When it’s spring-time, most fishers resort to going after fish that tend to eat other fish that are smaller in size and these are probably going to be targeted with crankbaits, since their plastic lips enable them to dive deep underwater.
Now, for that, you’ll want to have a crankbait reel, in particular, to empower you to cast to a proper water depth with adequate speed and comfortable ease. The rod on its own won’t do you justice.
Luckily, these specially designed reels are becoming widely available, with plenty of options on the market.
We’re here to give you a full comprehensive review of the best crankbait reels that are capable that have proven worthy and deliver the optimal mix of appealing design, high performance, and smooth fishing experience.
List of the Best Crankbait Reels:
- KastKing Royale Legend Low Profile – Best Overall
- Daiwa Tatula Baitcasting Reel – Best for Light Crankbait
- Abu Garcia Revo Winch – Best for Big Crankbait
- Piscifun Torrent Baitcasting Reel – Best Baitcaster
- Sougayilang Fishing Crankbait Reel – Budget Reel
Our Top Picks:
|Weight||Gear Ratio||Inches Per Turn|
KastKing Royale Legend Low Profile
Abu Garcia Revo Winch
Piscifun Torrent Baitcasting Reel
Sougayilang Fishing Crankbait Reel
The 5 Best Crankbait Reels in 2020
1. KastKing Royale Legend Low Profile – Best Overall
If the outer appearance of the reel matters to you, this baitcasting reel is a good pick thanks to its sleek design. In addition, the KastKing Royale Legend offers a wide array of properties that ease the process of making a good catch.
Interestingly, the Royale Legend crankbait reel weighs only 7.2 oz. Its lightweight gives you a comfortable fishing session that allows you to go home with no sore hands or arms. Despite its low weight, it is capable of dragging up to 17.5 pounds of fish species.
This crankbait reel also presents a gear ratio of 7:1, which is considered quite high for cranking, but still delivers smooth performance and allows you to cast long-distance and accurately. Besides, it comes with 11+1 bearings that make a buttery casting and retrieval of the line.
The Royale Legend also introduces 31.5 inches per turn, commonly known as IPT. This feature is also known as the line recovery rate, and its function is to crank the bait as deep down as possible with the fastest rate while slowing down the process of retrieval. This allows the lure to delve deeper and stabilize until a fish comes in contact.
- Corrosion-resistant bearings
- Ultra-quiet operation
- Requires constant maintenance
- Relatively high Gear Ratio
The KastKing Royale Legend Low Profile is a crankbait reel for every fisherman. Whether you know your way with the fishing world or are still taking off a new journey, this crankbait will never fail you.
2. Daiwa Tatula – Best for Light Crankbait
Daiwa is a prominent brand that takes the lead in the fishing world. Its Tatula series always go for lightweight, high performance, and polished designs. The Daiwa Tatula reel, in particular, is an ideal option for an easy crankbait lure.
Not only does this reel have a shimmering body, but it also feels light even when held for long hours, coming at a weight of just 7.6 Oz. Most importantly, this small-sized reel is capable of dragging medium-sized fish of different weights and up to 13.2 pounds.
This drag force is definitely backed up with high-performance gear ratios, which equal 5.4:1. This ratio is deemed efficient for a crankbait since it is neither too high nor very low. Adding the 7+1 bearings to these features, you get enough smoothness and consistency when it comes to casting and retrieval.
Lastly, the Daiwa Tatula has an IPT of 27 inches, which is a high enough recovery rate to crank the bait deep enough. However, since it is higher than 23, you need to play it smart while retrieving the line. You should go slow enough while turning the handle, so the bait takes the time to work itself.
- Polished design
- Great drag
- Smooth casting
- Weak cast in severe wind
- Not the best ball bearings
The Daiwa Tatula Crankbait grants you a pleasant experience, whether you’re an expert or just a novice. With all the properties this reel presents, it can be easily used, and that makes it suitable for fishers of all experience levels.
3. Abu Garcia Revo Winch – Best for Big Crankbait
If you have gone deep enough into the world of fishing gears, chances are you have come across a product or two of Abu Garcia. This top-notch brand has produced the Revo Winch reels in the past few years, unleashing a set of eccentric features that match the criteria demanded by crankbait fisherman.
The Revo Winch reel is famous for its capability to throw big baits, although it only weighs 7.5 Oz, which is considered a comfortable weight to hold. However, the materials used make the reel feel a bit heavy to carry. Also, it is powerful enough to force large-sized fish out of the water.
The gear ratios presented by the Revo Winch reel are 5.4:1. This ratio is actually the average one needed to cast accurately and perform smoothly. It is also enough for cranking. Paired with 8+1 stainless steel ball bearings, the reel ensures excellent stability as well as durability against the abuse of water.
The line recovery ratio of the Revo Winch is 22 inches per turn. Falling between the rates of 19 and 23 makes the reel perform at its peak while cranking the bait into the depth of the water. Besides, this reel has a magnificent line capacity, allowing it to perform long casts and crankbaits.
- High durability
- Smooth operation
- Long-distance casting
- A little heavy
The Abu Garcia Revo Winch reel is worth the investment given its distinct features and properties that cater to both experienced anglers as well as newbies, ensuring a smooth fishing experience for all.
4. Piscifun Torrent Baitcasting Reel – Best Baitcaster
Piscifun Torrent comes in a low-profile design that offers all the needed features for performing crankbait capability.
The Torrent weighs about 8 ounces of solid materials that withstand numerous damaging factors. It also presents more than a few properties that give new anglers a more extensive range of flexibility to explore their options.
Among many other features, the variable magnetic brake stands out. This feature provides you with 11 different settings from which you can customize casting your crankbait in terms of style and distance.
The Torrent comes with a 7.1:1 gear ratio. Although it is considered a bit high for a crankbait, it actually provides you with the stability and control you need. Pair that with a noise-free 5+1 bearings count, and you’ll get a buttery and smooth operation to lure your fishes.
With a line recovery rate of 30 inches, it is easy to let your crankbait sink deeper into the water, luring different species that hardly make it to the surface. The Torrent also has a maximum drag of 18 pounds, which is enough capacity to lift large species all the way to the surface and out of the water.
However, the only drawback it presents is the small line capacity due to the low-profile design.
- A perfect option for beginners
- Smooth performance
- Accurate casting
- Still maintains performance for experienced anglers
- Limited amount of line
- Drag needs frequent adjustment
Piscifun Torrent is an incredible pick for many fishers thanks to its tremendous features and properties. Its variable magnetic brake feature makes it a perfect choice for novice anglers who still need to adjust the reel to match with their level.
5. Sougayilang Fishing Crankbait Reel – Budget Reel
The Sougayilang Fishing Crankbait Reel is one of those ultralight fishing gears that makes your life easier and much more comfortable. Holding this budget-friendly 8.3 ounces crankbait reel is a breezy experience, enabling you to keep reeling and casting all day long without getting tired too soon.
There are also other prominent features that Sougayilang crankbait reel offers to give you the smooth and consistent operation you’re after, making it suitable for new beginners and experienced anglers alike.
For starters, the Sougayilang comes with a gear ratio of 7.0:1, paving the way for a long-distance casting as well as an accurate one. This reel also uses an 11+1 bearing system that enhances its stability and control during casting. Moreover, the bearing system is made of stainless steel, which improves the reel’s durability.
Another highlight of this reel is the variable braking system. This feature is responsible for giving you more power and control over the line during casting. It also reduces the chances of the line getting caught into something or tangled. This reel also provides an IPT of 30 inches, which is considered an incredible line recovery rate for a crankbait.
- Smooth retrieve
- Great for beginner anglers
- Not suitable for all line types
The Sougayilang Fishing Crankbait Reel is a high-functional gear that is popular among experienced fishers. It also has all the right features needed for crank baiting and ones that new beginners look for; lightweight, high performance, and affordability.
What to Look for When Buying a Crankbait Reel
1. Weight and Size
Holding heavy reels can tire you really quickly. For that reason, experienced anglers always recommend going for reels that feel comfortable in your hands. As a beginner, opt for lightweight reels, so you don’t feel exhausted halfway through your fishing session.
Besides, the size is also important. Large-sized reels are known for their massive capacity to hold more lines. Thus, they are more efficient when it comes to chasing big species. Aside from their performance, the reel’s size has to match that of the rod. Otherwise, you may end up with a reel too big for your rod or the other way around.
2. Gear Ratio
The gear ratio is there to indicate how fast the reel works. So, basically, the gear ratio is a number that means how many times the spool rotates per a single handle rotation. No gear ratio is better than the other; it all depends on the fishing style you are after.
For crankbait fishing, you need a gear ratio between 5:1 and 7:1. While higher gear ratios are efficient in different types of fishing, crankbait fishing needs no more than 7:1. Therefore, it is crucial to consider going for a reel with a gear ratio within this range.
3. Line Recovery Rate
Another factor that you should consider before buying a crankbait reel is the line recovery rate. It is also referred to as inches per turn, and commonly abbreviated to IPT. This feature measures the inches of the line you can retrieve in a one handle turn.
The best recovery rate to go to for crankbait fishing is anywhere between 19 and 23. This means that each handle rotation retrieves between 19 and 23 inches, which is the ideal rate for new beginners. Such rate refers to how fast the bait gets into its maximum depths and stays down there long enough before it’s retrieved.
4. Bearings Count
The bearings count isn’t of efficiency unless it is of high quality. Always look for a stainless steel bearing system to increase stability and durability. This material usually withstands abuse and corrosion. On the other hand, low-quality bearings can result in several problems, the most common being premature wear and failure and poor heat-treating.
There are a lot of crankbait reels on the market. Choosing the best crankbait reel for you highly depends on your fishing style, so make up your mind on your preferences, and match those with the reels’ offerings.
Yet, as long as you pick up one of the best crankbait reels on this list, your fishing experience is unlikely to go wrong, so don’t worry about making the wrong choice.
If you want a risk-free pick, we would recommend the KastKing Royale Legend, offering a diverse set of properties that make it a must-have for every fisher.