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Bunker Head

Best reel for muskie fishing?

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Looking to replace the POS reel I use now with something a little better, need some advice. I am considering the Shimano Calcutta 400 B, or the Garcia Ambsdr. I have noticed that a lot of the serious muskie fishermen use the Garcia, they seem pretty durable and reliable. However, I am a fan of Shimano reels and would much rather buy a Shimano than a Garcia. Shimano customer service is second to none, and I have many old Shimano reels that I still use that operate perfectly. I do have some questioins about the Shimano Calcutta. Can it be used with braided line? Is it as good as the Garcia Ambsdr for muskie fishing? Any thoughts, comments or advice would be appreciated.smile.gif

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I'm sure most people would say that all things being equal, the Calcutta is the better reel. If you can afford it, go for it. Is it worth it to the point of paying twice as much as you would for an Ambassadeur?... that is the real question.

 

Agree with you 100% about Shimano reels. And AFAIK braided line will work just fine with them as they would with any baitcaster. Of course I don't personally own a Calcutta so if anybody knows differently I stand corrected. I see no reason to believe otherwise though.

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I noticed that there are a lot of different models of Garcia Ambassador reels. I know that the C4 or C5's were really good ones and are the most common ones used by muskie fishermen. They now make many different kinds. Which size and model do you recommend?

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your talking apples & oranges. The Shamino is a better reel I fish the 400B & te 400TE I also fish The abu's both will work for you & both can be used with braid. It comes down to what you want to spend. You can buy 5 Abu 6500 for 1 Shimano 400TE. If your only fishing fresh water get an Abu!

 

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View PostI noticed that there are a lot of different models of Garcia Ambassador reels. I know that the C4 or C5's were really good ones and are the most common ones used by muskie fishermen. They now make many different kinds. Which size and model do you recommend?

 

I've never seen a C4 or 5 in action, but know several people with the C3's and older model Ambassadeur's than that, and they are still performing fine many years later. The newer models may very well be nice but why fix what isn't broken? I know often these days "they don't make 'em like they used to". If it were my money I'd stick with something time tested and proven, and that is the C3.

 

Since you are using braid line capacity isn't a big issue. I think a 5500C3 would be ideal for you. Save that extra $ for tackle... or bills.

 

Just my 2¢

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Some guys really like the Luna by Diawa, Calcutta's and Curado 300's by Shimano, and Ambassadeurs. All are fine with braid. Most guys use braid for musky. I use Ambassadeur Record reels myself. Both are spooled with braid. So far they have served me well, but I'm not as dedicated a muskie hunter as some others are. I got a good deel on the (2) I use. But if your serious you should invest in a reel your comfortable with. You will be making lots of casts every trip and cheap equipment won't hold up. Balance it with the rod your using. A long day of casting can take it's toll on you.

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Just another thought. Most lures are heavy and clunky. They're a strain on your equipment. If your tossing Double Cowgirls for a few hours you will know it! Also think about gear ratios.

 

Another popular brand is made by St. Croix. These reels are made by Diawa (Luna) and they are good reels too. Also, the 300 Curado's are low profile reels. Most other brand reels are round baitcasters. See what fits better for you.

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Just to add to Chickenscratch: If you're going to be tossing double 10's or greater get a large reel like a 7000 abu. The difference is huge between a 6000 series abu and a 7000. I can go all day with a 7000 tossing double 10's but not with anything smaller.

 

I am going to buy some other brand of reel than abu this year for muskie since I can blow them up in a short period of time, other than my 7000. I have a pile of reels that don't work right now that include c3's, c4's and Chrome rockets.

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I have a few round abu's that I've used a lot for stripers and a little bit for muskies. I like them a lot. That said, I think if I was purchasing a new reel for muskies/stripers I'd probably look into a low profile like the Curado 300 or maybe one of the new Abu Toro's or winch.

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