Best Gear Ratio For Catfish

Discussion in 'Fishing Reel Review' started by Catmaster, Feb 17, 2008.

  1. Catmaster

    Catmaster New Member

    SE Kansas
    I have never really understood what the gear ratio or the number of berring really mean. I know that there is a difference in what is needed for different game fish but what is the best for catfish? What is the best for certain sizes of fish? lets say from 1-30# and 30-50# and 50#-ect.

    I would also like to know what all the ratios and berring #'s mean.

    I am sure there are other fishermen out there who wonder what the numbers mean. Hope some of the replys will help.

  2. flathunter

    flathunter New Member

    Lower the gear ratio the more cranking power, higher ratio more cranking speed...I like a 4-1 or a 5.3-1 ratio

  3. brother hilljack

    brother hilljack New Member

    Shelbyville, TN
    I use the tidewaters made my shakespere. It has a 4.2:1 ration and it works good in all situations that I have come accross. Of course I have not caught any 50 pound fish
  4. veryama1975

    veryama1975 New Member

    South West Mich
    I've never caught a really big catfish (best was probably 6 or 7 lbs) so I don't know from experience. But, I've heard a lot of more experienced fishermen on the BOC say that the ratio/cranking power doesn't really matter all that much. That it's more a matter of working them with the rod & pumping them with the rod. They say you just crank the reel to take up the slack that you've gained by working the rod.

    Like I say, I don't know from experience. I'm just passing on what I heard.
  5. Bill in SC

    Bill in SC New Member

    South Caro
    That pretty much sums it up V.
    BB in SC
  6. mrmarkedwards

    mrmarkedwards Active Member

    the higher the gear ratio the faster the retreive the trade off with high speed is less cranking power. a high speed reel is good for picking up line if you're fishing for a fast swimming fish like pike or casting lures and covering a lot of water fast. the lower the gear ratio the more cranking power for catfishing i think something around 4:5 to 1 is about as highspeed as you can go for big cats.

    i'm guessing you mean ball bearings as in how many a spinning reel can have. they can have 3-12 ball bearings the more bearings they have the smoother and the more expensive the reel will be. also most new spinning reels have instant anti reverse which is a one way bearing that aids in the reel's smooth retreive.
  7. xringer3

    xringer3 New Member

    If you're going to crank the fish in with the reel, then you'll want the lower gear ratio. However, the trade off is a reel that won't last near as long.

    If you use the rod to fight the fish, then you'll pull on the fish by raising the rod tip, then as you let it down toward the fish, reel in the line. Then start pulling with the rod again and keep repeating. This will take the stress off of the reel and it will last alot longer. It also won't matter what gear ratio you have either.

    Were the higher gear ratios come in to play in catfishing is when you're fishing rocky or stumpy areas. When you are retrieving your line to change baits, then you can keep it up off the bottom easier with the higher gear ration keeping you from getting hung up and loosing your rig.

    I use longer rods and fight the fish with with it, using the reel to only hold the line. I've got ambassadeurs over 40 years old that still work as good as new, even better as they're well broke in.
  8. back channel

    back channel Member

    Pittsburgh, PA
    I like gear ratio's about 5:1. However, that is because of the area I fish. When there is a lot of snags or structure at the bottom I like to use a higher ratio so I don't break off and retie ever time. You do lose some cranking power but you have to take the good with the bad.
  9. SangamonCatKiller

    SangamonCatKiller New Member

    central illinois
    Agree 100% with this.