reel - bait casting

I am thinking of getting a bait casting reel. Been a spinning reel fan forever, but big spoons and spinners for pike and such are a bit heavy. I am looking at a Abu Garcia Ambassadeur 4600C3. Anyone familiar or other suggestions? Then, how about a rod? I’d like to keep thiis under $100.

I have a 4600 C4 bought on Ebay for under $50.00. I like it.

I have several Bait casting rods. I keep going back to a Wallmart two piece Harold Ensley (sp) 6.6 medium heavy rod. Less then $30.00 I use 10 lbs. Trilene Big Game.

I fish for Colorado, Walleye, Pike, Trout and Bass.


– Last Updated: Mar-16-05 10:08 AM EST –

I'm pretty much using a baitcaster exclusively now, when I'm using conventional tackle. I have 2 less expensive models by Shakespeare, a moderately priced Pinnacle and a pricey Shimano. The Shakespeares work ok and they were about $30, the Pinnacle is as good as the Shimano and cost me $60. I have both medium and light action rods. I would suggest using a medium action as you will have some oomph to the stick when you need it. I use a light action rod by Castaway as I prefer that type of action. It gives me longer casts, I can cast lighter lures with it and it makes every fish feel like a bruiser.

Some advantages I've found using a baitcaster:

1.) Less line twist. Equals fewer birdsnests.
2.) More acurate casting.
3.) Better lure control
4.) Better fish fighting power. It is essentially a winch.


1.) Annoying birdsnests, until you get the feel for thumbing the spool when you cast.

2.) Doesn't toss lighter lures all that well. Though, I can easily toss an unweighted plastic worm a good distance with my light action rod.

3.) Requires practice to cast effectively. Make sure you do this before you hit the water the first time. Bring your old rod/reel with you when you go so you can still fish after you get that huge birdsnest you can't get out on the water.

mono or braided
Thanks for the advice. Should I stay with mono or use braided line?

Bait Casting
Mono cost less and is more forgiving.

Braid is stronger for its diameter and gives great feel for fishing. Braid can makes a birdnest in a baitcasting reel that will make a all day project. Perhaps my technique needs work!

I don’t use braid on my baitcasters.

I have one spinning reel I use braid on. I use it for my bait/bank fishing.

I use 10 lb flourescent mono and it’s done ok by me. I still get the ocassional birdsnest and mono is pretty easy to clear up.

Bait Caster
I’ve got a 4000 series C3 and like it. The C4 has got more bearings, which ought to serve to make it that much better.

The great thing about the Abu Garcias is their resistance to salt-water and incredible durability.

I have three Abu Garcia reels, a Diawa Procaster, and a Bass Pro Shops Excel. For saltwater or estuaries, I use the Abus. For freshwater I use the Diawa and the BPS. I like them all. I had a Shakespeare that didn’t last a season. I fish rough water from a kayak, so my gear is frequently awash. The Shakespeare just didn’t hold up.

The key is to practice when you’re not at the water. Learn to cast to smaller and smaller areas effectively in your back yard or a park. Get a practice plug or make one by taking the hooks of your spoon.

Crank down the adjustments on your reels. Take a couple hula hoops or other reasonably large targets and be sure that you can consistently cast your lure into that target from close (and I mean a LOT closer than you’re used to - like 20’) range. Start backing up until you’re where you’ll be on the water. While you back up, loosen up the adjustments on your reel. Then start making the targets smaller and smaller. Pretty soon, you’ll have the reel adjusted just the way you like it and be able to cast into a Dixie cup from 50 yards. Well, that may be a BIT of an exaggeration, but it IS a fishing thread…

  • Big D

These reels are a bit harder to cast from a sitting position, but can work well with practice.

Just got a Pflueger" Trion" reel, it’s very easy to cast and is just under 100.00. Also lighter and smaller than 4600, and much much easier to cast.

TIPS… Braided line can be used without a lot of line troubles. spool up the reel, then take out a little more line than your longest cast, put some clear tape ( that you have taped to your shirt first, to lessen stickyness) around line on spool, then take up the line over the tape. this will keep line from getting caught deep in the body of the spool. if you get a big fish that takes you over that spot the tape just pulls out!

Next time you get a birdsnest try this! Turn your drag full tight. Put your thumb on the reel and line hard, birdsnest and all. Then crank hard, mabey 7-10 cranks. Check the nest. Still wacky then redo. This reverses the tangles from the bottom of the pack where it started.


Penn 309 Level Wind

– Last Updated: Apr-24-05 4:09 PM EST –

for saltwater bays, with red Cajun 30lb. mono - reel cost me $70.00 at local bait store (Suds n' Soda), 7' Chinese Tica "Snagging King" 30# rod $35 (a bargain at Zyla's). I just switched to a Penn 345 gti (USA) & a 7' Penn Slammer 20-50# (Chinese...)


– Last Updated: Mar-28-05 7:41 PM EST –

When picking out that tangle with thumb pressure on the spool,tighten the drag down also then crank handle forward,it's easier on the thumb.
Check out BASS PRO for good prices on any fishing tackle.If you go to thier store in missouri they have a customer return and overstock store on site that is very cheep.
You can also buy from thier catalog on line.
Braided line and mono have thier own specific useage,You may have to try both to see which one fits your need.Braided line does cost much more.
I needed to use both types on my fishing trip last friday with baitcasting gear and used mono on my spinning gear also.
You can get a free BASS PRO catalog by calling 1-800-BASS-PRO

oh yeah
I have plenty of baitcasting outfits. I wills say that most baitcasters under 75 bucks last me about a year before I kill them. Find a curado for 100 and you will fall in love. I have baitcasters from Pfleuger, pinnacle, spidercast, shimano, bass pro… I have found that about anything priced near 100 bucks will work fine. I just wait till they are on clearance or BPS has a big sale.

Rods: On the river I use 5.5 foot med action for everything. I need the short rod for the close quarters. On more open streaches I have a few 6 footers I will use. If you have space to use it a 6.5 footer would be great. BPS Bionic Blade rods are one of my favorites. I have rods from BPS, Fenwick, Browning, All star, Berkley, Abu Garcia… I just find rods that feels nice in my hands.

Line: I use spiderwire stealth or fusion on about all my river rods. I fish in heavy cover and need the abrasion resistance. The only mono I use on the river is P line 12pound. If I could only fish with one line it would be spiderwire.

good luck with your new purchase