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BrianBM

Alberto, Fish-Eye, Sergio ...

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The talk about drags in the VS thread raises an interesting question. Spinning reels generally have weaker drags than do conventional reels. This isn't a problem in the Northeast because surfcasters here don't see many dragburning fish. However, guys who fish the tropics might need a spinner, for the sake of a rapid retrieve; and might hook a rooster, trevally, dogtooth tuna or wahoo, and a good drag would matter more.

You three fellas have experience with warm water gamefish. What spinning drags do you like for fast, strong fish?

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Yeah....but. They use'em for tossing live baits at billfish, mostly, I think. The tourists who make a sailfish trip, in between betting at the dog track and buying lap dances, can't cast and can't thumb line, so they get the big spinners. (There's a name for my Cabo 47 when I get it: "Lap Dancer".)

A fish that runs hard is a more demanding than fish that bounce around on top for the camera. The Hawaiian anglers who pick at yellowfin tuna and ulua with spinners usually use a Penn 8500 or 9500, but I'm not entirely convinced by those reels either. I'm curious as to what the boys will say on this, when they check in.

 

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Hi Brian... I quit using spinning reels and thought that I would never use them again for any serious job, but the relatively new EM X5500A from Daiwa has proved to be a good reel for throwing Ranger lures to roosters.

 

Without doubt, lever drags have better drags than spinning reels, but it is not always the case when comparing a good quality spinning reel with a star draged casting conventional like the ABUs. The drag of the EM X5500A and of some other good quality spinning reels are IMO noticeably superior than the one in my 6500CSM (even tweaked). As a matter of fact the direct pressuring to the spool with the top drag knob of spinning reels, has a mechanical advantage over the indirect pressuring of the relatively more complex mechanisms of conventional baitcasters, that forcefully need to put the drag washers in the drive train. One type of drag that I stay away from in spinning reels is the rear draged ones..

 

The Fin-Nors (Teflon coated cork washers) that Al mentions have a superb drag Brian, but they are not in my opinion the best reels to cast from shore unless a short cast is the norm.

 

Regarding the Penn... I used to fish from shore for roosters with a 9500SS (a line twister from hell!!!) and I even took it with me offshore and managed to catch striped marlin with it. The drag is a good one, mainly because of it's size, but more important because it has HT100 disks. This HT100 is definitely one of the very best drag materials available. After market drag companies find it very hard to compete, with the cost : performance ratio of these washers.

 

Comparing spinning vs spinning reels, one important thing and overlooked by many I guess, is that the wide and shallow spool of the X5500A makes for a very small variation of the diameter of the spool, between a full spool and an emptying spool. Many people don't realize that the force needed for the drag to slip is in most reels tremendously affected by how much line is left on the reel. This characteristic in the X5500A when used for roosters, that can take a lot of line out is an important asset of the reel.

 

Back to your original question... I feel that the HT100 of the Penns is probably the best material, but I hate the SSs reels. The felt impregnated with Teflon grease of the Daiwas is not bad at all and the cork ones also with Teflon of the Ahabs felt very good when I tested them, but of these three I like, I can say that I have tried extensively only the first two types. It would also be interesting to hear from owners of ABUs CDs reels.

 

One more thing... the drag system of the VS reels flunked the test horrendously. My expectations were high, and I was VERY dissapointed. I have ZEROtolerance to a sticky drag. I would not even bother to fish with any of the several reels of this brand that I have handled.

 

Hope this helps.

 

Sergio

 

 

 

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Sergio, thank you. The Abu CD design has a lot of potential, and I hope Abu does expand it into a complete line of reels.

If I find myself in need of a big spinner again (my old Penn SS 750 is fine, for the limited use I make of it) I'll certainly take a look at the Daiwa

 

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Brian,

 

I have had good luck, even with the old style drag used on the VS200 and VS300. However, I have always preferred the system within the VS150. I have been anxiously awaiting the changeover to the 100 and 150 style drag in the larger VS reels. I have found that this drag system offers smooth performance at the onset of a hot run and it eliminates the annoying hesitation or occasional drag chatter that can result in a lost fish. Keep in mind that I'm a big fan of a light drag setting and palming the reel for the added resistance that is often needed.

 

I'm confident that the new style VS reels will stand up to your demands for a "big game" spinning reel.

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Ga-YIKES!!! This question is posted for curiosity's sake only. A VS makes sense for the enthusiastic wader, but not for me - I wade as little as possible. 'Druther spend the money on a Goldberg rod and try and make up in casting distance from the beach that distance I'd otherwise get by wading. matter of taste. Fish-Eye, what'd you use for your trevally, the one mentioned in the bogagrip reference?

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Brian,

 

The GT encounter was retold to me by Capt. Ed Hughes who was field testing the liplock device for me. I'm not sure what he was using for a reel.

 

When they first discovered the GT population in Midway, it was the first series of VS reels that were used by Ed to tame them. It was his "field reports" that helped develop the drag system that is now being used.

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Check out the web site http://www.vanstall.com and under their question and answer section you will find:

 

What's with the new ball bearing drag system?

 

A: Two reasons that equal a lifetime of fishing enjoyment: 1) It's maintenance free, which means it's no-hassle fishing. 2) It's waterproof protecting all inner working parts from the environment and salt deposit build up, thus ensuring longevity. The ball bearings, in combination with 9 drag washers give the reel a super smooth drag system that you need to experience to appreciate.

 

 

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Ball bearings in a drag have always puzzled me. Why add a friction reducing component to a friction engine? I'll have to go to the site and see. Nine washers does sound good.

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Well, if Mitchell comes out with a smaller Neptune when I finally buy, that's first pick. Depsite Pappynips' trouble with the Emblem, described in a thread below, that'd probably be first choice this minute. Fortunately I can wait.

 

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