Fishing for bass is mostly done on a baitcasting setup using medium to small sized lures. However it is possible to use some very small lures if you have the right tackle setup.
A good ultralight setup is much better than any baitcaster at throwing light lures right where you want them.
In general you are going to want to choose a spinning reel of not more than 3500 in size.
Depending on just how light you want to go a 1000 or 2500 sized reel is best.
You can view a buying guide for ultralight spinning reels on Tacklexpert.com. In that article there are a number of different reels ranging from an expensive Shimano down to a cheaper President.
Personally I always find you get the best value out of fishing tackle if you go for the mid-range priced offerings from the main manufacturers.
A rod that is best suited to ultralight fishing is going to be about 6’6″ in length and have a fast action.
You’ll not need a line rating any higher than 6 lbs. Ultralight rods are always spinning rods so if you are tempted to use a baitcasting rod then that won’t work with a spinning reel.
Monofilament is the go to lie of choice for light tackle. Braid is really not that good in really lighter weights.
Rating wise you need to go with 6 pound or less. The rod and line rating should always be matched if you want to get the very best performance from you casting.
The whole point of using an ultralight spinning setup for bass is so that you can use light and small lures.
Spinners, although spinners are mostly used for trout you can still catch bass on smaller inline type spinners.
Look out for Mepps, Short Strikers and Panther Martins are the go to lures here.
You can vary the body color and the blade colors, but in my experience a silver blade seems to work best for small-mouth bass.
Depending on the time of year and the water color you can also use a dressed treble hook on your spinner. This are already included with the Panther Martins. Black and dark olive/green are the best colors to use on the dressing.
Crankbaits in the smaller sizes can be extremely effective for bass right after spawning season as they are quite aggressive when protecting their nesting spots. You can use the usual bass crankbaits only in smaller sizes.
The smaller sized crankbaits will tend to run quite shallow so there are best used close in beside weed beds and other underwater structures.
Bass fishing using light tackle can be a heck of a lot of fun if you are prepared to get your tackle right and you target the fish in the right spots.
Make sure to always be very quite when fishing with light gear. Chances are the bass are near the surface of the water. Surface fish will tend to spook a lot easier so being quite and not wearing anything that is too bright is the best approach.
You may also want to get a good pair of fishing sunglasses that are polarized to help reduce surface glare.