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Topwater: Do you fish it with a Baitcaster or Spinning Reel?

  • Baitcaster

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Spinning Reel

    Votes: 0 0.0%

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Discussion Starter #1
Which is your go to rig for topwater?

Baitcaster or Spinning Reel
 

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I have both but I mainly fish from shore but i do like baitcasters for more even lure speed. This year I hope to have more time in the boat. I learned how to cast using Penn saltwater reels on the beach(surf casting) you learn real quick I sure took out enough birdnests. But the baitcasters sure have changed over the years "adjustable magnetic brakes" I guess it gives my thumb a break? They do work great when adjusted correctly.
BigBill
 

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Baitcaster. Prefer the accuracy and control you get with them. Lawdog
 

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Discussion Starter #4
It seems like the Spinning Reels are winning slightly. Personally, I have been using a baitcaster for the last several years. The main reason is the newer spinning reels I have used don't seem to be as reliable as they once were back in the days of the Cardinal 3's and Mitchell 300's. I do like the fact that the new ones don't click though. Of course, I have never bought one of the higher dollar versions that should tend to be better made. Still, I have had way too many problems with handles coming loose and bails getting bent in the rod box to trust them when I need them.

A few years ago, I broke my wrist and arthritis has settled in on it pretty hard. I have had to change over to a left handed baitcaster to get the action out of the baits that I like, and that was sort of difficult at first. I'm used to it now, and have thought seriously of converting some of my others to leftys as well. I did design a 3600 ABU to be able to throw the lighter topwater baits easier. Changing the bearings to ABEC 7's and tricking the spool a good bit. However, I haven't been able to locate a lefty version of that reel, and have changed over to a Chronarch SF for the application.

Skipper
 

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Skipper,

Do you think that the poll should have read;

Baitcasters
Spinning
Spincasting

I can't help but think a number of people use spincasting and call it spinning. My son for one, something lacking in his education. I mean with the newer reels and rods available it is so easy to learn to use a baitcaster. Is it that you can't cast with your right arm or that you can't reel with your right hand? Lawdog
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I probably should have included spincasting, but its pretty rare these days to see one in the bass world. I do still think a spinning rod might have a slight advantage in that the action you can provide to the bait is slightly better. I don't use many spinning reels at all. Of the 15 or so sticks in my boat, all but 1 or maybe 2 are baitcasters. They are just so much more reliable, accurate, and powerful fighting the fish that spinning gear.

Its actually my left wrist that was crushed. It gets stiff after a pretty short time of constant movement. Specifically with topwater baits like a pop R or the newer soft plastics like Flukes and Senkos the action is provided by the flick of your wrist (the one holding the rod) I can reel alright with it, but I can't flip it very long at all. I can cast with either arm, although not long with the left one. I use a casting technique similar to Jimmy Houston's, that roll flip thing.

Skipper
 

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Skipper,

I cast about the same way, roll cast I always called it. We get lots of wind in Northern Calif. and it's about the only way you can still get the bait where you want it. Using spinners and buzz baits you know you can't get them up in the wind and still hit your mark. I wish you luck in find a left handed casting reel that does what you want it to do. Luck and big bucket mouths to you. Lawdog
 

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Discussion Starter #8
So far that Chronarch SF in the left version has been a great reel. Of all the brands I have worked on and fished with, Shimano's Chronarch SF is by far tops for reliability, smoothness of operation, and toughness. I have yet to toss a Chronarch in either the regular 100A or the SF. Now that Magnesium reel is a whole other animal. I don't recommend it. The metal frame is so light of metal that they had to install a stiffener in it to keep the screws from pulling out of the magnesium. I just don't think its a lifetime reel like the first one and the Gold SF version. That and it costs another 100 bills.

I do trick out my SF's just a bit. I first remove the spool shaft clip that is located under the tension knob between the 2 white plastic spacers. This thing riding on the shaft slows the spool slightly. Removing it has no effect on the reel other than if you open the left sideplate, the spool could fall out. I always know I don't have the clip, and have never had that problem, nor have any of the guys who I have done work for. Additionally, I dress out the bearings with Rocket Fuel Yellow. First you clean all the grease and oil out by spraying it out with carb cleaner. Let them dry completely (about 45 minutes to an hour) then put in 1 drop of Rocket fuel. Your factory Chronarch SF will free spin about 8 to 9 seconds off the shaft, with these modifications, it should pick up to about 15 seconds. Installing ABEC 7 grade bearings will pick it up to upwards of 18 to 20 seconds. Additionally, I rarely use more than 3 of the centrifugal brakes, so I remove 3 of them. This lightens the spool slightly and makes it a little faster. You may also find it helpful to smooth the races on the frame with a dremmel where the spool rides. Most of the time, the spool doesn't contact, but under stress it can. This will smooth that out some.

Skipper
 

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Baitcaster

I like the baitcaster for topwater. I also like a good trailer hook as well. The baitcasting gear gives me much more accuracy and I can control the speed quite a bit better too. I suppose it depends on the equipment you're used to.

Then again my bass fishing skills prove only one thing...You don't have to be good at something to enjoy it!
 

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baitcaster vs spinning

If you are throwing a full sized Zara Spook or musky Jitterbug you just about have to throw a bait caster. If you are throwing a floating 3" worm you just about have to use a spinning rig. If you are "skippin" a 8" gatortail under hanging willows a spin caster is the way to go. Learn the tools and you will know there ain't no answer to the question.
 

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If your baitcaster is a good one, and your tackle is balanced, it can be used for just about any topwater application. There are very few lures in my boxes that I can't use with the baitcasters, and those that I can't are usualy regulaied to either my lite or ultra lite spinning rods. I wouldn't try to throw a J-7 Rapala with my Spook rod, but I can throw it on my lite action Shimano baitcaster, as well as a weightless french fry worm. I've learned a lot since I've lived here and do most of my fishing on Lake Eufaula, or make the short trip to Lake Seminole.
I thoroughly detest a spincaster.
 

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Festus hit the nail on the head...

Festus, you got it sir. That answer was the most obvious and least given. There is no one answer just like there's no one bait or set of conditions etc. There's only a personal preference for each lure and condition.

Bravo.
 

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I am a sales representative for Penn Reels who makes very fine spinning reels (4300-4500ss), and the Internationl 955, a one piece, machine-framed baitcaster. I use the 955 for spinnerbaits, crankbaits, and jig-n-pig configurations. For my soft plastics and some jerk baits, I run my SS series spinning reels or my Penn Prion spinning reel. I use both style reels on topwaters. And, although unorthidox, us my spinning reels for the majority of my bass fishing. Just my two cents.
 
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