To someone who loves the outdoors, very few experiences rival the first time they land a fish with their own rod and reel. Unfortunately, because of a misconception that quality fishing equipment has to cost a lot, many would-be fishermen and women skip out shopping for a rod. In this guide, we will show you what you need to learn in order to cast a line of your own without spending a fortune.
What to Know About Buying Fishing Rods
You might not fancy any of the impressive fishing rods recommended at your local store. Therefore, we have provided a buyer’s guide that will help you know the factors to consider when buying a cheap fishing rod.
Benefits of a Cheap Fishing Rod
Firstly, what are the benefits of buying a fishing rod under $50 or $100? Let’s see.
An Affordable Escape
For most people, fishing is a pastime used to escape from the hustle and bustle of work. It is a stress-relieving activity to do during vacations or on the weekends. Unlike many other activities, it doesn’t have to be expensive before it can be enjoyed.
By owning a fishing rod under $50 or $100, you can enjoy exciting activities while spending as little as possible. Some families take fishing trips, and everyone needs to buy a rod. It is more economical to buy affordable fishing rods that cost a little, over spending thousands of dollars on rods that might never be used again. If you are any good at fishing or choosing a nice spot, you might even end up catching fish that are more expensive than the rod!
They Are Easier to Use
The more expensive a fishing rod is, in most cases, the more features and the more complicated it is. A cheap fishing rod usually comes with the basic things you need to have a great time. They are easy to assemble and use. The mechanism in a cheap fishing rod is more straightforward than those in more expensive rods.
Furthermore, if you’re fishing in a small lake where you require more control, cheap spinning rods will help you. Therefore, if you are a beginner learning the ropes, getting a cheap fishing rod might be the ideal choice. Having seen the benefits of choosing a fishing rod under $50 / $100, let us now consider the vital factors that should affect your choice of fishing rods.
The Type of Fish
“There are plenty of fish in the sea,” goes the saying. This accurate statement applies even more so when choosing a fishing rod. You see, because of the numerous types of fish in the water, you have to choose a fishing rod that will easily catch the kind of fish you want. For example, if you’re going to catch a shark, you do not use a fishing rod (except if you plan on being shark food).
You must consider the fishing rod features and compare them with the size of the fish you want to catch. Such features include the length of the rod, the action, and the strength.
The bigger the type of fish you want to catch, the stronger and heavier the rod should be. If you use a lightweight rod to catch a heavy fish, it is likely to break the rod or even have it yanked out of your hands.
The location of your fishing expedition is another vital factor to consider. The smaller the body of water, the smaller the type of fish you will find in it. Conversely, fishing in a large body of water will yield bigger species of fish.
Aside from the fish in the water, the size of the water might affect the aggressiveness of the water body. Lakes, ponds, and small water bodies do not have strong currents. Hence, fishing in them with a lightweight fishing rod is not a problem. However, rivers and larger bodies of water have more aggressive currents, even whirlpools, which can rip away a flimsy fishing rod and damage it.
Thus, the larger the body of water you plan on fishing in, the stronger your fishing rod must be.
The Material of the Rod
The strength of the fishing rod is mainly dependent on the materials it is made of. In most cases, the core of fishing rods is made of either fiberglass or graphite. These materials offer excellent performance even though they are different from each other.
A fiberglass core is very durable and offers strength that is unrivaled in comparison to other materials. If you are after large fish or fishing in a large body of water where your primary consideration is power, fiberglass fishing rods are ideal for you.
In contrast, graphite is not as strong or as durable as fiberglass. Graphite fishing rods are not recommended for use when catching big fish or fishing in large bodies of water. Since they are not as strong, why do people use them? Well, this material offers far more sensitivity than fiberglass. If your goal is to feel the fish caught on the lure instantly, these fishing rods are ideal.
Due to the improvements in manufacturing, there are more hybrid fishing rods on the market. These fishing rods are “jack of all trades.” However, since they are a hybrid of fiberglass and graphite, they do not provide the specialized services of either material.
Comfort and Efficiency
Using a fishing rod for fishing is unlike using a net. When using a net, you can catch loads of fish with a single throw. However, with a fishing rod, you need to be patient. You might spend minutes, even hours, without feeling the tug of fish on the line. Therefore, while you wait, you need to get comfortable.
Without a comfortable fishing rod, you will get tired and frustrated quickly. To ensure your comfort while you wait, you need to consider the handle of the fishing rod. This is the portion of the rod you will be in contact with, and it has to be as comfortable as possible.
Many manufacturers use EVA foam or cork for the handle. The material that feels more comfortable is a matter of preference. EVA foam is not as durable as cork, but it is easier to clean and arguably more comfortable.
Furthermore, the fore-grip of the rod is another vital factor that will affect your comfort. The fore-grip affects your sensitivity. A lesser fore-grip will allow you to instantly know when there is contact with the lure, while a stronger fore-grip will make it more challenging to see when the prey has been caught.
The Reel and Reel Seat
The reel is the most important part of the fishing rod. Without the reel, you are simply holding a stick and a line. If the reel doesn’t work in the right way, you might as well give up fishing. A reel seat is what makes the reel work properly. If there is a problem with the reel seat, the reel will not work correctly.
Therefore, before choosing a fishing rod, inspect the reel seat. If it is possible to do so, test out different reels on the reel seat and ensure that they work correctly. As the reel seat is the stress point when the fish is caught, ensure it is sturdy and secure. Make sure that it can handle the stress and will last for a long time.
After inspecting the reel seat, you should get the perfect reel for your fishing rod. The right reel will fit your reel seat. It will also depend on the type of fishing rod. The heavier the rod, the bigger the reel you will require. The reel must also house the entire length of the line, or else you might find your fishing experience uncomfortable.
In simple terms, rod action refers to where the rod bends under strain. Therefore, you have to choose a fishing rod with the right rod action for an enjoyable fishing experience. Factors like the type of fish you are after, the location you will be fishing at, and the fishing rod’s material all affect the rod action.
Rod action is divided into three styles.
Fast action rods bend in the top third of the blank. Medium action rods bend in the top half, and slow action rods bend in the lower third of the blank.
The fast action rods can withstand rough conditions and can be used in aggressive waters. Medium action rods are ideal for medium-sized fish while the slow action rods are easy going and will be ideal in gentle waters and small fish.
Rod Length and Weight
The longer the rod is, the more flexible it is. If you are fishing in calm waters for small species, then this type of rod will serve your needs.
However, if you are after medium-sized species, it will be ideal to choose a shorter and heavier rod. Choosing a long and lightweight rod in such cases will be disastrous as these rods don’t have the strength to reel in big fish.
Choosing the right fishing rod is not an easy task. There are more than five types of fishing rods and numerous brands. You need a lot of research before you can identify the right one. We have written this review and buyer’s guide to assist you in choosing the right one. We hope that it will help you select the best cheap fishing rods under $50 / $100.