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Time for a new baitcaster -Maybe a new brand too

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Riprap Wrote:Emjay, you sure know your stuff and whether it's a marketing ploy or not, I don't care because you at least are being honest and give unbiased opinions; contrary to what they teach at "selling" school!

I have a question: Because the whole family fishes and different facets nogal too, the budget is like extremely stretched.......
The most expensive low profile baitcasting reel the kids own are Citica's and me personally I love my older Chromica 100 B's and Nav will love me for this, my Quantum surge burner......... Many okes have come and gone on my boat and I have felt some of the higher end models and they are nice, yes, but will you catch more fish?

I think that once you adapt to the type of tackle which you familiarize youreslf with and can afford, one can strip, clean, service and assemble in the dark just like we did with weapons! If you can't trust your reel on the next cast or next outing once you have neglected it slightly, then it's not worth

Many,guys ask on this site about a good decent reliable starter combo. I'm in the this same predicament and started as a kid and now my own kids are leaving the house but we still catch fish.
Lews BB1 about R1 500 - R1 800. How much better would you say they are to what I have mentioned above is the top range reels we currently use? The question eventually........

I never used to be un biased. Used to be a cocky moron that thought he knew everything. But learned in the end by paying major school fees. These school fees became distant scars and a whole new devil woke up inside me. What was the next best thing? Quite frankly I got obsessed, brand by brand the boredome started setting in. Draining my energy more often than not. My first baitcaster was Daiwa Triforce reel. Black spooled with bright orangeorange siglon line, then a Shimano Chromica. After that I won myself a Crestfire at my first junior comp win, then one saturday morning on ESPN I noticed Denny Brauer fish a small silver reel. Went to Solly's immediately and started opening every single box...not a kid in a candy store but a kid in a tackle shop on a mission. Eventually I opened a box with a Team Daiwa X reel. Bingo. Love at first sight.

Eventually by my 15th birthday it found me as a new owner. Then shortly after a few of those reels it was Jimmy Houston Outdoors and my eye caught his Chronarchs. 100a' one...liked it, shortly followed by the first Curado to ever appear. Then onto Abu after inherriting my dad's one Abu Pro that he got for Christmas when he left for the UK, this saw me have a couple of Abu's but the one that stood out most was my Morrum 1600c. Then the round reel craze started and soon I was into a calcutta 50b and shortly a 50xt.

Fast forward a few years and it was back to Team Daiwa and by then it was some Fuego's, Viento's and Sol's. A bit later a ZillionZillion dozen too.

Forward again and Abu is back with some Revo's and then Quantum made a comeback in SA. Energy's, PT Tours, Smokes etc...a battle for lightweight sarted shortly after that and I found myself fishing Revo Premiers, Daiwa Steeze's and Shimano Core 100's to name a few. Forward again and it was Curado E, G, I's, Chronarch A, B, D and E's, Calais 100a's and DC's. In between ALOT of imported stuff from all over, Phleuger, BPS, Pinnacle, Write&Mcgill, some locals too...alot of new model reels everytime whats hot and whats not came out...Revo, s SX, STX, Premier's, winches and MGX's. Quantum EXO's and everytime tackletour reviewed something that seemed worthwhile.

Then darkside and some of the best Shimano, Daiwa, Megabass and Abu's. Then it suddenly hit me...Emjay your chasing your tail...because how much better is Shimano Aldebaran BFS XG than a Chronarch 50? Wait..I cant compare...why? The BFS will be lucky if it holds 40m of 15lbs line...why would I want to cast a lure on a Chronarch 50e light enough to give a dropshot spinning rod a hard time? The obsession burned me out, Conquests, Exsense's, Aldebarans and the lot...what was happening to my personal life and the quality of that of my family? Whats the point of having 10 rod and reel combos on the boat that were worth a R160 000? To be honest 10 Shimano Crucial rods paired with Curado E's could feel the same bites and catch the same fish?

Re evaluated my life and went back to the drawing board. Lately I fish mid range and I am a far more happy angler...functionality is key..the best you can afford. I have said it before..if Larry Nixon could feel a bite in 60ft of water during the 80's with a spider jig fishing mono line why do I need a Gloomis NRX or Kistler Zbone. Or if you are super cock then a Megabass fish with what makes you happy but the most important thing is being functional and enjoying what you do. I am an experienced baitcast angler and know how to set up a rod and reel precisely, I can cast a Quantum Antix as far as any man can cast a Shimano Calais. It might not last as long or be as refined but woth propper care and maintenance it would come close. Whats the point of buying a 5000 reel and justify it by saying that "its gonna last me 30 years" wtf..really? Who wants to fish the same reel for that long?

Technology evolves rapidly every 5 years...its stupid to invest 5k in a reel the will be worth less than a 3rd of that by the time you want to step up your old stuff? We have basically reached the limit of the amount of rpm a spool can achieve before it spins so fast that it lets out line quicker than the laws of physics allow a lure to travel at. How far away do you want to catch a bass? If they dont employ morter type cannons on our rods shortly I cant imagine reels casting much further than they already do. The only new things will be in the form of materials being used to attract anglers to buy as they are running out of escuses and selling points. How buttery smooth can a reel get? You wont see alot more than 12 bearings because then it will negatively start impacting the weight weeny race and the 2k you just forked out extra on a magnesium reel was just wasted.

Retrieval also gets my knickers in a twist...I dont know about you but the majority of times the slower I fish the better my results...whats up with a 9.1:1 ratio reel? Fish can swim fast but I wanna see you crank any reaction type bait as fast as you can on a 9 ratio reel the whole day...a 5.1:1 or slower are there for a reason. 7.1:1 is almost overkill..."yes but I need to get the lure out the water as soon as I can after a no strike otherwise I lose time and all of us are professional US Bassmasters with $1 million dollar endorcements so time in the water is money" really? Poephol...if your lure is being retrieved after the first 2m on a 100m cast you dont belong behind a rod in the first place.

Yes certain reels are more refined than Riprap said..we adapt to our tackle...just like with anything else...can you remember your very first good quality car over your old scorro scorro...the scorro scorro drove like a got into your new can for a test drive and you enjoyed it...but you didnt really notice the difference that much till you got back in your old car and only then did you notice the flaws on your current car...same applies to reels...there is the realms we move goes up till it gets past the point of being acceptable and functional realm...where expectations are so far exceeded that it makes no sense especially with the boundaries of physics and your ego. Honestly you are going to enjoy upgrading to a certain point...then there will be no more functional gains but rather personal or self satisfactory gains.

What could you ever need more in a rod and reel than lets say a Shimano Crucial/old cumara paired with a Curado E, or a Quantum Tour PT rod and reel, or a Revo S and Veritas rod? Are you a freak with no sensation in your hand or are you a tub of lard that cant manage to cast a complete rig weighing more that 7oz for a day on the lake? If you cant lift 11 ounces or more you should rather look at seeing a doctor or joining a gym rather than spending 4k or more extra to save 2oz. Or you have a very small willy and need to prove something then we will understand.

Riprap if you enjoy your tackle keep at it. If you want to upgrade you will never need more than a Crucial Curado combo for instance. If fancy and bling is for you then by all means blow 10k on a rod and reel excluding 800zar worth of fluoro. Will it make you catch more fish? Definately' more personal preference than being functional...when you fish on your boat and notice the 20 rods on another boats deck worth more than most of our pensions will be worth one day and you think to yourself "am I missing out on something?" The answer is most defianetly not...remember the realm...things get better only to a point they it starts exceeding those realms...
Navrik Wrote:Thanks for your reply Emjay. I must say I fell in love with the PT Tour the first time I saw it and now I have 7. I also have 3 KVD Tours which a littler heavier but very strong. I use all three ratios from my cranking rods as I feel like you said that heavier cranking rods balance a lot better with the slightly heavier reels. I also love the cranking power of the KVD Tour. I will definately take a second look at Lews some time.

Have you tried Lews spinning reels as well and do you feel the same about them as the casting models? I see the max out around the $129 level.

Then I saw you mentioning the ALX rods. What do you think about them? I have 3 so far and I am realling enjoying the sensitivity and bite detection on them and the confidence I feel in hand fighting a fish.

The ALX rods are fantastic rods that in my opinion deserve much more exposure than they do currently. A way better rod in my opinion than a Halo and a ALX can rub shoulders with the best any day of the week. I was a bit scepticle in the beginning but they have since won me over. Look the American's cant build a car to save a life and at birth they are so processed that their genetic makeup is about 2 atoms away from being tupperware but if there is two things an American can do well it will be building a bass boat and a fishing rod.

Look at the Lews when you get a gap. I personally enjoy the BB1 and BBZ but the size and palming is similar to that of the Curado 200e which I personally like because of the wide spool/flat profile. If its not your thing then look at the Tournament and LFS models which are more compact.

I have to agree with you Nav, the First time I saw the titanium look PT and KVD with those carbon handles I was sold on them too lol...

@Riprap before I marketing ploy...just personal accounts and my own opinion always...I am a rebel by nature and never really did well with people telling me what to do or say...all these reels are good, I just point out things that bug me and try point out possible areas where a certain manufacturer can step things up to make a product more complete and enjoyable to it's potential audience. Thank goodness for taste differences otherwise everyone would have fished Lew's BB1's on ALX or Crucial rods hahahahahahaha

And yes one of my Lew's reels had a flaw...the damn little plastic bubble sticker that says Lews on the left hand sideplate looked like it was coming I pulled it off and superglued its ass hahahaha
Hi Emjay, thanks for the detailed replies. Be careful of all those realms......hehe!
The key here too being the corrrect setup of the reel on the rod so whether it's a 20 yr old bantam crestfire or a 2 day old aldebaran, and one has a moerse crows nest due to poor setup and it would have to be sorted out at home, both render the reel unusable for the rest of the day...........!
Lekka info Emjay. Really informative. Have you tried the Lews spinning reels yet?
Regards Robert Jacobs
Emjay and Rip this is really informative of how trends and decisions are made by us all,one thing is for sure the older you get the wiser you become we just have to own up to our mistakes.
Emjay you make me feel as we are a twin one thing I have learn't is to slow down before you buy and mod what you have got If you are not happy, your set up has all to do with it as Rip has indicated set it up and be happy.
I really have enjoyed this read
Just procured myself the new Crucial and paired it with the new Chronarch...yoh...very chuffed!
Navrik Wrote:Lekka info Emjay. Really informative. Have you tried the Lews spinning reels yet?

I have Nav, brilliant and real good value for money. Even the American hero version is way ahead of the competitors in the price class. And I think its one of the only reels at the price point which gives you a ratio of over 6.1:1...
Riprap Wrote:Hi Emjay, thanks for the detailed replies. Be careful of all those realms......hehe!
The key here too being the corrrect setup of the reel on the rod so whether it's a 20 yr old bantam crestfire or a 2 day old aldebaran, and one has a moerse crows nest due to poor setup and it would have to be sorted out at home, both render the reel unusable for the rest of the day...........!

Very true Riprap although I have yet to cast a crowsnest with an Aldebaran...thats the MG7 model by the way. The BFS XG a tricky little bugger. I also believe if you have opened 2 or 3 reels with confidence you will notice one thing...if you have seen one you have seen them all...I have opened literally thousands of baitcasters and they all work basically the same inside. Believe it or not the trickiest yet is a old white Daiwa Procaster but thats just because it wasn't thought out properly. Like a Alfa 147 JTD with a battery box that needed to be removed before you could get to the airfilter sort of deal.

And Shimano's more midrange and upwards reels have a anti reverse plate aswell as a bearing. Other than that its very basic. Remove side plate. Remove spool. The isdide has the main gear, a worm gear, two springs on a plastic part that houses the wormgear. A drag stack , a one way ribbed washer at the bottom. Some reels like the daiwas have a bearing underneath the main shaft. A set of circlips that hold the gears together on either side of the shaft that supports the level wind. Some reels have only one clip on either side. A bearing in right hand side cover where the spool tention knob goes and a anti reverse bearing ontop of your drag stack/main gear...biggest issue I have seen is due to our heat the grease in you reel melts due to sout african heat and finds its way into that bearing...symptoms Include your reel miraculously spinning backwards...if this happens just flush the bearing with plenty of oil and dry off excess oil. Work it a few times with your fingers and you're sorted.

Anyway back to setting up a reel, there is not much to it or a proven recipe like our magizines claim...each reel has a sweet spot...and each one differs...think of it as wheel balancing on a car and wheel alignment. There are basic guide lines like with most Daiwas 6 is a good starting point to work from. Shimanos have two pins that need engaging on the VBS at certain spots to find the sweetspot, although an Aldebaran on 3 pins and certain sequence, Quantums sweet spot is found on mag setting 4 and 5 depending on the model. Abu's between 3 and 5 depending on the model...

And not one reel is exactly the same..out of the box each one is all you crazy people on the forum...
Just unboxed the Tournament MG 8:3:1. Immediately I'm impressed with how lightweight it is! I will post feedback...
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