Guide to Spinning Rods
Spinning rods are very easy to identify since they have no trigger on the reel seat and typically have a series of guides that start very large and progress downwards in size as you reach the tip of the rod. The reason for the large first guide which is called the “Stripper Guide” is to reduce the size of the line loops coming off your spool, gradually compressing them tighter and tighter creating less guide friction resulting in a longer cast.
Rod actions and powers will help anglers determine which model will work best for what they are looking to do and to best describe these two very separate things we can break them down.
Power: power in spinning rods is listed in 7 categories… Ultra Light (UL), Light (L), Medium Light (ML), Medium (M), Medium Heavy (MH), Heavy (H) and Extra Heavy (XH).
Power is best described as the power it takes to move an object or fish… the bigger the fish or the heavier the lure… the heavier the rod should be… power will also determine the line rating for the particular rod… in most cases they will be similar to these listed…
UL – 1-4 lb test
L – 2-6 lb test
ML – 4-10 lb test
M – 6-12 lb test
MH – 8-17 lb test
H – 10-20 lb test
XH -12-25 lb test
Action: Action describes the amount of flex the rod has… the faster the action the less flex there is down the blank. Actions are typically listed in 5 groups… Slow (S), Moderate or Medium (Mod), Moderate Fast (MF), Fast (F) and Extra Fast (XF). The faster the action, the more accurate your casting ability will be but the rod will also have more backbone. Slower rods are ideal for lighter line applications like float rods where super light leaders are used.. the length in the rod will also help absorb shock exerted by the fish.
Length – Spinning rods are available in numerous length starting from 4 feet or less and reaching lengths of 15 feet with the float rods. The most common sizes for freshwater fishing in lakes is 6’6″ to 7’0″ and for river fishing trout and steelhead from 10’0″ to 13’0″.