Is there such a thing as a good sub $250 reel?

Discussion in 'Fly Fishing Forum' started by IveofIone, Feb 25, 2013.

  1. Tom Bowden Active Member

    Posts: 420
    Black Diamond, WA
    Ratings: +54 / 0
    Years ago, I bought an inexpensive Cortland Reel for a fiberglass rod I made. Dave Shoff, the shop owner, gave me some good advice, "if you need a better reel than this, you probably shouldn't be using a 5-weight rod."

    I love old Hardy click and pawl reels, and use them most of the time. They balance well with my bamboo rods, make a lovely sound, and look cool.

    For several years, I've used a Pflueger Trion 7/8 for fishing in the Sound for sea-runs, pinks & silvers. It's held up very well for a reel that costs under $130. I think this and similar Asian-made reels like the newer Battenkills are a great value, and all you really need unless you're going to the tropics or fishing for Chinook, Tuna, etc....

    Tom
    Brookie_Hunter and Kent Lufkin like this.
  2. scottybs Active Member

    Posts: 422
    Bellingham, WA and IGH, MN
    Ratings: +65 / 0
    There are some reel good deals out there for <$200 on quality US MADE reels!!! Not to preach but I've been slowly changing out to all US made rods and reels. Ross and Lamson have some deals to be found through various shops. Galvan also introduced "the Brookie" reel too, might be something to look into. Offshore wise, if you can find a Loop Evotec, it's the smoothest reel I own.
  3. Derek Dahms New Member

    Posts: 29
    Meridian,ID
    Ratings: +9 / 0
    Just get the Hardy ! Either the DD or th click , both are sweet reels ! Price is right around 200 . I just bought one , and it's pretty nice!
    Mark Kraniger likes this.
  4. kmac Member

    Posts: 95
    Bellingham
    Ratings: +17 / 0
    I vote for Orvis Battenkill III which I bought new from Orvis. I have 2 spare spools that are new but bought on Ebay. Total spent, under $220. Used for my 4 and 5 wt rods and am very happy I made the purchase. I have Rio 4DTF, 5WFF and Airflo 5 Intermediate sink lines on these 3 spools and I don't think I'll need any additional spools for a while. These are great reels and provides more than adequate drag for 4-5 wt.
  5. t_law Member

    Posts: 93
    Seattle, WA
    Ratings: +27 / 0
  6. Kent Lufkin Remember when you could remember everything?

    Posts: 7,022
    Not sure
    Ratings: +1,010 / 0
    Maybe I'm the one brain-farting now because I'm unable to find a BBS (Battenkill Bar Stock) reel with a click-pawl drag on the Orvis web site. The only BBS reels I see on the Orvis site all have a disc drag system, not a click-pawl: http://www.orvis.com/store/product.aspx?pf_id=40C7

    OTOH, I've been quite happy with the BBS reels I bought from Orvis several years ago. IMHO, they're a great value in a well-made reel.

    K
  7. Tim Cottage Formerly tbc1415

    Posts: 1,641
    Outer Duvall
    Ratings: +215 / 1
    Kent
    The new Feathercraft catalog does say the "Redesigned for 2013" Battenkill is a click pawl. They call it a "technically enhanced click and pawl that is a minimalists dream". Which of course means cheaper to manufacture. Any actual enhancement is most likely coincidental but that's okay as long as it sounds good and provides enough resistance to discourage spool over run.

    Ive
    Given your desire the try something new I think you've made the right choice. You get a shiny new reel with an unbeatable warranty and customer service for a very competitive price. A good match for your stated priorities.

    TC
  8. Kent Lufkin Remember when you could remember everything?

    Posts: 7,022
    Not sure
    Ratings: +1,010 / 0
    Thanks Tim. I see them now on the Feathercraft web site, but not on the Orvis site. Good looking reel. Wonder what the back looks like? Maybe Orvis will post more photos once they're available on March 25?

    K
  9. Porter Active Member

    Posts: 6,240
    Kenmore, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +435 / 0
    Didn't know about that one, that is one light looking fly reel.....

    [IMG]
  10. rainbow My name is Mark Oberg

    Posts: 1,228
    Renton wa
    Ratings: +77 / 0
    I'm going to have to look into these. I am a ross evolution fan. These look as sparse as the ross and light weight. Thanks
    Do you know if these are cut the same as ross or are they cast.
  11. Porter Active Member

    Posts: 6,240
    Kenmore, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +435 / 0
    Fully machined and under 3 ounces.
  12. Stewart Skunk Happens

    Posts: 946
    Spokane
    Ratings: +44 / 0
    I was looking at Feathercraft and Orvis websites. Orvis doesn't list the regular Battenkill anymore. Looks like the one on Feathercraft is the replacement for the old Battenkill. I believe the old one was cast and the new one is machined. The new one should be a nice reel, and the price is right.
  13. Bruce Baker Active Member

    Posts: 515
    Olympia, WA
    Ratings: +39 / 0
    Though I went on an Oregon fly shop's website and saw the reel for sale, I went on Galvan's website and didn't see it on their list of reels.
  14. rainbow My name is Mark Oberg

    Posts: 1,228
    Renton wa
    Ratings: +77 / 0
    I found the brookie on sale for 200 on google search.
  15. luv2fly2 Active Member

    Posts: 1,552
    .othello
    Ratings: +24 / 0
    my bet is brian chan uses an islander since they are made in canada and might be donated to brian. just tried my new evolution on some local water today and luv it. mike w
  16. Porter Active Member

    Posts: 6,240
    Kenmore, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +435 / 0
    Very common for companies in fly fishing to have new products out in retail stores before updating their own websites.
  17. Guy Gregory Active Member

    Posts: 438
    Spokane, WA.
    Ratings: +30 / 0
    Snake River Outfitters has a Snowbee reel (made in the UK..) for under a hundred bucks, it's one of the cassette reels...I'm looking at it.
  18. IveofIone Active Member

    Posts: 2,948
    .
    Ratings: +885 / 0
    I have the new Orvis Battenkill bar stock click pawl reel on order for $98. I should be getting the first one in this part of the country. I'll file a report after I catch a few fish on it.
  19. kmudgn Member

    Posts: 55
    Manhchester,NH
    Ratings: +26 / 0
    For about 95% of fresh water fishing, the reel is just someplace to hold your line. Even the drag on a "cheap" reel is capable of holding back virtually all trout and land locked salmon you might be lucky enough to hook. Yes, for salt water, steel head and ocean run salmon you will need a reel with a good drag and components. So as far as I an concerned brand name reels for less than $ 150 are more than sufficient. In fact, in Labrador 2 summers ago I was catching 6-8 lb brook trout with my old 8-9 wt Battenkil reell. I did have some friends on the trip with me who had much fancier reels, but the fish did not seem to care.
  20. wichaka Active Member

    Posts: 145
    White Salmon, Washington
    Ratings: +29 / 0
    I haven't read all four pages...but...Redington Drift and Rise reels.