Pole spears are an affordable and versatile way to begin spear fishing.
However, with the many brands and configurations of pole spear available, along with the different tips, bands and accessories you can buy – which is the best pole spear on the market today?
We have tried to answer that with this top 5 review round up. For our findings at a glance head to the table below.
For a dedicated buyer’s guide plus in depth reviews of each of our best rated pole spears, keep on reading.
Best Pole Spear Top 5 Picks
- Best Pole Spear Top 5 Picks
- Pole Spear Buyer’s Guide
- Pole Spear Reviews
- TOP PICK: MAKO Spearfishing Traveler Pole Spear with 5 Prong Paralyzer Barb Tip
- Scuba Choice 6′ One Piece Fiber Glass Pole Spear with 3 Prong Barb SS Paralyzer Tip
- JBL Shaka Carbon Fiber Travel Pole Spear
- 3116 Bandito Pole Spear 7’ x 5/8”
- Scuba Choice 4.5′ One Piece Fiber Glass Pole Spear with Lionfish Barb Tip
Pole Spear Buyer’s Guide
When buying a pole spear (whether you’re a beginner or experienced pro) there’s a few issues you should consider before parting with your hard earned money.
Let’s take a look at what those are:
Size of the Pole Spear
One of the first considerations is the size of the pole. Pole spears generally come in at between 4 and 8 feet long.
However with modifications you can find poles up to 12 feet long.
Longer pole spears can be broken down into sections that screw together for easy portability.
There are pros and cons to both long and short poles of course.
Longer poles are more wieldy in the water and are generally recommended for more experienced divers. That plus side is the amount of reach that you gain with added length.
Shorter poles are easier to manoeuvre and allow for more confined spearfishing. Conversely, the shorter reach means you have to move closer to your prey without disturbing it.
Pole Spear Materials
Let’s take a closer look at each type.
Fiberglass pole spears are generally the heaviest and most robust you can buy.
The great think about the added weight is that it gives you more force upon impact. It is also worth knowing that the weight of the spear does feel less in the water.
However, a negative end result is that of strike speed and velocity. On a marginal scale, a heavier pole spear takes more energy to move through the water than one of the lighter material options.
Aluminum pole spears are lighter than those made from a fibreglass construction.
As we touched on above, the fact aluminium is lighter can result in marginal higher strike-speeds in the water.
Durability and strength is the downside of aluminum pole spears. If the shaft structure becomes compromised in any way, it is difficult to bend back into shape with the aluminium weakening beyond use.
In other words, if you try to bend the pole back into place it is more likely to snap completely.
Pole spears made from carbon fiber are currently the lightest available. The shafts on a carbon fiber pole are also thinner in diameter.
The dual effect of reduced thickness and weight results in an extremely fast fishing spear in the water.
Furthermore, the carbon fiber structure makes the pole durable and strong. Your spear will be able to absorb flex under strain without compromising the shaft.
One of the downsides (as is always the way with quality materials) the cost of carbon fiber poles is often higher than both the aluminium and fiber glass alternatives.
Wood Pole Spears
Wood pole spears are generally vintage models. Very few manufacturers utilise wood now due to the onset of the lighter, more durable materials listed above.
However, if you are a collector or are fascinated by the aged old method of spearing fish, the wood pole spear is worth looking into.
Pole Spear Tip Ends
The number of options available to you when you buy a fishing spear continues with the style of tip.
You can find fixed tip poles as well as interchangeable tip poles.
As the name suggests on the fixed tip, you do not have a choice on the configuration. Whatever you buy you are stuck with. The plus side is sheer strength and durability of the tip.
The more versatile threaded tip allows the user to add different styles of tip as they see fit.
The current most popular tip you will find is the Paralyzer. Also known as the three-pronged tip, many brands offer these as part of their product line.
The Tahitian shaft (or single pivoting barb) is another common option that is well catered for with both fixed tip and interchangeable models.
The Pole Spear Band
The band on a pole spear is attached to the butt end. It is basically an elastic loop usually made from rubber.
The rubber loop in the band is held in place by the crook of the operators thumb.
This harnesses potential energy while the band is held in tension. Once the user lets go of the band it exerts kinetic energy that jettisons the spear through the water at your quarry.
The effective range of a pole spear is approximately the length of your spear.
The quality and durability of the rubber is the key issue here. To determine the best pole spear with regards to the band that it comes with involves careful attention to previous customer reviews.
Only long term use can reveal the overall reliability of the material over time.
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Pole Spear Reviews
The MAKO 3 in 1 Spearfishing Traveler Pole Spear is our number one pick because it balances affordability, solid build quality and travel friendly features all in one package.
Designed to snare small to medium size fish the 3 in 1 structure makes this a very easy pole to sling in the back of the vehicle, (or even over the shoulder) as you head to the water to for a spot of spear fishing.
MAKO state that the pole is capable of spearing fish as much as 10 to 15 lbs. The fact is the pole has a good amount of heft over its large 6′ 7″ full length.
The break down into component parts sees the pole reduced to only 27.5″ long for easy storageand portability.
The build also allows you to configure the length to your own personal requirements. If you need a shorter fishing spear, you can piece together only 2 sections for closer range hunting.
Taking this further, the versatile MAKO traveller Pole Spear can be put together using only one section. Fancy a spot of Lion Fish hunting? The 1 piece, 33″ inches long spear will do just the trick.
Connecting the pieces is nice and simple, with the joints being built in a durable manner to withstand constant use, (and breakdown / reconnection).
The individual sections are supported by recessed flush screw on connectors that provide extra stability while ensuring a smooth release.
The high strength, corrosion resistant, anodized aircraft aluminium spear is much stronger than standard aluminium constructed pole spears.
For actually snaring the fish, MAKO have included a paralyzer tip. This 5 prong cluster really does increase your chances of a successful catch.
Furthermore, each prong features MAKO “sure grip” barbs to ensure the spear fixes firmly into the fish reducing the chance of it getting away after initial impact.
What’s in the box?
This formidable spearfishing pole package contains the three interchangeable sections and one 5 prong cluster, paralyzer tip with “sure grip” barbs on each prong.
One full length MAKO “Latex Power Band” for 3 pc and 2 pc hunting is also provided.
Pros of the MAKO Spearfishing Traveler Pole Spear with 5 Prong Paralyzer Barb Tip
- Versatile and travel friendly 3 piece design
- Very long at full length (measuring in at 6′ 7″) with the great functionality of operating on 1 or 2 piece configuration.
- High strength, corrosion resistant, anodized aircraft aluminum
- Strong & durable connecting joints with recessed flush screw on connectors
- High impact and reliable 5 prong (with barbs) Paralyzer tip
- A minority of users have had some issue with the tip being too short and not strong over extended use.
MAKO have an excellent all round package here. The versatility of 3 different lengths, the easy travel solution and excellent paralyzer tip, along with overall quality build make this a clear winner in our top 5 round up. In our opinion, at this price point it is the best value pole spear on the market today.
Scuba Choice 6′ One Piece Fiber Glass Pole Spear with 3 Prong Barb SS Paralyzer Tip
For those that do not need the versatility of a travel fishing spear (with the different length configurations), a fixed one piece spear is very often a better choice.
To cater to those more specific demands, we have the 5’ one piece fiber glass pole (6’ overall with tip) from Scuba Choice.
This is a simple yet effective solution if you are in the market for a pole spear of these dimensions.
The fibreglass construction is lightweight while being durable enough to withstand rigorous underwater action.
To ensure sufficient engagement with your prey, Scuba Choice have provided a 3 prong paralyzer tip, (like the top pick MAKO this comes with barbs on each prong).
This is made from stainless steel, and features an 8mm thread for attachment to the main pole. Total length of the tip comes in at 12 inches.
As Scuba Choice state in their own marketing copy, this one piece fishing spear solution is currently one of their bestselling product lines.
Suitable for beginners and experts alike, it has proved to be a popular choice for many spearfishing enthusiasts.
Pros of the Scuba Choice 6′ One Piece Spearfishing Fiber Glass Pole Spear with 3 Prong Barb SS Paralyzer Tip
- Robust yet lightweight fibreglass construction
- Fixed length pole of 5 inches (with 12 inch tip). Total length 6’
- Reliable stainless steel 3 Prong Paralyzer tip with barb
- Durable black rubber sling
- Only 3 prong tip rather than the higher impact 5 prong offering on the MAKO
- One piece construction is naturally less versatile than what you get with connecting piece fishing spears
If you are after a lightweight, fibreglass pole spear of one length, (and that happens to be 6 feet), you will be hard pushed to find a better offering than this from Scuba Choice at this price point.
JBL Shaka Carbon Fiber Travel Pole Spear
Now we come to the daddy of our top 5 best pole spear round up.
The JBL Shaka Carbon Fiber Travel Pole Spear is designed for the veteran spear fisherman that demands the very best from his tool of choice.
The list of hi-tech design features that JBL has packed into this spear is actually quite extraordinary.
First off the manufacturers have gone down the path of nano-technology; fusing together high grade nano tech materials with their standard aircraft grade aluminium.
The result is a carbon fiber pole of extreme lightweight proportions that, in the words of JBL: ‘delivers a hybrid pole spear like no other’.
The spear has been constructed utilising a unidirectional carbon weave.
That may go right over the head of most of us. The fact is, in layman’s terms we only care about the results.
This engineering process apparently benefits the pole by allowing a maximum transfer of energy throughout the length of its construction.
The pole is able to withstand greater force meaning zero bend or flex occurs. In short, all of the power that is exerted goes right to the tip.
The aluminum end piece adds even more mass to ensure the safe and reliable snaring of fish. Should you be working in rocky conditions you can operate without any concern of damaging your pole.
The attention to detail goes even further. The precision machined (over-sized) aluminum unions add another level of durability, while the thicker walled power band makes big game fish a possibility when using this formidable spear pole.
6 and 7 feet options are available. The three piece travel pole spear is shipped with the JBL 890 breakaway tip for larger game fish use.
Pros of the JBL Shaka Carbon Fiber Travel Pole Spear
- Unidirectional design ensures no loss of inertia upon release
- Extra strong carbon fiber hybrid design – helps keep the polespear sturdy for maximum transfer of energy
- Durable tip suitable for rocky and reef environments
- Oversized sling (648-C) for improved speed and penetration
- Travel bag included
- Break-Away rockpoint tip for larger game (890)
- This is an expensive spear pole. You can pick up spearguns for a more affordable price.
The JBL Shaka Carbon Fiber Travel Pole Spear is a premium pole with some very impressive specs. Its as if JBL sat down and thought how ‘how could we make the strongest, most high performing spear pole out there’.
In many ways they have succeeded. However, due to the high price and specs it is more suited to experienced spear fisherman that will really benefit from the top level design.
If that’s you, you will want the JBL as part of your spearfishing arsenal.
3116 Bandito Pole Spear 7’ x 5/8”
This one piece pole spear from Bandito makes our top 5 list as it represents a reliable go to option for those requiring an extra long pole.
Measuring in at 7 feet, the one piece fixed, stainless spring steel construction certainly packs a punch.
And while the extended dimensions may put off some, if you’re regularly on the hunt for Lionfish, this tool really does come in to its own.
The solid 5/8 inch diameter fibreglass shaft features fixed aluminium but and tip. Bandito have opted for a three pronged, paralyzer in this regard. This has been fitted with two collar type barbs to increase reliability of the catch.
For increased force on release the Bandito features a 26” x 1/2” polespear band.
Another added benefit of purchasing a Bandito is the fact the pole spear is manufactured in the good old USA; the spear fishing mecca of The Florida Keys no less.
Pros of the 3116 Bandito Pole Spear 7’ x 5/8”
- Extra long 7’ x 5/8” one piece construction.
- Reliable three prong, paralyzer tip with two collar type barbs
- Strong yet lightweight fiberglass shaft (also features fixed Aluminum butt and tip fittings)
- Made in the USA
- The overall length certainly won’t suit all spear fishing uses
- The fact it is a one piece fixed spear does reduce overall versatility
While the 3116 Bandito pole spear doesn’t set the world alight with ground breaking features or design prowess, they have put together a durable fibreglass one piece that will appeal to those that like to hunt lion fish. A recommended option nonetheless.
Scuba Choice 4.5′ One Piece Fiber Glass Pole Spear with Lionfish Barb Tip
On the other end of the spectrum (in comparison to the Bandito) is this diminutive option from Scuba Choice.
With a total length of a mere 4.5 feet this one piece spearfishing pole is the shortest in our top 5 roundup, (discounting the options included with the multi-piece poles).
As with the Bandito, this comes with the Lion Fish hunter in mind. So much so it ships with a 3 prong lionfish barb tip (6 inches long) as standard.
Should you want more versatility than that, Scuba Choice do provide replacement spearheads as after unit purchases.
The small size and affordable price point does make this a worthwhile option for complete beginners wanting to give spearfishing a go for the first time.
That being said, accustomed fisherman, (especially those after Lion Fish) will find good use out of this sturdy fibreglass pole.
Pros of the Scuba Choice 4.5′ One Piece Spearfishing Fiber Glass Pole Spear with Lionfish Barb Tip
- Shorter than average 4ft fibreglass pole (total length with tip 4.5 feet long) makes this an easier tool to pick up and ‘run with’.
- 3 Prong Lionfish Barb tip designed for catching, well Lionfish.
- Removable spear head allowing for replacements to be fitted after purchase.
- The short length will clearly not suit all fisherman.
- Doesn’t come with a case.
Overall Scuba Choice have provided another great spear pole option that caters for a specific need. If you’re in the market for a short fibreglass fishing spear (and have a penchant for Lionfish hunting), you may well have found your solution with this.