Ask any freshwater angler what their favorite fish to catch is, and 9 times out of 10 they’ll tell you crappie.
This is the truth across much of the U.S. for a few reasons. One, they’re delicious. And two, crappie can be found in almost any type of freshwater setting, whether that’s a lake, large pond, or river.
While the type of bait crappie love can vary from one region to the next, there’s one piece of equipment that most anglers seem to prefer: a good spinning reel.
If you’re setting out to go crappie fishing soon, one thing you want to have with you is a reliable reel. We’ve looked through some of the most commonly used gear, and put together this list of the best spinning reels for crappie fishing.
Top 10 Spinning Reels for Crappie
- Pflueger President
- Okuma Ceymar
- Shimano Sedona Spinning Reel
- Penn Battle III Spinning Reel
- Lew’s Mr. Crappie Slab Shaker 100
- KastKing Sharky III
- Daiwa Regal LT Spinning Reel
- Abu Garcia Revo X
- Cadence Ideal Spinning Reel
- Sougayilang Fishing Reel SC1000
Our number one spinning reel is the Pflueger President. This reel is one of the most trusted pieces of freshwater gear you can find.
There are a variety of sizes available, so if you’re also looking for a reel that’s appropriate for catching something a little larger than crappie, the President has plenty of options.
The internal 7 bearing stainless steel system makes for an easy and precise cast. This is a great feature for casting around logs and fauna that crappie love to hide in.
With a maximum drag of 6 pounds, even the smallest-sized Pflueger President is an excellent choice for crappie fishing.
Like any freshwater angler knows, patience is key when you’re waiting for the fish to bite. The ultra-light Okuma Ceymar is the perfect choice for anyone who plans to spend hours on the water.
Thanks to the lightweight graphite body, this reel feels like you’re holding air. It’s perfect for a long day on the lake or river.
The sleek design of the Okuma Ceymar isn’t the only good thing it has to offer. Under that design is a smooth 8 bearings to ensure you enjoy every cast. And the line capacity of 200yds/18lbs makes it more than strong enough to reel in any size of crappie whether it’s black or white.
Shimano Sedona Spinning Reel
Shimano is a name most anglers have grown up with, and for good reason too. The Shimano Sedona is a quality reel, but it’s best for beginners and fishermen that are looking to keep their catches on the smaller side.
The most notable feature of any Shimano reel is the halgene steel that makes the gears strong and reliable.
The Sedona has a line capacity of 6lbs/60yds, and since crappie aren’t known to grow too far past 3 pounds, the Sedona is the perfect choice for crappie fishing.
Penn Battle III Spinning Reel
If you prefer to have one all-purpose reel, the Penn Battle III might be the right choice for you.
This reel is an excellent choice for salt and fresh water fishermen. Its precision-coated stainless steel body protects it from the elements.
The 5 ball bearing system and anti-reverse bearing make for a smooth and accurate cast each time. You also won’t have to worry about working too hard to reel in your crappie considering the 5.2:1 gear ratio.
The spool is ready to take any type of line that you prefer for crappie fishing, whether mono or braided.
Lew’s Mr. Crappie Slab Shaker 100
This reel is my top choice for any angler that’s looking for a simple machine. Just like the name suggests, it was specifically made for catching crappie.
It’s compact and easy to tote around overgrown lake and river shorelines where crappie love to hide. The graphite body makes it a durable reel that holds up to any kind of conditions you may be fishing in.
The 2 ball bearing system is just enough to land each cast exactly where you intend for it to go. Unlike some of the other reels on our list, it comes pre-spooled with a monoline that’s perfectly rated for reeling in crappie.
KastKing Sharky III
The Kast King Sharky III may seem like overkill when you’re fishing for crappie, but if you don’t mind the possibility of landing bass or a catfish alongside the crappie you’re looking for, then this spinning reel could be a good choice for you.
There are 10 ball bearings, which makes for a smooth and precise casting experience. The 3 carbon fiber disks give this reel a 39.5-pound drag, which is more than enough to bring in a fully grown crappie and get it back to the dinner table.
The innovative intrusion shield system, created by Kast King, makes this reel an excellent choice for anglers. We all know how crappies like to hide out in muddy waters, and with this reel, you don’t have to worry about how that mud will impact your gear.
Daiwa Regal LT Spinning Reel
The Diawa Regal LT is a top-of-the-line reel that’s perfect for any serious angler. The name of this reel isn’t the least bit misleading, everything about its performance is regal.
The frame is made from true carbon, which keeps the size small but doesn’t compromise strength. It’s also extremely lightweight at only 0.46 pounds.
With its 9 ball bearings, you’re going to get a smooth cast and retrieval every single time. The 26.8 inches of line retrieval per handle turn make reeling in your catch an absolute breeze.
Abu Garcia Revo X
The Abu Garcia Revo X is a great choice for anglers that are looking for a top-of-the-line reel to bring their crappie fishing to the next level.
The 9 ball bearing system keeps your casts gliding and landing exactly where you intend.
The 6.2:1 gear ratio is one of the best ratios you can find on a freshwater reel. With such an impressive gear ratio, you can reel in 40 inches with every crank.
Cadence Ideal Spinning Reel
The Cadence Ideal Spinning reel comes in a variety of sizes. The smallest size has more than enough strength to handle any crappie you find on the end of your line.
The 10+1 ball bearing system gives you the casting accuracy you need to hit those small coves crappie can often be found in.
This is a freshwater-only reel with 30 total pounds max drag, making it more than capable of reeling in crappie, and almost any other type of freshwater fish. The 6.2:1 gear ratio will protect your wrists from tiring out no matter how many fish you catch.
Sougayilang Fishing Reel SC1000
This eye-catching reel is packed with features that make it an excellent choice for crappie fishing. The 12 ball bearing system guarantees an effortless and exact cast every time.
The graphite frame is lightweight, and the spool is ready for either mono or braided line. One of the more unique features is the sounding coil, which makes the reel ultra-sensitive to even the softest bites on your line.
Crappie can be one of the most enjoyable fish to catch. They may hide behind logs and in small coves, but if you hit the water with the right gear, you’ll be able to reach them no matter where they are.
This list of best spinning reels for crappie fishing should help you choose the right reel for catching crappie on your next fishing trip. After all, a good reel is crucial for being able to catch crappie effectively, and so is a good minnow trap to keep you stocked up on bait!