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Rod and Reel Recommendations


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Hi there,

I'm relatively new to this and would appreciate some advice on what type of gear I should buy. I'm interested in doing some rock/shore fishing around NSW coast and I want to buy some reliable, but not too expensive gear. Can anyone advise what sort of set up I should use and which brands are the most reliable? Thanks.

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Rock fishing in Australia can be very rewarding and exciting, however at the same time very dangerous.

If you plan on doing rock fishing, I would suggest maybe watch others (if you cannot go with others), and see how they behave along the rocks. 

Also, the first thing you should invest in, before the rod/reel & line, is safety gear, especially a good set of comfortable cleats.

Remember to always watch the water.

Regarding rod/reel/line, it would really depend on how you plan on fishing, Eg. Casting baits or lures. Baits I personally like a heavier setup with roughly a 12ft rod, 8,000 sized reel (in Shimano) or 4500 sized reel (in Daiwa). Line I tend to get heavier with around 50lb. I like to use braid even though isnt all ideal with rocks with sharp edges.

For lures, I like the rod around 9'6 to 10ft. Reel & line also depends on target species.

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Welcome aboard.

Go to a reliable tackle shop and tell them what you want to do.

As Rob81 said, rock fishing is dangerous. Go and have a look first. If you are going rock fishing take somebody with you.

You did not say where you want to go rock fishing. If you let us know there are plenty of rock fishers on the forum.



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Hi Davrick, I've always used Alvey sidecast reels for rock and beach fishing, they are indestructible and will last a lifetime with very little maintenance. Also they're Australian-owned, not sure if they're still made here though. With Alveys you don't need to worry if they get soaked or if they are dropped in the sand. If you go with an Alvey you'll need a rod with a low mount, anyone in a tackle shop will point you in the right direction if you tell them you're matching the rod to a sidecast reel. 

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Thanks for the advice joshGTV. I'll definitely take a look at the Alvey reels. I've never used a sidecast reel but they look really durable.

Rob81 - The Shimano and Daiwa reels seem to have good reviews. What brand of rod do you recommend? I've heard that Shimano make good reels but the rods are the best.

Rebel - I'm planning to head to Clovelly this weekend but I also go to Kiama and Nelson Bay quite a bit.

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The issue with rods, so there are soo many out there and soo many brands for them. Personally I like the Sensor surf as my beach rod. But have used/tried others which arent too bad as well. I cannot offer a proper recommendation on them as I've used my sensor surf for the last 5-6 years. Prior to that I had a finnor, but forgot the name of the rod itself.

I would probably suggest, if you're not in too much of a rush to purchase, is to visit as many tackle stores as possible and get a feel of the rod (and ideally with the reel on, just so you can see how it balances), as everyone will have a different opinion on these things and it all comes down to personal preferences. Alot of ppl dont actually like the sensor surf due to its long butt designed, but I have heard of ppl cutting it shorter (as it was designed so that you can cut it), but this isnt something I've done myself.

Also the reason why I say visit many tackle stores, is that you'll find alot of them may/will sell rods others do not. 

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If you haven’t done any rock fishing before and cannot find someone who is experienced i would recommend you go with a guide like Alex bellissimo , might cost a few bucks but better than drowning ! You will also need a pfd along with a rod and reel-  i’m not sure if alex supplies these but a phone call will sort that out .

That way you will learn how to read the conditions ,learn when it is not safe to fish,find fish and what gear you really need before forking out your hard earned cash .

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Alex Bellissimo is a great idea if you want a crash course in Rockfishing, highly recommended.

He actually recommended Daiwa BG 5000, matches with Daiwa Seabass 110MH beach/rock rod 👍 Nice setup, and reasonable cost, can be used for bait or sending metals out. 

Just a note to take care at Clovelly if you fishing North side Shark point, really check swell, tides, wind and there are really only a few points you can actually safely fish off there If there is any swell, and as tide gets to the top the whole platform can be covered in water, even with relatively small swell, 1-1.5mtrs 👍

But that said solid spot for Luderick, drummer, grouper, silver trevally, bream and you can cast out metals for salmon, tailor, and the other pelagics. 

safe fishing 

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