6 Best Line Counter Reels For Walleye Fishing 2024

In the world of best line counter reels for Walleye fishing, three top contenders stand out. Shimano Tekota offers a powerful drag system, high gear ratio, and features tailored for Walleye. PENN Squall II Level boasts a large line capacity, robust drag system, and saltwater-ready durability. Daiwa Sealine SG-3B Line Counter combines durability, user-friendliness, a reliable line counter, and various features to up your fish-catching game.

When it comes to targeting Walleye, a species known for its elusive nature and challenging fishing conditions, the choice of equipment can be the dividing line between a rewarding Walleye fishing expedition and a day marred by disappointment. 

In the world of Walleye fishing, where precision and strategy are paramount, line counter reels have risen to prominence as indispensable companions for anglers. These specialized reels offer the means to achieve exact control over line deployment, ensuring that your baits or lures are presented at the precise depth and distance behind the boat where Walleye are most likely to strike. In this pursuit, consistency is key, and line counter reels empower you to replicate successful setups with ease. Moreover, their role extends beyond just line management; they facilitate seamless coordination with fishing partners during the critical moments of landing trophy Walleye, preventing any netting mishaps. 

Best Line Counter Reels For Walleye

We have examined the best line counter reels that play a key role in boosting your efficiency and effectiveness when chasing the elusive “Next Bite” while Walleye trolling. Below, you will discover in depth reviews of the top 6 line counter reels available on the market, along with a thorough buying guide to help you make an informed choice swiftly. 

Check Best Trolling Reels For Walleye

Here is the quick overview of the Top Line Counter Reels:


SHIMANO Tekota

SHIMANO Tekota

  • Ball Bearings: 3+1
  • Reel Size: 6000
  • S-Compact body
  • Smooth drag system
Daiwa Sealine SG-3B

Daiwa Sealine SG-3B

  • Available in eight sizes 
  • Ball Bearings: 3
  • Customization of gear
  • Levelwind: yes
Abu Garcia Max Digital

Abu Garcia Max Digital

  • Gear Ratio: 6.4:1
  • Weight:  8.6 oz
  • Durable and lightweight
  • Stainless steel

Best Line Counter Reels for Walleye 2024 : Reviews

Here is the list

Image Product Feature Price
Top Pick
 

SHIMANO Tekota

1. SHIMANO Tekota
  • Quick 6.3:1 gear ratio
  • S-ARB shielded
  • Extra-loud bait clicker
Check Price
PENN Squall II Level
2.PENN Squall II Level
  • Gear ratio: 4.9:1
  • HT-100 carbon fiber
  • Lightweight
Check Price
Okuma Cold Water Linecounter
3. Okuma Cold Water Linecounter
  • Carbonite drag System
  • Speed lock pinion gear system
  • Lightweight
Check Price
Daiwa Sealine SG-3B
4. Daiwa Sealine SG-3B
  • Available in eight sizes
  • Levelwind: yes
  • Customization of gear
Check Price
Okuma Convector
5. Okuma Convector
  • Clear View Technology
  • A6061-T6 machined aluminum
  • Smooth and consistent
Check Price
Abu Garcia Max Digital
6. Abu Garcia Max Digital
  • Carbon Fiber Star Drag
  • Maximum drag of 20 pounds
  • 5 stainless steel ball bearings
Check Price

Check Best Walleye Spinning Reels


1- SHIMANO Tekota

SHIMANO Tekota
  • Max drag Weight: 24 pounds
  • Ball Bearings: 3+1
  • Reel Size: 6000
  • Quick 6.3:1 gear ratio
  • Extra-loud bait clicker
  • S-ARB shielded anti-rust ball bearings

The SHIMANO Tekota reel has proven to be an invaluable companion for my walleye fishing adventures, especially during trolling expeditions. This reel boasts a range of features that enhance its performance.

Starting with the S-Compact body design, it is a game changer, reducing the reel’s size and weight by 20%. This makes it comfortable to hold for extended periods, crucial for long hours of trolling. Whether it is rain, splashes, or the occasional dunking, the Tekota A handles it with ease. Coreprotect technology is indeed a reassuring feature, providing anglers with peace of mind knowing that their gear is shielded from the elements. 

SHIMANO Tekota

The analog line counter is a crucial tool for precision trolling, enabling accurate tracking of line deployment, a valuable asset when targeting Walleye at specific depths. The anti-fogging lens ensures visibility even in challenging weather conditions like early morning mist or drizzle.

The reel maintains precise gear alignment and prevents flexing during battles with Walleye, giving you confidence in your gear’s strength. The reel’s maximum drag capacity of 24 pounds is impressive and provides the muscle needed to put the pressure on larger Walleye, allowing you to reel them in with greater control. The 6.3:1 gear ratio is perfect for efficient line retrieval. It’s essential for making quick adjustments when you get a strike or need to check and change your lure’s position. 

Check Best Walleye Rod And Reel Combo.

The extra-loud bait clicker is a handy feature when trolling. It ensures you won’t miss a beat when a walleye takes the bait, even if you’re not actively holding the rod. 

This reel is a must have for Walleye anglers who demand precision, durability, and performance during their trolling endeavors.

Pros
  • S-Compact body design for comfortable handling during long hours of trolling
  • The reel offers protection against water and dirt, ensuring longevity
  • Precise depth tracking, aiding in successful Walleye setups
  • Smooth drag system with 3+1 shielded anti-rust ball bearings for consistent performance
  • Quick 6.3:1 gear ratio for efficient line retrieval
  • Extra-loud bait clicker for immediate strike alerts
  • High 24 lbs. max drag capability for handling larger fish
Cons
  • May be relatively expensive compared to other options on the market.

2- PENN Squall II Level 

PENN Squall II Level
  • Available sizes: 15LW to 50LW
  • Maximum drag: 33 lbs
  • Gear ratio: 4.9:1
  • HT-100 carbon fiber drag system
  • 3+1 shielded stainless steel ball bearing system
  • Lightweight graphite frame and sideplates

The PENN Squall II Level Wind fishing reel is a top choice for Walleye fishing, offering a range of features perfectly suited to this pursuit. 

If we look at its features, Its fast gear access side plate ensures quick and hassle free maintenance and adjustments, which are invaluable when targeting Walleye in structure rich environments. With 3+1 shielded stainless steel ball bearings, this reel guarantees smooth and reliable operation, essential for detecting the subtle bites of Walleye. 

Walleye are known for their erratic and powerful runs, and the HT-100 carbon fiber drag washers are up to the challenge. These drag washers offer consistent and smooth control over the resistance, allowing you to handle the fight with precision. You can rely on these washers to avoid line breakage while applying enough pressure to bring in your prized catch. 

PENN Squall II Level

Check Best Walleye Reels.

The lightweight graphite frame and sideplates reduce fatigue during long fishing sessions, maintaining a comfortable and balanced feel. The forged and machined aluminum spool adds durability and precision, ensuring smooth line management in the face of aggressive Walleye runs. 

Altogether, the PENN Squall II is an indispensable tool for Walleye anglers, enhancing their success and overall fishing experience.

Pros
  • The reel offers durability and reliability
  • Shielded stainless steel ball bearing system for smooth operation
  • This reels has a powerful drag system that provides up to 30 pounds of drag pressure
  • Available in variety of sizes and line counter models
Cons
  • A bit heavy
  • High price

3- Okuma Cold Water Linecounter

Okuma Cold Water Linecounter
  • Carbonite drag System
  • Max Drag Pressure: 18-lbs
  • Ball Bearings: 2+1
  • Reel Size: 1500-4500
  • Gear Ratio: 5:1:1
  • Ergo grip handle knobs
  • Speed lock pinion gear system

During my Walleye trolling trips, the Okuma Cold Water Linecounter trolling reel impressed me.

It held up well even when water splashed, and mist was all around thanks to its lightweight and rust-resistant design. When I caught a Walleye, I liked how smoothly it pulled and released the line, which prevented it from breaking during the fish fight. The stainless steel bearings made reeling in and casting easy and smooth. I could also adjust the gear ratio to match my fishing style as conditions changed, thanks to the speed lock pinion gear system. The ratcheting star drag gave me precise control over the line’s resistance when a Walleye was on the run, reducing the risk of line breakage. 

Okuma Cold Water Linecounter

Overall, this user-friendly reel made my Walleye trolling experience more successful and enjoyable, making it a top choice for anglers looking to improve their game.

Check Best Trolling Rods For Walleye.

Pros
  • Lightweight and corrosion resistant design for durability and longevity
  • Smooth and consistent drag system prevents line breakage during intense fish fights
  • Stainless steel bearings facilitate effortless line retrieval and casting
  • Adjustable speed lock pinion gear system allows for versatile use in changing water conditions
  • Ratcheting star drag offers precise control over line resistance
Cons
  • Some users have reported issues with the line counter fogging up
  • Specific features and performance may come at a higher price point compared to some alternatives

4- Daiwa Sealine SG-3B Line Counter

Daiwa Sealine SG-3B
  • Available in eight sizes 
  • Weights: 12.9 ounces to 19.6 ounces
  • line capacities: 10/290 to 20/580 for mono, and 30/270 to 50/650 for Daiwa J-Braid
  • Maximum drag: 8.8 pounds to 16 pounds 
  • Ball Bearings: 3
  • Gear Ratio: 4.2:1 to 6.1:1
  • Levelwind: yes

The Daiwa SEALINE SL-3B reels are an indispensable addition to any serious angler’s trolling toolkit, perfectly suited for both freshwater and saltwater excursions. 

Daiwa SEALINE SL-3B reels are available in eight different models catering a wide spectrum of fishing conditions and target species. Each model boasts the smooth and durable performance of 3 ball bearings, ensuring you can count on them to perform when it matters most. The gear ratios vary from 4.2:1 to 6.1:1, depending on the specific model you choose, and the line retrieval rate per handle crank spans from 24.4 to 42.9 inches per rotation, offering versatility for different trolling applications.

The wide range of line capacities offered by the Daiwa SEALINE SL-3B reels is truly impressive and a testament to their versatility. These reels can handle a variety of line types, making them suitable for different fishing scenarios and target species. The capacity to accommodate both mono and Daiwa J-Braid allows anglers to customize their setups to match their specific preferences and fishing conditions. Whether you prefer the reliability of monofilament or the strength and sensitivity of braided line, these reels have you covered.

With capacities ranging from 10/290 to 20/580 for mono and 30/270 to 50/650 for J-Braid, you can confidently select the right line setup for your chosen fishing adventure, ensuring that you’re well-equipped to tackle a wide range of fish species and conditions.

Daiwa Sealine SG-3B

Additionally, the maximum drag settings, which range from 8.8 pounds to 16 pounds based on the selected model, provide the stopping power needed to handle a diverse range of species and conditions. 

Whether you are chasing Walleye, trout, salmon, or other trophy fish, the SEALINE SL-3B reels have you covered with their exceptional performance and flexibility.

Pros
  • Offer an impressive range of line capacities, allowing anglers to choose the most suitable line for their specific needs
  • versatile for different fishing scenarios and target species
  • Customization of gear to match their preferences and the fishing conditions
  • Well equipped to tackle various fish species and fishing conditions
Cons
  • These reels may be on the higher end of the price range, which can be a drawback for budget-conscious anglers.

5- Okuma Convector

Okuma Convector
  • Carbonite drag system
  • Weight: 11.7oz 
  • Clear View Technology anti-fogging line counter
  • A6061-T6 machined aluminum, anodized spool
  • Ball Bearings: 2+1
  • Gear Ratio: 5.4;1 
  • Levelwind: yes

The Okuma Convector Low Profile Line Counter reel is a fantastic tool for Walleye fishing. This reel has a special feature that accurately measures your line, even in changing weather. The strong and smooth spool is perfect for both braided and monofilament lines. One great thing for Walleye anglers is the quick drop system, which helps you place your bait precisely. The reel is easy to use and keeps your line in control. The reel’s high quality gears make it work smoothly, which is crucial when dealing with tricky Walleye.

The 2+1 stainless steel bearings make the reel tough and long lasting, even when you’re going after hard fighting Walleye. The reel also helps you handle your line easily with its automatic trip and spool mechanism. It reduces the need for manual adjustments and keeps you focused on catching fish.

Okuma Convector

The reel’s drag system is excellent for Walleye. It prevents your line from breaking when you are reeling in a strong fish. The dual anti-reverse feature helps you set the hook firmly when you get a bite.

The reel’s design also makes it easy to handle braided lines without tangling. It is available for both right and left-handed anglers, so everyone can use it. The on/off clicker is handy for trolling and alerts you when a fish bites.

The Okuma Convector is a reliable choice for Walleye fishing. It helps you catch these prized fish with ease and accuracy.

Pros
  • The reel provide accuracy in line counter
  • The reel’s construction contribute to its durability and long lasting performance
  • The Quick Drop feature simplifies bait or lure placement with pinpoint accuracy
  • Smooth and consistent drag pressure, preventing line breakage during fights with fish
  • Optimized braided line feature minimizes tangles and ensures even line distribution
  • Providing an audible alert when a fish takes the line
Cons
  • Some anglers may find the reel to be slightly heavier than they would prefer

6- Abu Garcia Max Digital Line Counter

Abu Garcia Max Digital
  • Carbon Fiber Star Drag
  • Mono Capacity yd/lb: 135/10 110/12 80/17. Braid Capacity 135/20 105/30 75/50
  • Max: 20lb | 9.0kg
  • Recovery rate of 26 inches (66 cm)
  • Weight:  8.6 oz
  • Ball Bearings: 5
  • Gear Ratio: 6.4:1
  • Levelwind: yes

The Abu Garcia Max Digital Line Counter baitcast reel delivers an exceptional performance tailored for Walleye fishing. 

This reel is lightweight yet robust aluminum spool ensures prolonged use without fatigue, offering an 8.6 ounce reel that will not weigh you down during long fishing sessions. The remarkable 26 inches of line retrieved with each crank turn, along with a 6.4:1 gear ratio and durable Dura brass gears, makes quick work of Walleye’s swift and erratic movements. 

Abu Garcia Max Digital

The Carbon Fiber Star Drag with a 20 pound capacity and the versatile Multi Disc Drag System allow for easy adjustments during fights. The left handle position, ergonomically designed handle, and Everlast bail system ensure all day comfort and durability. This is a significant advantage for Walleye fishing, as it allows for a secure and comfortable grip, reducing strain on the wrists and arms during extended battles. 

Smooth operation, provided by four ball bearings and one instant anti reverse bearing, is crucial for managing sensitive Walleye. Lastly the added digital line counter offers precision, making this reel a standout choice for Walleye anglers looking for reliability, performance, and convenience.

Pros
  • The reel has a durable and lightweight construction, reducing fatigue during long fishing sessions
  • The reel features 5 stainless steel ball bearings for smooth operation
  • The lighted digital line counter is a great feature for anglers who need to know how much line they have out
  • Maximum drag of 20 pounds, which is enough to handle even the biggest fish
  • The reel’s bent handle and drag star provide a more ergonomic feel for all-day comfort
Cons
  • The reel’s gear ratio of 6.4:1 is a bit on the slow side. This means that you may have to work a little harder to retrieve line
  • The reel’s line capacity is a bit limited

When Choosing a Line Counter Reel for Walleye:

You need to consider the following factors before selecting or buying your line counter reel for Walleye:

When Choosing A Line Counter Reel For Walleye

Construction: 

The best line counter reel for Walleye should be made of durable, lightweight, and corrosion resistant materials. Look for graphite or aluminum for frame and side plates, stainless steel or anodized aluminum for the spool.

Line capacity: 

The ideal line for a Walleye line counter reel, especially for trolling applications, is typically 10 to 14 pound test monofilament line. This pound test rating strikes a good balance between strength and diameter. It is strong enough to handle even larger Walleye, yet thin enough to allow crankbaits and other common trolling lures to reach significant depths. 

Line counter: 

Knowing the exact length of your fishing line is crucial, especially when using a downrigger. Some specialized reels have a built-in line counter that keeps track of how much line you’ve let out. This is very helpful for precision trolling. Cheaper line counters can be unreliable, often skipping numbers or failing to reset properly. They can also be fragile. The best line counters are found on Shimano, Daiwa, and Penn reels. Remember, when it comes to line counters, you generally get what you pay for in terms of reliability and accuracy.

Gear ratio:  

Line counter reels designed for heavy setups typically have lower gear ratios, around 4.2:1. This ratio means you retrieve about 24 inches of line per crank. It is ideal for handling heavy lines and weights, important for certain fishing techniques like deepwater trolling.

Drag system: 

The ability of the reel to control the line as a fish pulls. A smooth drag system is important for preventing break offs.


My Final Thoughts

In the realm of Walleye angling, achieving precision and employing strategic approaches are of utmost importance, and this is where line counter reels have established themselves as invaluable assets.These reels offer precise control over line deployment, ensuring your baits or lures are positioned precisely where Walleye are most likely to strike. Each of the top line counter reels, including the SHIMANO Tekota, PENN Squall II, Okuma Cold Water, Daiwa SEALINE SL-3B series, Okuma Convector, and Abu Garcia Max Digital Line Counter, comes with unique features designed to enhance your success when targeting Walleye. 

It is important to consider factors like construction, line capacity, gear ratio, drag system, and the reliability of the line counter when choosing the right reel for your specific needs. These reels can make a significant difference in your Walleye fishing adventures. Happy angling!

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