Spearguns for Underwater Fishing

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If you want to combine diving with fishing, you will need a speargun. These are made specifically for underwater use and come with practical features that will make diving and fishing a true pleasure. 

Let’s start with the speargun basics and then look at the differences with polespears. 

Speargun Basics

How does a speargun work?

A speargun propels a spear shaft underwater to pierce the fish. Spearguns come with a trigger mechanism, which holds the spear in place until you decide to shoot. 


Spearguns are made from wood (such as mahogany), aluminum, or carbon fiber. Wood spearguns are buoyant and have a classic feel. Aluminum spearguns are durable and lightweight. Carbon fiber guns are known for their strength and lightweight properties. 

Spear shaft

The spear, or shaft, is usually made of stainless steel or a similar corrosion-resistant material. The thickness and length of the shaft vary depending on the intended prey and the gun's power.

Speargun muzzle

Open-muzzle spearguns have a basic design, making loading easy and giving a clear view of the target. They can be used with shafts with shark fins. Enclosed-track-muzzle spearguns provide stability and support for beginners. With a carbon roller speargun, you have more power and range.   

Trigger mechanism

A good trigger mechanism is smooth and reliable and provides accurate shooting.

Loading mechanism

There is usually a mechanism or notch at the back of the spear shaft for loading the bands. Pneumatic spearguns often have a loading butt to help in compressing the air when loading the spear.

Polespear Basics

If you like to try something simpler, you can start with a polespear. This doesn’t rely on automatically propelling a spear. Rather, polespears are manual and rely on the diver's strength and skill for propulsion and accuracy: the diver has to aim for the fish and propel the spear tip. 

A polespear is a simple type of spearfishing gear. It’s made of a long shaft, typically made of fiberglass, carbon fiber, or aluminum, with a rubber loop (sling) attached to one end and a spear tip on the other. 

You grab the rubber loop and stretch it down the length of the shaft, then hold it near the back end with the hand. You then aim the tip at the target fish. You release the rubber loop to propel the spear shaft forward by the elastic force of the sling.

Polespear or Speargun?

So, you have made your choice among rash guards, wetsuits, snorkels, masks, diving knives, weight belts, and other diving apparel and spearfishing accessories, but the most important question is: should you go for a speargun or a polespear?

You can start with either spearguns or polespears. Polespears are often recommended when you are new to spearfishing because their mechanics are simpler and they rely on personal strength and aim. But you can easily start with a speargun if you prefer. 

Price can also be a factor when you shop for a speargun or polespear as a beginner. Polespears are generally less costly, while the cost for a speargun may vary depending on materials, complexity, and brand. 

Here are some mora factors to consider.

Spearguns for longer range

Spearguns generally offer greater range and power and they are great for targeting larger and more distant fish. Polespears require the diver to be closer to the target. You must display precision and stealth as you release the loop. 

If you are fishing for small fish, a polespear could be better; for larger fish, opt for a speargun, especially if the fish are fast and you want the extra power of mechanical propulsion. 

Polespears are simpler to take care of

Polespears are simpler and require less maintenance compared to spearguns, which have more moving parts and may require more regular servicing.

Polespears for beginners, spearguns for advanced fishing

Polespears can be easier to learn to use effectively which means they are great for beginners. Spearguns display more advanced features for experienced spearfishers looking for the extra thrill.

Diving and water conditions

Polespears are often used for spearfishing in shallow waters or tight spaces where precision is necessary and movement is limited. Also, if the water is murky, a polespear could work more effectively. 

If you are fishing on longer distances and clear waters, a longer, more powerful speargun is preferable. 

The Right Speargun for You

You are about to pick your speargun and you feel overwhelmed by choices. So, let’s make things simpler for you!

Size and power

The size and power of the speargun should match the type of fish you are targeting and the environment in which you will be spearfishing. 

Larger guns are more powerful and suitable for bigger fish and open waters. Smaller guns are better for reef fishing and smaller species.

Range and accuracy

You want your speargun to be effective, otherwise, what’s the point of going fishing? Accuracy is influenced by the gun’s design, your fishing skills, and the water conditions.

Ease of use and maintenance

Consider how easy the speargun is to load, maintain, and repair. Simpler designs can be more reliable and easier to handle, especially for beginners. Remember that you should load your speargun in the water and never on land as this can lead to accidents. 

Spearfishing Tips

Attach your speargun

Hand and finger movement underwater is not as simple as on land. With your gloves on, you might feel things differently on your fingers and more clumsy. To avoid losing your speargun while you dive, attach it to a float line. If you lose it, the float line will guide you to its position. 

Carry a catch bag

The thrill of spearfishing comes from catching fish and having some on your dinner menu. To carry your catch, have a catch bag with you to place your fish in. Use a float line to carry catch bags underwater. 

Remember that fish get scared of bubbles

The bubbles from your breathing equipment will get noticed by fish and could scare them. Be patient and make small and smooth movements. 

Shop Now

Contact our customer support for help on the best-selling models, to find the ideal speargun or polespear for you with our best price guarantee and free shipping for orders over $25.

Remember, though, that many areas and countries forbid spearfishing so it’s best to ask local authorities before you begin your spearfishing adventure!

Frequently Asked Questions

Are there legal restrictions on using spearguns or polespears?

Yes, there are legal restrictions on spearfishing, including the use of spearguns and polespears, depending on the location. Check local regulations regarding permissible gear, fishing seasons, and species limits before spearfishing.

How do I choose the right size speargun?

The size of the speargun should match the type of environment you'll be fishing in and the size of the fish you're targeting. Shorter models are better suited for confined spaces like reefs and wrecks, while longer ones are preferable in open water or for larger fish. 

What safety precautions should I take when using a speargun?

Always treat spearguns and polespears as loaded weapons; never point them at anything you do not intend to shoot, and use a safety mechanism if available. Underwater, be aware of your surroundings, especially other divers. You should have a clear line of sight and shot before firing. Use dive lights if needed to better manage your environment.