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dafack01

Best non-astronomically expensive saltwater reel?

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Sorry to be a contrarian, but I ponied up for a Billy Pate Bonefish more than ten years ago. It was painful at the time, but in retrospect it's been worth every penny. It hasn't had a hiccup (over 13 years), and while I'm not outright abusive, for a few years it saw hundreds of days a year on the water (benefits of living on a brackish water canal) including lots in a wet kayak. Look around at local garage sales and used gear sales. I picked up a second a few years ago for a shade under $300 - definitely not cheap, but these things are almost unbreakable. I see Billy Pates on eBay periodically since they are heavier than the equivalent Tibors. $300 is half of the going rate for a new Abel or Tibor, so that might meet your "non-astronomical" definition.

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Okuma Integrity 7/8 (LA) hands down. About $80 and the spare spools are about $40 each. It's a bit heavy, but on an 8 wt I don't even notice it. It'll take everything you can give it, which for me includes Reds, Snook, False Albacore, etc.

 

Fred

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