Bass Fishing Forum

General Bass Fishing Discussion => Rods, Reels and Fishing Line => Topic started by: jwtiger69 on April 08, 2018, 05:34:54 PM

Title: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 08, 2018, 05:34:54 PM
Hi everyone!  As I mentioned in the tackle section I am starting with nothing.  Currently I just have a rod/reel combo from Walmart.   I guess my question is where should I start.  I would love to get a bait casting reel but I k ow I donít really need it yet.   I plan on probably using a lot of lures and bait setups.   I think I plan on carrying two poles with me when I go (so one setup for each)?  I also will be having access to areas where there are pretty big bass (also catfish and stripper).   What type of poles should I be looking at and also reels to go with them. 


I guess my other question is about string.   Between breaded,mono and floro I am getting confused.  I know I might want breaded line if I go out to catch bigger fish ,but normally I will be in areas that will have smaller fish (8-10 lbs max).   What type of string and how big should I get?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: Lipripper on April 08, 2018, 06:07:05 PM
Don't feel bad I still get confused on all this stuff. I guess before you can get a good answer it would help to know a price range on what your looking for spennding on your reel and rod. What kind of rod/reel combo did you get from Walmart? 
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: Oldfart9999 on April 08, 2018, 06:13:51 PM
The best gauge of a reel is not gear ratio but how much line is picked up per turn of the handle. The speed of line pick up depends on technique, there are a lot of variables. Better question is what would be the best for doing XYZ. You'll get several answers, look at the reasons and see what you think is the best.
Rodney
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 08, 2018, 06:23:42 PM
Don't feel bad I still get confused on all this stuff. I guess before you can get a good answer it would help to know a price range on what your looking for spennding on your reel and rod. What kind of rod/reel combo did you get from Walmart?


A Shakespeare pole with a shamino syncopate reel.  I am actually getting a little bonus from work soon so my budget is ok.   I am thinking I would spend about 200 on between 2 poles and 2 reels.   I hope that should able to cover everything I want to do and would be a good start. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: Lipripper on April 08, 2018, 06:29:33 PM

A Shakespeare pole with a shamino syncopate reel.  I am actually getting a little bonus from work soon so my budget is ok.   I am thinking I would spend about 200 on between 2 poles and 2 reels.   I hope that should able to cover everything I want to do and would be a good start. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Do you have any BPS close to where you live out? Sometimes you can get get some great combos from there. My worm set up is a Bill Dance combo I got at the BPS by my house and I've had it for a few years and I think I only paid like $60 or $70 for it. I also throw chatter baits on it and heck I even throw some topwater HB Frogs and Buzz baits with it also.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: D.W. Verts on April 08, 2018, 06:33:15 PM
"smaller fish (8-10 lbs max)"

Wow. I think you need personal, on-the-water support here. I'm available.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 08, 2018, 09:04:08 PM
Do you have any BPS close to where you live out? Sometimes you can get get some great combos from there. My worm set up is a Bill Dance combo I got at the BPS by my house and I've had it for a few years and I think I only paid like $60 or $70 for it. I also throw chatter baits on it and heck I even throw some topwater HB Frogs and Buzz baits with it also.


Actually there is one within an hour from me.  I donít normally head that way.   Do most of my shopping online or for this Walmart or a sportsmenís warehouseby my work.   


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 08, 2018, 09:06:49 PM
How are fenwick poles?   Been reading about those and they are in my budget.   


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: SFL BassHunter on April 09, 2018, 06:20:03 AM
How are fenwick poles?   Been reading about those and they are in my budget.   


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

I have 2 fenwicks
One is a 3 piece and itís a nice rod. Not the most sensitive I own but gets the job done. Itís a methods.

I also have an older model fenwick aetos. Good rod. I like everything about it except the trigger. Itís short and stubby. When I set the hook it hurts my fingers.
This is a personal thing, it may be how I hold my rods and reels. It may be my big sausage fingers. You would have to hold the rod and see if itís to your liking.

All in all my experience is they arenít bad.

I do have other brand preferences though.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: SteelHorseCowboy on April 09, 2018, 08:06:16 AM
"smaller fish (8-10 lbs max)"

Wow. I think you need personal, on-the-water support here. I'm available.
Lol, he may be counting the Cats available in the area too! 30 and 40 pounders are not uncommon in the cat holes I've fished in the past, and I used to giggle at the "baby" ten pounders. A lady just upriver from me caught a 94# blue or flathead just a few weeks ago.

Tiger, I started out last year after a long hiatus with a very tight budget and an Abu Garcia Black Max II combo and my first bait caster reel in a box from storage, an Ambassadeur 5000. Steer clear of the BM. It has the same initials as Bowel Movement for a reason. Although, the rod is decent for what it is.

I'd recommend a good condition used baitcaster from a pawn shop that either already comes with a nice rod or get a Berkley Lightning Rod or Abu Vigilante 2 to go with it. That would give a good basis to build from on the cheap.
My favorite combo is my Shimano Curado 200 and Curado rod. I paid $175 for the reel when it first came out, you can get it now for about $150 on sale. The rod was $150. That's $300 for ONE combo. (holy crap I can't believe I spent that much...)
One of my other favorites is a Shimano Caenan on a Vigilante 2. The reel was $15 at a pawn shop, the rod was $40 at Walmart. That's $55 for a combo that suits what I use it for very well especially on my budget.
The combo I use for big, heavy cranks, spinners and jigs is my Ambassadeur 5000 on a Lightning Rod that I've replaced the guides with all Fuji K guides in a spiral wrap.

I've only tried a handful of braided lines and I've settled on Sufix 832 40# as my favorite so far, I'm sure I'll try others because I've barely scratched the surface of what's on the market. The mono I use is Sufix Pro-Mix 12#. Pro-Mix is dirt cheap and I like it better than all other monos I've tried, which is just about all of them under $15. Any more than $15, I'd rather spend on braid. Pro-Mix doesn't stretch too bad and it's pretty limp which aids in casting. Other monos, I've had to "break-in" by practice casting in the back yard. Even after being spooled and stored for a bit, Pro-Mix only takes a handful of casts to loosen up. This is what I use on my new favorite spinning combo, a Pfleuger President combo I found at a flea market for pocket change, and on my Caenan. I use the Caenan exclusively for topwater fishing, some experienced anglers here recommended mono for topwater and I discovered I like it better than braid for that purpose.
I liked P-Line, but if you backlash it you may as well cut it out if you get a kink in the line, and it will kink readily.
I use Pro-Cat 60# or 80# braid on my catfish rig, can't remember which, cause it's cheap and I go for brute strength in catfishing. That's put together with a heavy Pro-Cat rod and an Ambassadeur "winch" built from parts with 4.66 gears, both of which I got at pawn shops for less than $30 combined.
Used to catfish successfully all the time as a teenager, landed some big ones too. I know for a fact that records are only set because some folks go through the process of having them recorded. I've seen channel cats that put the current record to shame, but they were just eaten. I've yet to catch a decent one in the past year I've been occasionally trying. Actually, I've only caught one, about 4 inches long that I hooked through the gut, so I turned around and used it as bait.




Too long, didn't read?
I'd shop for good, used rods and reels until you learn what works best for you.
Also, I can't stand several products from H≤O Express, especially their line (avoid it like the plague), but I hear their reels are halfway decent and have an outstanding, no questions asked warranty. May be able to find a broken or damaged one for little or even nothing and then just exchange it. I know a guy who knows a guy who does that very thing and uses nothing but their reels just because of that very reason. He allegedly has about 15 and less than $100 invested in all, only paid full price for the first one. If one gives up the ghost, he just drops it in a box to exchange later and slaps another one on his rod.
Also it would behoove you, if you're mechanically inclined, to learn how to give a reel a basic service yourself. Several members here are talented reel techs, but a simple clean and relube is a quick and easy job if you can remember how to put it back together.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: SteelHorseCowboy on April 09, 2018, 08:12:05 AM
Disclaimer:
I'm probably the least successful angler here. Look at the IBass thread, I have one catch recorded at 6.75 inches. That woulda been catfish bait if it weren't for the fact I'd rather use shad and let a bass grow.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 09, 2018, 11:15:54 AM
Lol, he may be counting the Cats available in the area too! 30 and 40 pounders are not uncommon in the cat holes I've fished in the past, and I used to giggle at the "baby" ten pounders. A lady just upriver from me caught a 94# blue or flathead just a few weeks ago.

Tiger, I started out last year after a long hiatus with a very tight budget and an Abu Garcia Black Max II combo and my first bait caster reel in a box from storage, an Ambassadeur 5000. Steer clear of the BM. It has the same initials as Bowel Movement for a reason. Although, the rod is decent for what it is.

I'd recommend a good condition used baitcaster from a pawn shop that either already comes with a nice rod or get a Berkley Lightning Rod or Abu Vigilante 2 to go with it. That would give a good basis to build from on the cheap.
My favorite combo is my Shimano Curado 200 and Curado rod. I paid $175 for the reel when it first came out, you can get it now for about $150 on sale. The rod was $150. That's $300 for ONE combo. (holy crap I can't believe I spent that much...)
One of my other favorites is a Shimano Caenan on a Vigilante 2. The reel was $15 at a pawn shop, the rod was $40 at Walmart. That's $55 for a combo that suits what I use it for very well especially on my budget.
The combo I use for big, heavy cranks, spinners and jigs is my Ambassadeur 5000 on a Lightning Rod that I've replaced the guides with all Fuji K guides in a spiral wrap.

I've only tried a handful of braided lines and I've settled on Sufix 832 40# as my favorite so far, I'm sure I'll try others because I've barely scratched the surface of what's on the market. The mono I use is Sufix Pro-Mix 12#. Pro-Mix is dirt cheap and I like it better than all other monos I've tried, which is just about all of them under $15. Any more than $15, I'd rather spend on braid. Pro-Mix doesn't stretch too bad and it's pretty limp which aids in casting. Other monos, I've had to "break-in" by practice casting in the back yard. Even after being spooled and stored for a bit, Pro-Mix only takes a handful of casts to loosen up. This is what I use on my new favorite spinning combo, a Pfleuger President combo I found at a flea market for pocket change, and on my Caenan. I use the Caenan exclusively for topwater fishing, some experienced anglers here recommended mono for topwater and I discovered I like it better than braid for that purpose.
I liked P-Line, but if you backlash it you may as well cut it out if you get a kink in the line, and it will kink readily.
I use Pro-Cat 60# or 80# braid on my catfish rig, can't remember which, cause it's cheap and I go for brute strength in catfishing. That's put together with a heavy Pro-Cat rod and an Ambassadeur "winch" built from parts with 4.66 gears, both of which I got at pawn shops for less than $30 combined.
Used to catfish successfully all the time as a teenager, landed some big ones too. I know for a fact that records are only set because some folks go through the process of having them recorded. I've seen channel cats that put the current record to shame, but they were just eaten. I've yet to catch a decent one in the past year I've been occasionally trying. Actually, I've only caught one, about 4 inches long that I hooked through the gut, so I turned around and used it as bait.




Too long, didn't read?
I'd shop for good, used rods and reels until you learn what works best for you.
Also, I can't stand several products from H≤O Express, especially their line (avoid it like the plague), but I hear their reels are halfway decent and have an outstanding, no questions asked warranty. May be able to find a broken or damaged one for little or even nothing and then just exchange it. I know a guy who knows a guy who does that very thing and uses nothing but their reels just because of that very reason. He allegedly has about 15 and less than $100 invested in all, only paid full price for the first one. If one gives up the ghost, he just drops it in a box to exchange later and slaps another one on his rod.
Also it would behoove you, if you're mechanically inclined, to learn how to give a reel a basic service yourself. Several members here are talented reel techs, but a simple clean and relube is a quick and easy job if you can remember how to put it back together.


Great post!  Thanks for the ideas on fishing line.  From what I see on bait casting setups people use braided line.  Spinning reels mostly mono or floro.   In the other two is there really much difference?  I figure I will have a few spinning reels (trout stuff and bass).  I am thinking I I would have a bait setup and one for lures ect. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 09, 2018, 11:26:15 AM
I have 2 fenwicks
One is a 3 piece and itís a nice rod. Not the most sensitive I own but gets the job done. Itís a methods.

I also have an older model fenwick aetos. Good rod. I like everything about it except the trigger. Itís short and stubby. When I set the hook it hurts my fingers.
This is a personal thing, it may be how I hold my rods and reels. It may be my big sausage fingers. You would have to hold the rod and see if itís to your liking.

All in all my experience is they arenít bad.

I do have other brand preferences though.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Would it be better maybe to check bass pro and see what combos they offer?  Budget under 200. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: analfisherman on April 09, 2018, 11:36:42 AM
you may want to consider reversing the line choices on which reel.

Flouro on spinning gear can be a nightmare. (TON OF MEMORY)
Mono not as bad BUT still more than Braid/Superlines.

Braid on spinning gear is a dream line.
No 'memory' (means how much the line remembers how it was bent by being wrapped on a spool or a reel)
Braid on either reel usually allows longer casts and thinner line diameter compared to equivalent mono or flouro line tests (breaking strenth)
Title: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 09, 2018, 11:51:03 AM
you may want to consider reversing the line choices on which reel.

Flouro on spinning gear can be a nightmare. (TON OF MEMORY)
Mono not as bad BUT still more than Braid/Superlines.

Braid on spinning gear is a dream line.
No 'memory' (means how much the line remembers how it was bent by being wrapped on a spool or a reel)
Braid on either reel usually allows longer casts and thinner line diameter compared to equivalent mono or flouro line tests (breaking strenth)


Hmm.  I plan on carrying one spinning reel and one baitcasting setup.  What would you recommend?


Also plan on have two setups for trout fishing.   I assume a nice mono is good enough for that?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: analfisherman on April 09, 2018, 12:00:32 PM

Hmm. So maybe look into putting it on both?  Heavier on naitcastong and lighter on spinning? 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Many here will say, "YES" to that question!

Personally I use Co-ply and braid but I'm a Northern 'Yankee' and we grew up using spinning gear first...Baitcaster second.

But I do use Braid more often on my spinning gear than Baitcasting gear...BUT I have a baitcaster AND a spinning BOTH WITH BRAID for Frogging.

Another point about braid...it 'cuts through grass and vegetation'. better than any other line out there.
So only you can decide......but there are A LOT of anglers around here that use 'Braid' on and for EVERYTHING.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 09, 2018, 12:09:21 PM
Many here will say, "YES" to that question!

Personally I use Co-ply and braid but I'm a Northern 'Yankee' and we grew up using spinning gear first...Baitcaster second.

But I do use Braid more often on my spinning gear than Baitcasting gear...BUT I have a baitcaster AND a spinning BOTH WITH BRAID for Frogging.

Another point about braid...it 'cuts through grass and vegetation'. better than any other line out there.
So only you can decide......but there are A LOT of anglers around here that use 'Braid' on and for EVERYTHING.


Would you use a heavier line on a spinning reel and heavier on bait casting?  Or just use the same.  Honestly talking about this is confusing me more.  Lol



So as I edited my post above.  With me wanting to poles.  Bait casting and a spinning what would you commend?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: SteelHorseCowboy on April 09, 2018, 12:28:10 PM
On mono vs braid for each type, here's my thoughts:
I mentioned I like the Sufix Pro-Mix on my President, that's because it goes limp pretty quick and seems to resist twisting pretty well. But why'd I choose mono for it instead of braid? Only because it's what I had on hand when I spooled it. If I'd had more 832 on hand, it's what would have gone on it.
I use braid on all the other spinning reels.
My UL spinning reel pretty much won't run on anything except thin braid, that's because the spool is so tiny that mono will take so much memory it flies off the reel looking like a friggin slinky. Or one of those old school telephone cords. I've even gone down to 4# mono just to experiment, and NOPE! It MUST have 10-15# braid. Less, and it gets wind knots like mad, more and I'll run all the braid off the spool with every cast and go all the way down to the mono backing, IF I can even get it to cast without tangling.
Spinning reels need a thinner line with less memory simply because of how they're designed. Just look at their spec sheets while shopping, BC reels are nearly always listed to take heavier line than spinning reels intended for comparable uses. In fact, putting too thin of a line on a bait caster will cause just as much trouble as putting too thick of a line on a spinning reel.

So, since a spinning reel needs a thinner line, but they excel with line that's very limp and you may want a higher breaking strength than 8-10# mono, braid is just a clear choice.

Braid vs mono on bait casters:
I like braid because I get smoother casts and more distance. Fishing from the bank, I need every inch I can get. Without that biggest obstacle I face, I wouldn't need it. But now I like it. The higher breaking strength, manageability and sensitivity are just bonuses for me.
I use mono for topwater because I tried it out based on a recommendation here, and discovered I seem to get a better action with my topwater lures with it, or at least it's easier for me to get a better action with it.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 09, 2018, 12:50:56 PM
On mono vs braid for each type, here's my thoughts:
I mentioned I like the Sufix Pro-Mix on my President, that's because it goes limp pretty quick and seems to resist twisting pretty well. But why'd I choose mono for it instead of braid? Only because it's what I had on hand when I spooled it. If I'd had more 832 on hand, it's what would have gone on it.
I use braid on all the other spinning reels.
My UL spinning reel pretty much won't run on anything except thin braid, that's because the spool is so tiny that mono will take so much memory it flies off the reel looking like a friggin slinky. Or one of those old school telephone cords. I've even gone down to 4# mono just to experiment, and NOPE! It MUST have 10-15# braid. Less, and it gets wind knots like mad, more and I'll run all the braid off the spool with every cast and go all the way down to the mono backing, IF I can even get it to cast without tangling.
Spinning reels need a thinner line with less memory simply because of how they're designed. Just look at their spec sheets while shopping, BC reels are nearly always listed to take heavier line than spinning reels intended for comparable uses. In fact, putting too thin of a line on a bait caster will cause just as much trouble as putting too thick of a line on a spinning reel.

So, since a spinning reel needs a thinner line, but they excel with line that's very limp and you may want a higher breaking strength than 8-10# mono, braid is just a clear choice.

Braid vs mono on bait casters:
I like braid because I get smoother casts and more distance. Fishing from the bank, I need every inch I can get. Without that biggest obstacle I face, I wouldn't need it. But now I like it. The higher breaking strength, manageability and sensitivity are just bonuses for me.
I use mono for topwater because I tried it out based on a recommendation here, and discovered I seem to get a better action with my topwater lures with it, or at least it's easier for me to get a better action with it.


I got ya now.  I follow sort of what you do at least that what I though from the beginning.  I guess it is time to start shopping and figuring what to get.  Thanks again. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: basss on April 09, 2018, 01:56:07 PM

I got ya now.  I follow sort of what you do at least that what I though from the beginning.  I guess it is time to start shopping and figuring what to get.  Thanks again. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Check out this site ... http://www.ffo-tackle.com/ffo-combos/

You can do two combos for $82.  An Abu spinner ($40) and a Berkley bait caster (42).  You can even get the line and some lures for $200 or less.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: Smallie_Stalker on April 09, 2018, 04:30:47 PM
This is about as basic as it can get without knowing specifics of the waters you will be fishing.

Spinning: Rod - 7 foot  Medium power Fast action.
               Reel: Large capacity spool and high amount of line pickup per handle turn.

Baitcasting: Rod - 7 foot  Medium Heavy power Fast action
                  Reel: At least a 6.0:1 gear ratio with as much line pick up per handle turn as possible.

Remember, you can always make a faster reel go slower if you need to, but you can't make a slow reel go any faster.  :-*
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 09, 2018, 06:36:04 PM
This is about as basic as it can get without knowing specifics of the waters you will be fishing.

Spinning: Rod - 7 foot  Medium power Fast action.
               Reel: Large capacity spool and high amount of line pickup per handle turn.

Baitcasting: Rod - 7 foot  Medium Heavy power Fast action
                  Reel: At least a 6.0:1 gear ratio with as much line pick up per handle turn as possible.

Remember, you can always make a faster reel go slower if you need to, but you can't make a slow reel go any faster.  :-*


Awesome thanks!   Basically looking at maybe 50-100 for each reel and pole.  Any brands to stay away from or brands that are pretty good in that area?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: Smallie_Stalker on April 09, 2018, 06:48:19 PM

Awesome thanks!   Basically looking at maybe 50-100 for each reel and pole.  Any brands to stay away from or brands that are pretty good in that area?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

For rods I would look at either the Colt Series or Fury Series from  Dobyns rods.  (http://dobynsrods.com/)

For spinning reels in that price range I would look at Pflueger reels. The President series is a great reel for cheap money. The Trion model is also very good and many Walmarts carry them ( I see you mentioned shopping there).

Baitcasters in that range are a little tougher for me to recommend, but the BPS Pro Qualifier is really good.

Others will chime in with some help too.  ~sun


Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: zippyduck on April 09, 2018, 06:58:08 PM
Smallie has hit it just right.

Dobyns rods in any series and you won't regret it.

Plueger president series spinning reels have a huge following.

Daiwa Fuego baitcaster is the best bang for your dollar. Easy to use and cheap but built well.
Title: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 09, 2018, 07:23:38 PM
Thanks guys!  Those look nice.  I ended up sending them an email to help decide.  The fury series fits in my budget.  Sense I only plan getting one rod for now I want something that can be used for pretty much anything.  Thanks everyone again for the help and answering my questions. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: 1ReelFanatik on April 09, 2018, 10:37:37 PM
I agree with zippyduck....a Fuego CT is going to be hard to beat if buying new.

Right hand model:  https://www.ebay.com/itm/Daiwa-Fuego-CT-6-3-1-Right-Hand-Baitcast-Fishing-Reel-FGCT100H/272781453973?_trkparms=aid%3D222007%26algo%3DSIM.MBE%26ao%3D2%26asc%3D44040%26meid%3Dd4b24b51687d4d2aadff8d92d67caa1f%26pid%3D100623%26rk%3D3%26rkt%3D6%26mehot%3Dpp%26sd%3D311835500384%26itm%3D272781453973&_trksid=p2047675.c100623.m-1

Left hand Model:  https://www.ebay.com/itm/Daiwa-Fuego-CT-8-1-1-Left-Hand-Baitcast-Fishing-Reel-FGCT100XSL/302397297488?_trkparms=aid%3D222007%26algo%3DSIM.MBE%26ao%3D2%26asc%3D44040%26meid%3Dd4b24b51687d4d2aadff8d92d67caa1f%26pid%3D100623%26rk%3D4%26rkt%3D6%26mehot%3Dpp%26sd%3D311835500384%26itm%3D302397297488&_trksid=p2047675.c100623.m-1

However, my last original Fuego (a $229 reel when new) cost me $65 in very good condition.  Used is a good way to go if you know what you want.

I was also going to suggest ffo-tackle.  If you can get along with pink, they have the Pflueger Lady President for $35.88 (a $59.95 reel).  The President is always a good option as is the Pflueger Trion.  Jet.com has the Trion for $26.42 right now.  A $39.95 reel.

$100 per combo isn't much.  Don't be in a hurry to buy unless you find a great deal right away.  Berkley Lightning or Lightning Shock both in spinning and casting are one of the best values out there at that price.  Especially if you can find a model you want at FFO.  In a recent thread on another forum, a guy posted that his Walmart was selling the Lightning Shocks for $19.  A great buy.

I heartily agree with the suggestion to go with a Medium Fast spinning rod and a Medium Heavy Fast casting rod.  These are going to be good all around rods.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: Smalls on April 10, 2018, 04:06:19 AM
Personally, I think you need to slow down a little. The more limited you are on funds, the more research you need to do. Itís easy to ask a bunch of people what you need, but theyíre not doing the same fishing you are. Start reading and watching informative videos and soaking up as much info on fishing as you can. With a little bit of knowledge, you can determine the gear you need for yourself, and your gear will be tailored to your personal fishing needs.

Diving head first into the world of bass fishing in this age is gonna give you a headache. Take your time, read, read, read, soak it in, and youíll be more prepared with the best gear suited for you and catching some hogs before you know it.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: SFL BassHunter on April 10, 2018, 06:17:43 AM
I would look at the Dobyns Colt or Fury series as well.
They make a great rod and have excellent customer service. I mention these because Iíve heard the reviews. Iíve never fished either of these but I do have an older Savvy and I own 2 champion series rods and they are my favorite in my lineup.

Another choice for rod is the BPS carbonlites. These are very sensitive blanks.
During the BPS Classic they had the combo for 100. carbonlite rod and reel. Not sure if they will have that sale again till next year.

For reels for spinning I would look at the Pflugers. They are your best bang for the buck and make an excellent spinning reel.
The Trion is hard to beat 39 or 49 dollars.

Baitcaster I would pick up a Fuego CT in your price range. 70 bucks and itís the same reel as te Tatula CT without the TWS line guide. I love my Tat CT and with the same internals on the fuego you canít go wrong and itís an all aluminum frame which is rigid and will be great for getting big fish out of heavy cover when needed.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: SteelHorseCowboy on April 10, 2018, 07:26:21 AM
I have to second Small's opinion too. I came into this game last spring on a very tight budget. Heck, I'm always on a tight budget.
Last summer, I spent FAR more money than I should have, going through cheap gear trying to find something just right.

Some things are worth spending extra money on, some things aren't. Speaking from recent, first hand experience, fishing tackle is most definitely one of those things. When the best you can afford is a $40 rod and $80 reel, it's easy to look at other people's expensive gear and think "gear snob".

So, while there's some great budget friendly choices being thrown out for you to consider, and they WILL work, you may also like to consider spending your whole budget on just one really great combo and then save up for the next one. Going through budget gear while searching for and figuring out what you really want and need can be an extremely expensive endeavor.
As much as I really love my Ambassadeur and Lightning rod, Caenan and Vigilante, my Curado combo is by far the most satisfying and easiest to use. The rod is more sensitive than the LR. The guides are higher quality. In fact, the guides I used to replace the ones on the LR are the same make, model, and even color as the ones on my Curado rod. Even though the LR is very sensitive, with the Curado and braid I can literally hear what my bait is doing, and I have some serious hearing problems.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 10, 2018, 07:59:49 AM
Personally, I think you need to slow down a little. The more limited you are on funds, the more research you need to do. Itís easy to ask a bunch of people what you need, but theyíre not doing the same fishing you are. Start reading and watching informative videos and soaking up as much info on fishing as you can. With a little bit of knowledge, you can determine the gear you need for yourself, and your gear will be tailored to your personal fishing needs.

Diving head first into the world of bass fishing in this age is gonna give you a headache. Take your time, read, read, read, soak it in, and youíll be more prepared with the best gear suited for you and catching some hogs before you know it.


Great advice.  I probably wonít buy any nice rods and reels for a month.  Waiting on a nice little check from work!   I have a cheap combo from Walmart that will work for the time being and I cam always give that my kids later when I acquire some better stuff.  If anything I will get some senkos and stuff.  That is really all I need to go out and have fun right now.   


Just to say again.  I donít see myself have more then 2 decent set ups.  Nothing crazy expensive.  If I can put a decent set up (in my budget) for under 200 then I will be happy.  That is all I would ever need.   Hopefully that makes sense.  All I am looking for is some decent gear to get me going.  Everyone has been great with their recommendations and advice.  Thanks again. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: SteelHorseCowboy on April 10, 2018, 09:24:22 AM

Great advice.  I probably wonít buy any nice rods and reels for a month.  Waiting on a nice little check from work!   I have a cheap combo from Walmart that will work for the time being and I cam always give that my kids later when I acquire some better stuff.  If anything I will get some senkos and stuff.  That is really all I need to go out and have fun right now.   


Just to say again.  I donít see myself have more then 2 decent set ups.  Nothing crazy expensive.  If I can put a decent set up (in my budget) for under 200 then I will be happy.  That is all I would ever need.   Hopefully that makes sense.  All I am looking for is some decent gear to get me going.  Everyone has been great with their recommendations and advice.  Thanks again. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Lol... yeah, that's what you think right now!
Just wait till that rabid gear monkey sinks it's teeth into you!
Dude, you're gonna end up just like me...
"Okay, one for this, one for that, a little Zebco on a light rod for fun... bet my lady would like something nice too... Oh, this is cool! Don't even need it, but it's cheap so I'll just put it on display... hey, that one may be broke, but it's good for spare bearings and refrigerator magnets... this one will fit in my car easily... is 7'6" too long? Let's find out... I think I may try fishing for some crappie, or maybe some big cats. May as well get something for each..."
Next thing you know, you're buying rod racks, collecting tackle boxes, your desk drawers are over flowing, and you're building a friggin boat!

And lord help you if you decide to restore a few old lures found at a yard sale for pennies.
Oh, and you're gonna start upgrading hooks and split rings on new lures as soon as they come out of the package!
May as well get some swivels too, there's always a time and place for them.

Brother, you're possibly stepping into a big hole! One of two things is gonna happen: you're either going to decide bass fishing is a waste of time, or you'll become obsessed. I just recently got to see my oldest son become obsessed. He hasn't even landed one yet, but the first time I took him out fishing a few months ago he hooked some sort of lake monster that had me scared his rod was gonna break. It was dragging out line like crazy and zig zagging back and forth. Then it spit out his mangled spinner bait.
He's still working on figuring out how to set the hook good and doesn't get the opportunity to fish much, but he's always ready to go when the moment strikes.

Let us know which side you fall on in a few months!
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 10, 2018, 09:54:44 AM
Lol... yeah, that's what you think right now!
Just wait till that rabid gear monkey sinks it's teeth into you!
Dude, you're gonna end up just like me...
"Okay, one for this, one for that, a little Zebco on a light rod for fun... bet my lady would like something nice too... Oh, this is cool! Don't even need it, but it's cheap so I'll just put it on display... hey, that one may be broke, but it's good for spare bearings and refrigerator magnets... this one will fit in my car easily... is 7'6" too long? Let's find out... I think I may try fishing for some crappie, or maybe some big cats. May as well get something for each..."
Next thing you know, you're buying rod racks, collecting tackle boxes, your desk drawers are over flowing, and you're building a friggin boat!

And lord help you if you decide to restore a few old lures found at a yard sale for pennies.
Oh, and you're gonna start upgrading hooks and split rings on new lures as soon as they come out of the package!
May as well get some swivels too, there's always a time and place for them.

Brother, you're possibly stepping into a big hole! One of two things is gonna happen: you're either going to decide bass fishing is a waste of time, or you'll become obsessed. I just recently got to see my oldest son become obsessed. He hasn't even landed one yet, but the first time I took him out fishing a few months ago he hooked some sort of lake monster that had me scared his rod was gonna break. It was dragging out line like crazy and zig zagging back and forth. Then it spit out his mangled spinner bait.
He's still working on figuring out how to set the hook good and doesn't get the opportunity to fish much, but he's always ready to go when the moment strikes.

Let us know which side you fall on in a few months!


I know right...  I got a little excited already.  My wife is already annoyed with me talking about fishing already.   My kids want to go to.  I am have already been looking at kayaks.  To my defense I wanted one for a while.   


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: Bassin_VA on April 10, 2018, 11:41:12 AM
"I have a cheap combo from Walmart that will work for the time being... "

I did the same thing. When I jumped back into fishing from a looooong hiatius, i went to wally world and got an ugly stick, shimano spinning reel, and some PP. Picked up some EWGs, weights, swimming hooks, and a couple different packs of baits. I was good to go..  so I thought. Dang monkey!!

The different choices of baitcasters made my head spin and nothing really made sense...and some still dont to be honest. I still use that wally world combo today, but after reading alot  and some bad choices along the way, I ended up with some other set ups that I really like. One of those being a Fuego on a Dobyns Fury 734C.

Sent from my SM-G955U using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: 1ReelFanatik on April 10, 2018, 12:47:45 PM
Tiger, another rod to look at is the Escalade from Dick's Sporting Goods.  These sold for $100.  I assume they are being closed out as the price has been $50 for several months.  I bought a MH casting rod (the only model left storewide) to get my sister-in-law started on baitcasting rods.  I liked it enough after trying it out that I went back and bought one for myself.  Personally I like them better than the black Tec Spec I have.  Never used one of their Elite Tec Specs...a blue rod that costs more.

The guys are suggesting some good low cost rods, but a $110 Dobyns isn't going to leave you any money for a reel.  Nor will an $80 rod leave you much for a decent reel.  Not unless you can increase your budget.

Hopefully you have a place where your kids will be able to catch fish....even if only panfish.  I'd have 2 fishing partners if the fishing in my area didn't suck so bad.  Kids lose interest fast if there isn't any action.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 10, 2018, 01:22:24 PM
Tiger, another rod to look at is the Escalade from Dick's Sporting Goods.  These sold for $100.  I assume they are being closed out as the price has been $50 for several months.  I bought a MH casting rod (the only model left storewide) to get my sister-in-law started on baitcasting rods.  I liked it enough after trying it out that I went back and bought one for myself.  Personally I like them better than the black Tec Spec I have.  Never used one of their Elite Tec Specs...a blue rod that costs more.

The guys are suggesting some good low cost rods, but a $110 Dobyns isn't going to leave you any money for a reel.  Nor will an $80 rod leave you much for a decent reel.  Not unless you can increase your budget.

Hopefully you have a place where your kids will be able to catch fish....even if only panfish.  I'd have 2 fishing partners if the fishing in my area didn't suck so bad.  Kids lose interest fast if there isn't any action.


Before I take my kids I want to find areas to catch stuff.  Like you said they will lose interest.  My son for sure.  My daughter would have fun either way I think?


I have been looking and ready and heard decent reviews about the abu Garcia reels.  And I have been looking at the finwick eagle casting rods.  Good news is that it is almost my bday and of course Fatherís Day.  That means gifts!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 10, 2018, 01:40:46 PM

Before I take my kids I want to find areas to catch stuff.  Like you said they will lose interest.  My son for sure.  My daughter would have fun either way I think?


I have been looking and heard decent reviews about the abu Garcia reels.  And I have been looking at the finwick eagle casting rods.  Both of those would be about 100 and leaves me plenty of room.  Good news is that it is almost my bday and of course Fatherís Day.  That means gifts!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: DonM on April 10, 2018, 03:15:30 PM
"Another choice for rod is the BPS carbonlites. These are very sensitive blanks.
During the BPS Classic they had the combo for 100. carbonlite rod and reel. Not sure if they will have that sale again till next year. "
I bought the combo on sale.  It basically meant buying a reel and getting the rod free.  It is lightweight but really smooth.  I already had previous models but this one is lighter and NEWER.  :)
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 10, 2018, 10:18:52 PM
"Another choice for rod is the BPS carbonlites. These are very sensitive blanks.
During the BPS Classic they had the combo for 100. carbonlite rod and reel. Not sure if they will have that sale again till next year. "
I bought the combo on sale.  It basically meant buying a reel and getting the rod free.  It is lightweight but really smooth.  I already had previous models but this one is lighter and NEWER.  :)


Thanks for the input.  I will add that to things to look out for.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: SteelHorseCowboy on April 11, 2018, 02:06:16 PM
Can't say much to the Abu Garcia low pro reels except this:
Like I said earlier, steer clear of the Black Max. It's literally the cheapest, most low budget low profile reel they make and I wouldn't piss on it to put out a fire. And after than one reel, I'm leery of ever even thinking of getting another one. Still love my Ambassadeurs though.

Then I'll mention this; my old man wins local tournaments using nothing but Abu Garcias. But, his are much higher end than the BM and much more expensive.
And there are a few members here who love 'em.

As for the kids, a decent option may be a couple of those telescoping jigging poles. They can use 'em just like a cane pole with a bobber, they collapse for easy storage and transport, and can be found pretty cheap sometimes. As little as $5 when Walmart puts some models on sale.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 12, 2018, 02:12:18 PM
Can't say much to the Abu Garcia low pro reels except this:
Like I said earlier, steer clear of the Black Max. It's literally the cheapest, most low budget low profile reel they make and I wouldn't piss on it to put out a fire. And after than one reel, I'm leery of ever even thinking of getting another one. Still love my Ambassadeurs though.

Then I'll mention this; my old man wins local tournaments using nothing but Abu Garcias. But, his are much higher end than the BM and much more expensive.
And there are a few members here who love 'em.

As for the kids, a decent option may be a couple of those telescoping jigging poles. They can use 'em just like a cane pole with a bobber, they collapse for easy storage and transport, and can be found pretty cheap sometimes. As little as $5 when Walmart puts some models on sale.


You are right about the abu Garcia black model.   At this point would rather go over my budget and look at the dawia model that was recommended in here. 

As for the kids they have a cheap reel/pole combo.  That should be good enough until they show real interest in it and they are course usable.  Though I am not sure what I would want them to use as far as tackle.  They canít cast far ect...   I am thinking going basic and using a bobber with a worm or something.  That way they can see the bobber and know if they are getting a bite.   


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: SteelHorseCowboy on April 13, 2018, 09:01:41 AM
Worm and bobbers are always a great start for kids. There are plenty of fish attractants on the market too that you can chum the spot with to draw in some fish to help out.
Just wait till one of 'em catches something that fights back.
Like a Warmouth, good golly those little monsters hit like a freight train and fight like a demon, especially during their spawn. They're fun on "big boy" gear, you'd swear you just hooked something bigger, but they're an absolute blast on lightweight kiddie gear! If you happen to find some, do yourself a favor and pick up some ultralight gear for yourself, you won't regret it.

They look like a strange crappie/bluegill/smallmouth bass crossbreed to me, and they actually do cross breed with other species sometimes.(https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180413/d0b119841e52d85855762d36eec77dca.jpg)

Sent from my Nexus 6P using Tapatalk

Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: Smalls on April 15, 2018, 02:48:31 PM

You are right about the abu black max

Wanna see a cool magic trick with a $20 bill? Check out the pro max. The rod is... meh. Not garbage, not great. But the reel is money. I like it more than some of my $200 reels
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 15, 2018, 02:48:53 PM
Once again thanks everyone who commented.  Today I went for a few hours with a buddy and caught four.  Feels good especially now I know how to catch them at the pond by my house. 

(https://uploads.tapatalk-cdn.com/20180415/646374ddab5e35d8a4033232f815885e.jpg)


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: cbburke on April 15, 2018, 03:09:44 PM
You are having better luck that me

Two weekend straight at the local pond, I skunked both times.
I was walking over the bridge to take a short cut home.

there was a school of basses with some 3/4 lbs there. I didnt even bother to throw a line cuz they saw me and was "hauling" to get out of that spot.
Title: Re: Gear recommendations
Post by: jwtiger69 on April 15, 2018, 03:23:45 PM
You are having better luck that me

Two weekend straight at the local pond, I skunked both times.
I was walking over the bridge to take a short cut home.

there was a school of basses with some 3/4 lbs there. I didnt even bother to throw a line cuz they saw me and was "hauling" to get out of that spot.


The picture I posted is from the way out.  We were waking and I saw a few right by the bank.  Said screw it and casted.  That guy got away twice before I finally got him. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk