels and so on.

To be more specific, here are few of the qualities we should look for when choosing the best saltwater spinning reel:

Line Capacity

If you’re going against fast swimmers or strong fish, especially in very wide areas, you should get a reel with a lot of fishing line. Well, this is also dependent on the type of fishing you’ll do. For instance, offshore fishing uses reels with larger diameters and deeper spools so more lines can be fitted. However, it is always best to look for reels with deep spool and more line capacity, regardless of how you fish, so that even it doesn’t affect your chance for a catch if the fish swims farther.

Drag Strength

Saltwater isn’t only the most corrosive but it also breeds the largest, strongest, and fastest fish species you’ll ever see. With that, it’s important to have a reel with intense drag strength. This will stop the fish from running away and even retaliating. Before buying reels, you should always check if the maximum drag strength is enough for the weight of species you’re fishing.

Handles and Cranks

In the same way lines affect your fishing, the way you handle your line spool also sets the mood for fishing. If you’ve ever experienced it, you’ll know it will be easy to reel the line when the fish has loosened its reins if you have a large handle and a strong crank. This is due to the fact that it changes how you grip your equipment.

On the other hand, having flimsy knobs and weak cranks won’t even stand a chance against saltwater fish. You’ll only end up seeing your potential catch get away, leaving you empty handed. 

Braided-line Compatibility

Braided lines in itself have different qualities that anglers look for such as strength, casting distance and sensitivity. When it comes to choosing the right spinning reel, a different set of standards are used for them.

Braided lines are very prone from slipping on spools when you are reeling. As a way to solve that issue, it’s better to look for saltwater spinning reels with a rubber grip material on the spot where the line touches the spool. If this is present, the chances of the spools sliding around will be cut tremendously and allows you to pull some of that line back easily.

Frequently Asked Questions

What size should my Spinning Reel Be?

This has been reiterated quite a lot of times already but the size of your reel decides how big your catch can also be. In picking the right spinning reel for you, you should also look at its size and whether it meets the demands of your fishing techniques.

If you’re only aiming to catch average size fish like redfish, striped bass, snook and salmon, spinning reels at the minimum of 6000 is already enough for you. But if your goals are some of the largest fishes, you should definitely invest in reels up to 30,000. While the smaller sized fish can be caught with reels from 500 to 2500. 

But just a bit of a disclaimer, reels’ size system is a little arbitrary, non-scientific, and very inconsistent across brands.

Is The Expensive One Better?

In almost everything we purchase, we have this misleading belief of getting the most expensive one because it has the most quality. There have been many instances that we paid a lot for a product that did not even pass our expectations. In short, a few dollars wasted.

This can be applied in buying spinning reels, the most expensive one isn’t always the best. Although the quality increases when a better material is used, you’ll know if the spinning reel is good if it lasts you a long time and fits whatever you need.

Generally speaking, it’s not practical to buy the most expensive one if you cannot afford it or if it does not fit the type of fishing you’ll do.

Are More Ball Bearings in a Reel Better?

Generally speaking, the more bearings, the more support for moving and rotating parts. 

This delivers a more solid and lighter crank and is a more stable spinning reel. Make sure you understand the bearing count.

For example, 4 + 1 means there are four bearings to assist gears and cranking and 1 anti-reverse bearing.

Top 8 PENN Spinning Reels Reviews

Shimano Baitrunner D Spinning Reel

If you want to buy a Baitrunner reel and you don’t have any budget constraints, you might want to look at the Shimano Baitrunner D Spinning Reel. This is a bit pricey compared to others but it serves justice to every penny you pay since it can last for years and have a lot of impressive features.

Aside from being able to cover  a variety of species and situations, it also has features like Hypergear, a Waterproof Drag, Cold Forged Spool and Shimano’s Varispeed for even line lay. Anglers, regardless of their level, also find this reel to be very useful as it has almost everything they are looking for. From casting, dragging, and every other aspect of a fishing reel, you name it and this reel can do it!

It’s also very evident that it has excellent engineered qualities ideal for fishing saltwater species like snapper, stripers, or bluefish. Now, you don’t have to worry about the right timing to strike as the reel does it for you!

KastKing Megatron Spinning Reel

For us, the fame the KastKing Megatron Spinning Reel has been receiving is just right for the excellent performance they deliver. Even with its affordable price, this spinning reel is guaranteed to give you a surprising amount of solid features and performance characteristics.

One of the main characteristics of this reel is its price but this does not stop it from offering components and features that can be found in high-end reels. This is also designed to handle larger-sized saltwater fish that will otherwise damage other reels.

It surprised us how lightweight this reel is too! Even when it provides raw power, it is very light and does not strain your muscles so much. This cool reel is indeed a megatron. Anglers that are tight on budget can now experience impressive capabilities to catch larger fish without having to break their banks.

PENN Battle Spinning Fishing Reel

If you’re looking for a reel that can handle any challenge the sea has to give, you should consider the  PENN Battle Spinning Fishing Reel. With its fish-combating functions and dependable components, you are sure to take large amounts of catches at home. 

After considering many reviews and researching possible developments, this reel now has an additional complete metallic frame layout with aspect plates and rotors as well as 5 sealed chrome steel ball bearings that will help you trap fish.  

This affordable reel has been a crowd’s favorite for the many amazing features it can offer. Now, reeling is made easier with its instant anti-reverse bearing and the HT-100 Versa-Drag carbon fiber drag system. It is also very durable and reliable which removes the need for you to buy again and again every year. Any angler would be happy with this amazing reel!

KastKing Sharky III Fishing Reel

Even if you’re new to the inshore game or saltwater fishing, you’ll surely find yourself getting fond of this KastKing Sharky III Fishing Reel. It’s not expensive but at the same time offers a heavy-duty and strong drag system.

Most users loved this reel as it has held nicely for them and can even compete with high-end products at an affordable price. This reel is built tough to land trophy fish in all fishing conditions and provide a comfortable fishing experience with its lightweight design and high percentage fiber reinforced graphite body and rotor.

Who would imagine that this low price point reel can provide such impressive power? Even when you’ve gotten a hold of more expensive reels, you’ll surely come back to the  Sharky III spinning reel!

Dr.Fish Long Shot Spinning Reel

If you’re the type of fisherman to put much importance in high density and corrosion resistant reels, the Dr.Fish Long Shot Spinning Reel is ideal for you!

With its high density and corrosion resistant reel body, you can surely defeat the strongest monsters in the ocean without worrying so much about equipment damage. Speaking of which, it also has rust-resistant ball bearings that help you experience a smoother action when it comes to casting and retrieving. 

Apart from its protective features, it also has specific qualities that make it easier to catch your desired fish. For example, it has a mind-blowing 48LB max drag that can immediately counter big fish bites. Not to mention that it also has a HUGE CNC Aluminum spool responsible for its capacity to handle heavier lines on your reel for bigger fights. Even when you are not that confident with your skills, this reel can help you win against bigger fish and cast longer and faster too!

Sougayilang Spinning Reels 10000 Series Surf Fishing Reel

Your fishing experience will surely be brought up to a notch with the Sougayilang Spinning Reels 10000.

Almost every fisherman who laid their hands on this reel complimented on how long casting distances are and how minimal backlashes and wind knots are formed. This is all thanks to the new Propulsion spool lip design added on this unit through thousands of casting tests and computer simulations.

This reel is also complete with a Strong Aluminum Spool that makes it possible to hold heavy duty monofilament or braid lines especially during long distance casting. You don’t need to worry about damaging this reel too for it promises outstanding durability and reliability.This is perfect for those who fish for Tuna, shark, yellow tails, striped bass, king fish, mackerel, and other species that pose great challenges. 

Daiwa BG3500 BG Saltwater Spinning Reel

For the price, this is an outstanding reel that is durable and smooth, with enough drag to handle everything from little inshore species to giant Pelagics off the boat or the beach.

Some of the characteristics are “Hard Bodyz,” or a black anodized coating that provides a thick protective covering over the aluminum housing, a watertight carbon ATD drag system, an air rotor design, and the overall ultra smooth retrieve supplied by the anti-rust ball bearings.

This is also a highly cost-efficient yet effective spinning reel solution. What are you waiting for? Enhance your saltwater fishing experience now with the Daiwa BG3500 BG Saltwater Spinning Reel!

Penn Pursuit III & Pursuit IV Spinning Fishing Reel

The Penn Pursuit III & Pursuit IV Spinning Fishing Reels may be the ones you’re looking for if you want a lightweight yet sturdy reel!

Regardless of the size you choose, from 2500 to 8000, you will notice how lightweight this reel is. Anglers like you are guaranteed a corrosion-resistant graphite body and powerful HT-100TM drag system due to its sturdy construction and smooth gear system.

Aside from that, there is no longer any rotor back play for rapid hook-ups, and retrieves are also smoother. Its Anti-Reverse bearing and four sealed stainless steel ball bearings are responsible for this.


If we have to learn one lesson in choosing the best Spinning Reel for us, it must be the fact that you do not need to spend all of your money to experience high quality products. There are many fishing gears and equipment out there that can give you the same features from a high-end brand but on a lower price. Price isn’t everything in fishing.

Now that you’ve learned the basics of saltwater spinning reels, you can now have a better judgment on which item to buy or use. Always remember that the best does not necessarily mean the most expensive but it depends on whether it’s within your budget and can serve you the way you need it to.

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