Picking a reel [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Picking a reel


FlyGal
03-24-2003, 07:33 PM
Hi: I need to select a reel for my new 6wt rod which will be fishing for trout in the Rocky Mtns. I'm undecided between (in no particular order):
a) Orvis Battenkill Bar stock IV
b) Ross Colorado
c) Galvan Large Arbour

Which would you select and why?

Thanks for taking the time to help me make a decision.
Marguerite ':confused:'

roballen
03-24-2003, 08:03 PM
Fly Gal did you ever find the a job in the fly fishing industry? I hope so.. Of the three reels you mentioned I don't think there is a bad choice. of the three my least favorite would be the ross simply because I have yet to see a colorado where the drag adjusted enough so that the spool wouldn't over run..

Eddie
03-24-2003, 08:16 PM
I would agree about the Colorado, but it is a cool reel in a minimalist way. I think I have stacked the springs and that worked, but I don't remember exactly. It was a few years ago.
The gavlan is a lttle more expensive, and is the best of the three.

juro
03-24-2003, 08:26 PM
I really like the Colorado for the price, and it's exposed rim spool makes it really easy to palm as needed to prevent overrun. Never encountered overrun but I am quick to palm from my steelhead days. Nice simple design for a simple gear kind of fishery (trout). I fish the old lamson LP 1.5 most of the time on my trout rods, you can find them often for very good prices. Of course the other reels you listed offer their own advantages but are more money as others have already mentioned.

BobK
03-25-2003, 06:39 AM
You stated that you were going to be fishing primarily in the rockies. I assume that most of the fish you will be handling are under 20 inches, with maybe 5 to 10 percent over 20 inches (if you are lucky). In that case, any of the reels you suggested are fine. The main purpose of the reel will be for storing and holding line, rather than serving as a "drag device" that steelhead/salmon fishers need.

I used very simple (and cheap) reels for standard trout fishing over the years, and they all worked fine, as long as they had an "exposed rim" for palming in the instances where I had to fight a big fish.

If you were steelhead or salmon fishing, I'd advise going with the best drag possible (read "expensive", too!).

But for trout only, just pick a good reel that balances your rod as it makes for effortless casting, and will be less tiring.

Incidentally, check out the Cabela's brand large arbors - they have a nice, low start-up inertia, good drag, are attractive, and don't cost a fortune. I have one as a back-up, and it is quickly becoming my favorite - even for steelies as well as stream trout.

Most fly fishers are vain, and spend a lot of money for "brand" names. (I am guilty of this myself.) Often times, it is money foolishly spent. We do it to "show off" on the stream, and talk in revered tones about our fine "brand X" choices. But with a little searching, you can often find something with more "bang for the buck".

BobK:)

flyfisha1
03-25-2003, 07:49 AM
I must agree with BobK - When the prospects of hooking into truly huge fish are very slim, I tend to go with something petite and functional. Cabela's also has a Presitge line of standard arbor reels; I have a pair of them for my light line outfits (3-wt. and 5-wt.). They're cheap, cast aluminum, but very smooth and have ample drag to stop relatively large fish. Extra spools are inexpensive, which is an added bonus. When it comes to fishing for heavier, stronger fish I rely on my Bauer and Lamson reels.
Of course, this is not what you asked (i.e. Orvis, Galvan, or Ross), but I honestly think that you could match the inexpensive Cabela's reel with any of these and get the same "performance" out on the water. Now, if I had to choose from the three you listed, I'd personally go with the Orvis model, simply due to the fact that this is a tried-and-true reel design, it's got a cork drag, and overall the reel is very light. This is coming from someone who is no great fan of Orvis!

BigDave
03-25-2003, 08:19 AM
If you want something with a good drag for big fish I would reccomend a lamson velocity as you get a lot of bang for your buck with these reels. If you travel it could also have uses for steelhead or light SW applications because of it's large capacity.

As far as drag goes, you don't need abel but if you fish light tippets for big trout in big water you should get something with at least a disk drag - or go the other way and get a super light hardy click and pawl. Nothing beats the scream of a hardy when a big fish is taking line :devil:

juro
03-25-2003, 08:59 AM
Great info... but in the spirit of calling a spade a spade isn't the latest Orvis Battenkill design only a year or two old? I wouldn't call it 'tried and true' at this stage although it's a great reel for a great price.

Flygal, I think if you're concerned about price go with the Colorado, it's a fine reel for $100 - one of the finest for that price. But in the Galvan price range you might compare with different reels like:

the Evolution from Ross which is $225 ($25 less)
Bauer McKenzie Superlight = $255
Bauer Junior Mac = $185
etc.

Or look at the waterworks/lamson who always offer excellent performance for the price and one of the top warranties in the biz.

Given the time one could build a huge list of great reels for mid-price range - we're pretty lucky to have so many choices!

Good luck with yours

flyfisha1
03-25-2003, 09:08 AM
For mid-range, I use the Lamson Lightspeed and Bauer Junior Macs; these are on my 6-wt. and larger rods. Love them both.

Eddie
03-25-2003, 09:22 AM
We do it to "show off" on the stream, and talk in revered tones about our fine "brand X" choices. hey! speak for your self. :smokin:
It is often said that a trout reel is only a place to store line, and that is true for most trout. I would argue that that does not mean that you shouldn't get a well made and designed reel.
I have seen countless cast reels that would not turn smoothly because the soft cast aluminum dented easily. Heck, I've even owned a few. A machined reel is much stronger. All of the reels you have selected are machined.
I would recomend a large arbor reel for two reasons. 1) your line will be stored in larger coils, and will be less likely to kink. and 2) when you hook up on a fish, a large arbor reel will pick up the loose line at your feet quicker, so you can get the fish on the reel.
Millions of pounds of trout have been landed with small arbor cast reels. The newer reels are still better.
If you are considering the Galvan, you should look at the Orvis Battenkill Large Arbor and the Lamsons. Of the Ross reels, I think that the Cimerons are the best value. I relly like the Evolution, but I thought it was more expensive.

FlyGal
03-26-2003, 02:59 PM
And Bob, I never did. Think I scared folks off with my ad. LOL
Marguerite

JErwin
03-27-2003, 04:47 PM
I looked at the new Battenkills and they looked pretty good, except for the cheap-looking plastic clicker. It doesn't look like it can hold up to too many fish. And for what it's worth, there is still nothing wrong in my view with the good old cast Battenkill reels. I've used several for years without any problems.

CSJ60
03-28-2003, 11:57 AM
I have a Waterworks on my 5wt... I like it so much I put the Waterworks 3.4 on my 9wt. :D

flyfisha1
03-28-2003, 12:04 PM
Originally posted by juro
Great info... but in the spirit of calling a spade a spade isn't the latest Orvis Battenkill design only a year or two old? I wouldn't call it 'tried and true' at this stage although it's a great reel for a great price...

Sorry, I was under the impression that the Battenkill reel design (specifically the drag) had remained essentially the same for more than two decades. The large arbor design is more recent, obviously. Still, you almost can't go wrong with any of the reels that have been mentioned. Good luck!

BobK
03-28-2003, 03:25 PM
I've got a VERY old Battenkill. Guess what - the drag knob is sort of cheesy at best, and fits on loosely. But the drag itself is flawless. I will admit, though, that I don't "dunk" the reel when fishing, as I have seen some people do (Then they complain about a "lousy drag" on their Brand XXXX reel.)

BobK

Greg Pavlov
03-28-2003, 04:30 PM
Originally posted by BobK
I've got a VERY old Battenkill. Guess what - the drag knob is sort of cheesy at best, and fits on loosely. But the drag itself is flawless. I will admit, though, that I don't "dunk" the reel when fishing, as I have seen some people do (Then they complain about a "lousy drag" on their Brand XXXX reel.)
BobK
I believe that it is reasonable to expect that something
that is ostensibly designed to be used for a water-based
sport should continue to work properly even if it gets
wet. So I'm one of those who dunks reels and would
complain about (actually, get rid of) a reel that didn't work
properly as a result.