Fin Nor Reels 2023

Sergio Smirnoff

Hello, my name is Sergio Smirnof, and my goal with FishReeler is to provide a valuable resource for anglers of all levels, from beginners to experienced veterans. I hope that my passion for fishing and dedication to the sport shines through in the content I create and inspires others to get out on the water and catch some fish!

Fin-Nor Reels

Choosing a rod and reel for sea fishing, many fishermen face difficulties. The choice is practically unlimited today; budget models and professional versions are presented on the market. How do you choose the right fishing equipment that will allow you to get the job done and enjoy your fishing? To answer this question, we will consider several models of reels and rods from the American company Fin-Nor.

About the Fin-Nor Brand

The history of the Fin-Nor brand began in Miami in 1933, in the golden age of Big Game sea fishing, when large politicians (starting with the President of the United States), industrialists and financiers, as well as representatives of literature and art were fond of it. The brand was born in a drum shop in Miami from its owners Mr. Finley and Mr. Norwood, where they made their first big-game drums. The coils weigh about 17 kg and can hold enough nylon to fill a bucket of water.

Captain Tommy Guilford was working on a reel capable of catching a large 527 lb tuna. Fin Nor’s reputation as a brand was bolstered by Alfred Gracella’s (black marlin) record catch of 1,560 pounds in Cabo Blanco (Peru, 1956) while filming scenes for The Old Man and the Sea. It is by far the largest black marlin caught and recorded by I.G.F.A. Breuer Henry III A Palm Beach resident and heir to a large fortune in the ice cream world, he later owned the brand until 1990.

With the help of Gar Wood’s engineer Fin-Nora, he developed a special line of fly fishing products. Legendary saltwater fly-fishing reels that for the first time we’re able to consistently withstand the struggle of large saltwater specimens such as the tarpon. Many of these reels are still in use today due to their simplicity and elegant design. Fin-Nor also developed a revolutionary spinning fishing reel in 1950, which laid the foundations for a brand in the spinning world. Today the company has the latest technology in both production systems and design, earning over 380 fishing records worldwide.

Our Top List 5 Best Fin-Nor Reels

Fin-Nor LT80 Lethal 80-size Spinning ReelFin NorBuy on Amazon
FinNor Lethal Star Drag LTC16 450 ydFin NorBuy on Amazon
105SZ Offshore SP Reel, Gray, One SizeFin NorBuy on Amazon
FinNor Marquesa Lever-Drag Reel (300 yds)Fin NorBuy on Amazon
Fin-Nor Topless Marquesa Lever Drag MA20 ReelFin-NorBuy on Amazon
Surge CV RodFin NorBuy on Amazon
Fin-Nor Surge Spinning Fishing Rod, E-Glass and Graphite Rod with Double-Footed Aluminum Oxide Guides, 7-Foot 50-Pound Moderate Action, Contoured EVA Handle, 614012Fin NorBuy on Amazon

For this review, I have selected the 5 best fin-nor reels, which are recognized as some of the highest quality and affordable for anglers of all levels.

1# Fin-Nor LT80 Lethal 80-size Spinning Reel

Fin-Nor LT80 Lethal Spinning Reel

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Fin-Nor Lethal spinning is a series of reels for fishing trophy fish. Allows handling trophy-sized fish weighing up to 80-100kg. Convenient to use, reliable. The impressive line capacity of the spool will allow you to accommodate a sufficiently large amount of cord or fishing line for comfortable work with large fish while playing. The reel has 7 stainless steel bearings for corrosion resistance. It has a gear ratio of 4.9: 1 and a maximum drag of 40 pounds.

2# Fin-Nor Lethal Star Drag Reel LTC16

Fin-Nor Lethal Star Drag Reel LTC16

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The Lethal trolling reel is one of the most versatile solutions in terms of price-performance ratio. It has a solid resource of durability, a comfortable grip, and a practical knob. Like other models of FIN-NOR reels, it has anti-corrosion protection. It is worth noting that the Lethal is one of the most high-performance reels in its price range, making it a favorite among American anglers. The reel is also suitable for bottom fishing and pitching live baits. It is fitted with 6 bearings and has a 6.2: 1 gear ratio. In addition, the model has a special MegaLock backstop.

3# Fin-Nor 45SZ Offshore SP Reel

Fin-Nor 45SZ Offshore SP Reel

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The Offshore reel is used for both freshwater and saltwater fishing. The robust aluminum housing and double bearing protectors extend the reel’s lifespan for years to come. It has left and right-hand retrieve and mono capacity 450/30. The reel has an Offshore MegaDrag™ multi-stacked drag system for a very durable action. Its gear ratio is 4.4: 1 and the maximum resistance is 60 lbs. Smooth operation is ensured by 4 bearings.

4# Fin-Nor Marquesa Lever-Drag Reel

Fin-Nor Marquesa Lever-Drag Reel

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Fin-Nor Marquesa delivers the highest quality, strength, and sophistication in a one-piece, lightweight 6061-T6 aluminum body. The reel is ideal for fishing with modern thin braided lines. The reel is manufactured with high precision and is equipped with one of the most powerful braking systems ever installed on a baitcasting reel. It has 6 bearings and a right-hand retrieve.

5# Fin-Nor Topless Marquesa Lever Drag MA20 Reel

Fin-Nor Topless Marquesa Lever Drag MA20 Reel

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This reel is compact, so it’s easy to take it with you every time, even on long trips. It is equipped with continuous anti-reverse and has a right-hand retrieve. With 6 bearings, the reel delivers the smooth operation that all anglers expect from a reel. Maximum resistance 20 lbs. The reel has a 6.1: 1 gear ratio and mono capacity of 300/25.

Our Top List 2 Best Fin-Nor Fishing Rods

The reel can’t be used without a fishing rod. It is not enough to buy just a good reel for fishing to be successful. Only the joint work of a quality fishing reel and fishing rod can bring results. I suggest you take a look at 2 of the best Fin-Nor rods.

1# Fin-Nor Surge Spinning Fishing Rod

Fin-Nor Surge Spinning Fishing Rod

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If you are looking for the perfect saltwater fishing rod then take a look at this model from Fin-Nor. It is suitable for catching fish such as catfish, stripers, and more. The rod is equipped with 6 guides. The reel has a tip so that you can fight back against the predator. This graphite bar will withstand any sea test and will serve you for years to come. It also has a graphite reel seat and comes with an EVA handle for a comfortable pastime.

2# Fin-Nor Surge Spinning Fishing Rod, E-Glass Graphite Rod

Fin-Nor Surge Graphite Spinning Fishing Rod

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This rod will fit any fin-nor reels just like the previous one. This is a sturdy and comfortable rod that can handle any strong fish. This reel, like the first model, has 6 guides and a tip. Also has a length of 7 pounds, but has a different line weight. This rod has a 40-80 line weight while the previous model has 30-50.

How to Choose the Best Fishing Rod – Buying Guide

Your fishing rod is something you are going to be spending a lot of time with and this will determine what kind of fishing experience you have. You want to make sure you have the right one. So what makes a good fishing rod and how do you choose the right rod for your fishing needs? When evaluating the best rods, take a look at the following characteristics of each rod you are considering to determine if it offers what you need in your rod.

General Basic Guides

  • Linear guides are circular rings located along and looking up at the bait. Its purpose is to control line flow during retraction and retraction and to minimize the amount of friction and heat on the line to ensure smooth line flow without tangling and improve the durability of your line. These bushings may seem minor, but they are very important as they affect the quality, durability, and responsiveness of the rod, as well as the smoothness and depth of the pot. Therefore, it is important to examine the type of guidelines that the cast bar in question has. Pay attention to its quality and positioning.
  • A quality cast rod, well made, will have neatly placed guides that are aligned and stay straight without twisting or breaking under pressure. The more guides a rod has, the better its casting will be, but the more expensive the rod will be.
  • Power. The power of a fishing rod refers to its strength or lifting capacity. There are ultralight, light, medium, and heavy fishing rods. Ultralight and lightweight rods are designed for lighter lines, lures, and small fish. Medium, heavy and extra heavy give the rod enough power to throw heavier lines, attract and bring big and heavy fish.
  • Action. The action of a fishing rod describes where it bends when a load is placed on its tip, and how quickly it recovers when the load is removed. Determine how the rod will act when fishing and fighting fish. There are superfast, fast, medium, and slow rods.

Superfast rods are very stiff and only bend at the end. Quick-release rods are slightly more flexible and bend in the upper third of the rod from the tip. They have a lot of strength at the tip, which allows them to travel a greater distance. They are also very sensitive and fix the hooks quickly and firmly.

Moderate action rods are equally stiff and flexible, flexing in the upper half of the rod. They are versatile and suitable for casting medium-weight lures. They are the easiest to learn for beginners. Slow-acting rods are the most flexible and bend evenly along the entire length of the rod. They are good for soft casts and for fishing with live fragile lures. They set the hooks more slowly and allow the fish to grab the hook deeper into the mouth:

  • Material. The material that the rod blank is made of will affect its ease of use, durability, strength, and performance when fishing. When using the rod to catch heavy lures and ground trophy fish, the most important thing is strength and durability, and fiberglass gives you that. It is tough and not as sensitive as graphite. Graphite rods are unsurpassed in lightness, comfort, and sensitivity. Graphite is also tough but tends to become brittle. It is ideal for casting, long fishing trips, and situations that require a superior feel. The composite construction combines graphite and fiberglass to produce lightweight and flexible rods as well as strong and durable.
  • A Handle. On a good day of fishing, you will keep your hand on the rod handle for several hours. It should feel good in your hands and provide a secure grip even if your hands are wet and slippery, and no matter how hot or cold they are. It also needs to be ergonomic so you don’t go home with sore wrists. Thus, the handle of the rod and the type of grip it offers are very important considerations when choosing. When it comes to length, longer handles help with heavy lures and long casts because the angler can use both hands to generate more load and forward thrust. For two-handed casts, the extended length of the rear handle provides more control and leverage. For shorter and easier casts, the short handles allow for one-handed casting or roll.
  • Frame Quality. When it comes to frame quality, high-quality aluminum or graphite will do. Graphite frames are lightweight and shock-resistant. Aluminum frames are stronger, heavier, and more bending resistant than graphite frames. Graphite is suitable for light fishing tasks such as fishing for small fish, while aluminum is ideal for tough jobs such as fishing for large fish or seawater.


Since 1933 Fin-Nor has been producing world-class tackles to meet the requirements of the world’s most experienced anglers. Innovation in the use of new materials and new designs, the creation of new, more successful fishing methods, have given anglers more opportunities for fishing from boats.

Tags: #fin nor reels / #fin-nor reels / #fin nor spinning reels / #fin nor fishing reels / #fin nor fly reels / #fin nor reels review / #fin nor offshore spinning reels review

Sergio Smirnoff
Sergio Smirnoff
Professional fisherman with 40+ years of experience.
Fishing and the ocean is a passion of my life. I am passionate about all kinds of sea fishing: fishing from the shore (spinning, float, baitcasting), from a boat, and spearfishing day and night.

I live in Tenerife (Canary Islands) for the last 10+ years and share my daily fishing experiences on my website. Many years of personal experience as a fisherman and the vast experience of my friends allow me to write professionally on any fishing topics (from choosing a flashlight and equipment to deep-sea fishing).

All of my advice is based on practical real-world experience and will be useful to both novice anglers and professionals. Read more about the author.

Affiliate Disclosure: sometimes gets paid for listings, through sponsors or affiliate programs like Amazon, Ebay, Cabelas, Bass Pro Shop, Shimano, Daiwa, Rapala, Renn, Okuma, KastKing, etс. Clicking a link helps keep free, at no extra cost to you!

About the author: Each article is verified by the fishing expert Sergio Smirnoff. The articles are written by professional and amateur fishermen with 20+ years of fishing experience.

Note: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of any agency. The articles are for informational purposes only, share your opinions in the comments and join the fishing discussions, let's share our fishing experiences together!

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Laximus Boteera
Laximus Boteera
2 months ago

In today’s world of large corporations owning multiple brands, it’s important to recognize that branding is simply a means of manipulating consumer expectations. These big companies offer various versions of their products at different price points, ranging from cheap, low-quality items to higher-end professional gear.

Take Zebco, for example. They’re known for producing inexpensive beginner-level gear, but they also own Fin-Nor and Van Staal, both of which are known for high-end saltwater gear. However, they also own Quantum and Cajun lines, which I believe are some of the worst monofilament lines ever produced. It’s a strange mix, and you’d think that the owner of Fin-Nor and Van Staal would at least offer a premium fishing line option.

With the exception of small independent businesses with tightly controlled and well-earned brands, branding is mostly a bunch of nonsense. Brands like Abu or Penn build loyalty over generations, but then they outsource production to Asia and start offering lower-quality branded goods to the mega box stores that can move the most product at any price point.

It’s important for consumers to do their research and not be swayed by branding alone. Sometimes, the best quality products can be found from lesser-known brands or even smaller independent businesses.

Alin Flaqo
Alin Flaqo
2 months ago

As an avid saltwater angler, I recently had the opportunity to test out the Fin-Nor Lethal spinning reel, and I must say I was impressed with its performance. This reel is perfect for a wide range of saltwater fishing applications, from inshore fishing for trout, redfish, and snook to hard-fighting species like tuna, tarpon, and sailfish.

One of the standout features of the Fin-Nor Lethal is its all-aluminum body, which is loaded with features such as a braid-ready spool and a high lock-down carbon fiber drag. It also comes in a range of sizes to suit any fishing situation, from the lightweight LT25 with a max drag of 19 pounds to the heavy-duty LT100 with a maximum drag of 45 pounds.

After using several sizes of the Fin-Nor Lethal, I can confidently say that this reel is a great value for its price. The overall quality is impressive, and the drag system is superior to even some reels that cost 5 times more.

In fact, I would choose to buy 3-4 of these reels over a single $400 reel any day, as I believe they perform just as well as those higher-priced options.

I am looking forward to getting my hands on an LT100 and doing a full review on it later this season when we go chasing tuna and tarpon. Overall, I highly recommend the Fin-Nor Lethal spinning reel for any saltwater angler looking for a durable, high-performance reel at an affordable price.

Quantaro Haxel
Quantaro Haxel
2 months ago

As someone who has used Fin-Nor fishing reels for a while, I can say that there are several advantages and differences that make these reels stand out from the rest.

Firstly, Fin-Nor reels are known for their durability and reliability. The reels are built with high-quality materials that are designed to withstand harsh saltwater environments and the wear and tear of regular use. The all-aluminum body and braid-ready spool are just some of the features that make Fin-Nor reels sturdy and long-lasting.

Secondly, Fin-Nor reels are versatile and can be used for a variety of fishing applications. Whether you’re targeting inshore species like trout, redfish, and snook or larger game fish like tuna, tarpon, and sailfish, Fin-Nor has a reel that can handle the job. The different models and sizes available make it easy to find a Fin-Nor reel that is tailored to your specific fishing needs.

Another advantage of Fin-Nor reels is their superior drag system. The drag system is designed to provide smooth and consistent performance, even when fighting hard-fighting fish. The high lock-down carbon fiber drag is one of the features that sets Fin-Nor reels apart from others in their price range.

Finally, one of the biggest differences with Fin-Nor reels is their affordability. Despite their high-quality build and features, Fin-Nor reels are priced very reasonably. In fact, they offer some of the best value for money in the saltwater spinning reel market. This makes them an excellent choice for anglers who want high-performance gear without breaking the bank.

Fin-Nor fishing reels offer a great combination of durability, versatility, superior drag systems, and affordability. As someone who loves fishing and wants to get the most out of my gear, I highly recommend giving Fin-Nor reels a try.

Tonagut Ordineta6
Tonagut Ordineta6
2 months ago

As a fishing enthusiast, I came across an article where the Fin-Nor Lethal 100 fishing reel was rated as the best budget offshore fishing reel. Intrigued by this claim, I decided to purchase one for myself about 18 months ago. 

Although the owner of the website is a field tester for Fin-Nor, I have no affiliations with the company and this review is based solely on my personal experience with the reel.

After using the Fin-Nor Lethal 100, I have to say that I am pleasantly surprised by its performance. It has now become my go-to reel and I often choose it over many higher-priced reels that I own. I am writing this review to share my honest opinion and provide fellow fishing enthusiasts with insight into the capabilities of this reel.

Additionally, I have even discussed the idea of writing a review with my wife, as I believe this reel deserves recognition for its exceptional quality at an affordable price point.

Salah Fightbreak
Salah Fightbreak
2 months ago

I have to agree with the guest writer that the Fin-Nor Lethal 100 reel is a great value for its price. I purchased mine for around $139 and I have seen them on sale for even cheaper if you shop around. Initially, I bought it as a backup reel and for floating live baits out the back of my boat, but after using it for a few trips, it quickly became my go-to reel.

The line capacity is impressive, and the drag is ultra-smooth and strong, with a rating of 20kg (45lb). However, most fishers wouldn’t need more than 9kg, as going beyond that can put unnecessary stress on the body during a long fight and increase the risk of pulling the hooks. Despite weighing more than my usual offshore reef fishing reel, the Stella 8000, which costs over five times as much, the Fin-Nor Lethal 100 performs just as well, if not better, in some cases.

The durability of this reel is also a significant advantage, as I don’t have to worry about it getting dropped or banged against something. If the same happened to Stella, I’d be extremely nervous. At around $1200 for a new Stella, it’s not something I can afford to replace often, making the Fin-Nor Lethal 100 an excellent value for a reliable, cheaper reel.

On my first trip using this reel, I caught my personal best saddle-tail snapper, measuring 92.5cm and weighing around 12-13kg (not weighed). The reel performed flawlessly, and I ended up using it solely for several trips as a bait fishing/bottom bashing rod. Overall, I highly recommend the Fin-Nor Lethal 100 reel for anyone looking for a high-quality reel at an affordable price.

Kolker Gwendorne
Kolker Gwendorne
2 months ago

I completely agree with the guest writer’s review of the Fin-Nor Lethal 100 reel. I have been using this reel for about a year now and it has become my go-to reel for offshore fishing. The line capacity and ultra-smooth drag impressed me from the first trip itself. The drag is rated at 20 kg, but realistically, it is more than enough for most fish species.

One of the best things about this reel is its price point. I got it for around $139 and it is definitely worth the price. I also appreciate the fact that it is a durable reel and I don’t have to worry about it getting damaged if it falls or hits something. On the other hand, my expensive Stella reel is a bit fragile and requires more care.

I have used this reel on small to medium sharks and have locked up the drag to land them quickly. The reel has handled the pressure perfectly. Although one guy did snap his reel handle on a dogtooth tuna, Fin-Nor replaced it quickly with no issues. I haven’t heard of any other issues at all.

One thing to keep in mind is that the reel is a bit heavier than my Stella, but for the price and the features it offers, I don’t mind the extra weight. In fact, I am planning to buy a few more as spare reels for my boat.

Finally, I appreciate that the reel came ready to fish right out of the box without the need for any additional grease or oil. I highly recommend the Fin-Nor Lethal 100 reel to anyone looking for a high-quality and affordable offshore fishing reel.

Odiel Frayspen
Odiel Frayspen
2 months ago

I appreciate the thorough review of the Fin-Nor Lethal series, but I have to agree that it’s important to note that the review is specifically for the Lethal 100 size and not representative of the entire series. As someone who has examined the Lethal 40, 60, and 80 sizes, I can confirm that they have the same internals as the Fin-Nor Sportfisher series, with the only real difference being the casing. 

In fact, the Lethal 80 even has a slightly lower retail price than the Sportfisher 80, which just goes to show how random pricing can be. It’s also worth noting that while the Lethal 60 and 80 have full metal bodies and rotors, the Lethal 40 has a metal body and plastic rotor. I’m glad you mentioned this because there’s a lot of misinformation out there. At the end of the day, it’s important to focus on the completely different Lethal 100 and evaluate it on its own merits.