delaware surfman

Conventional reel advise

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First I’ll start off by saying I have never casted conventional reels. 
I just recently picked up a Lamiglass blank rated 4-7, I plan to chunk bait on Assateague Island. I am willing to put in the practice as I’ve always wanted a conventional.
So the last week I’ve been researching and finally thought I’d post here. I’m about to pull my hair out.
Should I start out with something like a Squidder? If I could figure that reel out with no mag I could graduate up from there, or would it just frustrate me to give up? Many nice ones are available for $50. Maintenance I could easily handle. 
I see the Daiwa slosh Reels for a little more money, once again no mag but centrifugal brakes. 

Then you have Abu’s. Ugh the list goes on.
Should I just bite the bullet and buy a new Penn reel? If so which one? I’m leaning toward a Maged reel I’d say. I know everyone will have a difference of opinion but I’m really lost here and don’t want to waist money when I could just get something new, and I’m not sure I want to spend $300 plus either.  Unfortunately I don’t have any friends that cast conventional to ask or use theirs.  
Thanks for any in-site you are willing to provide, John. 

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Daiwa or Penn, daiwas are kind of like a brunette, not the flashiest but reliable day in and out. Fathoms are a red headed business professional, can be toned down and then ripped out to the ragged edge on a Saturday night. Abus are the 1:30 fat girl when the bar closes at 2, always there but not what your going to show off around town.

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You might want to take a look at penn 525 mag.  You can find them, but they're not easy to find. Guys don't want to let them go. You can look at the Penn 535. It has no mag. It won't cast as far as some of the reels you mentioned if it wasn't tuned up. You can use it as is and get used to it.  Once you're comfortable with it you can mag it and tune with some different oils. Then it will cast really well. And it is a tough reel. Just my opinion.  I'm no expert by any means. I only fish conventional reels.  Good luck. 

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Although I do not own any Akios reels, I do own a multitude of ABU's up to the 7000C3Ct, and a few Penn525 Mags.  I do however, now that Tommy Farmer would only sell the best quality.  That having been said, If I was getting back into Heaving from Assategua and south down to Hatteras, I would purchase the AKios S-Line 757 CTM with high speed 5.5:1 gear ratio  for $200.00

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I would not buy a conventional reel without magnetic brakes and preferably with centrifugal as well.  On the cheap you could go to eBay UK and pick up a tronixpro envoy.  For around $50 or $60 plus shipping.  They are super easy to learn on and with all the centrifugal brakes in use and the mag max I don't think it is possible to backlash it.  Or you could buy an ABU Ambassador 6500 mag elite or sport mag.  Very nice reels and not too expensive.  They are somewhat gutless IMO though, but they cast well.

If you really want something nice look at the Akios Nitron F-15.  I own one and it is fantastic.  Casts great and has guts.  Oh and don't go with a level wind.  You don't need it and it affects the casting distance.  I have attached a pic of my Akios. 

Nitron .jpg

Nitron2.jpg

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33 mins ago, Birdsnester said:

I would not buy a conventional reel without magnetic brakes and preferably with centrifugal as well.  On the cheap you could go to eBay UK and pick up a tronixpro envoy.  For around $50 or $60 plus shipping.  They are super easy to learn on and with all the centrifugal brakes in use and the mag max I don't think it is possible to backlash it.  Or you could buy an ABU Ambassador 6500 mag elite or sport mag.  Very nice reels and not too expensive.  They are somewhat gutless IMO though, but they cast well.

If you really want something nice look at the Akios Nitron F-15.  I own one and it is fantastic.  Casts great and has guts.  Oh and don't go with a level wind.  You don't need it and it affects the casting distance.  I have attached a pic of my Akios. 

Nitron .jpg

Nitron2.jpg

What that akios set ya back ? I been hearing lots of good things  about them .. I love my fathom 12 but she def is a tad fast and not exactly easy to cast but when ya get it dialed in she can send it 

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14 mins ago, Wire For Fire said:

What that akios set ya back ? I been hearing lots of good things  about them .. I love my fathom 12 but she def is a tad fast and not exactly easy to cast but when ya get it dialed in she can send it 

I agree that the Fathom is a bit too fast.  The bad thing at least with the latest model is that you can't add more static mags to slow it down.  I have owned an Akios Shuttle and the Nitron. Both are really great reels but the Nitron is tougher with more guts than the Shuttle.  They are around 250 dollars.  IMHO they are worth it.  It casts better than my Seigler SM and is almost 1/2 the price.

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walk before you run.

I have been thumb burning for seventy years. I'm eighty two.

I would suggest an old Penn(not chrome spool) and practice.

Use mono and keep the line down 1/4"from the top of the spool rim.

Start out with25or30lb test line

If your a righty put you're left shoulder toward the water and with your rod behind you move your rod as casting and almost fall over at the same time.

Have plenty of mono handy as you will be learning how to make fluff before you master the good ol thumb burner.  Yer gona love this.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

I've been casting conventionals in the surf since I was a kid. I'm in my mid 50s now. Up until recently, I have been using my grandfathers reels. I decided to get a new Penn Squall and matched it to a 12' Penn Battalion rod. I must have looked like a googan the first time I used it. I made a mess of the thing. I had to learn all over again. The new reels are much smoother and the rods can be loaded up much better than the ones I've been using for so long. I decided to get a Squall 15 with the mag backlash brake to learn with. Took me one season to get to the point where I have it set to zero. I use 20# mono and need to fill the 15 up completely, or I get close to emptying the reel when casting 6 or 7 ounces, which is my sweat spot. Any more or less weight and my distance is less. My line reader says I load about 165 to 170 yards of 20# mono on the 15.

 

As for thumb burning, I cut the fingers off of leather garden gloves and hand sew the ends where I cut the threads. It has to be the finger pieces, because if it's not tight on the thumb it will come right off when you put a little pressure on the spool.

Edited by Trainman327

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I don't thumb it at all.  I cast 630' last season with my Seigler SM.  It was 5 oz with no bait.  Just let it rip...  To be fair that was 630' of line, so backing off for the apex of the curve probably would put me at about 570' or so I am guessing.  The point being, that with a properly set up braking system you don't need your thumb.

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Don’t get star struck with equipment. A new or used ($50-100) Abu 6500 is easy to cast, easy to take apart, and can easily handle stripers. Get some 20-30 lb test mono, go to a ballfield with a 1.5-2 ounce weight, and learn the basics.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

45 mins ago, Birdsnester said:

ggI don't thumb it at all.  I cast 630' last season with my Seigler SM.  It was 5 oz with no bait.  Just let it rip...  To be fair that was 630' of line, so backing off for the apex of the curve probably would put me at about 570' or so I am guessing.  The point being, that with a properly set up braking system you don't need your thumb.

From a pier in my town, using a 12' Battalion rod, Squall 30LD reel and an 8 oz. eg sinker, I can cast 200 yards with little difficulty. I never thumb the line when I'm practice casting like that. But once I'm on the beach, casting weight & bait on a drum rig, with two piece unbalanced weight points and the angle of the rod to avoid the sand can make a big difference in casting distance.

 

Mostly I thumb the line to place the bait where I want it in the slough. Many surfcasters cast too far. Most of the fish are within 60 yards of the beach. Only for the big Bull Reds do I find it necessary to try and clear the bar. And since I'm fishing for food, I rarely target them.

Edited by Trainman327

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18 mins ago, Trainman327 said:

From a pier in my town, using a 12' Battalion rod, Squall 30LD reel and an 8 oz. eg sinker, I can cast 200 yards with little difficulty. I never thumb the line when I'm practice casting like that. But once I'm on the beach, casting weight & bait on a drum rig, with two piece unbalanced weight points and the angle of the rod to avoid the sand can make a big difference in casting distance.

 

Mostly I thumb the line to place the bait where I want it in the slough. Many surfcasters cast too far. Most of the fish are within 60 yards of the beach. Only for the big Bull Reds do I find it necessary to try and clear the bar. And since I'm fishing for food, I rarely target them.

That's impressive.  Does the Squall have any braking at all?  I can't imagine not thumbing it without brakes....  My cast in my post above was from a pier as well.  Just a strong overhead thump is all it was.  

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