7 Best Anti Backlash Baitcaster Reels Reviewed!

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Intro: What is a bait caster backlash? How do you adjust a bait caster to fix the anti-reverse system? What causes a bird-nest on a baitcasting reel? 

How can I prevent my feeder fishing rod from bird nesting when I cast it out? How do you shorten your line on an open-face baitcasting reel when you are using it for feeder fishing?

All questions answered + a full review of the best anti backlash bait caster reels!

In the past bait casters have been known to cause many issues for anglers, from having backlashes on your very first cast of the day all the way to not being able to set the hook into that massive fish you have been battling all day. 

It is important to be able to fix a bait caster if you are having problems because not being able to set the hook properly can make or break an angler when it comes down to it!

Here we will list all of the best anti-backlash bait caster reels that money can buy, and give their pros and cons for you to make the best decision when it comes down to whether or not you’d like to own one of these reels.

Lew's Team Lew's HyperMag Speed Spool Baitcast Reel

Editor’s Rating: 4.6/5

Price: $$$$

This is by far one of the top-rated bait casters on the market right now. It has a compact, lightweight design that allows every angler to have full control over their rig. 

The machined aluminum handle makes casting smooth and easy while the double anodized ported spool allows for both durability and longevity of use. 

You will also get a high-speed 7 + 1 ball bearing drive system that allows the bait caster to spin fast and smooth. 

The Team Lew’s Hyper-Mag comes with a Zirconia line guide that further enhances casting accuracy while also increasing durability through the use of this high-quality material. 

It has an attractive painted finish so you can show off your new bait caster, or it even comes in four additional colors!

Pros: Looks great! It has five different color options along with the standard silver/grey one.

The Zirconia line guide is one of the best systems that you can get for a cheap, low-profile bait caster.

Cons: The price point isn’t justifiable to some anglers. I think that it is an excellent product, but I understand that there is a certain market for this reel and it will never be purchased by everyone.

Conclusion: If you have the budget for this product then it is well worth it. I personally think that this is one of the best bait casters on the market right now. It has just about every feature that a top-of-the-line bait caster should have and performs extremely well to boot!

Shimano Metanium Low Profile Reels

Editor’s Rating: 4.9/5

Price: $$$$$

The Shimano Metanium is a fantastic choice for any angler looking to upgrade their setup and get the most value and quality for their money. 

The reel comes with everything you would need in a baitcaster: high-quality bearings, smooth anti-reverse functionality, and an understated design that will match almost any boat or kayak out there.

The Shimano Metanium is a compact baitcaster that is designed to have a professional-grade feel and heft while still being easy to control. 

It features eight bearings with an Instant Anti-Reverse bearing on the front of the spool. This provides you with smooth reeling while also giving you two more bearings than any other reel in its class. 

The Instant Anti-Reverse bearing is a patented Shimano design and it allows for increased resistance when you crank down on the reel, which in turn makes your line tighter and stronger than ever before. 

This gives you the opportunity to cast further out into the water while also providing you with more control over every aspect of your fishing setup.

Pros: Eight bearings in total make this reel extremely smooth and easy to use.

The Instant Anti-Reverse bearing allows you to be more accurate when pulling line in or casting. 

It also gives you twice as many bearings on the front of the spool, which further enhances smoothness.

Cons: The price point is the only real reason this reel didn’t get five stars from me. It is an excellent baitcaster and I highly recommend it to everyone, but not everyone has the money to purchase a ~$400+ spinnerbait or casting setup.

Conclusion: This is the best low-profile baitcaster on the market right now and if you can afford the price point, you should definitely get it! It is an excellent choice for any angler fishing in freshwater or saltwater and will provide them with a lifetime of use.

We have a review of the best Shimano saltwater reels you can read.

Daiwa Lexa 400 HD Casting Reel

Editor’s Rating: 4.8/5

Price: $$$$

The Daiwa Lexa HD Casting Reel is an excellent upgrade to the original Lexa design. It has a thicker, wider frame which gives it much more stability and durability than its older counterparts. 

This makes it perfect for any angler looking for a cast-ready spinnerbait or casting setup without having to worry about breaking an annoying fish in half.

The Daiwa Lexa HD Casting Reel is a smooth-spinning, high-speed baitcaster that can cast up to 200 feet in a matter of seconds. 

It has eight bearing system with front and rear double shields for durability and resistant when fighting fish. 

The front bearing is designed to be snag-free, which means that you won’t have to worry about your line getting tangled up in the front of the spool when you are reeling it in.

Pros: This reel has a wider frame than many competitors’, which makes it much more stable and reliable when fighting large fish.

The eight bearings give it a complete overhaul on its predecessor’s six-bearing system. 

This means that your fishing line will flow even more smoothly than before, giving you the opportunity to be more accurate with your casts and pulls.

There are two bearings at the front of the spool that are designed to prevent snagging on fish. This is an excellent feature for both beginners and veterans of the sport.

Cons: The price point is a bit high for some people, but I feel that it is well worth the money if you are looking for a reliable, all-purpose setup.

Conclusion: This is an excellent choice for any angler looking to upgrade their baitcasting rig. It provides smoothness at a great price point and will last you forever. 

If you are looking to get into the baitcasting style of fishing, this is a viable option for you.

SHIMANO SLX DC Fishing Reel

Shimano SLX DC

Editor’s Rating: 4.7/5

Price: $$$

The Shimano SLX DC Casting Reel is a newcomer to the baitcasting line, but it is already making a name for itself with its affordable price and smoothness. 

It has six bearings, four water-resistant seals, and a titanium-coated line guide that allows for a wide range of fishing possibilities.

The Shimano SLX DC Casting Reel is a lightweight aluminum frame with a special feature – Magforce Z cast control. 

This is the only true anti-backlash system on the market right now and it makes this one of the smoothest casting reels I have ever used. 

It has a quick-set anti-reverse bearing, which makes it even easier to stop fish when they make an attempt for freedom.

Pros: The price point is one of the best on our list today. It’s not quite as cheap as the redington, but it’s still pretty reasonable considering its quality.

It has a Magforce Z cast control system which is an excellent upgrade from most competitors’ anti-backlash systems.

There are four super-sealed bearings and a titanium-coated line guide to make sure that your fishing line is going to go exactly where you tell it to.

It comes with a spare spool, which is a great feature that many fishing brands don’t include.

Cons: The gears may start to slip after heavy use, but this is easily fixable with some WD-40 and a few minutes of time.

Conclusion: This is an excellent all-purpose baitcasting reel, which would be perfect for beginners who are looking for an affordable option to get them going. 

The price is a bit higher than the Redington, but its features are a bit more impressive as well.

Abu Garcia Pro Max & Max Pro Low Profile Baitcast Fishing Reel

Editor’s Rating: 4.6/5

Price: $$

The Abu Garcia Pro Max Baitcast Reel is perfect for the angler who wants to be able to cast effortlessly. 

It has 4 stainless steel bearings, 2 of which are shielded, making it one of the smoothest reels on the market today. It has an aluminum body with a graphite side plate and arbor, giving it a nice, sleek look. 

The gear ratio is slightly slower than other reels on the market today (7.1:1), which means that you can do long casts without having to worry about your line getting tangled up in the front of the spool.

The Abu Garcia Max Pro Baitcast Reel is a newer addition to Abu’s Max Pro line and it is one of the most accurate reels on our list today.

It has a parabolic cast control system that automatically adjusts to give you the perfect cast every time. 

This reel has four stainless steel shielded bearings, which provide excellent smoothness and durability in all conditions.

It comes with Abu’s Infinite Anti-Reverse bearing, which allows you to keep on fishing even when a big fish is trying to make off with your line. 

It has an aluminum body and side plate again, but this time it comes in black for a more modern look.

Pros: The price point is considerably lower than many other reels on the list today. 

This makes it perfect for anglers who are just getting into the sport and don’t want to spend a ton of money to experiment.

It has an Infinite Anti-Reverse bearing which is perfect for anglers who have a lot of heavy cover on their fishing spot – you don’t need to worry about your line tying up in front of your reel.

It comes with a spare spool (non carbon) which is an excellent feature for anglers who want to be able to switch out their line.

It has four stainless steel shielded bearings, which provide smoothness and durability in almost any condition.

Cons: There have been reports of this reel leaking after extended use and some people say that the gear speeds are too slow.

Conclusion: If you’re just starting out and looking for a “cheap” option, this is an excellent choice. It’s less than $100, but it still has the features that you need to be successful with your first few catches. 

You can always upgrade later on if you want something with more power.

 

Pflueger® President® XT Low Profile Reel

Editor’s Rating: 4.6/5

Price: $

The Pflueger President XT Baitcasting fishing reel is perfect for anglers who are looking for a mid-level reel that has all the features they want. 

It has 5 stainless steel ball bearings, which provide increased smoothness and durability in all conditions.

It comes with an adjustable centrifugal cast control system, which lets you choose how much power is released through your cast. 

This reel also comes with an adjustable brake system, which lets you adjust the number of brakes that are released with each cast. 

It has a quick-release spool change system, which is perfect for anglers who want to be able to switch out their line quickly.

Pros: This reel is extremely smooth, even after months of heavy use.

It comes pre-spooled with a 4lb test Trilene XT fishing line, so you don’t have to worry about buying your own.

It has an easy access multi-setting centrifugal braking system.

Conclusion: The Pflueger President XT Baitcasting fishing reel is perfect for anglers who want a mid-level reel that has all the bells and whistles they could ever think up.

 It’s only about $80, but it still comes with a 4lb test Trilene XT fishing line, so you don’t have to spend extra money on equipment.

 

Fishing Concept Z Freshwater/Saltwater Baitcasting Fishing Reel

Editor’s Rating: 4.4/5

Price: $$$$

The 13 Fishing Concept Z Saltwater and Freshwater Baitcasting Reel is a high-performance reel that is perfect for anglers who are looking for a top-of-the-line model without having to spend thousands of dollars. 

It has a magnetic cast control system that makes sure you get the perfect amount of power for every cast. It has a Clicker anti-reverse bearing, which ensures that your line doesn’t get snarled as soon as the fish takes off.

It comes pre-spooled with a 12lb test Trilene XT fishing line, so you don’t have to worry about buying your own.

It has a 6-pin centrifugal braking system, which is extremely powerful and makes sure that you are able to stop the spool quickly.

Pros: This reel is very functional for anglers who have progressed beyond beginner status. 

It’s great for fishing in both saltwater and freshwater conditions – it can be used to catch everything from bluegill to sailfish.

It has a machined and anodized aluminum frame, which is extremely durable and can handle hard-to-stop fish (like those that weigh 30 pounds or more).

It comes pre-spooled with a 12lb test Trilene XT fishing line, so you don’t have to worry about buying your own.

Conclusion: The 13 Fishing Concept Z Saltwater and Freshwater Baitcasting Reel is a top-of-the-line reel that is perfect for anglers who want the ultimate in function and design. 

It’s only about $300, which means it’s within reach of most people, but it still has all of the high-performance features that you would expect from a much more expensive model.

The definitive guide for anti bird’s nest baitcasting reels.

Casting in a straight line and trying to keep in control without the fish taking off is always difficult. 

It gets even more difficult if you cannot stop your rod from moving backward when doing so. This is why we will go through every aspect of the anti-backlash system on baitcasting reels, what it does and how to fix it.

Prevention is better than cure. If you can cast a baitcaster out without any problems, before the fish bite, it will be much easier for you when they do. 

We will go through every aspect of the casting system on your reel and show you what part of your setup causes bird nests and how to fix it.

Your reel has a very important feature called the anti-backlash system. This helps you cast your lure or bait in a straight line and keeps it from going backward at the end of your cast.

We will go through every aspect of the casting system of your reel and show you what part of your setup causes the bird nests and how to fix it.

Let’s start with the anti-reverse system of a bait caster and what causes this feature on your reel to fail or work properly. 

To do this we will go through each part of the casting system and show you how they affect your setup and why if one is not working it can cause backlashes, bird nests, and many other problems.

First off, let’s talk about how the anti-reverse system works on your reel. This system is located in different places depending on the brand and size of your reel. 

It will however have a tension band that wraps around one of the gears inside your baitcaster so it can work properly. 

The main idea of this system is that when you finish your cast and the lure hits the end of the line, instead of going backward it will lock up and keep your lure from getting pulled back into the spool.

When this tension band breaks it will cause your anti-reverse feature to fail which means that as soon as you finish a cast and hit the end of the line with your lure it will start going backward into the spool. 

This can cause a backlash which is when your line gets tangled on the reel and causes a reverse whiplash as it comes off the spool.

To adjust this properly you need to find out what type of baitcaster you have. 

There are 4 different types and below we will go through each one and show you how to properly adjust the anti-reverse system on your baitcaster:

Open Face Reel. If you have an open face reel it will be much easier for you to fix this problem because all you need to do is tighten or loosen the screw that holds the tension band in place. 

If it’s too tight the anti-reverse system will engage to early and if it’s too loose you will not get an accurate cast. 

This is due to the fact that when you open your bail the tension band starts moving around on its own causing problems with the timing on your cast. 

To fix this all you need to do is turn this screw and see if tightening or loosening it helps you get an accurate cast.

Spinning Reel . On most spinning reels this will be quite a bit more difficult to fix because the anti-reverse system is built into the drag of your reel. 

This means that when you turn on the drag, which is usually a star drag, it starts to push the anti-reverse system, which is located where your spool sits on the reel.

When you tighten or loosen this screw it will start to affect how much pressure your drag puts on the tension band of your anti-reversal system. 

To fix this problem you need to set your drag so that when you cast with no tension on the line it does not engage the anti-reverse system. 

After that you can find out what setting makes your lures go in a straight line which is what you want when casting with no tension on the spool.

This is very important because if this screw gets too loose or too tight, your anti-reverse feature will be useless and you will have a backlash. 

The best way to fix this problem is to put the proper drag pressure on your line for accuracy and then adjust the tension band as needed so your lure goes in a straight line when you cast it.

Tippet Material . If this happens, make sure you replace it as soon as possible because if you keep using it the anti-reverse feature will not work properly.

Replacing your tippet is simple and all you need to do is take off your current leader, put a new one on, tie it to your spool with a double or triple knot. 

Make sure that you have about 2-3 inches of Tippet hanging out past the knot. Once you do that clip the tag end of your old leader off and then press the thumb bar on the spool to set it in place.

Just above this knot is where you want to cut your new leader to match up with your old one so when you tie the two together they are exactly alike. 

This will keep your lure from getting pulled back into the spool when you cast.

Anti-Reverse Assembly . This is the hardest system on your anti-reverse feature to fix if it breaks because even though you can tighten or loosen this screw, it will only affect how much tension gets put on the whole assembly. 

If this breaks off, replacing the entire thing is going to be the only option.

Replacing this is usually not a simple task and you will need a tool belt or a fishing vest so you can carry around all the tools you may need. 

You will also need a good knowledge of how to handle different types of baitcaster reels because there are many that look similar but when you get them apart the parts are much different to fix.

One way you can do this is by slowly taking it apart and seeing what breaks off. If there is nothing left but broken plastic then you should be able to put it back together again easily, but if it’s end caps or screws that broke then take your time, gather all the pieces you find and make a list of every screw and end cap you find.

The parts you need should be available from any local or online fishing tackle store that carries the brand reel you own. 

Ask them for help finding the parts but don’t give up once they tell you what to look for because if your anti-reverse system breaks again it will cost as much as a new reel.

Good Luck and Good Fishing!

***

What is anti-backlash reel?

With a bait caster that prevents backlash, you can easily prevent it. It has an anti-backlash braking system built in that uses the spool’s slowing down to avoid spin and prevent backlash. You have two options: a centrifugal brake or a magnetic brake. Simply put your thumb on the brakes to activate them.

How do you make a Baitcaster, not backlash?

Baitcasters can backlash while fishing in the wind, even if the reel’s brakes and spool tension are tightened down. Casting across or with the wind is the best method to prevent backlashes in this scenario. If you have to cast into the wind, make quick and modest pitches close onshore.

Where is the anti-reverse on a bait caster?

The large gear post on most reels has the anti reverse bearing (usually covered up by the drag star and reel casing). The most important aspect of these is that they are oiled or greased – whether by the factory or users who excessively apply oil/grease to everything that moves. 25th September 2012