Hi I am looking for suggestions on Spinning reels in the $100-$125 range. I am typically casting for Large and Smallmouth bass and Walleye. Looking for ultra smooth drag features and ability to make long casts with 1/8- 3/8 oz lures. I am casting finesse plastics, stick and lip-less cranks etc. Tight lines !!
Spinning Reel suggestions
This will be the 20th trip to MN fall fishing with my two Shimano Sahara's. Both size 2500 with 8b test mono. Countless walleyes and other species caught on them. Never no issues. Cleaned every winter and stored properly inside. I would never buy any other reel. I have smaller versions for pan fishing. I cannot see spending the big money for other reels, these Sahara's work fine for me.
I picked up 3 Daiwa Exceler LT 2500 XH reels in the Spring. I use them for panfish primarily, but they would pair well with a light action walleye rod. I bought them because they are so light and would balance well with my 7' UL rods I use for pannies. Drag is smooth, and I can fit more line on the larger arbor for long casts. I plan on picking up 2 more this Winter and replacing the old Sahara's on my Walleye jig rods. They have a screw in handle which I really like. I wouldn't recommend them if you are targeting large bass and eyes. They are light reels, and will flex a little at the reel seat stem. I have landed some incidental pike, walleye and bass with no issues, so they might be fine up to say 5-6 lb fish.
Another vote for the Pflueger Presidents....I put 8# mono on mine for bass, walleye and the occasional northern and the #35 works well, it will take 6, 8 or 10# test, I always buy my reels for the middle line that I am going to use.
X2 on the Pflueger President's. Super smooth drag and smooth reeling. Caught everything from bluegills to salmon on them. Size 30 for all around fishing. Also have Pflueger supremes and you won't need to spend the extra money. Presidents are just as good and $30 less.
I have been a shimano guy for many years and this season tried a Bass Pro Shops Pro Qualifier 2 and a Lews, both reels performed better than the Shimano Sedona I bought . They are both a little cheaper than your price range but both cast far and the action is smooth . Will be buying another Pro Qualifier 2 for next year for sure and looking into another Lews
Again, Okuma carries several good reels that are less than $100 bucks with up to 10 ball bearings. Look at the Epixor or Inspira.
Daiwa Fuego. Or ...I'd buy 2 Daiwa Legalis. They're both great reels.
Pfluger makes some awesome reels. I have some Presidents that are over 10 years old that are still like new. The Supremes are great also. The President runs around $60. I fish a lot and they have never let me down.
Okuma makes some awesome reels that are really smooth and less than $100 bucks. Look at the Epixor has 8 ball bearings, or the Inspira has 9 ball bearings. Both super smooth, smooth drag's less than $100 bucks retail, and will stand up to any of the other reels on the market.
Daiwa fuego. Easy choice