Originally Posted by jaybo41
My experience with Ross is limited to the Evolution LT so I can't directly comment on the Flystart's durability. What I can say is that I'm nearly certain the Lamson's up to a point all use the same drag system. If memory serves me, the larger game drags were slightly different and the newest Lamsons may also differ. The drag on the on the Lamsons that I fished performed flawlessly for trout and Lake Run Steelhead. FWIW, the Evolution LT is a fine reel in its own right.
If you have concerns or reservations about it now, it's best to take the time and get what you want.
As another option, the Galvan Rush 4 or 5 are just a little above your price range of the Guru but I'm confident you won't have reservations or problems with the drag in a Galvan.
Thanks (to everyone) for the comments. Your Ross Evolution LT has what I call an open drag like the Ross Flystart. When you pop the spool off, there is an opening in the drag assembly that "could" get grit into it. My question really is how concerned or careful do I need to be in keeping that from happening? And... Is it hard to deal with if it does happen?
The Waterworks Lamson reels have a completely sealed drag system that attaches to the frame of the reel rather than the spool like with Ross. While I'm not that tough on my gear, I'm not all that careful either. My reels have been dunked, dropped on a soft or sandy shoreline, etc.
Thanks for your thoughts!