wiretap

Baitcaster Level Wind VS Low Profile

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On 1/11/2020 at 2:21 PM, BrianBM said:

Bugger the Abus.  There are plenty of better reels on the market for a shore-casting bait angler. Old/used: Daiwa SLOSH 20, 30 and first generation Saltiga; Newell 229 (if using braid, the 220 is big enough, not with mono), Penn Fathom and first generation Torque conventions. Current and admirable: Daiwa Saltiga (twiddle the brake blocks to taste 20, maybe 30 if you have big hands; Penn Fathom II, Torque. I don't know the current Shimano lineup.

 

As the Fathom II reels are coming in, the earlier Fathoms are on closeout everywhere.

 

You may be advised to seek out the Penn Squidder. Ignore the advice. Anyone recommending it is old enough to have voted for Teddy Roosevelt.

 

In baitcasters (reels with levelwinds that are meant for casting, which the Penn 209 is not), there are a multitude of large low-profile reels with enthusiastic fans.

Use Search and find user comments on the Komodo, Lexa, etc. Personally, I'd rather fish an open-faced conventional, if fishing bait. Some lo-pros don't have a clicker, which is nice to have, and a level wind is a nuisance when trying to twiddle a birdsnest into submission.

 

I agree that there are better reel options then an Abu 6500 or 7000, but we are talking to a kid that has an unknown income if any and just wants a good baitcaster with a levelwind. 

 

If he wants to get a conventional and learn to thumb level, I would by all means tell him to get a Fathom 12.

 

It he has the cash and wants to stick with a levelwind, it is tough to beat an Okuma Komodo 364SS for what he wants too do including using 30lb braid.

 

 

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On 1/11/2020 at 1:21 PM, BrianBM said:

Bugger the Abus.  There are plenty of better reels on the market for a shore-casting bait angler. Old/used: Daiwa SLOSH 20, 30 and first generation Saltiga; Newell 229 (if using braid, the 220 is big enough, not with mono), Penn Fathom and first generation Torque conventions. Current and admirable: Daiwa Saltiga (twiddle the brake blocks to taste 20, maybe 30 if you have big hands; Penn Fathom II, Torque. I don't know the current Shimano lineup.

 

As the Fathom II reels are coming in, the earlier Fathoms are on closeout everywhere.

 

You may be advised to seek out the Penn Squidder. Ignore the advice. Anyone recommending it is old enough to have voted for Teddy Roosevelt.

 

In baitcasters (reels with levelwinds that are meant for casting, which the Penn 209 is not), there are a multitude of large low-profile reels with enthusiastic fans.

Use Search and find user comments on the Komodo, Lexa, etc. Personally, I'd rather fish an open-faced conventional, if fishing bait. Some lo-pros don't have a clicker, which is nice to have, and a level wind is a nuisance when trying to twiddle a birdsnest into submission.

Now, now, now, hostility toward the ABU is misplaced. I have used just about every brand of reel except the Newell. I agree, the 209, is not a great choice, since it’s drop and drag or just drop, or short cast and drop, type reel.  And squidder, jigmaster, and shoremaster are old, but workable with patience and practice, but there is learning curve, and until you are over it, you may lose a lot of line and spend more time frustrated than enjoying your fishing. 
 

If you must have a baitcaster, for any beginner, I would recommend an ABU reel like a 5500, 6500, or 7000, simply because the levelwind versions are tame enough to learn on: or, any of lp’s recommended in the quoted material, like the Lexa, since the levelwind will help break the cast. I would go so far as to say that within a day of use, anybody could cast one of those lps backlash free. If you want to jump right into non-levelwind, go Daiwa Slosh with mono, it’s one of the easiest non-levelwinds to cast, and they can be had in good shape for around $40.00.

 

I still use ABU round reels, the chrome rocket and big game 7000, are reliable excellent casters. The down side to any levelwind is that sand may cost you a pawl, wormgear, or cog. The bmax3 would not be on my list of reels for the surf, nor would just about any other ABU lp. 

 

If you can spare some change, consider a different reel.

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13 hours ago, Beastly Backlash said:

 

I agree that there are better reel options then an Abu 6500 or 7000, but we are talking to a kid that has an unknown income if any and just wants a good baitcaster with a levelwind. 

 

If he wants to get a conventional and learn to thumb level, I would by all means tell him to get a Fathom 12.

 

It he has the cash and wants to stick with a levelwind, it is tough to beat an Okuma Komodo 364SS for what he wants too do including using 30lb braid.

 

 

I never used a Citrix, and don’t know how they would handle the surf, but Okuma is selling them for around $75.00.

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I believe the 209 has larger internals which can constantly hold up to casting heavier loads. It has no bearings so you don’t have to worry about that. Just make sure everything is properly lubed before you go out. Not the best caster but they can be cast. I’ve done it for fun. Just watch those fingers. That levelwind can get you. The configuration with the aluminum spool is probably better for casting. If it’s true 320yds/20 , I believe you have plenty of line. 

 

I wouldn’t constantly cast anything over  1oz with a BMAX3. It’s a good reel for light casting presentations, ideal for casting 1/2 jigheads. What worries me is the lighter internals and the graphite frame. It may not hold up to the heavier loads.

 

Plenty of tackle out there if you have the money to spend.

 

When I was young, I just “fished what I got” and enjoyed myself. So many times, I’ve been under gunned but it makes things exciting. Plenty of times I came out on top and when you don’t, you learned from your mistake.

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I receieved the BMAX3 as a gift a year or two back, its fantastic for light stuff, havent gotten past 1oz with it, so I was wondering. Good to know that I shouldnt use it with heavier stuff!!

As for the 209, it was given to me as well with a bunch of other rods as a gift for helping my sister's fiance out. 

 

I literally just nailed an interview and am starting a new job in Feburary, so I should be able to invest in a proper reel. Since Im new Im probably going to go with an Abu. 

 

Looking into the thumb drag and it looks like a fun learning curve. 

ARE THUMB DRAG/WIND THAT MUCH BETTER THAN LEVEL WINDS? 

Is it night and day, or brunch and lunch? 

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On 1/11/2020 at 0:03 PM, wiretap said:

OMG I just died laughing. HAHAHAH

i just rebuilt my grandpa's old squidder.. ready, set, and i think the ratio (3.3:1?) is a little too low for surf fishing... i used a low-profile daiwa baitcaster bass reel a couple of weekends ago for surf perch, and while i was successful, i'd prefer a faster gear ratio to keep up with the incoming waves 

03D078ED-122A-4308-8636-E1B6492DEF37.jpeg

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Posted (edited) · Report post

11 hours ago, fishhappy said:

I never used a Citrix, and don’t know how they would handle the surf, but Okuma is selling them for around $75.00.

 

That is a good point and would make an excellent reel for the OP at that price. It is basically a Komodo 364SS with brass gearing and a few less ball bearings. Those reels can handle casting over 16oz easy, so the 5oz that the OP wants to cast would be nothing.

Edited by Beastly Backlash

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8 hours ago, wiretap said:

I receieved the BMAX3 as a gift a year or two back, its fantastic for light stuff, havent gotten past 1oz with it, so I was wondering. Good to know that I shouldnt use it with heavier stuff!!

As for the 209, it was given to me as well with a bunch of other rods as a gift for helping my sister's fiance out. 

 

I literally just nailed an interview and am starting a new job in Feburary, so I should be able to invest in a proper reel. Since Im new Im probably going to go with an Abu. 

 

Looking into the thumb drag and it looks like a fun learning curve. 

ARE THUMB DRAG/WIND THAT MUCH BETTER THAN LEVEL WINDS? 

Is it night and day, or brunch and lunch? 

By thumb drag, I assume you mean a conventional reel that you have to thumb level because it does not have a levelwind? The learning curve on thumb leveling is not difficult, the advantage is casting distance and less mechanical parts that need maintenance. 

 

Anyways, if you are going to be coming into any kind of disposable cash and you want to go with a nonlevelwind conventional for casting bait, skip the Abus and go with a Penn Fathom 12.

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5 hours ago, jon_elc said:

i just rebuilt my grandpa's old squidder.. ready, set, and i think the ratio (3.3:1?) is a little too low for surf fishing... i used a low-profile daiwa baitcaster bass reel a couple of weekends ago for surf perch, and while i was successful, i'd prefer a faster gear ratio to keep up with the incoming waves 

03D078ED-122A-4308-8636-E1B6492DEF37.jpeg

Nice Barred Surfperch.


I use my squidders for throwing large spoons. The slow gear ratio is perfect for that. I didn’t think I needed one until the big bonito showed only hitting spoons and I needed one. I came back the next day with my older brothers borrowed squidder. Never doubted having one in my arsenal since.

 

For perch I use an old lefty 5:1 Shimano TX mag. It’s graphite so I don’t have to worry about it rusting. That reel is even considered slow but it allows me to do certain perch jigging techniques, without it being too fast for the fish.

 

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10 hours ago, wiretap said:

I receieved the BMAX3 as a gift a year or two back, its fantastic for light stuff, havent gotten past 1oz with it, so I was wondering. Good to know that I shouldnt use it with heavier stuff!!

As for the 209, it was given to me as well with a bunch of other rods as a gift for helping my sister's fiance out. 

 

I literally just nailed an interview and am starting a new job in Feburary, so I should be able to invest in a proper reel. Since Im new Im probably going to go with an Abu. 

 

Looking into the thumb drag and it looks like a fun learning curve. 

ARE THUMB DRAG/WIND THAT MUCH BETTER THAN LEVEL WINDS? 

Is it night and day, or brunch and lunch? 

I believe the levelwind feature on the 209 was meant for light trolling.

 

When fishing for large strong fish, a levelwind is something that might break. So on a conventional reel, it’s one less thing you have to worry about.

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If you can learn to throw a Penn 9 with the level wind off or a squidder, you can throw anything. I learned on a Penn 9, can be incredibly frustrating but it will make you a better caster. I'm going to jump into left field here, im a big Calcutta fan. Cardiff is alot cheaper, never owned one though. I'll throw in another vote for the fathom, had all the star drags except the 25, and cast them all. 15s my favorite, purchasing a CS one here soon. Another idea for level wind is an akios, throw quite a few and nice reels.

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3 hours ago, Beastly Backlash said:

By thumb drag, I assume you mean a conventional reel that you have to thumb level because it does not have a levelwind? The learning curve on thumb leveling is not difficult, the advantage is casting distance and less mechanical parts that need maintenance. 

 

Anyways, if you are going to be coming into any kind of disposable cash and you want to go with a nonlevelwind conventional for casting bait, skip the Abus and go with a Penn Fathom 12.

The last Penn Conventional I used was the 525. The 525 was not a beginner reel. I can’t speak for the Fathom.

The biggest consideration, when deciding between the Penn and Abu, is gearing. For a comparison, put a nickel beside a quarter, that is about the ratio of an Abu main gear to a Penn gear. The Penn gear is also thicker. 
If you are also looking for a reel to crossover between fresh and saltwater, go with an Abu levelwind.

I don’t ordinarily bash ABU, however, in my opinion, the company changed a lot for the worse since 2017.  The brand was sold and customer service tanked out. Maybe that was just 2017 (it could have been 16), but my last experience was not good, and I would not buy another reel from them again. It’s easy to buy a brand, reduce the quality of components, increase customer cost, and sell a $20 China reel for $100.  I’ll leave it at that. There are still some round reels from Sweden, like the chrome rocket, I will purchase, but that’s it. 

Okuma makes its own stuff and the price is right. ABU is nothing more than a brand name, except for what few products come out of Sweden, it’s all China, and I’m suspect that ABU is more marketing and bottom line than quality product these days. If I had to pick Komodo or Revo Toro, it would be Komodo.

If I absolutely had to have another levelwind round reel, it would be a Swedeish made ABU, Akios, Omoto, Shimano Calcutta, or Daiwa Luna.

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Fortunatly, the Abu C3 and C4 series of reels from the 6500 and under are still Swedish made.

 

Even though the 7000C3 is made in China it is still a quality piece.

 

Regarding the Penn Fathoms, since the new Fathom II's have external mag brakes I feel they would be beginner friendly. The 12's and 15's are also great for freshwater use too.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

I bought two Swedish made 6501C3 Abus from ebay, brand new at ~$80 including shipping. I do surf and rock fishing, and these are my first baitcasters, I already love the Abus, they cast like a dream (can go far with less effort than my spinnings), already service the reels on my own (Cal's drag grease, TSI 321, marine grease), and I know these Swedish reels can last a lifetime. 

 

Considering some Chinese baitcasters are selling at ~$60, the Abus are an excellent choice.  

Edited by leorada

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Posted (edited) · Report post

9 hours ago, leorada said:

I bought two Swedish made 6501C3 Abus from ebay, brand new at ~$80 including shipping. I do surf and rock fishing, and these are my first baitcasters, I already love the Abus, they cast like a dream (can go far with less effort than my spinnings), already service the reels on my own (Cal's drag grease, TSI 321, marine grease), and I know these Swedish reels can last a lifetime. 

 

Considering some Chinese baitcasters are selling at ~$60, the Abus are an excellent choice.  

Can't beat the price/performance as they will still be around when we are all gone! If you were right handed the red 6000 with a clicker can be had for $50 shipped. I have been on a buying spree to set up combo's for friends and nephews who have just started fishing. 

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Edited by quan808

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