Setting Up A Fishing Pole

People may go fishing as a means of livelihood, sports, social bond, or just a personal recreation. Many people do it, not only by teens and adults but also by parents also try to teach their children to fish even as early as five years old.

But whatever age group you belong to and whatever reason you have that makes you want to go fishing, it is necessary for you to ensure that your tools are ready.

A Must-Read: Types Of Fishing Hooks

One of the basic tools needed for this activity is the fishing pole. If you want to start fishing and find a way to get your fishing equipment ready, you may follow the basic procedures and techniques for setting up a fishing pole.

Identifying Parts Of The Fishing Pole

Before you can set up your pole yourself, it is good to determine its parts first. It could be boring to read about terms and such, but it is wise to learn them.

This way, you will be guided with the necessary materials needed to set up your fishing pole.

Also, by identifying its parts, you will get a better understanding of how a fishing rod works. As well as the purpose played by every single part of it, thus helping you to set it up properly and effectively.

Fishing poles sold in the market vary in size and material used, which are intended for different purposes. These are the common parts of a fishing pole:

Fishing Rod

The main body or the whole length of the pole is what you call the fishing rod. It is usually made of bamboo, fiberglass, or carbon fiber. It is where everything is attached to. It may be disassembled into two or more parts.

These parts have joints at their ends, which are called ferrules – male or female ferrule.

These connectors are usually made from metal or fiberglass that fit together when connected. Ferrules come in different styles and sizes, but male ferrules are generally thinner or smaller, designed to be inserted into female ferrules.

The bottom section of the fishing rod is called the handle (also called the grip), which is made from cork or synthetic foam rubber. It is where you hold the rod while fishing.

Besides that obvious purpose, the handle also houses the butt cap and the reel seat.

The butt cap, which is usually made of rubber or cork, is located at the very bottom end of the pole. It is the part that might be pressed onto your stomach if extra support is needed when getting the fish.

The reel seat is where the reel is attached to the fishing rod.

The thick section that is located just above the handle is called the butt. It is where the hook keeper (also called the Keeper Ring) is located. As the name suggests, the hook keeper is a small ring where you can “hook your hook” when not in use.

The thinnest and most flexible section, called the tip, is at the uppermost part of the rod. It is the section that bends when loaded.


These are small rings that you see along the fishing rod. It helps you keep your fishing line from the tip along the length of your rod.

Butt guide is the guide that is closest to the handle.

Fishing Reel

A fishing reel is a revolvable device that is attached to the fishing rod. It is used in winding the fishing line. There are various types of reels available in the market—each with different mechanisms designed for different purposes.

Two main categories of reels are spinning reels and fly reels.

Spinning reels, usually used with heavier rods, are intended to cast heavier lures. Meaning, they do not need to use a heavy fishing line to cast because the lures are already heavy to go deep into the water.

It is normally used in rivers and still water angling.

Spin fishing is an easy fishing method to start with, especially when you are a beginner. It does not require much throwing skills, but simple practice will do. The reel used is easy to clean, maintain, and operate.

Flying reels are used with lightweight rods. These reels are used to cast lightweight flies such as dry flies, streamers, and nymphs, imitating the food fish feed on. 

It is usually used when fishing in moving water like seas and oceans. If you are looking for a suitable reel for big saltwater game fish, you might want to get Penn Battle II Spinning Fishing Reel.

Whatever reel you have or are going to use, you need to identify common reel parts necessary for setting up your fishing rod. You mainly need the spool, the reel foot, the bale arm, the line roller, and the drag knob.


The cylindrical part of the reel where you will wind the fishing line around is called the spool. Just imagine a sewing spool where the textile thread is wound, which looks like it.

Reel Foot

You will see a sort of “puzzle piece” at the butt end of your fishing reel that fits with the real seat. It is called the reel foot.

Bale Arm

The bale arm, also known as bail, is a piece of metal on the reel that either stops or lets the fishing line comes out of the spool.

Line Roller

The line roller helps to correctly guide the fishing line from the spool to the fishing rod.

Drag Knob

It is a knob allowing you to set the drag of the fish. Drag is the measure of the resistance a fish feels when the line is being pulled.

Fishing Line

Of course, all the parts discussed above will be useless without the thread-like material that goes through the length of the fishing rod down to the waters. It is called the fishing line. The fishing line is a durable cord usually made from nylon or fluorocarbon.

For high-quality fishing lines, you might want to check KastKing SuperPower Braided Fishing Line. Braided lines like this, in general, are more durable and have a higher resistance to abrasion. But if you like a fishing line that is less visible to fish, then you can buy fluorocarbon varieties like KastKing FluoroKote Fishing Line.

Terminal Tackle

Every gear you put at the end of the fishing line, such as hooks, baits, fishing weights, lures, nets, and traps, are called terminal tackles. Baits and lures attract the fish.

The hook catches the fish when it bites the lure. Fishing weights help sink the lure, especially if it is lightweight. Nets and traps help to prevent the fish from running (or swimming) away.

Various lures and gears are used in fishing. Each is dependent on the weather, the target type of fish, the type of water, and the fishing technique you will use.

Try to do some research on the internet about the lure you must use to attain your purpose. You can also ask your fishing shop or anglers that you know to give suggestions about effective lures and gears.

Cleaning The Parts Of The Fishing Pole

Now that you have encountered the basic parts of a fishing rod, you are still not yet ready to go. I recommend cleaning every material before assembling them.

This way, you can ensure that your fishing pole would attain its maximum shelf life. Dirt and debris can scratch through your rod parts and wear them out in the long run.

How To Set-up A Fishing Pole

Assembling The Rod Sections

A while ago, I stated that the fishing rod could be disassembled into parts unless it is a one-piece rod. Now that you have enough ideas about the different parts of the fishing pole, it is time to assemble the rod sections.

A piece of information: One purpose why some fishing rods can be broken into two or more parts is for easy transport. You might not want to carry your fishing rod with all its length.

Now, if you have a single-piece fishing rod, you can skip this step and proceed to number 2. But if your fishing rod breaks into two or more, follow along.

First of all, you need to get the pieces on a flat surface, which may be a table or such. Line up the male and female pieces of the fishing rod. These are the rod sections you are going to join.

Now, look at the ferrules at the ends. Securely hold the female ferrule and fasten the male ferrule into it. Note that males are inserted into females.

As I said, there are different rods sold in the market, so make sure you check the instruction for the type of rod you are using. If your rod has pieces needed to be rotated to lock them together, you might need to align the parts on a particular angle before twisting them.

Make sure not to force the rod sections together. If they are not coming together, find another way. Also, try to reread the instructions; maybe you are only missing a certain procedure.

Perhaps you can also ask help from people who know because maybe you are just doing it wrong.

Again, do not force the rod sections together because you might weaken or damage them if you do. Whatever type of locking mechanism your rod has, see that the guides are aligned to one another after assembling.

Attaching The Reel

Whatever reel you prefer to use, you always need to connect it to your fishing rod. To do this, get your reel and look for the reel foot. Now attach the reel foot to the reel seat.

Together, they should form a thread. Now, rotate the reel in a clockwise direction to tighten it to the reel seat. While making sure that the pieces are secured together, you should be careful not to over-tighten them. Or else you risk ruining your fishing rod.

Threading The Pole

First, you must lift the bale arm by flipping it up to the opposite side of the reel. When putting rod pieces together and attaching the reel to the reel seat, you should not force the bale arm to flip up.

If it does not go easy, you might be doing it the wrong way. Check the spool as well. The direction where the fishing line unwinds and the reel turns should be the same. If not, adjust your spool to match the reel.

Now place your fishing line around the spool once and make a knot, preferably an overhand knot. Double the knot to secure the line, then cut the excess, just leaving ¼ inch. Now close the bale arm.

Gently pull the line to see if it is closed. The line should not come out.

Turn your reel to wind up the fishing line around the spool. The amount of line you must put depends on your preference and on the type of reel you have, of course. Check if your reel has a “line cap,” which tells the maximum amount of line it can carry.

Now that you have gathered the line around the spool, you need to tuck it under the line roller. After doing this, place the line along with the guides. You need to open the bale arm again with one hand so the other hand can pull the tip of the thread.

In threading the pole, insert the line along with the butt guide first, then passing through every guide until it reached the very tip of the rod where the last guide is located. Be careful not to let go of the tip because it might fall back.

Attaching Lure And Terminal Tackles

Whatever terminal tackle you decide to use, you must put it at the tip of your fishing line. Thread your line to your gears and lures by making knots. You can search the internet and search for a suitable knot for whatever gears you will use.

Once the lure or gear has been threaded to your fishing line, make sure the knot is secured and durable. O else, it will loosen up, and your fish will eventually swim away with your bait.

Set The Drag Knob

To tighten the drag, turn the knob clockwise. To loosen, turn it counterclockwise. The tighter the drag is, the more resistance the fish feels. To determine the drag, manually pull the line from your reel. Repeat turning the drag knob until you reach the amount of drag you wanted.

Note that the drag should be tight enough to make your fish get tired and not so tight so the line would not break. Consider also the type of fish you are targeting. Still, you can determine the right amount of drag when you go fishing.


Setting up a fishing pole might be a complicated process, but understanding its parts and their roles in this activity helps make the process simple and easy.

Knowing how to properly set up your fishing equipment, particularly the fishing pole, is also an essential skill to learn as fishing itself. Once you have successfully set up your fishing pole, you are now good to go, ready to enjoy the recreation that fishing offers.