New to Saltwater Fishing: Need rod advice for my reels!

fdbrown22

Newbie
Jul 27, 2020
15
3
26
OC
Name
RJTP
Boat
none
Been reading a lot on the starter setups, but was hoping for more personalized advice.

Some backstory... I'm a freshwater bass guy who is slowly transitioning to saltwater. When I have fished saltwater it has mainly been from shore in the harbors/bays with some boating trips on only a few party/private trips. Now I have became good friends with some who are pretty much at my skill level, so we are all learning together. One of these friends has a small center console boat that we like to take out just local inshore trips out of Dana pt. We are all starting to plan a lot more trips so I would like to add two setups dedicated just to saltwater, as I have been using my bass rods and they are struggling to handle the larger weights. Mainly would be fishing inshore along the coast, with occasional island/offshore trips a few times a year. If we do anything beyond what my rods are capable of I have no problem renting a setup, but would prefer to stick to my own for as much as possible!

I know there isn't a perfect universal setup for everything, but I would like to find two rods to pair with my two reels I just picked up. I've been trying to teach myself with just youtube/internet forums, so any input is appreciated! So what I have listed below is basically what I have been able to put together, so if anything looks off please let me know! We aren't going after anything too intense, as we are just starting out, but I would like something that would allow me handle a variety of smaller species such as small yellowtail (under 40lbs), bass, rockfish. I love fishing jigs, and have had some success throwing coltsnipers/swimbaits and some things I want to try to throw are surface irons, like kicker 25's/tady 45's.

Reel 1 - Penn Squall 20 level wind: would be using for rockfishing/fly lining bait
Reel 2 - Okuma Komodo 471: surface irons/jigs/1-2oz swimbaits

I have been reading a lot of people suggesting Phenix M1 inshore 809's, Okuma PCH's, etc. What would you guys recommend to pair these two reels with, and recommenced braid/mono? I have a large spool of 65lb power pro, enough to fill both spools if that's a usable option. Future fishing trips will be a mix of 50/50 party boats and private. So what would an ideal rod length be for these scenarios?

Budget: Ideally $400 or under total for two rods

Thanks!
 
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IronMikeAC

Member
Aug 2, 2013
924
1,041
torrance, ca
Name
Mike
Boat
Vagabond
The basic starter rod is usually a 7 for medium. CS 700m, Seeker 6470, others. There's a ton of good entry gear for great prices. Penn Fathom 25, Shimano speed master 16 or 20 for example.
 
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TijuanaClams

Newbie
Jan 15, 2020
17
16
HongKongClub
Name
Rock
Boat
SoapShow
You don’t need anything special.

The Komodo is a nice real. I would match that with a PCH H or XH or Phenix Abyss 809 or 909. This is probably your yellowtail/calico setup. Great for throwing irons but probably not for the lead heads, bring a bass rod for the light baits.

If you aren’t going to upgrade the squall anytime soon, I would match it with a 20# rod. Something like an ugly stick tiger would work as a good starter rod. Anything M or Mh will work.
This will give you a great guest rod for friends to use on half day boats when you do upgrade.

Level winds aren’t great for fly lining but can get the job done.
Save some money now because this hobby gets expensive once you figure out what you like.

Lookout for deals on the pch. You can find them for $160 online or get some good vibes buy supporting your local shop and paying retail. Charkbait has pch deals from time to time.
 
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fdbrown22

Newbie
Jul 27, 2020
15
3
26
OC
Name
RJTP
Boat
none
You don’t need anything special.

The Komodo is a nice real. I would match that with a PCH H or XH or Phenix Abyss 809 or 909. This is probably your yellowtail/calico setup. Great for throwing irons but probably not for the lead heads, bring a bass rod for the light baits.

If you aren’t going to upgrade the squall anytime soon, I would match it with a 20# rod. Something like an ugly stick tiger would work as a good starter rod. Anything M or Mh will work.
This will give you a great guest rod for friends to use on half day boats when you do upgrade.

Level winds aren’t great for fly lining but can get the job done.
Save some money now because this hobby gets expensive once you figure out what you like.

Lookout for deals on the pch. You can find them for $160 online or get some good vibes buy supporting your local shop and paying retail. Charkbait has pch deals from time to time.

Thank you! Yeah I do have my regular bass rods for the light swimbaits as well. The squall was just a budget purchase, and will likely upgrade over time when I get more experienced.
 
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