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Top 10 Best Saltwater Reels

Fishing is one of the most relaxing activities that humans perform, and our list of the top 10 saltwater reels will get you started. The sight of the water rests the eye, the sound of flowing appeals to the ear, and the feel of flowing water is nature’s pacifier. Many people are lucky enough to live along a coastline, but many others only venture to the lands along the salty waters of the oceans once or twice in their lifetimes. Fishers who visit saltwater to enjoy a bit of relaxation should invest in a saltwater fishing reel. Unlike freshwater reels, saltwater reels have an anodized exterior and sealed protection for gear and gearing compartments to resist the corrosive effect of saltwater. Choose from this list of the best saltwater reels to avoid damaging your fancy freshwater reel.

1. Penn Squall LevelWind Fishing Reel

One of the best lightweight saltwater fishing reels, the Squall LevelWind has a graphite exterior and frame to protect against salt water. The battle force is an adjustable carbon fiber drag system that provides some of the tightest drag on the market to land the largest fish. The reel handles thick line for heavy trolling and reels in smoothly due to its dual stainless-steel ball-bearing action. The Squall LevelWind is a reel that will last through decades of intense battles with every type of ocean fish.

Penn Top Ten Saltwater Reels

2. Level Shark Saltwater Trolling Reel

Level Shark offers this affordable saltwater trolling reel for anyone who seeks the big fish from the confines of an ocean fishing boat. The exterior consists of lightweight bakelite sides with a machined aluminum spool. The handles are geared to be irreversible moving the force of the battling big fish to the 40-pound drag system. Sealed stainless-steel gears provide the driving force to land the largest of fish while your hand comfortably operates the spherical handle that fits comfortably in the palm.

Burning Shark Top Ten Saltwater Reels

3. Daiwa BG Spinning Reel

Daiwa designed the BG series of spinning reels to work in saltwater or freshwater with equal skill. The BG spinning reel is ideal for fishing off the bank in tidewater situations or those fish-filled coves found along every coastline. The reel is protected against the effects of saltwater corrosion on the exterior and features sealed ball bearings and gears to guard against the intrusion of any water. The real is rated hardy enough to handle braided line but handles light line equally well.

Daiwa Top Ten Saltwater Reels

4. One Bass Level Wind Trolling Fishing Reel

Fresh from One Bass Fishing Reels, this cheap version of the conventional saltwater trolling reel is stamped from airplane level aluminum. It allows you to resist saltwater corrosion while providing an equally important light and compact feel for the fisher. The reel is ostensibly designed for trolling but work for ocean jigging as well. The multi-disk drag system tires any size fish you hook. At times, when bottom fishing, the action of multiple fish bites provides the same feel as a large fish. Not to worry, this reel can handle it.

One Bass Top Ten Saltwater Reels

5. SeaKnight Rapid Saltwater Spinning Reel

The affordable SeaKnight Rapid Saltwater Spinning reel is one of the top spinning reels on the market for either saltwater or freshwater fishing. The reel is designed for the cast-and-drag fisher who wants to land the lightweight trout and the heavy ocean-running game fish with the same equipment. The reel is finished with a thick layer of corrosion-resistant material, and the ball-bearings and gears are sealed for protection against saltwater corrosion. The reel is equipped with a carbon0fiber drag system that supplies 33-pounds of drag.

SeaKnight Top Ten Saltwater Reels

6. Penn Fierce II Spinning Reel

The Penn Fierce II spinning reel is a top value item with superior protection for gears and ball bearings. The entire frame and side panels are covered in a saltwater resistant material to combat the corrosive effect of saltwater exposure. The drive unit consists of a four-ball bearing supported gear mechanism completely enclosed, sealed, and packed in marine grease. The reel is ready to accept braided or monofilament line, depending on your taste.

Penn 2 Top Ten Saltwater Reels

7. The Shimano TLD Reel

The Shimano TLD reel is considered one of the top offshore fishing reels on the market. The frame and side panels are protected via a thick graphite coating baked over a tough stainless-steel structure. The four stainless-steel ball bearings that drive the unit are coated with further protection to ensure extended life and are completely enclosed and packed in a maritime grease. The programmable drag system limits the impact of a strike and runs to the reel with limited discomfort for the fisher.

SHIMANO Top Ten Saltwater Reels

8. Daiwa Sealine-X SHA Conventional Saltwater Reel

Daiwa’s Sealine-X SHA works like the conventional offshore saltwater reel with the addition of extra drag and casting features for those times when casting lures over the ocean is appropriate. The reel is often used during tuna fishing where the casting technique is required to bag the big fish. The unit features a three-ball bearing drive that is encrusted in marine grease and sealed away for protection from saltwater. The massive six-element drag system ensures a smooth and reliable action to tire any sized fish.

Daiwa 2 Top Ten Saltwater Reels

9. The Penn Spinfisher VI Spinning Fishing Rel

Penn’s Spinfisher VI is an excellent casting reel that is protected against saltwater through an extensive program of enclosures and corrosion-resistant coverings. The spool mechanism is enclosed and sealed so that seawater can never reach it. The drag unit has an adjustable crank that allows you to determine the amount of drag, which is a great feature for fishers who pursue multiple species. The reel’s framework and side plates are protected via a saltwater resistance finish to ensure long life without corrosion.

Penn 3 Top Ten Saltwater Reels

10. The Dr. Fish Saltwater Spinning Reel

The extra-large spinning reel by Dr. Fish is a favorite of beach fishermen everywhere. The size of the reel allows for seemingly unlimited braided or monofilament line. The reel is built for casting long distances to find those holes beyond the surf where fish linger and feed. The unit is protected from saltwater by a generous layer of corrosion-resistant clearcoat. The high-powered reeling mechanism is thoroughly protected by maritime grease packed inside a double-sealed compartment.

Dr. Fish Top Ten Saltwater Reels

Finding the best saltwater reel for you depends on what type of seawater fishing you are considering. Offshore trolling is far removed from beach fishing. The species you are pursuing also influence your choice of a reel. The difference between fishing for Silver Salmon and the elusive Halibut is as immense as the ocean itself. However, there are excellent seawater reels for every type of fishing and species as this list attests.


By BCR Staff

August 2019