Using lever drag reels for bottom fishing

 Hi All,

Do many boat fishos out there use Lever drag OH reels for bottom bashing insead of star drag? Ive always used a star drag Penn Torque as my OH reel for fishing bait but wouldnt mind upgrading to a new top end LD reel but not sure if its a pain in the arse always backing the drag off when dropping down and deeper. We fish 40-70M and a lot of drop offs so constantly letting more line out.

Just seems most of the strong and light OH reels are LD now.






pelagicyachts's picture

Posts: 759

Date Joined: 23/02/11

you get used to it pretty

Tue, 2018-05-22 10:18

you get used to it pretty quick
I use Penn and have a few LD reels, they have a "stop" which you can adjust at your preferred drag setting so its just a case of flicking the lever back to the stop when you hit bottom (sorry if I am telling you something you already know!)

sea-kem's picture

Posts: 10695

Date Joined: 30/11/09

 Before switching to Stella

Tue, 2018-05-22 10:23

 Before switching to Stella eggbeaters all I used was Tyrnos 30's for bottom bouncing. As Clint says you get used to them pretty quick and an easy and soft way of increasing drag pressure. 


Love the West!

Woodsy65's picture

Posts: 70

Date Joined: 21/05/15

Leverdrag the only way to go

Tue, 2018-05-22 10:54

Leverdrag the only way to go IMO. Pulling the lever back to free spool to drop down or to let more line out is no drama. Still have to thumb the spool as you would when putting a star drag into free spool when dropping down. The advantage of the lever drag is once the drag has been preset, you can return to the correct drag setting every time without guessing (that's the theory anyway) And lever drags are better for trolling also IMO.

sea-kem's picture

Posts: 10695

Date Joined: 30/11/09

 Yeah still use mine for

Tue, 2018-05-22 11:14

 Yeah still use mine for trolling and inexperienced deckies lol they are virtually unbreakable.


Love the West!

Dale's picture

Posts: 6730

Date Joined: 13/09/05

Tue, 2018-05-22 12:11

 I’ve always had Shimano TLDs, do use a big spinning reel on a ugly stick that I bounce around my octa jigs on though.


"Just because you are a Character, Doesn't mean you have Character."

Mr Wolf



timboon's picture

Posts: 1362

Date Joined: 14/11/10

 Star drag/lever drag no dif

Tue, 2018-05-22 12:42

 Star drag/lever drag no dif really....


I like both but tbh prob prefer the lever

Faulkner Family's picture

Posts: 13767

Date Joined: 11/03/08

 I use lever . Good thing

Tue, 2018-05-22 17:41

 I use lever . Good thing about them you can set it to drop on its own . Just sit the rod in the holder and let it rip so you can go off and drop another rod if you wish. I set my drag at the strike point and iff more drag needed its just a matter of thumbing the lever to where you feel is right. After the fight is over you know your drag will still be set the way it was. Easy to increase or decrease drag imo. Never had an issue at all


RUSS and SANDY. A family that fishes together stays together

scuttlebutt's picture

Posts: 402

Date Joined: 24/03/06

 I've always used lever drags

Tue, 2018-05-22 17:42

 I've always used lever drags for bottom fishing.  Current favourite is a Penn torque 40 2 speed.  Beautiful reel 

scano's picture

Posts: 1021

Date Joined: 31/05/07

Lever drags also have the advantage

Tue, 2018-05-22 18:43

 Where you can leave the reel in free spool whilst drifting, thumb the spool awaiting a bite, and then then throw the level to strike and strike when starting to get a descent bite to set the hook. 

That way if you need to let more line out, you are not on and off the drag all day, just striking when actually feeling a bite. 




woody's picture

Posts: 566

Date Joined: 27/02/08

 Thanks for the replies

Tue, 2018-05-22 19:10

 Thanks for the replies fellas, much appreciated

cudbfishn's picture

Posts: 1299

Date Joined: 06/04/09

 For jigging I prefer star

Wed, 2018-05-23 18:44

 For jigging I prefer star drags. But theres a lot of frespooling. I have a lever for my deep jigging as levers usually have a higher max drag. For baitos I doubt using a lever over a star would make much difference.

BarraSlayer's picture

Posts: 282

Date Joined: 14/04/14

 Love using my talica 8 with

Wed, 2018-05-23 19:36

 Love using my talica 8 with longer torsa handle... go to bait rig drifting mullies out with a small bean sinker. Sits well on a shimano type j. Started usingba calcutta ocea but still prefer the lever drag.



Posts: 27

Date Joined: 27/07/16

Levers for me

Wed, 2018-05-23 20:21

I have levers on a Talica 12, TLD 50 & Miya Epoch, at the end of the day it's what ever your comfortable with. I will say though the Miya is an awsome bit of gear to operate.