Coarse & Match Fishing Reels
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Coarse and Match Fishing Reels
A rod without a reel is nothing more than an expensive stick of carbon, which is why we, here at Angling Direct, have made sure to create a comprehensive selection of reels – all of which have been designed with coarse and match fishing in mind. Reels are some of the most technical items of angling tackle around so it pays to invest in quality. This is why we have made sure that all the reels in our collection are manufactured to the very highest quality, ensuring that you are always left with a top quality reel which is perfect for your needs. Nevertheless, you will find some differences between each of the reels that we stock. This is why we have created this small coarse and match reel guide, in order to ensure that you can invest in the perfect complementary reel for your coarse and match rod.
To start off, there are two types of reel available in our coarse and match range. The most popular of these is the fixed spool reel. This is a reel option which is used across the angling disciplines, including the likes of carp fishing, predator fishing, and sea fishing, and it is an excellent versatile option for the coarse and match angler. The second option available is a centrepin reel. This is an option which is exclusively used when river fishing and it is the most traditional of the two reels. Here’s a little more information about each of the reel types, their strengths and weaknesses, and what to look out for before you make your purchase:
Fixed Spool Reels
We have a huge range of fixed spool reels available for the coarse and match angler on our site. These are available at a huge range of prices for anglers of all ages, abilities, and budgets. Whether you’re a first-time angler looking to try out the joys of coarse fishing or you’re a dedicated player on the match scene, you’ll be able to find the perfect reel for your needs.
One thing you’ll want to look out for when you’re investing in a high-performance match fishing reel is the material from which it is constructed. You’ll find that, more often than not, the reel you’re looking at will boast a carbon construction. This is because carbon fibre is both lightweight and durable, ensuring that your reel is well balanced and high performance. Some manufacturers will use their own variations on this, including the likes of magnesium, graphite, and aluminium. In these cases, the method used to construct the body or the spool of the reel has usually been modified too – for example, aluminium reels are usually cold forged in order to ensure that they can offer the kind of strength that you’ll require as a dedicated coarse and match angler. It’s not unusual for the spool and the body to be manufactured from different materials, either, as each part of the reel is designed with a different purpose in mind. Regardless of the material used in the reel, you want to ensure that it is both rigid and light in weight. The more rigid the reel is, the better it will perform under pressure. The lighter in weight the reel is, the more balanced it will sit on the rod and the more comfortable it will be to use over an extended period of time.
Another point you’ll want to consider when you’re looking a top quality coarse and match fishing reels is the number of ball bearings the reel contains. As a general rule of the thumb, the greater the number of ball bearings that the reel boasts, the greater the overall quality of the reel. This is because ball bearings prevent friction in the body of the reel, ensuring that the vital internal components of the reel can function without resistance. Friction and abrasion are two of the biggest causes of reel failure on the bank so taking steps to avoid this, including the addition of ball bearings, helps to ensure that you’re never let down on the bank by your reel. There are two main types of ball bearings. The first of these are standard ball bearings, which are usually manufactured from stainless steel. The second of these are CRBBs, also known as corrosion resistant ball bearings. These offer additional resistance to wear and tear and they are particularly common on fixed spool reels which have been designed for saltwater fishing. As well as preventing premature wear and tear on the reel, the bearings also help to ensure that the reel is smooth in its operation. There is also a third bearing type which you might see on our fixed spool reels: the roller bearing. These work to prevent any rearward backplay on the handle when you’re tackling a particularly large or aggressive fish and are most commonly seen on fixed spool reels designed for big carp fishing, rather than those designed with smaller coarse fish in mind.
Regardless of the number of ball bearings in the reel, you’ll want to look out for the construction of the internal reel mechanisms, too. These should be precision engineered in order to ensure that the reel can offer the kind of strength and durability that you’ll require as a committed coarse and match angler. With properly aligned gears, you’re able to exert a greater amount of power through the reel handle with a greater retrieval result. In other words, minimum input should yield maximum reward and you shouldn’t feel as if you are fighting against your reel as well as you fish when you’re trying to land your capture.
You’ll also want to bear in mind the kind of line lay that your fixed spool reel offers, especially if you’re looking to float fish far out into the water. Line lay refers to the way the line sits on the spool after retrieval. In order to make the most from your reel, you’ll want the line lay to be perfectly parallel as this ensures that it’s able to peel from the reel with ease during the cast. Exemplary line lay helps to ensure that you’re casting with greater accuracy over a greater distance.
The final thing that you’ll want to consider when you’re looking at your fixed spool reel is the kind of drag that it offers. You’ll usually have a choice between rear drag and front drag. Both of these drag systems have their benefits and their drawbacks and it usually comes down to a matter of personal preference. It is worth noting, though, that rear is drag is often considered the easier of the two to operate. This is because of its position on the spool as you don’t need to move your hand as far in order to access it. However, it isn’t as intense of a drag system as front drag and, as such, it is less suited to larger and harder fighting fish. If you’re an experienced angler and you’re looking to target the larger coarse species, including large specimen barbel and other such fish, then you might prefer a front drag system.
It’s also worth noting that reels are size classified via a four digit number. These run from figures as small as 1,000 and continue right the way up to a 10,000 reel. For general coarse fishing, your best bet is to go for a reel between 3,000 and 6,000 in size. These sorts of reels will give you the scope to target a wide variety of smaller and larger coarse species, as well as giving you the option of near or far range casting. It’s worth bearing in mind the test curve of the rod you’re buying when you’re looking at a reel, as you don’t need an ultra-high powered reel if you’re purchasing a lightweight rod designed for smaller species.
We stock fixed spool reels from all the biggest names in the industry. This includes offerings from industry giants such as Daiwa and Shimano, both of which stock tackle across the disciplines, as well as dedicated coarse and match brands such as Preston and Drennan. Both of these brands are committed to creating superior quality coarse and match tackle for British anglers and this is reflected in their outstanding collection of coarse and match fishing reels.
As the name suggests, centrepin reels operate on a central pin system, around which the entire body of the reel rotates. Unlike free spool reels, which hang below your rod with the handle on the side, centrepins sit to the side of your rod with the handle on the top. This means that line leaves the spool at a 90 degree angle from the rod itself. As you might expect, this causes you to use a somewhat unusual casting style which, when used correctly, and yield fantastic results. Unlike fixed spool reels, centrepins operate with zero drag. This means that you have full control over your spool speed – which is controlled by pressure from your thumb – and it leads to an angling experience like no other. If you want to fish with impeccable feel then a centrepin reel is the ideal choice for you and, thanks to this outstandingly smooth performance, centrepin reels are particularly popular tools when you’re trotting for coarse fish such as roach or chub.
Centrepin reels are size classified based on their arbour. This measurement is usually given in inches and it refers to the diameter of the spool. The larger the arbour of the reel, the greater its line capacity and the further you’ll be able to cast. Most UK reels are large arbour as standard, which means they are 4.5inches – although you will find some which fall to either side of this figure. Centrepin reels are also incredibly low maintenance – especially when compared to fixed spool reels. Unlike fixed spool reels, which require either complete deconstruction or a dedicated maintenance port for cleaning, with a centrepin, all you have to do is remove the drum and wipe it clean. You can also add a little oil to keep everything moving as smoothly as you like.
When it comes to centrepin fishing, one name stands out from the crowd: J W Young. J W Young has been dedicated to centrepin construction for more than a century and, other than a short hiatus during the Second World War, there has always been a J W Young reel on the market. However, if you’re looking for a slightly more wallet-friendly option, we stock centrepin reels in our own-brand Advanta range. Advanta was born from our angling roots, as we wanted to see affordable and high quality products on our store shelves year-round.
We know that you want your reel to run as smoothly as possible in all circumstances, whether you’re on the bank enjoying some coarse fishing for pleasure or you’re in the midst of a heated match series. This is why you’ll find a collection of reel oilers and greasers in our reel accessories range. These ensure that you’re able to keep your reel running as smoothly as you need – providing you with a flawless performance on the bank time after time.
Hopefully you’ll now have all the information that you need to make the perfect reel choice. However, if you do have any further questions – whether they are about a specific reel or more broadly about the coarse and match fishing discipline – please do not hesitate to get in contact with our customer services team. We’re proud to staff a team of dedicated anglers, each with their own favourite angling styles, all of whom are ready for a no-obligation conversation about any aspect of our shared passion. Our team are able to assist you with all aspects of your experience with us, whether you require help placing an order or you simply want to track your order process. They’ll also be able to help you complete your setup with options from our fantastic range of coarse and match line, as well as our array of terminal tackle options.