7 Best Spod Reels
Full Guide On Top Carp Fishing Reels For Spodding & Spombs
By James Bevan
Last updated: 5th August 2023
A good reel is the 'engine' of your tackle. You wouldn't drive a Porsche with a clapped-out Datsun engine, would you?
Apply the same logic to your setup. The best spod reels have to take a fair bit of punishment.
Not only do they have to fling a heavy weight a long way, but they also have to pull it back in too!
In this article, we will show you some great options and tell you the little things that make the best spod reels amazing.
Strapped For Time?
If you haven't got the time to read the full article. You can skip straight to our recommend spod reels below.
Alternatively, please read on to see more information on what to look for in the best spod reels.
What To Look For In A Good Spod Reel?
Looking for the best spod reel? There are a few key qualities to look out for: -
A Big Spool
You are going to be casting a long way. Big spools allow the line to lay broadly and evenly. If it goes on easy, it comes off easy! This means that you'll get better distance on your cast. You'll also need a big spool to accommodate enough line.
A Fast Retrieve Rate
If you've cast a long way, you will need to bring all that line back in! And don't forget you'll have the weight of a spod on the line too! The key is to get a reel that has a decent retrieve rate to make life much easier.
A Line Clip
A decent spod reel will always have a line clip on it. I use the line clip all the time when spodding as it ensures I hit the mark everytime, creating that concentrated area of bait for carp to find and start feeding.
The better spod reels have a rounded line clip made out of a hard wearing material both for ease and longevity.
Older or more inferior spod reels tend to have a more elongated, plastic type clip that can be fiddly to use and can be prone to breakages, these I would avoid.
The forces generated during each cast on a spod rod and reel are phenomenal. Normally, we are fans of going budget, but you just can't risk it under such pressure.
You don't need to spend a fortune, but you should aim to go to the upper end of your budget to ensure that your tackle doesn't end up taking an early bath.
Quality components are key. A spod reel will fail quicker than any other type of reel due to the stress that it is put under.
A quality, large spool is a key component to a spod reel
Is A Specific Spod Reel Essential?
Fishing with a dedicated spod reel isn't strictly necessary, but it can make life easier for regular spombing. Back in the day before specialised spod reels existed, I used an old beachcaster reel with a massive spool and it worked fine. However, current spod reels are engineered specifically for heavy spodding.
The main advantage of a purpose-built spod reel is durability. Continuous spodding and spombing puts a lot of strain on a reel, so a robust build is important. Spod reels are not as refined looking as those lined up perfectly on your rod pod, but they can take abuse. They also have high cranking power to quickly retrieve spombs without wearing out your wrists.
So while any big pit reel can get the job done, a dedicated spod reel makes repeat casting less tedious. If you're a frequent long-range carper, the investment in a specialised reel is worth considering. But for the occasional spod use, your existing gear should work reasonably well. The choice comes down to your specific needs and preferences as an angler.
Check out the following video that gives some great spodding tips and emphasises the importance of using sufficient tackle for the job:
Can you fish with a spod reel?
There is no reason why you couldn't fish with a decent spod reel. After all, they aren't too dissimilar to other 'heavy duty' reels such as big pit reels and the like…
Would it be optimum, however? Probably not. If you want to throw out a heavy rig used for fishing on the bottom, a spod reel could perform pretty well. With a caveat…
You'll need a decent spodding rod to go with it. We've got a great guide on the best spod rods right here.
The Best Spod Reels
The following 7 reels are all great options for spodding and spombing. We have covered a variety of reels that can be catered for different fishing circumstances and budgets...
Best Overall Spod Reel
Daiwa Emblem Spod Reel
Remember when we told you what to look for in a good spod reel? This beauty is a shining example of exactly that!
You'll note that the spool is really wide, this will allow your line to spill off effortlessly during the cast, and it will be able to hold plenty of it!
Also, get this…
For each turn of the handle, you will be bringing in around a metre of line! That is lightning fast!
One great feature is the Castlock function. If you've ever had your arm yanked out of its socket as the bail arm closes mid-cast, you'll realise how vital this can be. No more broken lines and tangles mid-cast!
The reel also features two durable line clips so you can cast with pinpoint accuracy every single time!
Best Spod Reel for Distance
Daiwa Emblem 45 SCW QD
Look at the length of that spool. Go on, look at it!
Because of its substantial length (and girth), you'll get a line lay unparalleled with any other spodding reel.
Remember what we said… Easy on, easy off. For casting into the distance, you aren't going to find a better reel.
To help you cast even further, the spool has a frictionless lip which will allow the line to spill off with minimal drag.
This is another reel with impressive retrieval rates. At 4.9:1, you'll pull in line by the yard with small turns of the handle.
Spod setups can be heavy. Daiwa has reduced the weight by producing a spool and reel body that is super light.
Overall the performance of this reel is extremely smooth. This is every bit as good as the more expensive Daiwa Basia, except you can pick on up for about half the cost!
Best Budget Spod Reel
Like the more expensive Daiwa emblem, this features a substantial bail arm lock to prevent cracking off mid-cast.
And one nice extra is that the reel comes pre-loaded with 300m of braid, which ought to save you a few quid more!
The main gear within the reel is specially strengthened to withstand the forces of big casts, which is just what we like to see.
Best Spod Reel for A 10ft Rod
The body and spool are made of a mixture of graphite and aluminium, good for keeping the weight down.
One superb touch is the wooden handle which gives the overall look and feel of the reel a measure of quality.
The only downside we can see is the slightly truncated retrieval rate. You might have to make a few extra turns to bring your spod in, but the casting performance from this beauty is well worth it!
As with all the best spodding reels on our list, the performance is silky smooth, both in the cast and the retrieve.
Best Spod & Marker Reel
Avid Carp XR Spod
Ok, so you may not have heard of 'Avid Carp'.
Try and view this as one of those brands that are every bit as good as the 'designer' labels, but without the designer price tag.
What makes it stand out? Plenty.
You'll find the retrieve rate is absolutely phenomenal. It pulls in nearly a metre and a half of line with each turn of the handle. This is aided in part by the extra-long handle, which makes retrieval even easier!
When you are winding in, watch how slowly the spool oscillates. Do you know what that is? Smooth and even line lay, that's what!
Simply cast out, get your spod or marker where you need it and then clip the line in. Voila, inch-perfect precision every single time!
Want to see a mark of quality mechanics? Check out the ball bearings. Less is more, and with four rotor mounted bearings, this is every inch the best spod and marker reel for the money.
Other Recommended Spod Reels
Shimano Ultegra Spod XTD Reel
Alright, look, technically, this is a big pit reel.
We prefer to call it one of the best all-round carp fishing reels on the market.
Whether you are casting a PVA bag full of treats or a spomb to pepper the swim, this should have you covered.
You'll note a particularly shallow spool. This isn't the best for capacity, but it offers consistent casting, time after time.
Again, this is another that boasts a fearsome retrieval rate. Wind in, reload, and repeat!
If you are worried about line capacity, braid is the answer. Check out our article on the best braids for spodding to find out more.
We like the little things. Such as? Three-line clips for a start. You can easily spod three different distances without having to guess or judge where your spod will land.
Pair this with an awesome carp rod holding the Ultregra XTD 1400, and you'll pretty much have the perfect carp setup.
Daiwa 20 Crosscast Spod 45 SCW 5000CQD
Here's the thing about Daiwa. They don't make junk.
This is another feature on our list as it has all of those special things that go into the best spod reels for carp fishing.
This reel features an air rotor, giving great performance both on the cast and the retrieve.
The digigear II system shows that it is packed full of quality bearings and parts. And the infinite anti-reverse technology prevents loops in your line, saving you tangles at the worst possible moment.
As with other Daiwa reels on our list, the slow cross wrap gives optimal line lay, making casting, even to distance, a real breeze.
Choosing the best spod reel is easy. Look for a massive spool, great retrieve speed and try and opt for something from a well-known manufacturer.
From there, it is just a case of casting your marker out and peppering it as often as you can!
With what I hear you ask? Well, have a wander this way to get a good flavour of the best carp baits!
If you would like to learn more about carp reels in general, we have a dedicated article to the best carp reels here.
Thanks for reading…
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