Salt water 8 wt reel opinion [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Salt water 8 wt reel opinion

05-08-2007, 09:41 AM
I use a Sage 8100-4 XP with a Lamson Litespeed 3.5 for Steelhead in Idaho. This fall I'm going to Icy Bay, Alaska for the Silver run. Most of the silver fishing will be done in the flats in salt water and I'm thinking that I need a new reel more suited to salt water. I've also experienced a bit of slippage on my Litespeed drag when it gets wet and think I need a new 8 wt reel, regardless.

Can you guys give me opinions as to alternatives? I've been told the Ross Evolution was the way to go but I saw a few posts here last night that indicated it wasn't a good salt water reel. I have read alot of the comments about Danielson also.

I love Sage rods and have a 3200 reel for my 5wt. How do Sage reels hold up to salt water and hard running silvers? If I went with a Sage, is the 3400D the only way to go or would the new 2580 be acceptable?

I'm open to all brands, though.

Thanks for any information.

05-08-2007, 09:55 AM
That's an easy one...

Danielsson Evotec 6nine for silvers, 8eleven for kings.


Or pay twice as much and get the Tibors, Abels, etc.

05-08-2007, 10:52 AM
The Sage D series reels are kosher for the salt. They should have plenty of drag for what you want to do.

If you are looking in that price range already, might as well go all the way and pick up the best - Tibor Everglades.

Bauer McKenzie superlight is a proven SW performer if you're looking for something with a more reasonable price tag.

There have been a lot of posts on this subject already - it might benefit you to do a search and see what others have already had to say...

05-08-2007, 11:32 AM
I don't see any reference to the Evotec there but I do see the LW 6nine. Is this the reel you are referring to for Silvers? That is in their Light Weight product line.

Can you or anyone describe for me the basic pros and cons between the LW 6nine and the HD 7ten?

05-08-2007, 12:22 PM
I own both... the 7ten is better if you plan on dropping it on concrete a lot or predict a nuclear halocaust while on the trip. I use the 6nine from everything to 7wt thru 9wt and have landed 40" plus stripers on it (using 50# gelspun backing).

I have a lot of experience with pacific northwest silvers and it's more than enough and it will become your #1 bonefish reel for the Bahamas as well as a very reliable striper reel for the northeast.

All with no SW maintenance concerns at half the cost of the big names.

05-08-2007, 02:50 PM
Abels and Tibors are great reels and cost a lot of money. As good, without the price tag are Old Florida and Danielsson. The Danielsson must have just about the smoothest drag I can think of and are starting to replace my Sage reels.

05-08-2007, 07:41 PM
Upon the recommendation of Juro & others here, I just bought my First Danielsson , a LW 8/eleven for my 9wt. I have yet to catch a fish with it( the next few weeks will fix that) but it sure is a sweet looking reel that is well made. The drag is smooth as silk.
The Orvis Mach series is a good reel in my opinion, I have one on my 10 wt & have hooked into a few stripers & some big blues with it. Drag works well & is smooth

For the price & quality I would look real hard at the Danielsons. Several people here on the Forum use them & rave about how good they are. I am also contemplating a HD to team up with a Two hander rod in the near future

05-09-2007, 04:58 AM
I'm also in the market for an 8wt reel might get the Nautilus from Old Florida also a sponsor. I like the Tibor backcountry wide and the Albe non ported reel . Tough choices. My top pick would be the Tibor Everglades. Lots of choices. FishHawk

05-09-2007, 05:17 AM
Just a clarification -

Old Florida is a past sponsor, Daniellson is current. Most sponsors are expired (yearly) due to our need to manage sponsorships.

We are looking for a volunteer to manage sponsorships, contact me offline if anone can put some time in on this, e.g. the rest of 2007.

05-09-2007, 06:00 AM
The reel I prefer for my 8wt rod is a Van Staal C-Vex 78.
It has a beautiful sealed drag and is perfect for bonefish.


Jamey McLeod
05-09-2007, 05:09 PM
All of the reels mentioned above are wonderful. Although, IMHO, if you are just going there for a vacation (not moving there to fish everyday), you'll be fine with what you have, just rinse it everyday. As a tackle whore myself I know the feeling of being faced with the prospects of finding a reason to buy more gear.

So blow the kids college fund and buy a Super 8, even get some sweet graphics to match your XP, and a spare spool for a sinking line.

05-11-2007, 09:10 AM
thanks for the info guys.

jamey, that' pretty funny. i probably am looking for an excuse to buy a new reel. the lamson customer service people assure me the other day that my litespeed 3.5 is suited well for salt water. i've got a couple months to decide.

05-11-2007, 09:35 AM
I went through 3 lamsons in one season due to rust a few year ago. All maintenance was done by the book. Water infiltrated the O ring and as a result the spindle would rust and not function properly with the "sealed" conical drag system. Sometimes it would free spool, engage drag in both directions, or just lock up entirely. Not what I would consider a SW-safe reel.

More concerning is the fact that the spools on some models are not constructed from one piece of aluminum. 4 years ago I had a 38" bass take a strong run against a fairly heavy drag and the spool separated right down the middle in an explosion of orange dacron. Luckily the fish was about spent and I was able to hand line it in. That was the last straw for me - no more lamsons or other "sealed" drags with plastic moving parts.

As Jamey mentioned there is no reason to break the bank if you are a casual fisherman. If you are going to be putting in your time, better to make the initial investment and never have to worry about it again.

05-11-2007, 09:52 AM
The current drag design is prone to failure as Dave explained perfectly. That reminds me I have two to send back that are completely corroded.

I heard from a soon-to-be sponsor that Lamson is redesigning a SW reel. I asked that they contact the Forum for input. I hope they do!

05-11-2007, 12:05 PM
For the price & quality I would look real hard at the Danielsons

Danielsson reels are best regardless of the price…….

The reels like Tibor or Abel are sold to dealers at 40-50% discount.
Danielsson goes directly from factory to customers.
The price we pay for Danielsson LW or HD is the same dealers pay for Tibor or Abel......

When Danielsson was marketed by Loop ( prior to 2004) the retial price range was $ 600-800!!!, in line with Tibor.

The specially fabricated multi-plate ( graphite/steel/graphite/Steel) drag system, is 100% sealed and uses materials similar to those used in a race car/ mountain bike drag. The Danielsson drag is maintenance free for live, no need to wash it every evening with fresh water, remember to put oil on the cork etc.

Jamey McLeod
05-11-2007, 12:38 PM
With all the hype I hear I am starting to think I will pick up an LW 8/12 for my once a year salt trip and spare my Hardy's.

05-15-2007, 11:19 AM
Ok, thank you all for the feedback. You've got me sufficiently interested in a Danielsson LW6nine.

Can someone link me to a retailer that is in the US? I can't find anything but websites for companies in Czech Republic, UK, etc.

Also, would overlining my 8100-4 XP to a 10 wt line be necessary/recommended or would an 8 wt line be better suited?

Thanks, again.

05-15-2007, 12:16 PM
Just click this:

07-05-2007, 07:00 AM
well you could try a line heavier, i do on my T&T but two lines heavier i wouldnt recommend, also when playing a big fish a heavier line does not mean more rod power, hey good excuse to buy a new rod too lol

01-20-2008, 08:06 PM
I agree with all the people who have said here that the Danielsson is a great reel.

I have a Loop LW 6nine that I bought to use with a 10 ft boron rod and 7wt Wulff Triangle Taper line. Yes, it is a wonderful reel but I have noticed that it is so light that this particular rod-line-reel combination feels top heavy. In fact, the balance point is roughly 2 inches in front of the handle. I have not weighed them on a scale but the Loop feels noticeably lighter in the hand than other salmon reels that I use. I use a Pate Bonefish and an Abel Super 8 loaded with 8 and 9 wt lines on 9 ft carbon rods and those combinations feel just about right.

There will be always be differences among casters as to what feels good but for me personally, I think a Danielsson LW 6nine would balance better on graphite rods of around 9 ft or shorter.

01-21-2008, 07:08 PM
I should of picked up one when they had their introductory prices...

01-22-2008, 02:01 AM
One more vote for the Danielssons. They stand behind their products and treat their customers right. I've hooked about 10 bonefish on my LW8twelve so far and have been impressed with its smooth operation. Teton and Tioga are great working reels for the money, but the Danielssons' smoothness and finish are certainlhy one rank above the Tetons. I would recommend an LW8twelve and maybe a 8eleven spare spool. This combo will cover anything from a single-hand 8wt to 12wt (with a thinner backing) and double-hand 8/9wt. I have an LW6nine also and like it a lot, but use it for 6/7wt lines to get enough backing.