Re: your opinion on expensive reels?
I'm not sure how much money qualifies as expensive. I once paid $300 for a new in the box 1970 Hardy St. George 3.75" and I thought that was a bunch. Truth is I never really cared for that reel and eventually sold it.
Today after years of experience with reels I buy used if I want the ones that sell over 3 or 4 hundred. You gotta watch out for nick's and scuffs and try to find ones that have been taken care of but the after market offers the frugal angler the chance to fish like the big dogs. Don't get caught up in a bidding war on eBay, remember you are trying to buy a silk purse for the price of a sows ear.
What's the moral of the story? I think expensive reels are great as long as I don't have to pay too much for them.