If you are on a bowfishing journey and want to strike as many targets as possible, a perfect bowfishing reel can greatly enhance your chances to catch a fish. Not to mention you will be awarded with a delicious meal afterward.
But it can be confusing for many hunters to find the perfect reel for their bow due to the number of options they have. So I did some in-depth research and found 5 best bowfishing reels that might suit you.
If you are in a hurry and don’t have time to read through the whole article, you can go for our top pick AMS 610 Retriever Pro Bowfishing Reel. This premium reel comes with a drag less design and intuitive trigger to engage the reel for fast retrieving. This reel is easily adjustable for both large and small shooters.
But every hunter has a different budget and needs. So, I highly recommend you to read through the whole article so that you could pick the best reel for your hunting journey.
How To Choose The Best Bowfishing Reel?
- 1 How To Choose The Best Bowfishing Reel?
- 2 5 Best Bowfishing Reels Reviews
- 3 Frequently Asked Questions
- 4 Conclusion
To choose the perfect bowfishing reel for your bow, you need to consider some facts about the reel. Try to find the best type of reel that will suit your need:
Three types of reels are used commonly by the hunters.
- Hand-warp: This is the most commonly used reel of the market. It is a bit old school due to the fact that the line comes free when you’ll shoot the bow. But pretty handy for the beginners.
- Spin-cast: This reel was designed just for bowfishing. The fast flight line of this enhances the bowfishing experience.
- Retriever: This reel is the best of the bunch and commonly used for hunting big games that need some chasing down. But of course, it works fantastically on every target.
Line, Length, and Strength
The ideal size of reel varies with different situations. But if you are looking for a reel which will work for both small and big targets, then you should probably look for a reel that has a diameter for 5’’.
The gear ratio of a reel means how many times the spool turns for every single turn of the handle. Try to purchase the reel with the highest gear ratio according to your budget.
Probably the most important aspect of a reel is its durability. Durable reels last longer and perform smoothly. Try to avoid plastic built reels if you can. Keep in mind that reels tend to lose its performance with time regardless of its build material. But metal reels last longer.
5 Best Bowfishing Reels Reviews
Researching about reels wasn’t an easy task. But I dug deep and found many reels that look and feel appealing. I have narrowed it down to five reels that’ll hopefully cover the needs of every type of consumer out there.
If budget is not an issue for you, and you just want the best of the best, go for this reel. AMS 610 retriever pro offers the best features you would want from a fishing reel.
- Build quality: This reel has the best build quality due to its material being corrosion-resistant. Getting a lightweight and durable reel is pretty hard. But in this case, you will get both.
- Gear: This reel contains brass-driven gear. And the gear ratio is around 3.0:1.
- Design: Its design contains no drag and its light is sorted in a bottle. This helps the arrow to fly fast and far.
- Mounting: Its mounting system is adjustable for every size of hand out there.
- Accessories: This reel comes with some accessories which you won’t find in other reel packages.
- Operation and installation are very easy.
- Constriction is very strong and durable.
- The performance is smooth and fast.
- It comes with a pre-installed line.
- This brand is trustworthy and is in this business for a long time.
- Can be quite expensive.
This reel falls on the same category as AMS 610 Retriever Pro. If your pockets are deep, you can consider buying this reel for the fact that it almost ticks every checkmark a reel should.
- Build quality: Cajun Winch Pro Bowfishing Reel is extremely durable due to its aluminum frame.
- Gear: This reel has a gear ratio of 4.3:1 which puts it on a sweet spot.
- Design: The design of this reel was focused on one-handed usability which helps while fishing.
- Mounting: We can adjust this reel vertically and horizontally and most of the bows should be fine for it to fit.
- Fighting wheel break: Simultaneous break and reel are possible on this reel due to its fighting wheel.
- The line never tangles for an ani-reverse system.
- Designed for one-handed operation.
- This reel provides smooth operation because its string guide is adjustable.
- It fits on any kind of bow.
- Very durable.
- This reel is also extremely expensive.
This bowfishing reel from the Muzzy offers an assimilated mounting system. This is very helpful for amateur bowfisher because it makes setup very easy.
- Built quality: This reel was also built for bowfishing and lasting. The stainless-steel built of this reel makes it very durable.
- Design: Its hood style design provides a smoother line feed.
- Switch activation system: The switch activation method lets you to free the string or lock it.
- Spooling: This reel is also pre-spooled.
- It has an adjustable dragging system.
- Usable for both left-handed and right-handed persons.
- This reel is designed specifically for bow- fishing.
- This reel is bass-driven and built with stainless-steel.
- The components are internally bass-driven for smooth feedback.
- There is no customer service or contact info for their parent company.
- Many users complained about its line breaking
- Reel changing takes time.
If you are on a tight budget, ZEBCO 808 can fulfill your needs from a reel for a substantially low price. It won’t be perfect, but I can assure you that it will be damn close.
- Build quality: This reel is also built with stainless-steel and thus makes it very durable.
- Design: This reel provide smooth feedback for its elongated hood design
- Adjustable Drag: Catching big targets are possible due to its spatial push-button system.
- Spooling: This reel is pre-spooled out of the box.
- Handle: Its specially designed handle makes it very easy to use.
- Very durable.
- The brand is known and trustworthy.
- Price friendly.
- Designed for using it in saltwater without the worry of damage.
- No rusting problems for its stainless steel built.
Some spatial features are absent due to its low price.
This Bowfishing Reel from Cajun is another lower-mid budget reel which is perfect for amateur bow fishers. If you don’t want to spend a ton on reels, then you can consider buying this one.
- Build quality: This reel has a long-lasting full-metal assembly. I don’t think durability will be an issue.
- Design: Line feeding is great due to its hood design. It also provides longer holds.
- Pickup: This reel has faster pick up due to its dual pickup pins. It also has faster reeling for the same reason.
- Spooling: This reel is also pre-spooled out of the box and has a flight line of 150 lb.
- Almost no tangling.
- Very fast reeling for its pickup pins.
- Very durable for the price.
- The durability of the included pins is poor.
- Sometimes pick up pins get stuck.
- The line quality is poor.
Frequently Asked Questions
Answer: Install the mounting plate with the holes at the side of the bow. Make sure they are snug and in place. Then just screw the mounting plate in place.
Answer: If you are new to bowfishing, use drum reels.
Answer: Drum reels are best for beginners. And for experts, it varies with their style and bow.
Answer: If you aren’t using old school longbows, then you don’t have to worry about it. Because most of the reels are designed to fit on any bows except longbows.
Answer: Insert the fishing line through the hole in the slide so it comes out the side with the groove. Run the fishing line back through the opposite hole in the slide. Double up the tag end onto the line coming from the reel. Twist the loop in the lines and insert the points in the loop you just created. Slide the arrow through the loop to the nock end of the arrow. Tight the knot.
For almost every bowfisher purchasing a perfect bowfishing reel is essential. And it is very easy for the amateur fish hunters to get confused seeing so many choices. I dug deep, researched for an extensive amount of time, and found 5 reels for people of different budgets.
Don’t take my words for granted, go and do your research via the links I’ve shared on this review. I sincerely hope this guide will help you to find the best bowfishing reel.
I wish you the best of luck with your bowfishing journey.