How To Choose Shimano Spinning Reels
Not sure which of the series or models to pick for your fishing needs? The best Shimano spinning reel for you will depend on how and where you fish and some personal preferences. To help you find the best spin reel for you below are nine vital considerations.
Every series of Shimano reels make models that are capable for everything from super light freshwater species to larger off-shore game fish. The numbers in the product code mean the diameter of the spool. Bigger diameter means more line you spool your fishing reel with. For this article the smallest reel size is a 1000 used for light finesse fishing. On the opposite end of the spectrum is a monster coming in at 14000 in size.
Freshwater & Inshore Salt
1000 This size reel is best used with 4 to 8-pound line, for targeting small to medium crappie, bream, walleye, or trout.
2500 – 3000 This size reel is for jumping up to 6 to 15-pound test. A 2500 size reel is the most versatile size, but the 3000 size tend to get less twists. This size can handle every smaller species and medium fish like large mouth bass.
4000-6000 The actual reel size at 4000 is medium, whereas a 6000 size is bulkier and heavy. These size reels will use 10 to 17-pound test of mono or fluorocarbon. Use these sizes for big freshwater predators and lighter inshore salt fishing.
Salt – Offshore
8000-10,000 These are bigger reels both in physical size and capacity. Their function is to target big fish such as species that hit the 20 to 30 pounds mark. If you want to target striper, leopard shark or rays these are great size range of reels.
14000+ Anything over the 14000 size is for serious angler who want to catch massive species. This size of reel hold between 16 to 50-pound test of mono or fluorocarbon! You hunt sharks with this size of spinning reel.
It’s important that the reel size you choose matches the type and line size you fish with. Shimano prints capacity numbers on the side of the reel. The numbers denote the average range like this: pound-test weight/length in yards.
For example: a reel stamped with 8/140 equals 8 pound-test /at 140 yards. Which means this reel can use 6 and 10 pound weights too.
This is the built-in braking system for the reel. You will either choose a front or rear system.
- Front: Located on top of the spool. It features several drag washers for increased durability and performance. Used in moderate to expensive spinning reels.
- Rear: Found under the bottom of the reel body. While it’s easier access when fighting fish it isn’t strong. As a result it isn’t great for strong and fast fighting fish. Inexpensive reels like the Shimano IX use the rear system.
The maximum rating indicates the stopping potential a reel has. In this article the Shimano spinning reels have maximum drags ranging from 7 to 44 pounds (19.96 kg).
- Finesse Freshwater – Look for 7 to 15-pounds.
- Inshore Salt – Pick 15 to 20-pounds.
- Offshore Salt – Need 20+ pounds
These are the internal parts that transmits rotational force from the handle to the spool. If you want fast retrieves a reaction strikes, opt for ratios of 6.1:1 or higher. Whereas if you are using crank baits, spinner baits for heavy cranking, opt for a lower ratio like 4.1:1. If you are in the middle and want a versatile targeting try a 5.1:1 or 6.0:1.
Most Shimano Spin reels use shielded anti-rust ball bearings. Their function is to reduce friction when the bail arm and spool rotates. Reels print a set of numbers to state ball bearings like this: “6 + 1.”
The first number (6) means a six ball bearing unit and the second number (1) is one pinion/roller gear.
More high quality ball bearings equal more smooth and durable reel performance. The Shimano “Super Stopper II” pinion is what promises smooth hook sets.
Shimano Spinning Reels Construction
Shimano packs their products with industry leading technology which translates into the best quality reels. Features like the Cold forged Hagane gears. Combining with Shimano’s advanced Micromodule II and X-Ship pinion support system. These ensure unflinching smooth control and exceptional durability despite heavy loads.
Using the Propulsion Management System ensures perfect fishing line management. As well as, implementing the AR-C spool on every reel to deliver long accurate casting.
It should be obvious why reel weight is an important factor. Weight makes a big difference on long fishing excursions. The good news is that Shimano reels come in everything from ultra-lightweight 5.3 ounces up to 12.7 ounces for freshwater/inshore reels. Shimano salt-style reels range from a respectable 15.5 ounces to 23.5 ounces.
High Quality Materials
Reel body and handle materials are crucial as they determine the durability of the reel and weight. Shimano Hagane aluminum and carbon-fiber are the best materials. These are strong, corrosion resistant and lightweight. Shimano’s version of graphite, called X-T7 is rigid and being a composite it won’t rust.
Its good insurance to buy from a brand that covers their products. As a company, Shimano offers a two-year limited warranty. This covers defects in materials and workmanship. Be mindful to read the fine print in a warranty. It’s critical to know what conditions can void a warranty.
Finishing Up The Best Shimano Spinning Reels
As shown above, finding the right Shimano spinning reels doesn’t have to be hard. Most of us want a reel that is lightweight, powerful and has a smooth drag. With your new-found knowledge about the best 6 spinning reels, you will have an easy time picking the reel best suited for you.
Thanks for letting us at Outdoors Informed to help with your research. We do it, to ensure you can spend less time indoors and more time outside hooking fish.