Why Your Spinning Rod Should Always Cost More Than Your Reel


If you have a spinning reel that costs more than your rod then you’re doing it all wrong!

Did you know that your inshore spinning rod should almost always cost more than your reel?

Now that doesn’t mean you need a super expensive rod and it also doesn’t mean that expensive reels are bad.

It also doesn’t mean that your rod has to cost a bunch more than your reel.

Heck, most of what we use is a $100 reel on a $109 rod (in this case, the rod costs more than the reel).

In a sentence, don’t forget about how important the rod is.

Also, it’s important to note that most combos are NOT a good investment (unless you’re buying them for kids).

Listen in as we break down one of the biggest misconceptions about fishing (that you need a fancy reel to succeed) when in reality, it’s the rod that is doing all of the work.

Check it out below!

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Your Rod Should Cost More Than Your Reel [VIDEO]

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Your Rod Should Cost More Than Your Reel [PODCAST]

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You can follow the timestamped table of contents:

  • 0:39 – You should always spend more money on your rod over your reel for inshore saltwater fishing
  • 2:04 – The order of importance: rod, line, reel.
  • 3:24 – Here’s the #1 thing you must do right to catch more fish
  • 5:36 – Any sport needs the right gear
  • 6:31 – A great rod gives you more confidence
  • 8:14 – Match your rod to the type of fishing you’re doing (And this rod is a game-changer)
  • 8:55 – The reel only does this for casting, everything else is your rod
  • 11:14 – Be in the feeding zone longer than anyone else
  • 13:49 – This is the line that you need for inshore fishing
  • 14:45 – Spend THIS on a reel & spend THIS on a rod
  • 17:30 – Is the price justified by the quality
  • 18:19 – The rod is so crucial for using artificials
  • 20:34 – Please don’t buy rod/reel combos, here’s why
  • 23:58 – Expensive quality reels will last a very long time
  • 25:14 – We’re excited for the Salt Strong custom rod

Here are some helpful links for rods, reels, and line tests:


If you are using a reel that’s more expensive than your rod, you may be missing out on fish and wasting a ton of money.

Your spinning rod is doing all of the work so give it the respect it deserves!

Do you agree or disagree?

Are you fishing with a more expensive reel than what you really need?

Let me know down in the comments!

And if you know an angler who thinks their reel is more important than their rod, please TAG or SHARE this with them!

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Melissa McDonald
1 year ago

Hey Guys great video. Who hasn’t made their rod purchase an afterthought, so thanks for opening my eyes to the importance of a good rod especially when using artificial lures. Quick question. Is the prototype rod Luke has in this video the Bulls Bay Custom rod on your tackle page or is there another custom rod coming down the pike? Thanks for your time.

Luke Simonds
1 year ago

The rod I was referencing in this video is the upcoming custom rod that we are building with Mudhole. The Bull Bay one is very nice, but this next one is going to be a next level up. Hoping to have it available in our store this summer.

Melissa McDonald
1 year ago
Reply to  Luke Simonds

Thank you, Luke. I look forward to it.

Mark Welzel
1 year ago

Great points, who doesn’t get a great reel and whatever rod they can afford! Thinking Bass Ackwards.

william bennett
1 year ago

Luke, so what do you consider a good cast distance wise? I can cast a 3″ Slam shady attached to a 1/16 or 1/8 oz jig head 40-50 yards with no wind. Using a 7’6″ med, fast tip rod with 10# braid. I agree, hitting the spot and skipping is critical.

Steven Free
1 year ago

Actually I totally disagree it’s the quality of both rod and reel that gets the job done I have 2 rods that I still use that are about 12 years old and have had a couple reels replaced on both of them not because the reels were bad they were just upgraded and the ones that I upgraded them w were cheaper in price then the originals I have also had reels last longer then some of my rods but I now never spend more then 100 dollars for my spinning reels about 150 for my baitcasters and about 130 on my spinning or baitcasting rods but to me its not the price but the quality 2 of my rods that are 12 years old now were once considered cheap rods they are Blair Wiggins inshore specials both from eagle claw my one a spinner the other a baitcasters in fact the baitcasters is probably the rod I use the most during the after topwater bite is done time of morning it’s my spinnerbait rod and the reel now an inshore lews childre speedspool and the reel before the drag wore out was a shimano citica baitcaster that caught me hundreds of fish but only after being taken care of a lot of anglers seem to not realize it doesn’t matter on price but quality and the care you give it to make it last it doesn’t matter a hill of beans how expensive it is or cheap either if both are taken care of then unless the quality of the cheap one is very poor they both should last a long time common sense and care and maintenance go a very long way and unless you have more money then you know what to do with it is wise to use and do it works for me enough said😉

Fred Gerhart
1 year ago

Fantastic podcast! Very clear and informative. Thanks guys!

Joe Capelli
1 year ago

        Good article.
        I know you’ll acknowledge that when it comes to casting for Distance and Accuracy, Luke is the Man!
        He’s also one of the very best fishermen.

Danny Mitchell
1 year ago

I hope this doesn’t get me kicked out of the club, but here goes….
I almost always agree with the content on Salt Strong but I have to disagree with some of the options expressed on this podcast. There is no “need” for a weekend warrior angler to spend $170-$200 and up for a single fishing rod. Having a high end fishing rod will not make you a better fisherman nor will you out fish your buddy because you have one and he doesn’t. There are many high quality, light, sensitive and powerful fishing rods in the $80-$150 price range. Case in point: Major League Fishing pro. Jacob Wheeler just finished the 2021 season with 3 tournament wins and the angler of the year title. He uses exclusively his “Jacob Wheeler Series” casting and spinning rods in competition. These rods retail at $139.00. I agree that when choosing a rod/reel setup the rod should be given first thought and consideration, but the narrative that spending upwards of $170-$200-$250 on a rod will somehow take your fishing to the next level is simply a myth.

Danny Mitchell
1 year ago
Reply to  Joseph Simonds

I agree that the rod should always be chosen first and matched to the technique… then reel… then line. Many guys don’t understand that. The most expensive inshore spinning combo that I own is a BG on a Duckett Triad ($100 reel, $130 rod) I saw a post on another group recently where a guy had just purchased a Diawa Saltist MQ and had it on a Fenwick HMG! I’m like.. “Dude, are you serious?” I also agree that with most “combos” the rod is an afterthought… both Penn and Diawa are the worst offenders in my view.

Rick Farinella
1 year ago

One thing you folks don’t mention and, maybe, it’s not that important.
But, do all the “better” rods have the same type of material in the eyelets?
I notice some rods have agate in the eyelets, some with ball bearings(deep sea), and
maybe most are just stainless steel. Are there many different types and designs
and what is really the best to get? Or do the rod manufacturers decide what is
best for each type of rod ??

After watching “Wader Dave” and his videos, I purchased the same equipment he
uses, and wow, what a difference. I am still learning how to accurately cast and getting
better each time I go out to practice….It DOES make a difference….

John Rudisill
1 year ago

check out Sixgill rods – American made and they often run BOGOs

Nikolay Marinov
1 year ago

Luke/Joe, can you give a small review of the TFO Tactical Spinning Rod 7′ MH 10-20 lb as to what type of fishing would you use it for, is it powerful enough to target larger fish, such as tarpon, bull reds, etc. Is it more suitable to be used on a boat?
Thanks much


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