Buying fishing equipment as a beginner can be confusing. The options of rods, reels, lures and other tackle is boggling. Manufacturers have designed all the equipment to be specialized or so it seems. Selecting the right equipment takes a little knowledge. This applies to fishing for bass, catfish, and any other species.
Understanding how a fishing rod works is a good start. They have various lengths, powers, and actions. Which rod depends on how you will fish also. Then there are reels and choosing the wrong one will be a waste of money. Reels come in several types with numerous features. The choice of lures can be confusing, even to an experienced angler.
Beginner Equipment Rods
What species of fish do you plan on catching? This is step one in rod selection. Lighter rods are for small fish and heavier rods are for big fish. You need to know what fish are the targeted species and how you will fish for them. Live baits or single hook lures require a certain rod, whereas, fast-moving multiple hook lures work better with something else. General fishing will have its own unique option also. I recommend reading this article. It goes into detail about fishing rods and choosing the correct one.
|Bass||Spinning||Live Bait||7′ to 7’6″||Med||Moderate|
|Bass||Spinning||Lures||7′ to 7’6″||Med.or Med-Heavy||Moderate|
|Bass||Baitcast||Soft Plastics||6’6″ to 8’6″||Med.or Med-Heavy||Slow|
|Bass||Baitcast||Reaction Lures||6’6″ to 8’6″||Med.or Med-Heavy||Fast|
|Walleye||Spinning||Live Bait||6’6″ to 7’6″||Medium||Fast|
|Walleye||Spinning||Jigging||6’6″ to 7’6″||Medium||Fast|
|Walleye||Spinning||Crankbaits||6’6″ to 7’6″||Med-Heavy||Moderate|
|Panfish||Spinning||Any||5′ to 7′||Ultra-Lite or Lite||Fast|
|Trout||Spinning||Any||6′ to 7 1/2||Light||Fast|
|Catfish||Baitcast||Live Bait||7′ to 8’6″||Med-Heavy||Moderate|
|Musky||Baitcast||Lures||7’6″ to 9’6″||Heavy or above||Fast|
|General||Spinning||Any||6’6″ to 7’6″||Medium||Fast|
Rods and Their Use
The above table is general guidelines. Bass fishing in streams may only require a medium lite action, whereas lake trout will need a heavier rod than regular trout.
Beginner Equipment Reels
The reel has to match the rod in size. Beginners buying equipment tend to buy a reel too small or large for their needs. The size is identified with a number. The sizes range from 1000 to 5000 and above, only the first two numbers mean anything. Reels have a line rating also. You can match the reel rating to the rod rating. This is the simplest method of choosing the correct size. Additionally, the size selection is large also, allowing anglers to match any rod.
|6000 or up||14-25||30-60||20+||Heavy or higher|
These are general guidelines of reel sizes and specifications. These numbers vary between manufacturers. The key is to find a reel that balances with the rod and falls into the guidelines. A rod that is tip heavy will cause fatigue, consequently, a rod that is butt heavy will not cast as good. Place a finger or two under the fore handle of the rod. It should be balanced, if not the reel is the wrong size. Read how to choose the right spinning reel article.
The rod and reel are chosen, What about the line, it is just as important. An inferior line will be grief and a lot of it. The beginner buying fishing equipment may overlook the value of a quality line. The three types of line have pros and cons associated with their performance. You need to know which type is best for you, based on how you fish. The stretch, abrasion resistance, and shock strength all play a role. The article on choosing the right fishing line will clear this up for you.
This article should give you an idea of what to look at in fishing equipment. The various tackle requires specific knowledge on buying, how to use, and where to use. I recommend reading my other articles on reels, rods, lures, and lines before purchasing. The information contained in the articles will save you time and money. Knowing what you need is the first step in enjoying fishing.
Keeping fishing simple for tight lines and bragging rights.