RE:New Reel Recomendations
IMHO: Lamson - a good value for a mid-priced reel, but not an upper crust reel (Pate, Abel, Tibor, etc)
I like the Lamson LP series reels a lot, and have a bunch of them because they are a good deal for the $$. They were the first bar stock reel w/ lifetime unconditional warranty for under $250 that I can remember, sold like hotcakes and got bought by Sage before being sold to Waterworks. I've got 5 of them and they have not let me down, worth every bit and I am satisfied with my decision. They have been known for a couple of problems despite having a large following of faithful owners:
a) mass produced clutch can fail - I've had one blow in all these years out of all five
b) drag looses 20% tension when thoroughly wet - two clicks and you're back in business, or use palm to compensate
Now the good news:
a) machined aircraft alum / anodized
b) light and tough, gorgeous to look at
c) lifetime uncond warranty
e) huge line capacity (275 yds of 30# backing under 9wt line)
f) open rim requires no threading of line when swapping or cleaning spool
g) clutches fit all Lamson LP reels and Waterworks will send you some free (I've only needed one in all these years)
h) EASY TO SWAP SPOOLS
My opinion, for what it's worth:
Great deal for the money, comparable to the Tioga and other machined reels in this class. Not an upper echalon reel but a working man's meat and potatoes reel. You can go cheaper - Teton at $110; you can go higher (duh).
I chose them because I need a lot of reels and this gave me quality without a second mortgage.
Pete - let me think about this one. The Bauer MX 4 comes to mind...