Fishing Reels

5 Best Saltwater Spinning Reels Under 100

By June 11, 2020July 15th, 2020No Comments
Best Value Reel
Shimano Nasci FB
4/5
Model: 4000
Close 2nd Reel
The Pflueger Supreme
5/5
Model: SUPSP30X
Best Reel
Daiwa BG 4000
5/5
Model: 4000

If you are having a hard time looking for the best budget saltwater reel, then you are in luck. Today we are going to be diving into the top 5 reels for saltwater spin fishing. Our crew has tested more than 20 reels in this price range and we have picked 5 which in our opinion stand out above the others.

If you don’t have time to read the whole article then just take a look at our pick for THE best saltwater spinning reel under 100. The Daiwa BG 4000.

Daiwa BG 4000

The Daiwa BG 4000 is in a league of its own, if you told me this real cost 200 i would believe you. Not only is the reel housing a gorgeous black and bronze colour, it’s made from machined black anodised aluminium; this reel is totally scratch and corrosion proof.

This reel is super smooth and not by accident. It has what Daiwa call the DIGI GEAR which is an oversized gear with larger tooth points which give you a much smoother reel. This is what really separates this reel from its predecessors. 

If you were to ask me what makes Daiwa better than the popular Shimano, it’s this, the smoothness. The shimano stradic is a great reel and is equal to the Daiwa, however it’s priced at nearly a third more expensive. And the Shimano spinning reels at under 100 have more problems with corrosion resistance.

Next is the handle. This is one of the best reel handles with almost no give. Once you attach it, it will not come loose which is something a lot of reels in the past have had issues with. You will know what i mean if you have tried to reel in a cheap reel to have it collapse or move.

Diawa have introduced an air rotor which is 15% less than normal air rotors which makes this a lot more comfortable to hold. This is all down to its unique design.

The unique design continues down to the spoon. This spool is built to be maxed out. You can fill this reel all the way to the edge.

I would recommend the 3500 or 4000 on a 7-8 foot rod.

Pros 

  • Gorgeous Design
  • Corrosion Resistant
  • Buttery Smooth Reeling
  • Great Value For Money

Cons

  • Honestly nothing, feels like a much more expensive reel.

Pflueger Supreme

It was a difficult choice to not put this fantastic reel in first place. The Pflueger Supreme SUPSP25X and SUPSP30X are extremely well made, lightweight spinning reels. This is another good looking reel, especially if you prefer the silver classy look.

The Pflueger Supreme has a lightweight magnesium coated body casing and rotor making this a very corrosion resistant saltwater reel. Its 9 bearing system is made from corrosion resistant steel ball bearings, so even though some water might get into the housing, it should be relatively harmless should you care for it. This is easily done by submerging the reel into freshwater, i just dip mine in the sink when i get home to wash away any traces of salt.

The stainless steel oil and felt drag system is however, completely sealed to ensure your reeling experience is and remains smooth. So don’t worry about replacing this one anytime soon.

The handle is made from aircraft grade aluminium so if you are a clumsy person this might be a good selling point for you.

It’s clear to see why people who buy Pflueger brand reels stick to Pflueger for a lifetime. Even though this reel is a couple years old it remains one of the lightest and best braid ready reels.

Pros 

  • Classy Design
  • Magnesium Coating Corrosion Resistance
  • Sturdy, Long Lasting
  • Braid Ready

Cons 

  • Require Care and Cleaning

Daiwa Fuego LT

Another reel from Daiwa appears on this list, this is a higher quality model, but older which keeps the price under £100. The Daiwa Fuego LT has a stunning black and red design. The LT stands for light touch. And this is what the reel provides, an extremely well balanced light reel.

The use of their DS5 carbon fibre composite means Diawa could reduce the weight significantly whilst keeping torsion resistance in comparison to conventional ABS materials. The reel is similar to the BG series reels as it contains the Digigear design for a smooth reeling experience.

The reel casing is completely sealed by the “magsealed” mechanism – the magnesium coated body casing – protecting against saltwater and dirt. The sturdy design means you can use heavier weights and the reeling remains smooth.

They are great all round reels, and a great fishing experience. If this is on a good sale this might even take the first or second spots. But for the same price as the Pflueger Supreme and Daiwa BG it narrowly misses out.

Pros 

  • Smooth Reeling
  • Lightweight
  • Corrosion Resistant
  • Magsealed Casing

Cons 

  • Older Model

Shimano Nasci FB

The Shimano Nasci FB comes in at 4th on this list. It’s a great value reel and in some cases you can find them for about 50. The gold and black design is really clean and I can see why this is considered one of the nicest on this list.

This model comes with Shimano’s leading gears, the shimano HAGANE gear. Previously This was only available on the most expensive models from Shimano. The hagane gear provides a similar experience as the Daiwa digigear. Although from person experience this doesn’t last when used very often. It is however lighter than the BG.

Even under the worst conditions this reel holds up really well. Even when it is subjected to salt water for 7-8 hours in a row. Just remember to rinse it off when you are done for the day. 

Not only have shimano tried to reduce fatigue by reducing the weight. They have also moved the centre of mass closer to the rod which really helps during those extended periods of fishing. It also makes the casting experience a lot nicer than heavier reels.

I would recommend the 4000 model, but even the 3000 would be capable of using a 20 pound braid.

Shimano reels under 150 have always felt a little bit lacking but with Daiwa and Pflueger providing incredible options under 100 have stepped up their game and some features from the expensive models have trickled down into this one. A lot of people consider this the shimano reel they have been waiting for. The 100 price point is by far the most popular amongst anglers.

Pros 

  • Smooth Reeling
  • Corrosion Resistant
  • Large Spool

Cons 

  • Requires Care

Penn Battle II

Many may be surprised this doesn’t feature higher on this list. But i’ll explain why the american made reel comes in at 5th place. 

The sleek black and gold full metal body is a really gorgeous design and would make a perfect match for black rod setups. The coating is corrosion resistant and just as good as the Daiwa GB series reels. 

Here is where the other models win over the Penn battle reels.

The Penn battle reels only have 5 sealed ball bearings, for comparison the BG has 9. This means the reeling experience is not as smooth on the Penn Battle. 

Whilst the spool may allow for a longer line, the max drag of 15 lbs falls slightly short compared to the others in this list which have upto 20 lbs of drag. Penn’s signature HT-100 carbon fiber drag system is great and with larger more expensive models reaches 30lbs of drag. 

This shouldn’t be an issue for anyone fishing from the shore.

Pros 

  • Smooth Reeling
  • Sleek Design
  • Large Spool
  • Price
  • Corrosion Resistant

Cons 

  • Only 5 bearings
  • Slightly Less Drag Weight (15lb vs 20lb)

Conclusion

The best saltwater reel under 100 is, in my opinion, the Daiwa BG 4000. Daiwa combine value for money with performance. The smooth reeling experience paired with the strength and size of spool really make this an excellent purchase.

In second place is the Penn Battle II especially if you are only fishing from the shore. This reel is often a little less expensive and almost matches the performance and build quality of the BG series saltwater reels.

In reality any of the reels on this list are good purchases, especially if you can find these on a sale. So make sure to shop around for the best deal you can get. If these remain similar prices, then you can’t go wrong with the Daiwa BG series.

Saltwater Fishing Reel Buying Guide

If you are like many anglers who love the thrill of a big catch then you will undoubtedly love saltwater fishing. Bigger water, Bigger Fish and more intense action. But before you rush out onto the shore, pier or boat there are a few things you should consider.

Here are the most important factors to consider before going saltwater fishing.

Corrosion Resistance

Saltwater is seriously corrosive, if you take your freshwater reel out for a spin it won’t last long before you need to shop for a new one. Saltwater is damaging to metals, plastics and other components like ball bearings. Which is what makes it feel smooth when you are reeling in or casting.

Because of this corrosion resistance is probably the most important factor. So you should look for reels which have a housing or casing made from materials like carbon fiber or anodised aluminum. 

The ball bearings should be completely sealed so no water and more importantly salt, does not become stuck in between the bearings. The Daiwa BG Spinning Fishing Reels we have featured are a good example, made from machined black anodised aluminium which is totally corrosion and scratch resistant.

I would be surprised if you could find a reel under £50 which would comply with this. But the 50-100 price range offers a number of options. Buy cheap, buy twice.

The Daiwa BG 4000 is our pick as it will likely last you longer than some saltwater reels in the 100-200 price range.

Strong Drag

If you are used to match fishing then you probably won’t have experienced fish in the 20-40 pound range. With fish like these, the fight is real and your freshwater reel would be pulled apart if you manage to hook one.

Most saltwater gamefish like Bass and Mackerel will be more than fine for a spinning reel with 10-20 pounds of drag. You’ll be able to catch fish that weigh upto 10 times more than some match fish.

If you want to go for larger species then you will want a minimum of 30-40 pounds of drag. This is even going to be suitable for some small sharks 

The key thing to do is research what size fish you will be going after and adjust the reel you pick accordingly.

Line Capacity

When these powerful saltwater fish fight, they can make long runs on your line. This means that you need lots of extra line on your spool. So if and when they do run, you can let them tire themselves out. 

Typically, most reels are sold in 150-yard and 300-yard spools. For saltwater spinning reels you would aim for sizes between 2500-4000. These sizes will generally have the 150 yards with 20-30 pound braided line that you require.

Brand

When you are spending this amount of money, you want to buy something which is made to last. The list of companies below are renowned for their quality.

Kyle Davies

Kyle Davies

Having angled for over 15 years some would say i’m something of an expert. The trouble with learning from experience is, it never stops. Come read along as i review some of the most (and least) popular fishing tackle that you can buy. And join me on my journeys to catch some beautiful fish.

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