Within the world of fishing, having the right gear and equipment can make or break the experience, and can determine whether you successfully catch fish or not.
The thing is, there are many different types of reels and gear, and choosing the right one can be challenging.
A baitcaster is a type of reel that sits on top of the rod so that the spool is parallel to the rod. It is usually used with monofilament, fluorocarbon, and braid line types, as that is what it works best with.
The line then comes off the spool directly in line with the rod, as opposed to being let off away from the rod, like with spinning reels.
So essentially, when you’re baitcasting the spool moves with the casting of the line, meaning you need to be a more experienced angler.
If you don’t have the necessary control over it, the spool can end up moving faster, and the line can end up in a big knotted mess. (This knotted mess is what we call a backlash, which some refer to as the bird’s nest).
It’s a great type of reel for advanced fishermen and makes a huge difference in regards to the rate of fishing success.
However, it is important to use it right so that you avoid and reduce the risk of getting that dreaded backlash, which is why it is so often left to more experienced anglers.
If you want to know more about the baitcaster, and how exactly you should use it to avoid the backlash, then keep on reading. We’ve answered all of the most common questions!
How to use a baitcaster reel:
Using a baitcaster reel correctly is super important in order to avoid ending up with backlash, which is when the line ends up in a big knotted mess. (Trust us, the backlash is the worst because undoing that knot can be a hellish job, and it will make you lose a lot of time.)
So, how do you use a baitcaster reel? If it’s your first time using one, then these are the steps that we recommend you follow:
1. Adjust the baitcaster:
Use the adjustment knob on the spool to adjust the tension of the line, and check on the other side for the brakes. The tension knob is the most important adjustment you need to make before casting.
First of all, release the tension so that the line is free. (You do this by pressing the button). The lure at the end of your line should be able to hit the floor, without a bird’s nest occurring on the line.
If a bird’s nest (backlash) does occur, then this is a sign that the tension needs to be adjusted. Keep trying until you can free the line with no bird’s nest. Then it will be ready for casting.
2. Cast the reel:
Before casting, allow the lure to come down between 8 to 10 inches from the rod tip. This is because you will be using the momentum of the lure to create the arc, for the best cast possible.
The next thing to remember is that you need to keep your thumb pressed against the spool while you cast, this is to keep it under control so that there is no backlash once the lure hits the water.
You can use both the over-hand cast and the side-arm cast with this reel. However, if it’s your first time using a baitcaster then we recommend using the side-arm cast, as it is easier to get a better arc, and it also reduces the risk of getting backlash.
3. Stop the line:
The best way to avoid backlash is to stop the line right before it hits the water. So you feather it with your thumb all the way, and right before it hits the water you press the button so that the line stops. That way it will not cause a bird’s nest.
Should a beginner use a baitcaster?
Baitcaster reels are pretty hard to use, which is why they are usually left for more advanced anglers, who will be able to control them properly and get the most out of them for fishing success.
However, this doesn’t mean that a beginner can’t use a baitcaster. As a beginner, you can choose to use whichever type of reel you want, regardless of difficulty. However, the results will be very different depending on which one you pick.
The question, therefore, is whether a beginner should use a baitcaster or not. The answer depends.
If you want to catch fish and have a successful fishing outing, then the answer is no. With a baitcaster, beginners will spend the first few outings learning how to use the reel, and slowly get better at it so that they stop getting bird’s nests every single time they cast. Meaning, they won’t actually be catching any fish for quite some time.
But if you want to learn to use the baitcaster, and you’re passionate and ready for the challenge, then the answer is yes. Sure, it’s hard to get the hang of, and it will take a lot of tries. But the best way to learn to use the baitcaster is to just go ahead and use it.
Practice makes perfect, and through a lot of trial and error you will eventually be able to use it effectively, and your fishing skills will have then advanced massively!
How hard is it to learn a baitcaster?
Baitcaster reels are one of the hardest to learn to use, especially due to the high risk of getting a bird’s nest when you cast. However, through practice and patience, you will eventually master them, and once you know the trick they should be great to use on a regular basis.
How do you use a baitcasting reel for beginners?
Beginners will struggle to use a baitcasting reel effectively, as it is one of the hardest reels to master. The biggest problem will be the bird’s nest that will keep on happening every time you cast.
The way to use it is simply to follow the right steps and to practice until you’ve mastered the technique.
However, here are some tips and tricks for beginners, so that using the baitcasting reel is slightly easier:
- Use the side-arm cast instead of the over-hand cast. This will help make a better arc and will reduce the risk of getting backlash.
- Use a baitcaster reel with anti-backlash technology. To some, this is cheating. But honestly, it’s the best way for beginners to get used to this type of reel!
- Feather the spool as you cast so that you keep the line under control. This will massively reduce the risk of backlash.
- Stop the line right before the lure hits the water, in order to avoid the bird’s nest.
- Take some time to properly adjust the reel before you use it for the first time.
What is the Best Baitcaster for beginners?
There are many great baitcaster reel options for beginners. The most recommended one is the KastKing Royale Legend GT, as it is designed to be ideal for beginners, and it is also very affordable in its price.