2021 Saltwater Spinning Reels PREVIEW (New, Updated & Discontinued)


2021 is just around the corner and that means new fishing reels are coming!

It also means some reels are getting upgraded, while others (even some popular ones!) are getting discontinued.

So will your favorite reel still be here next year?

Or will you find a new favorite?

There are a lot of questions and uncertainties surrounding the upcoming reels, so I brought the man behind the Salt Strong tackle shop, Mark Goodson, with me on the podcast here.

He knows more about tackle than any other person I’ve met, and today, he’s giving us a sneak preview of the upcoming fishing reel changes.

The big reel companies have been listening to us and are shaking things up a lot with their 2021 releases.

We’re covering all of it here, including:

  • Why the Ci4+ will be discontinued (and what will take its place)
  • Which brand makes the smoothest reels
  • What updates Shimano, Daiwa, Penn, and Quantum are making
  • Which reels get returned the most
  • Which brands give you the most bang for your buck
  • And much more

You can watch the video version of this podcast below (which I recommend since Mark does a few demonstrations), listen to the audio version by clicking the play button underneath it, or listen to it on iTunes, Stitcher, or Spotify.

P.S. Don’t forget to subscribe on iTunes, Stitcher, or Spotify and leave us a review!

2021 Spinning Reels [VIDEO]

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2021 Spinning Reels [PODCAST]

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Below is a timestamped table of contents for the podcast:

Shimano Updates

3:40 – Upcoming changes

4:57 – Shimano Vanford vs. Ci4+

10:13 – Stradic FL

11:40 – Stradic vs. Vanford

Diawa Updates

13:58 – Why Diawa makes the best bearing-concealment system

15:03 – MAGSEAL demonstration (and why it’s so important)

20:00 – Upcoming Daiwa name and model changes

22:42 – New Daiwa BG MQ

24:47 – More new Daiwa reels

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Penn Updates

29:28 – Upcoming Penn changes

31:34 – Penn Battle updates

Quantum Updates

36:11 – Upcoming Quantum changes

38:04 – The impressive Quantum warranty

40:52 – Quantum Smoke vs. Shimano Stradic

42:34 – Quantum’s two most popular reels

Quantum Bail Trip Test [VIDEO]

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General Reel Tips

26:54 – Why the amount of bearings is important

44:41 – Which reels get returned the most (and why)

47:00 – Biggest angler mistakes that can ruin reels


most expensive saltwater spinning reel

Lots of new and exciting changes coming to the reel industry!

Some of the new reels are already on their way (like the Shimano Vanford) so be sure to keep an eye on FishStrong.com for more new reels.

Also, to get 20% off of all the reels in our store, join us in the Insider Club!

The savings from just one or two of these higher-end rods and reels can more than pay for your membership, plus you’ll get our best fishing spots each week.

Click here to join us in the Insider Club.

Now I love talking fishing reels with Mark and we’ve gotten a lot of great feedback about these types of episodes, so here’s my question to you: what do you want to see next?

Do you want to learn about high-end reels, low-end reels, best reels for kids or newbies, or something else?

Let me know down in the comments!

And if you know someone who’s going to be purchasing a new reel next year, please TAG or SHARE this with them!

P.S. Want access to our best fishing spots and tips, plus discounts to our online tackle store? Click here to join us in the Insider Club!

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Garret Boswell
4 months ago

So with these new light weight style of reels like the new vanford. I have only seen them flex when people will get snagged and they will tighten the drag all the way down and pull straight back on their rods to snap the leader line. I see people do this a lot. Would you guys say this is bad for the reels and if so what would be the most appropriate action for that situation?

4 months ago
Reply to  Garret Boswell

When in need of breaking off on a snag, it’s best to manually hold onto the spool and then pull back against the snag with the rod pointed right at it until the line breaks (it’ll pretty much always break at either the hook/lure or at the line to line knot so you’ll at least recover all of your mainline.

Richard Fiorentino
7 months ago

Do you think the Saltist is worth the extra $50 over the Fuego?

Justin Ritchey
7 months ago

Great question! Are you talking about the Regular Saltist or the Saltist Back Bay? Both are around $200-$220, which is a lot more than the Fuego. Basically, the difference between the two is that the Regular Saltist offers MagSeal at both the AR Clutch and at the Roller Bearing. The Regular Saltist also offers CRBB (Corrosion Resistant Ball Bearings) throughout its design. If you were interested in jumping up from the Fuego, I would consider the Procyon AL as the next step up. But if the Saltist Series appeals to you, I’d go with the Saltist Back Bay. It has the same Ratio, Drag and MagSeal throughout the body as the Regular Saltist, but it’s a smaller compact body (making it a better option for Inshore scenarios throughout the Southeast). Hope that helps, Richard!

Richard Fiorentino
7 months ago

I would have watched this 1 hour video, but I am sure it would not have given me a reason to give up my 2500 and 3000 Daiwa Fuego’s for in shore fishing.

Ron Whetstone
11 months ago

What is your recommendation for a 5000 size reel that will go on a 7’6″ Redbone Heavy fast action rod. This will be a multi purpose outfit for big tarpon, fishing snook around docks and fenders. Also will use it for sight fishing cobia in east central Florida. I want to put 30# to 40# braid on it. I bought a BG 4500 for it but it is just a little to big and I dont like the fact that the handle does not fold down. So I am going to move that reel to an offshore rod. I would like to keep the price around $100 and I prefer a work horse that will last over a sports car that needs to be babied. Thank you

Jeffrey Honeycutt
11 months ago
Thom Ray
11 months ago

Let’s do a podcast / reel reviews for Inshore Baitcasters. When to use. what models. I’d suggest you talk to Bill DeWeese as he’s done some research and experimentation, ans has a nice selection foe inshore saltwater fishing.

Thom Ray
11 months ago

Great podcast I listened in the car on the way to my fishing spot. Follow up on reel discussions. Florida Fiahing Products review. I’ve become very fond of them. The Saltwater Series for live and cut bait. The Osprey Carbon Edition (CE) for artificials. Terrific customer service. Easy to send in for reel maintenance and repairs. Quicker turnaround than many tackle shops.

Stan Mitchell
11 months ago

Great stuff Joe,Mark I learned a lot from you both on this podcast. I’ve always been a Shimano man the downside is they are so expensive but I absolutely love and trust them day in and day out.

Jason Calvert
11 months ago

Shimano Vanford internals is the same as the Shimano Stradic FL. Only difference is lighter body. If your saltwater fishing, FL is the way to go. The light body of the Vanford over time won’t hold up as long as the Stradic. But the market is hot to trot for light reels. The new Shimano Speheros for $120 is the old Stradic FK internally. The Daiwa BG MQ is a smooth reel but it has a major question mark and head scratcher that needs to be addressed with Diawa. The rash guard is not sealed. If you take the rash guard off the main gear is exposed. Take it off for yourself and you will see. Basically if it gets dunked and saltwater gets through it could get toast. In that same price point for the BG MQ imo your better off getting the Penn Slammer III or Saragosa. I gotta disagree with Mark on the main gear that Shimano has the best. I’d give the nod to Diawa. No replacement for displacement. The most underrated inshore reel on the market but has the finest main gear for the price point is the Daiwa Saltist Back Bay. On my Stradic FL I replaced the bushings for bearings that are in the Stella (same size and fit) and you can do the same for the new Vanford. Also, I heard Mark say that Shimano made the switch from felt drag washers to cross carbon washers. Not true. The felt drag washers are still in the 1000-2500 Stradic and Vandord. 3000 and up have the cross carbon drag washers. Daiwa does the same. Only the Penn Clash 2 that I know of from 1000 series and up all come with cross carbon drag washers. IMO Penn HT 100 drag system is the best in the industry. It’s proprietary and patented. Penn Slammer III in it’s price point is the only reel with a brass main gear and brass pinion gear (CNC Machine). Another beef i have with the Daiwa BG MQ is that you need a special tool to service it. So essentially anyone that like to service there own reels will have a tough time doing so with the new Daiwa’s until that special tool hits the market. If you have any questions let me know. Shimano is a Ferrari out of the box. Penn is a diesel pick up truck. If Shimano and Penn had a baby it would be a Daiwa. That’s my 2 cents for what it’s worth. Fish on!

David Yates
11 months ago

I’d really like to see a strong comparison between Stradic FL, Vanford, and Ballistic


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