Finest ultralight spinning reels for 2022

The very best ultralight spinning reel for trout and different smaller species is determined by your funds, as a result of there are nice decisions at each value level. A part of the enjoyable of fishing for smaller species is utilizing light-weight, appropriate-sized gear. This record options examples of well-designed, well-built ultralight spinning reels which can be suited to fishing streams, rivers, ponds, reservoirs, and even saltwater bays and estuaries.

We’re speaking right here about spinning reels often categorized as dimension 1000 fashions, the smallest most producers produce, designed for line from 2- to 8-pound take a look at. All of them weigh lower than 10 ounces, a few of them a lot much less, for which your casting wrist will thanks. Ultralight spinning is generally a freshwater pursuit, so resistance to corrosion from saltwater isn’t emphasised as a lot as it will be with bigger saltwater reels. When you do want a reel for small salt species, you’ll need to be additional cautious to rinse it totally after every use, and reapplying grease on occasion is a good suggestion.

This record contains reels ranging in value from about $60 to $500. The very best ultralight spinning reel for you most likely falls someplace on this vary, and with correct care and upkeep ought to present years of excellent fishing.

Issues to Contemplate Earlier than Shopping for an Ultralight Spinning Reel

Spinning reels have a number of specs, and ultralights are not any exception. The totally different parts of a reel will decide how nicely it performs on the water, and the way nicely it holds up season after season. You’ll need a reel that doesn’t really feel heavy within the hand, cranks easily, can range how exhausting it’s for a fish to drag line from the spool, and resists corrosion and grit.


Steel is broadly seen as the very best materials on your reel’s physique due to its sheer energy and rigidity. Nevertheless, carbon fiber can a superbly acceptable substitute and is used for our bodies and rotors on the among the prime fashions. Carbon fiber is often lighter than metallic, can usually deal with the stress of preventing bigger fish, and can by no means rust.


You’ll depend on your reel’s drag to place the brakes on hard-charging fish earlier than they get too distant to regulate, or dart into heavy cowl which may break your line. The rule of thumb says drag ought to quantity to one-quarter of your line’s pound take a look at score. All of the reels listed right here can simply exceed that stage of drag, however a stronger drag is healthier as a result of it requires much less twiddling with the knob whereas enjoying your fish.


Reels use bearings to maintain gear shafts turning easily. The extra, the higher, though having a couple of high-quality bearings is preferable to quite a few low-quality ones. Reel specs usually record the variety of ball bearings plus one curler bearing for the anti-reverse clutch.

Gear Ratio

The upper the primary quantity within the gear ratio, the extra line your reel will retrieve per flip of the deal with. If the ratio is 5.1:1, the rotor turns 5.1 instances for every crank of the deal with. A slower retrieve is sweet for deep-running crankbaits or spinnerbaits, however a excessive ratio additionally allows you to pull a buzzbait or lipless crankbait with applicable pace. The gear ratio mixed with the scale of the spool yields within the “inches per flip” determine – how a lot line comes again onto the reel with a full flip of the deal with.

Finest Total Ultralight Spinning Reel

Shimano Sedona FI 1000 Bass Professional Store

Why It Made the Lower

The Sedona is a well-liked reel that provides a few of Shimano’s greatest options at a comparatively modest value, together with the exact and sturdy Hagane cold-forged gears.

Key Options

  • Weight: 7.6 ounces
  • Gear Ratio: 5.0:1, 26” of line retrieved per flip
  • Line Capability: 270/2 to 110/6 mono (yards/pound take a look at)
  • Most Drag: 7 kilos
  • Bearings: 3+1
  • Most Drag: 7 kilos
  • Bearings: 3+1


  • Hagane cold-forged gears
  • Increased heart of gravity for much less fatigue
  • Loads of drag for an ultralight


  • Gradual gear ratio
  • No anti-reverse swap

The Sedona FI has fewer bearings and a decrease gear ratio than dearer, metal-bodied Shimanos. However, it prices lower than half as a lot and may nonetheless deal with the species you’re after with an ultralight. One place it doesn’t skimp, providing signature high-end Shimano options, is within the gears. The Hagane gears are cold-forged as an alternative of molded or machined. As with different cold-forged gears, the end result—skipping on some science—is {that a} gear might be anticipated to have sharp tooth for years to return, leading to a product that retains its out of the field clean reeling. The Sedona FL 1000 weighs 7.6 ounces however can be designed with Shimano’s G-Free physique, by which the middle of gravity is nearer to the rod, so it feels lighter than it really is.

Finest Ultralight Spinning Reel Beneath $100: Penn Fierce III 1000

Finest Ultralight Spinning Reel Beneath $100

Penn Fierce III 1000 Tackledirect

Why It Made the Lower

The Fierce III 1000 has a metallic physique and aspect plates, carbon fiber drag, 4 stainless ball bearings plus a curler bearing, and a sturdy aluminum bail—nice specs at this value, from an iconic model.

Key Options

  • Weight: 7.8 oz
  • Gear Ratio: 5.2:1, 22” of line retrieved per flip
  • Line Capability: 160/6 to 110/10 mono (yards/pound take a look at)
  • Most Drag: 9 kilos
  • Bearings: 4+1


  • Sturdy metallic construct
  • 4 chrome steel ball bearings can deal with rugged environments
  • Spectacular drag energy


Count on the Fierce III to carry up nicely when battling good-sized trout, panfish, bass or small salt species. That sturdiness comes because of its metallic building—full physique and aspect plates—and Penn’s proprietary HT-100 carbon fiber drag washers. The 1000 dimension is a real ultralight, comfy for lengthy use at 7.8 ounces. The 4+1 chrome steel bearing system contains instantaneous anti-reverse to guarantee stable hooksets.

Finest Ultralight Spinning Reel for Trout: Daiwa Tatula LT 1000

Finest Ultralight Spinning Reel for Trout

Daiwa Tatula LT 1000 Tackledirect

Why It Made the Lower

Most likely due to its high-density carbon fiber physique, the Tatula LT 1000 is remarkably gentle. It has a really environment friendly gear ratio and loads of clean drag energy to deal with the largest trout. Seems to be good, too.

Key Options

  • Weight: 5.8 ounces
  • Gear Ratio: 6.2:1, 30.5” of line retrieved per flip
  • Line Capability: 250/4 to 110/8 mono (yards/pound take a look at)
  • Most Drag: 11 kilos
  • Bearings: 6+1


  • Light-weight
  • Six ball bearings plus curler for tremendous clean operation
  • Digigear expertise


  • Complaints of bail slipping open

This not-so-cheap reel is a part of Daiwa’s LT line. The “Mild and Robust” concept pares down design and focuses on building, utilizing cutting-edge supplies for lighter weight parts that don’t compromise a reel’s energy. The Daiwa Tatula LT sticks to that LT idea with a powerful however light-weight high-density carbon materials physique, what Daiwa calls Zaion. The reel additionally affords a high-tech drive practice, with the corporate’s DigiGear digital machining—making certain gears match collectively precisely—and a cold-forged aluminum foremost gear for silky clean reeling. The parts flip inside a beneficiant set of six chrome steel ball bearings, together with one with corrosion resistant coating. A excessive gear ratio will get fish at hand shortly and may have an effect on a speedy retreat from snaggy construction. The result’s a reel with the finesse wanted to land the smallest native, however with sufficient horsepower to tame the biggest steelhead.

Finest Premium Ultralight Spinning Reel:

Shimano Stella FJ 1000 Bass Professional Store

Why It Made the Lower

The Stella collection is constructed for corrosion resistance with a metallic physique and waterproof drag, but it weighs simply six ounces and options 12 shielded ball bearings to maintain it working easily for a lifetime of use.

Key Options

  • Weight: 6 ounces
  • Gear Ratio: 5.1:1, 25” of line retrieved per flip
  • Line Capability: 270/2 to 110/6 mono (yards/pound take a look at)
  • Most Drag: 7 kilos
  • Bearings: 12+1


  • Steel physique, coatings, and sealed drag
  • Easy cross carbon drag
  • Twelve sealed ball bearings provide exceptionally clean efficiency
  • Surprisingly gentle weight


  • Gradual gear ratio
  • An costly funding

Shimano’s Stella series reels characterize a long-term funding in high-quality gear for severe anglers. The cold-forged metallic physique is totally inflexible, proof against flexing beneath stress, and a collection of inside and exterior coatings assist forestall corrosion, even in saltwater use. The sleek, sealed drag affords full management of your fish. The long-stroke spool, Aero Wrap II fast-up/decelerate oscillation, and one-piece bail combat tangles and promote orderly line lay on the retrieve.

Loads of thought has gone into the engineering of the Stella’s Propulsion Line Administration System, together with a spool lip designed for max casting distance. Chilly-forged Hagane metallic gears are a part of a specifically designed drive practice, dubbed Micromodule Gear II, for easy, clean efficiency. The vary of technological advances constructed into the Stella FJ have impressed fierce loyalty amongst ultralight anglers, and it’s straightforward to see why.

Finest Funds Ultralight Spinning Reel

Pflueger President 20 Scheels

Why It Made the Lower

This good-looking blue reel has six ball bearings, an aluminum deal with and spool, and a gradual oscillation that delivers nice line lay, all for round $60.

Key Options

  • Weight: 6.2 ounces
  • Gear Ratio: 5.2:1 Gear Ratio, 20.2” line retrieved per flip
  • Line Capability: 200/2 to 80/6 mono (yards/pound take a look at)
  • Most Drag: 6 kilos
  • Bearings: 6+1


  • Light-weight and compact
  • Runs easily on six ball bearings
  • Aluminum deal with and bail


  • Some studies of line twist

Pflueger’s President 20 is a superb worth each day reel, and it’s the one I take advantage of to fish spinners for small bass and panfish in my native pond. The drag is greater than sufficient for smaller species, and the texture is easy on a lightweight 6-foot rod. The drag is sealed, and the aluminum spool is braid-ready; Pflueger lists the capability as 180 yards of 4-pound take a look at braid. The physique and rotor are graphite for a light-weight building, whereas the bail and deal with are sturdy stable aluminum.

Finest Micro Spinning Reel: Zenon SP20

Finest Micro Spinning Reel

Why It Made the Lower

Abu Garcia calls the Zenon “the lightest spinning reel ever produced,” and it’s loaded with high-end options, together with 10 ball bearings, 11 kilos of drag, and a tiny, one-piece, no-wasted-space magnesium physique.

Key Options

  • Weight: 4.9 ounces
  • Gear Ratio: 6.2:1, 33” line retrieved per flip
  • Line Capability: 185/6 to 110/10 mono (yards/pound take a look at)
  • Most Drag: 11 kilos
  • Bearings: 10+1


  • Amazingly gentle
  • Ten bearings guarantee smoothness and sturdiness
  • Quick gear ratio


Constructed as a finesse fishing reel for the quality-obsessed Japanese home market, Abu Garcia’s Zenon is full of the producer’s greatest tech. The reel achieves its remarkably low weight with a one-piece magnesium physique that eliminates pointless materials, a closely vented spool, and carbon fiber rotor. Along with being light-weight, the C6 V-Rotor gives ultra-low begin up inertia. Ten HPCR ball bearings maintain the “plane grade” aluminum foremost shaft turning easily. The quick 6.2:1 retrieve will usher in 33” of line with every flip, and the 11-pound carbon fiber drag is robust sufficient to show fish which can be often performed on larger reels.

How We Made Our Picks

I in contrast spinning reels within the ultralight class from established producers, in search of the options and traits that the majority affect day-to-day use – weight, construct high quality, considerate design, producer popularity, and consumer evaluations. Worth was a consideration, and I discovered a lot of good choices for beneath $100. When you use these reels within the method they had been designed for, they’ll all present a lifetime of service.


Q: Who makes the very best ultralight spinning reel?

All reel manufacturers have costly and cheap fashions, and as with most issues, you get what you pay for. Some manufacturers, equivalent to Penn and Van Staal, are higher identified for bigger freshwater and saltwater spinning reels. The very best ultralight spinning reels most likely come from Shimano, which has a lot of highly regarded fashions, together with the Stradic, the Stella, and the Vanford.

Q: Are you able to catch massive fish on an ultralight rod?

You actually can catch massive fish on an ultralight rod. The following query is, are you able to land them? That is when a reel with a clean drag is most necessary. A very good-quality drag can apply sufficient strain to regulate the fish, however not tighten so exhausting that the fish can break the road.

Q: What’s the lightest spinning reel in the marketplace?

The lightest spinning wheel I discovered for this roundup is the Abu Garcia Zenon SP20, at 4.9 ounces. The Zenon SP30, which has a bigger spool, weighs simply 5.4 ounces. Regardless of the sunshine weight, these are each competent reels.

Ultimate Ideas

An ultralight spinning reel is a remarkably versatile fishing software, one which’s helpful on the shore of a giant reservoir and on a small upland trout stream. Paying shut consideration to options and traits—like supplies, drag, bearings and kit ratio—makes it simpler to pick out a reel that will provide you with few issues and far pleasure for seasons to return. Any of the above will serve you nicely in your light-tackle angling pursuits.

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