Basics For How to Use a Baitcaster

 

This is Part 1 Click here for Part 2 How to use a baitcaster in your Backyard

how to use a baitcasterLearning how to use a baitcaster reel isn’t difficult but it does require patience and practice. Overruns and backlashes are the most common issue but are easily mastered when you follow the steps below.

Step 1: Which reel to buy and where to buy it.

Firstly, it’s strongly advised to purchase a good quality bait casting reel and Abu Garcia is acclaimed to be among the best. I strongly recommend the Abu Garcia 6500. Start with an average size reel and no more than a 7 foot rod. Ideally, a six foot light whippy fishing rod is ideal for learning. The Shakespeare ugly stick is the perfect choice.

Step 2: Loading the line onto the spool.

A good method for loading line onto a spool from the plastic spool provided by the manufacturer, is to place the spool in a half full bucket of hot water (not boiling). This tends to soften the line and iron out any spool loops and also helps avoiding twisted line. Use only mono film or nylon line as braided line doesn’t flow as easily from the spool with a baitcaster.

Once  having placed the spool in the bucket, thread the line through the eyes of your rod from the end back to your bait casting reel and secure it with a wrap around low profile knot that doesn’t stand much higher than the spool core itself and cut off the end as close as possible to the spool body. Many prefer not to tie a knot at all but to hold the first few revolutions with a piece of plastic tape.

If a fish is to take all your line, any kind of knot is not likely to hold anyway and the line will break because the drag will no longer be functional. By doing this you will ensure that the line is fed evenly across the spool with no “lumps”.
Having loaded the line and fed it through the eyes of your fishing pole, stand a few feet away from the bucket with your rod running horizontally to the ground or a little higher. Hold the rod on the upper hand grip and let the line pass on the inside of your fingers so that the line is kept reasonably taught as you wind the line onto the spool with the crank. The line feed will load the line evenly across the spool as it passes back and forth across the face of the spool. If the line overlaps itself, pull the line back out until there is no crossing of the line except at the very ends of the feed travel guide where the pawl reaches the ends of the spool.

Take care when loading the line onto the spool that the line is not too loose or too tight. Too tight is better than too loose as too loose will cause over runs and tangles whereas too tight will only slightly stretch the line which is not a bad thing with new line anyway.

Load only fairly light fishing line onto the reel. I suggest around 6 lb breaking strain to begin. The lighter the line the better and to begin don’t exceed around 10lb pound line. This gives you the advantage of having full control without relying on the weight of the line to assist you. I suggest loading enough line onto the spool to have it filled to around half to three quarter capacity. Fully loading the spool will tend to make you have more over runs, backlashes and tangles. After you master your casting, you can use heavier line and fill the spool to the manufacturers recommendations. Do not exceed the manufacturers recommendations when learning how to use a bait caster!

Step 3:

Your First Cast in Learning How to Use a Baitcaster.

Many people buy a and want to learn how to use a baitcaster simply because of the accuracy you can attain in your casting but to ensure accuracy, you’ll fist need a target on which to concentrate and aim at. I recommend using a plastic household bucket half filled with water. The weight of the water will stabilize the bucket against the wind or stop it from being knocked over if you are lucky and skilled enough to hit it with your cast.


 This is Part 1 Click here for Part 2 How to use a baitcaster in your Backyard