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Have surf-fished for year with nothing but spinning reels, but notice many of the "old pros" use conventional reels. My past experience with these has been miserable, but there must be advantages?

Pros/Cons of Conventional vs. Spinning for surf fishing?

While I'm at it, any great all-around surf spinning rod/reel combos recommended? (without breaking the bank)

Thanks for your input
 

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Most surf anglers now are using conventional reels.

1 They cast further

2 It is easier to fight a fish (better drag systems)

there are an array of casting reels out there lioke the Diawa slosh reels, Penn 525 mag series, Avets, Abus and others that I cant remember.

Spinning reels have there place mostly for casting lures but for the non or least experienced anglers I would recomend starting out with a spinning outfit in the 12 to 12 ft range.

You will soon find your way to what they call the dark side and join the reem of anglers and own your first conventional outfits once you see how far these guys can cast because they will outcst you.

There are other reasons to switch over and hopfully others will chime in with thier opinons.

Rick
 

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I really like using a conventional set up, i can definitely cast much further than i can with a spinning setup.

my buddy's dad & uncle are a bunch of old pros, they've been hitting the dunes in hatteras since the 50's, they just went back to conventional setups. they switched over when big spinning setups became available, because of how easy they are to use. they have recently went back because of all the new casting brakes, etc. that make them easier to use. its funny to listen to them talk about how easy todays conventional setups are to use compared to before.

If you are nervous about backlashes, start off just casting heavy bait setups, like 7-8 oz, and then play with all the braking until you feel comfortable throwing lighter stuff.
 

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The amount of weight you are casting would detemine the best set up. I use conventional for anything over 1/2 oz. I would say that for anything over 1 oz. conventional would be the way to go. Casting distance is greater and smoother, line twist is reduced and fish fighting ability is better on conventionals, for the heaver class overall weight is also reduced. A good heaver starter set up would be the 12' Tica matched up with a Daiwa 30 SHV. For starting out I would recomend installing both red brakes flat side out. I believe that someone recently won a casting competion using a Daiwa 20 with one red and one white brake installed, just to give you an idea of the distance possible with these reels. For lighter casting weights I would recomend any of the better Abu Garcia reels, or the Penn 525 mag. The reels with centrifigul brakes are more forgiving on the beginning of the cast which makes them better for first convetional set ups, the mags help more during the cast and at the end. And the earlier post was correct about the dark side, if you go to conventional you will find all kinds of ways to tweak the reels to you liking, everything from mags to bearing upgrades to different oils, but in the end you will hopefully end up with a reel that suits your fishing style.
 
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