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dafack01

Best non-astronomically expensive saltwater reel?

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I think it's time to replace my 8wt Orvis Battenkill Mid Arbor fly reel. When I moved to Savannah I wasn't aware just how bad saltwater was on your gear so I was a bit laxadasical in caring for my gear. By the time I figured everything out, too little too late. It's gotten to the point where the reel functions OK but the Ball Bearing doesn't turn at all. When you try to turn the ball bearing it feels like a steering wheel that is locked. You have that little bit of play before the locking mechanism prevents it from moving any further. The spool spins OK and the drag tightens and everything but I'm worried about that bearing.

 

The roller bearing on the spool works fine, and the part marked "sleeve" spins fine, but the part marked "ball bearing" is seized up. So I'm looking at new reels.

 

Unless the rim of the bearing isn't supposed to turn, that is. If that's the case I'll just keep on using it. No need to spend $400 on a new reel if I don't have to.

 

The worst the reel will see fish wise is Redfish and Striper (unlikely to target Bull Reds and Cow Striper with this rod). So I'll need a decent drag but nothing spectacular. But I'm a kayak angler so this reel will be abused. Banged, dunked, caked in mud and sand, the works. That's just the nature of kayak fishing; you're hard on your gear.

 

So I'm thinking about getting either something in the $200 range or going ahead and spend $400 or so on a good real with a sealed drag and bearings. Something that's actually 100% sealed if that's available at around $400 dollars.

 

I'd love a Tibor or something like that but $700 is just too rich for my blood.

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I have used a Battenkill mid arbor on one of my saltwater rods for years without any issues. I am very strict about rinsing it after every use, though, so I attribute its longevity to keeping the salt off of and out of it. I imagine that if you get another Battenkill and take care of it, it will last you a long time.

 

 

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I have used a Battenkill mid arbor on one of my saltwater rods for years without any issues. I am very strict about rinsing it after every use, though, so I attribute its longevity to keeping the salt off of and out of it. I imagine that if you get another Battenkill and take care of it, it will last you a long time.

 

 

That's good to hear! I really don't want to spend money that I don't have to. I refuse to buy something expensive just because. There are plenty of other things I can put my money towards (like paying my car off early). I just want the best reel for my money that will give me years of service with careful maintenance.

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1) if the reel works, just use it.

 

2) Look at Albright before spending hundreds on a single action fly reel.

 

3) Read some history of salt water fly fishing- Before we were all TOLD we needed to spend truckloads of money on super-wonderous fly line holders, people did just fine with what they had.

 

I haven't made my living salt-water fly fishing, but I have done a bit of it. I simply can not afford to spend $200 on a reel of any type. All the big fish I've lost were NOT lost due to the reel. The big fish I've caught (I realize 'big' is a relative term) were not landed due solely to the reel. I used Cabela's Prestige Plus reels in the salt, and never had a problem. They're $40 reels I think. Wash them in warm fresh water every night, judiciously apply a little grease, and you'll be fine.

 

In my opinion, and in my limited experience, a million dollar drag is HUGELY overrated as a selling point. On almost every fly reel sold you have an infinite drag adjustment called a palming rim. If a fish has an entire fly line out, it is "dragging" a large resistance just in the line itself, if it is up close and and makes a sudden lunge, the last thing you want is a heavy drag. With things like Tarpon and billfish, certainly one needs more mechanical advantage.

 

If you haven't already, I strongly suggest reading about fly reels in Lefty Kreh's "Fly Fishing In Salt Water". Yes it's a bit dated but he lays it on the line from the point of view of someone who has caught more salt water fish than most of us ever will.

 

If someone can afford $3-$4-$500 and more dollars for a reel, great, more power to 'em. Don't let it hold you back if you can't. I want my reels I use in saltwater to be built like a Glock or an AK; if I accidentally drop it in the sand, I want to be able to shake the sand out and keep going.

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1) if the reel works, just use it.

 

2) Look at Albright before spending hundreds on a single action fly reel.

 

3) Read some history of salt water fly fishing- Before we were all TOLD we needed to spend truckloads of money on super-wonderous fly line holders, people did just fine with what they had.

 

I haven't made my living salt-water fly fishing, but I have done a bit of it. I simply can not afford to spend $200 on a reel of any type. All the big fish I've lost were NOT lost due to the reel. The big fish I've caught (I realize 'big' is a relative term) were not landed due solely to the reel. I used Cabela's Prestige Plus reels in the salt, and never had a problem. They're $40 reels I think. Wash them in warm fresh water every night, judiciously apply a little grease, and you'll be fine.

 

In my opinion, and in my limited experience, a million dollar drag is HUGELY overrated as a selling point. On almost every fly reel sold you have an infinite drag adjustment called a palming rim. If a fish has an entire fly line out, it is "dragging" a large resistance just in the line itself, if it is up close and and makes a sudden lunge, the last thing you want is a heavy drag. With things like Tarpon and billfish, certainly one needs more mechanical advantage.

 

If you haven't already, I strongly suggest reading about fly reels in Lefty Kreh's "Fly Fishing In Salt Water". Yes it's a bit dated but he lays it on the line from the point of view of someone who has caught more salt water fish than most of us ever will.

 

If someone can afford $3-$4-$500 and more dollars for a reel, great, more power to 'em. Don't let it hold you back if you can't. I want my reels I use in saltwater to be built like a Glock or an AK; if I accidentally drop it in the sand, I want to be able to shake the sand out and keep going.

 

My thoughts exactly. I don't need an uber strong drag. I'm fishing for Redfish, not Blackfin Tuna. I've pretty much eliminated expensive reels and am back to the sub $150 category. I'll just be anal retentive about caring for it this time.

 

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1) if the reel works, just use it.

 

2) Look at Albright before spending hundreds on a single action fly reel.

 

3) Read some history of salt water fly fishing- Before we were all TOLD we needed to spend truckloads of money on super-wonderous fly line holders, people did just fine with what they had.

 

I haven't made my living salt-water fly fishing, but I have done a bit of it. I simply can not afford to spend $200 on a reel of any type. All the big fish I've lost were NOT lost due to the reel. The big fish I've caught (I realize 'big' is a relative term) were not landed due solely to the reel. I used Cabela's Prestige Plus reels in the salt, and never had a problem. They're $40 reels I think. Wash them in warm fresh water every night, judiciously apply a little grease, and you'll be fine.

 

In my opinion, and in my limited experience, a million dollar drag is HUGELY overrated as a selling point. On almost every fly reel sold you have an infinite drag adjustment called a palming rim. If a fish has an entire fly line out, it is "dragging" a large resistance just in the line itself, if it is up close and and makes a sudden lunge, the last thing you want is a heavy drag. With things like Tarpon and billfish, certainly one needs more mechanical advantage.

 

If you haven't already, I strongly suggest reading about fly reels in Lefty Kreh's "Fly Fishing In Salt Water". Yes it's a bit dated but he lays it on the line from the point of view of someone who has caught more salt water fish than most of us ever will.

 

If someone can afford $3-$4-$500 and more dollars for a reel, great, more power to 'em. Don't let it hold you back if you can't. I want my reels I use in saltwater to be built like a Glock or an AK; if I accidentally drop it in the sand, I want to be able to shake the sand out and keep going.

CAN I GET AN AMEN?!?

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1) if the reel works, just use it.

 

2) Look at Albright before spending hundreds on a single action fly reel.

 

3) Read some history of salt water fly fishing- Before we were all TOLD we needed to spend truckloads of money on super-wonderous fly line holders, people did just fine with what they had.

 

I haven't made my living salt-water fly fishing, but I have done a bit of it. I simply can not afford to spend $200 on a reel of any type. All the big fish I've lost were NOT lost due to the reel. The big fish I've caught (I realize 'big' is a relative term) were not landed due solely to the reel. I used Cabela's Prestige Plus reels in the salt, and never had a problem. They're $40 reels I think. Wash them in warm fresh water every night, judiciously apply a little grease, and you'll be fine.

 

In my opinion, and in my limited experience, a million dollar drag is HUGELY overrated as a selling point. On almost every fly reel sold you have an infinite drag adjustment called a palming rim. If a fish has an entire fly line out, it is "dragging" a large resistance just in the line itself, if it is up close and and makes a sudden lunge, the last thing you want is a heavy drag. With things like Tarpon and billfish, certainly one needs more mechanical advantage.

 

If you haven't already, I strongly suggest reading about fly reels in Lefty Kreh's "Fly Fishing In Salt Water". Yes it's a bit dated but he lays it on the line from the point of view of someone who has caught more salt water fish than most of us ever will.

 

If someone can afford $3-$4-$500 and more dollars for a reel, great, more power to 'em. Don't let it hold you back if you can't. I want my reels I use in saltwater to be built like a Glock or an AK; if I accidentally drop it in the sand, I want to be able to shake the sand out and keep going.

CAN I GET AN AMEN?!?

 

 

AMEN

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In my opinion, and in my limited experience, a million dollar drag is HUGELY overrated as a selling point. On almost every fly reel sold you have an infinite drag adjustment called a palming rim.

 

That is so true, a friend of mine has a flyfishing store and the first thing he tlod me was to always look for a reel that you can plam. That way you have complete control of the drag. At the time a company impose on him to display and sell a reel that did not permit palming; 15 years later, the reel is still there unsold, the company closed. He won't sell it to anyone, unless they insist on having it.

 

Two orher important point already made, rinse dayli and grease regularly. That will keep your reel in good working order even good advice for fresh water. ;)

 

Tight lines.

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On almost every fly reel sold you have an infinite drag adjustment called a palming rim

 

Amen

 

I have done a lot of maintenance on baitcasting reels and uasually bearings can be replaced. You might want to contact orvis to see if they have a replacement. And if not see if you can get the size of the bearing and look at places like boca bearings to see if they have that size. I think the only reason you would need a mid range drag/reel is if you were CONSTANTLY targeting fish with speed like bones or barracuda. Most low to mid range reels are sufficiantly functional for the majority of fishing most people do.

I have also been looking at albright reels.

They look nice.

Although, if I were a millionare I would buy a ross.

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Just checked the albright website and the gpx has gone up $40 this month an the bugati or whatever is out of stock in the 7/8. Oh well.

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On almost every fly reel sold you have an infinite drag adjustment called a palming rim

 

Amen

 

I have done a lot of maintenance on baitcasting reels and uasually bearings can be replaced. You might want to contact orvis to see if they have a replacement. And if not see if you can get the size of the bearing and look at places like boca bearings to see if they have that size. I think the only reason you would need a mid range drag/reel is if you were CONSTANTLY targeting fish with speed like bones or barracuda. Most low to mid range reels are sufficiantly functional for the majority of fishing most people do.

I have also been looking at albright reels.

They look nice.

Although, if I were a millionare I would buy a ross.

 

I cannot for the life of me figure out how the Battenkill Mid Arbor completely comes apart. I've tried and tried and tried and tried but cannot figure it out. When I called Orvis about replacing it they wanted (I forget exactly) $80 or more to replace the darn thing.

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LAMSON KONIC(I don't rep them)--7/8 Weight=$140/Extra spool $70--This is an awesome reel, same drag system as their $300-400 reels, I have 2 that replaced Orvis Large Arbors and they hands down fish...but I did check the Albright page and it looks like they do have some good closeout deals...I personally have not fished them...

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I pick up old click&pawl reels every chance I get the last one I picked up was a JW Young 1535 with 4 spare spools in mint condition for $75. There's a guy on another board looking for a $9000 Bogdan reel; to each there own I say.

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On almost every fly reel sold you have an infinite drag adjustment called a palming rim

 

Amen

 

I have done a lot of maintenance on baitcasting reels and uasually bearings can be replaced. You might want to contact orvis to see if they have a replacement. And if not see if you can get the size of the bearing and look at places like boca bearings to see if they have that size. I think the only reason you would need a mid range drag/reel is if you were CONSTANTLY targeting fish with speed like bones or barracuda. Most low to mid range reels are sufficiantly functional for the majority of fishing most people do.

I have also been looking at albright reels.

They look nice.

Although, if I were a millionare I would buy a ross.

 

I cannot for the life of me figure out how the Battenkill Mid Arbor completely comes apart. I've tried and tried and tried and tried but cannot figure it out. When I called Orvis about replacing it they wanted (I forget exactly) $80 or more to replace the darn thing.

Contact Pfluger for a digram of the trion. (the same reel as the Battenkill mid) Its a pian in the butt, you have to start by removing the drag knob.

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Sage 1600. Two seasons in. not a single problem. I've dropped it in sand, in the ocean, on the Salmon river river (which froze the spool to the reel, and I had to melt off the ice to get it to turn again) etc.

 

99 dollars. 40 dollar spools. AMAZING.

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