The Best Spinning Reels

Spinning reels are a must-have accessory when fishing with bobbers or rigs, dead or live bait, and even artificial lures. After seeing a buddy have a great day of fishing with a spinning reel, you want to own one too, so which are the best?

These are the top 10 spinning reels for anglers:

  • Shimano Stradic 
  • Ozark Trail 5+1 Ball Bearing Spinning Reel
  • Lew’s American Hero Speed Spin Reel
  • Okuma Stratus VI Spinning Reel
  • Shimano Sienna Spinning Fishing Reel
  • Abu Garcia Revo SX Low-Profile Fishing Reel
  • Daiwa Regal LT Spin Reel
  • Pflueger President Spinning Fishing Reel
  • Avet HX
  • Ugly Stik GX2 Youth Rod 

What is it that makes each of these 10 spinning reels such phenomenal finds? In this article, that’s exactly what we’ll tell you. We’ll go through each reel and talk in detail about its features and pricing so you can pick the best one for you!

These Are the 10 Best Spinning Reels

Shimano Stradic – $210

Starting our list is the Shimano Stradic, which includes the models ST1000HGFL and STC3000XGFL.

For gear durability, Shimano adds X-Ship technology. The X-Protect water-repellent coating is designed to resist the corrosive, damaging effects of water. 

Also aiding in preserving the spinning reel is the labyrinth construction, which improves the level of water resistance while keeping the rotor and gear rotation lightweight. Waterproof Drag is weather-resistant too. 

With Silent Drive, as you cast, your reel makes less noise so it doesn’t disturb the fish. You’ll also like the Propulsion Line Management System, which allows you to extend your casting distance compared to using a spool lip design. You’ll be at lower risk of wind knots and backlashes thanks to this management system.

The Hagane Gear and Body are impact-resistant metal for smoothness, durability, and less body flexing. 

With Cross Carbon Drag, you can select from more drag settings than ever, all of which are smooth like butter. The Aero Wrap II two-speed oscillation system creates crisscrossing spool patterning that lessens the friction of your line. 

You can buy the Shimano Stradic in a 1000- or 3000-reel size with an interchangeable retrieve. 

Ozark Trail 5+1 Ball Bearing Spinning Reel – $20

Who says a good spinning reel has to be overly expensive? We don’t! The Ozark Trail 5+1 is available for under $50, yet it’s sure to get all your fishing buddies talking.

The titanium line guide is built to last, as are the precision-cut gears. The available gear ratio for this spinning reel is 5.1:1.

Ozark’s reel has an anodized and machinated aluminum spool as well as one-way clutch instant anti-reverse bearings. The bearings stop backlash on the reel so you can bring in your catches with less drama. 

The centrifugal brake system is adjustable, and the Trail also features reinforced graphite side plates and a frame that keeps things light so you can fish just the way you want to. 

Lew’s American Hero Speed Spin Reel – $50

A classic spinning reel that’s worthy of your consideration is Lew’s American Hero.

Although it’s low-cost, the American Hero boasts Speed Lube technology that’s designed to withstand all sorts of weather, from hot and balmy summer days to colder autumnal afternoons. The multiple disc drag system is purposefully oversized for just the right amount of friction on the spool.

The handle of the American Hero is built from tough anodized aluminum. The SoftTouch knob prevents blisters and pain. You can even fold down the handle so it doesn’t interrupt your latest catch.

The pinion gear is solid brass that’s precision-cut while the bail is thickened aluminum, and the spool is double-anodized aluminum. The rotor is graphite that doesn’t weigh much but is still rugged. The gearbox is also thin.

The American Hero has a five-bearing system that includes a Zero-Reverse one-way clutching bearing that can keep your load moving in the right direction so you never miss out on a potentially great catch.

Lew’s American Hero speed spin reel is available in reel sizes 200 or 300 with an interchangeable retrieve. 

Okuma Stratus VI Spinning Reel – $50

Okuma is a trusted name in fishing rods and reels, so their Stratus VI spinning reel certainly deserves a spot on this list. Not only is it high-quality, but the price is right too.

You can choose from five models of Stratus VI, which are the SVI-10-CL, the SVI-30-CL, the SVI-40-CL, the SVI-55-CL, and the SVI-65-CL. The gear ratio range is 4.8:1 to 5.0:1. 

As you handle this spinning reel, you’ll quite appreciate the EVA knob, which feels great in your palm. The machinated aluminum spool is ready for all your fishing adventures. Augmenting the spool is the bail wire, which is fatter on the Stratus VI than what you see in other reels.

An elliptical gearing system improves reel performance, as does Okuma’s CFR, which is short for Cyclonic Flow Rotor technology. 

We have to talk about the graphite body of the spinning reel as well, which is corrosion-resistant to look good for a long time to come.

The other features are a machine-cut precision brass pinion gear, Quick-Set anti-reverse bearing, and 1RB+6BB to improve smoothness. 

The Okuma Stratus VI features an interchangeable retrieve. Depending on the model, the reel size is 10, 30, 40, 55, or 65. 

Shimano Sienna Spinning Fishing Reel – $30

Here’s another great spinning reel from Shimano, the Sienna

Designed for performance and balance, the Sienna includes Shimano’s Propulsion Line Management System, which you’ll recall lowers the risk of wind knots and improves your casting distance. 

An included Super Stopper II lets you anti-reverse at a moment’s notice without any chances of back play. The 3+1 bearing system makes the Sienna an ideal choice for light inshore fishing and freshwater fishing alike. 

This lefty/righty fishing reel is renowned for its responsiveness. You can select from a variety of gear ratios for the Shimano Sienna, including 5.0:1, 5.2:1, 5.6:1, or 6.2:1. 

Abu Garcia Revo SX Low-Profile Fishing Reel – $170

An Amazon’s Choice product, the Abu Garcia Revo SX low-profile reel might be your choice as well. 

Admittedly, this is a more expensive spinner reel than many of the others we’ve reviewed to this point. However, the Revo SX has lots of great features that justify the price. For instance, there’s the Infini II Spool, which increases your castability and can withstand even “extreme loads,” says Abu Garcia.

One roller ball bearing when used in conjunction with the nine stainless steel bearings eases your retrieve and castability, as both will feel easy and natural. DuraClutch has all sorts of benefits too, including better casting smoothness, less thumb bar resistance, and durability.

The dual braking as part of the Infini Brake System uses centrifugal braking and magnetics to keep both halves of the case under control no matter which bait style you’re using. 

With an X2-Craftic alloy frame that’s both rigid and lightweight, you get a corrosion-resistant spinning reel that can handle increased drag pressure. The frame also features a handle that’s 90 millimeters with an extra-large PVC knob for comfort, leverage, and handling.

The side plates are C6 carbon, which increases durability and strength without making your spinner reel heavier. 

The Power Stack Carbon Matrix Drag System included with the Revo SX is another standout. The max amount of drag the system can handle is 24 pounds thanks to the thick carbon washer. 

You can select between 6:6 and 7.3:1 gear ratios for the spinner reel models; the gears are D2 gears with a brass main gear. 

Daiwa Regal LT Spin Reel – $69

The Regal line is a Daiwa standout, and the Regal LT is among the best spin reels in that line. 

The Regal LT is available in seven models: the RGLT1000D, the RGLT2000D, the RGLT2500D, the RGLT2500D-XH, the RGLT3000D-C, and the RGLT3000D-CXH. The gear ratio for the Daiwa spinning reels ranges from 5.2:1 to 6.2:1.

A machinated aluminum handle with a large knob makes using this spinner reel easy and comfortable. The swept-back angle of the handle is out of your way so you can focus on reeling in that huge catch pulling on your line.

The Regal LT features up to nine ball bearings as well as one roller bearing. These bearings improve the performance of the spinner reel. A carbon-light body never weighs you down.

Automatic Tournament Drag or ATD is a Daiwa exclusive. The grease-impregnated discs have higher energy yield, improving your starting grinding power and keeping your drag stable. 

Air rotors are another Daiwa exclusive technology that distributes rotor strain across the entirety of the rotor rather than in specific areas. This can make your rotor last longer. That sounds good to us! 

Pflueger President Spinning Fishing Reel – $58-$87

We’re also quite fond of the Pflueger President and think you could be too. 

Am ambidextrous spinner reel, the President is available in five models, the PRESSP20X, the PRESSP25X, the PRESSP30X, the PRESSP35X, and the PRESSP40X. All but the first model have 10 bearings; the former has seven. 

The soft-touch knob makes it more convenient and comfortable to fish all day. The handle as well as the bails are aluminum so your spinner reel stays lightweight. The rotor and body are graphite for the same purpose. 

If you’re looking to fish in colder waters and catch fish that are weary to anglers, then you’ll quite like the President’s slow oscillating gears. The sealed drag system stays safeguarded from the elements too. 

You can buy the Pflueger President in five different reel sizes that correspond to the above models. The sizes are 20, 25, 30, 35, and 40. 

Avet HX – $440

Okay, so you need a big budget for the Avet HX, but we’d say it’s worth every penny.

The spinner reel features a 3 3/8th-inch HX crank handle with an oval-shaped knob for grip. The spool is wider than usual to handle plenty of fishing line at once. You’ll also appreciate the machinated aluminum rod clamp. 

The harness lugs are stainless steel and reversible so you can put them in the reel when you’re not using them. An offset machinated handle arm prevents crank wobble and lowers your centerline profile. 

The alarm clicker is a nice feature, and you’ll also like that the ball bearings (eight of them) are individually sealed. Avet’s Avedrag dry-carbon fiber has drag to increase its resistance to wear and to allow you to stop when you need to.

The HX is durable through and through. It has a one-piece frame, and that frame is anodized to prevent corrosion. The stainless steel and aluminum parts are 6061 T-6 marine-grade.

Ugly Stik GX2 Youth Rod – $40

Who says the kids have to stay home when you want to go fishing? With the Ugly Stix GX2, they can experience the fun of spin fishing from an early age!

This low-priced beginner’s rod comes in a size 30. The spool is made of machinated, anodized aluminum, and the extra ball bearing boosts performance so your kids will feel like fishing pros. 

A two-piece rod, the GX2 is fiberglass and graphite so it doesn’t break easily yet doesn’t weigh too much either. You don’t want a spinner rod that’s too heavy for the kids, after all! 

The Ugly Tuff stainless steel guides are single pieces so you don’t have to pop anything out to use this reel.

With EVA grips, even tiny hands won’t mind holding on for a while. An included Ugly Stik Clear Tip is very responsive so your kids won’t miss a potentially big bite on their line!

Final Thoughts

Spinner fishing reels support all types of bait and are often made with aluminum or stainless steel gears and other features. If you’re looking for a spinner reel that doesn’t break the bank, we reviewed plenty of options today. You can also buy a more expensive reel on this list so you can be the envy of all your fishing friends!

Geoff Southworth

I am a California native and I enjoy all the outdoors has to offer. My latest adventures have been taking the family camping, hiking and surfing.

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