Re: 2013 8-Weight Challenge: What's the Best Saltwater Fly Reel?
Thanks for the *mostly* constructive criticism. Drag is a very personal setting, but as we mention in the article, we gave you the data so that you can draw your own conclusions. While there's no way (that I know of) to test "sustained" smoothness, if you check out the drag graphs, you'll find the smoothness of each reel as well.
The interview you quote is interesting, but you should note that he's abiding by IGFA rules, which limits your tippet strength. Conventional anglers often use 20-30+lbs of drag. You'll note that he also fights these fish for many hours, and honestly, you can just reverse the boat for several hours while the fish builds up lactic acid and not use any drag at all - of course the fish will be dead when you bring it in...