Surf Casting Reels | The Top 4 Surf Casting Reels of 2021

Surf Casting Reels – There are numerous saltwater baitcasting reels available, but which is the best for surfing? To be honest, there is no absolute best. There is nothing more important than what is best for you, your circumstances, and your fishing applications.

“Best” is situational and subjective, at times exceedingly subjective. Brand loyalty alone has an effect on our capacity to evaluate a film objectively. Additionally, there are a plethora of aspects other than the brand to consider when determining the best surf casting reels.

Our Top Picks

  • PENN Slammer III Spinning Fishing Reel
  • Abu Garcia Premium Cat 6500 CT
  • Daiwa SS Tournament
  • Diawa Sealine-X

PENN Slammer III Spinning Fishing Reel

The Slammer III has an IPX6 water resistance rating, meaning it can withstand forceful splashes from approaching waves. It should not, however, be submerged in seawater. It’s entirely waterproof and can withstand a full dunk, but don’t leave it submerged for too long.

You’ll get an automatic bail if you acquire one that’s 5500 or smaller. You’ll have to close the bail manually on the larger ones. Penn’s innovative CNC Gear Technology is included, and the 5500 size boasts a whopping 40 pounds of drag. If you’re looking for a surf fishing reel that can endure a hammering and put the breaks on huge fish, this is the one to get!

  • Strong and long-lasting (yet smooth).
  • Extremely resistant to saltwater (IPX6 rating).
  • The Dura-Drag technology generates a significant amount of drag.
  • There is ample capacity for lines.
  • Outstanding line lay.
  • Due to the aluminum construction, it is heavier than some other inshore reels.

Abu Garcia Premium Cat 6500 CT

Abu Garcia Premium Cast Series incorporates a carbon matrix drag system for improved durability and performance. It also features 2 HPCR bearings in the spool. A Corrosion resistant IAR bearing.

Line out an alarm. Magtrax brake system. Open top CT frame and Dual stoppers. This is a premium-priced reel but with it comes extreme high quality and durability. You will surely enjoy this reel. It’s no wonder why it’s rated 5 stars.

  • Durability and Performance.
  • Highly built framework.
  • Premium series.
  • Exceptional Drag system.
  • It is a bit costly.

Daiwa SS Tournament

This is my go-to distance casting or “long casting” reel because it gives me the most bang for my buck. Again, a reel that I purchase and have a dozen of. I’ve had these for a long time. Pick one of these up if you want to get into distance casting.

It was initially built as a long casting reel, and while some may consider it outdated now, it is unbreakable, corrosion-resistant, and available in four sizes in the United States.

One of the first reels with lengthy casting geometry was this one. This indicates that it has a longer spool. Usually, it’s a little shallower. The line lay is very excellent.

And the Daiwa was among the first to do so, and they continue to do so. It’s similar to the Z-series. They tried to end it, and people were outraged because it was simply too good to end.

  • Excellent drag.
  • Durability.
  • A time-tested design.
  • It is a bit costly.

 Diawa Sealine-X

These Non-Mag reels, the SLH, the Diawa Sealine, or the SLX, are practically equivalent for surfcasting. The SLX was released a few months later.

It has a few more bearings and bells and whistles, but they are without a doubt two of the greatest non-mag grills you can buy. It has a good amount of drag. The Diawa HG Tournament is another great that I would add to the list. They’ve been out of production for a while, but they’re still around. They’re out there somewhere.

It’s a non-mag reel that’s quite forgiving and definitely worth checking out. Also, solid corrosion resistance. 6.1:1 is the gear ratio.

  • The Sealine adds value to your arsenal at an affordable price.
  • The Sealine delivers on its promise, which is the capacity to land a large number of fish.
  • The Sealine is lovely in gold and black.
  • Superior Durability
  • Aluminum is more protective than a hard plastic frame. Additionally, aluminum is more resistant to long-term wear.
  • 17.6-pound maximum drag.

Spinning Casting Reels vs Surf Casting Reels

Spinning reels are ideal for light tackle and bait because they only need to lift the weight of the fishing line. Additionally, spinning reels have a sturdier construction than spincast reels and provide you with additional line alternatives.

A tall spool is used on surf fishing reels to allow for more casting distance. Bait runner reels perform well for surf fishing because they include a separate low drag system that allows the fish to swim with the bait before setting the hook. Surf fishing rods are often fairly lengthy to allow for vast casting distances.

Waves casting is similar to ordinary casting, but it focuses more on distance and accuracy to land your bait in the surf. Hold the rod in your hand, bend your arm up to a 90-degree angle, and swiftly flik out the pole, straightening your arm to launch the bait into the water for an overhand cast.

A surfcasting reel (also known as a saltwater casting reel) can be a spinning reel or a baitcaster that has been modified to cast great distances. Surfcasting reels with a baitcaster-style spool have a large, spherical spool that can store a lot of lines, making them excellent for long-distance casting.

How to choose casting reels

When it comes to fishing reels, it is critical that you select one that is compatible with your rod and fishing line. You want to match the sort of reel with your rod and line in the same way you want to match your significant other.

Choose one that is long-lasting and appropriate for your skill level. Instead of a baitcasting reel, I recommend starting with a spincast and spinning reels if you’re new to this activity. You don’t want to purchase a reel designed for more experienced anglers.

Simply practice on the reels that are easiest to learn before moving on to a baitcasting reel or whatever you choose.

If you’re having difficulty with surfcasting reels or you are considering purchasing a specialty reel, we’d like to assist you. You’ll find some helpful hints below, as well as a detailed discussion of what we look for in a decent casting reel, as well as reviews of some of our favorites.

What To Look For In The Best Long Distance Surf Casting Reel 

Match Your Needs

You can invest in a reel that is large enough to haul in massive sharks and tuna, but if you’re only fishing for 20 lb fish, you probably don’t need it. If you’re looking for a good long-distance reel, purchase one that can cast long distances. 

But if you don’t need a reel that casts that far, skip it – extra length in this regard isn’t always better because you might be sacrificing in other areas. Bigger isn’t always better. Very few fish will run 100 yards, so don’t feel the need to tack on extra length to your casting distance. 


When you are looking for a good reel, you’ll notice that they come in various sizes, usually starting at 1000 and working their way up. 

Generally, the larger the number that is listed, the bigger your reel is going to be. 

Smaller sizes are better when used in freshwater fishing settings. Those that are larger have stronger drag systems as well as larger line capacities and spools to handle more intense saltwater fishing. 


Durability is one of the most important factors you can look for in a long-distance surfcasting reel. Having a reel that breaks in the middle of hauling in a massive fish is no fun. 

Consider reels made out of long-lasting materials, like stainless steel and corrosion-resistant aluminum. You won’t regret paying a bit extra for a high-quality reel that will last you a lifetime.

Drag Strength

A good drag is often significantly more important than any other factor when you are buying a long-distance surfcasting reel.  There are very few reels out there that will cast 300 feet or more without the right rod and technique.

Look for a reel with an excellent drag and don’t worry so much about the line capacity of your reel. Drag always wins. The best reel for surfcasting will be one with at least 20 lbs of stopping power. The larger the fish you intend to go after, however, the more drag power you will need. 

Corrosion Resistance

One of the biggest issues with reels used in saltwater conditions is that they tend to wear out more quickly because of the saltwater. If you plan on surf fishing, always consider a corrosion-resistant reel since it will withstand prolonged exposure to the elements.

Reels built out of corrosion-proof materials are best, as they will be better equipped at handling the abrasive effects of both sand, saltwater, and heavy surf. 

Those that are sealed or watertight, protecting vital elements like the drag system, bearings, and gears are best at preventing saltwater corrosion.

And remember, too, that even if you select a corrosion-resistant reel, it is going to need a good cleaning from time to time. After each fishing trip, rinse out your reel with a splash of freshwater to prevent saltwater from accumulating. 

Ball Bearings

All fishing reels have ball bearings to help provide smooth casting and retrieving. The number of bearings you have will tell you how quickly and smoothly your retrieve and casts are. 

The more ball bearings a reel has, the smoother it will be to operate. If you are surfcasting, you will want to select a reel with plenty of high-quality bearings. 

Those with anti-reverse bearings are also ideal, it will eliminate back play when you are trying to set hooks in tricky situations. 

Gear Ratio 

Many people overlook the importance of gear ratio when shopping for a new long-distance surfcasting reel. Don’t be one of these people. The gear ratio is important as it indicates your line retrieval and cranking powers.

For example, as your gear ratio gets higher, you will have lower cranking power with a quicker line retrieval.

Conversely, if you have a low gear ratio, it will have more cranking power yet have a slower retrieval. If you are reeling in giant fish, keep in mind that you will need to sacrifice a bit of retrieval speed.

A medium or average gear ratio is a good balance, as it will let you have decent retrieval with a fair amount of cranking power for big fish. 

Why You Need A Long-Distance Surf Casting Reel

Long-distance surfcasting for fish is an enjoyable hobby – but it can be quite abusive on your regular old fishing gear. Therefore, you need to shop for gear that will hold up to these demands.

The very best long-distance surfcasting reels are strong and corrosion-resistant, offering you all the torque and durability you need to handle tough fish, jagged rocks, corroding saltwater, and other harsh conditions.

These reels aren’t for the faint of heart – but once you find the perfect one, you’ll likely have a piece of equipment that will remain in your gear arsenal for life.

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