Galvan Rush Light, Nautilus FWX, Hardy UltraliteDD
I got a Zenith 10' 4wt (old reel seat) a few weeks ago for my 30th birthday as well as a airflow mend line for it. I also have an 8' 2wt tfo, and between the two, a lamson konic 1.5 and velocity 1.5.
The airflow line must be a larger diameter than other brands as on the velocity, I had to go with layer of backing that just covers the spool and cut off about 20' at the rear of the line. It still will only fit if I wind it up evenly. I swapped it to the konic, and it fits much better, but that konic is very beat up.
I have found some stores that will let me trade in the velocity. I am looking at the Galvan Rush Light 4, Nautilus FWX 5/6, and Hardy Ultralite DD 4000/5000. In all likelihood I will not buy a new rod or reel for the next several years.
I am in Denver and love fishing in the winter, and have had a few experiences of drags getting wet and presumably a sheen of ice on them and offering no resistance. Hence why I am looking to avoid exposed drags and why I really liked the lamsons (a speedster is possible, but I dislike the look). I am also fairly hard on my gear, and the reel will get dunked regularly and I tend to always lay it down in places where there is sand or sediment on the reel when I pick it up. I do get regular opportunities to fish some great very private water where 10lb+ trout are the norm, so a quality drag would be great, but the rest of the time I rarely have a trout take any line worth noting.
Weight doesn't matter much to me.
I'd like it to look good/match the zenith's reel seat, or in the case of the Galvan, I would get it in the green to match the blank.
I like the lamsons as they have never failed me, or froze, and a quick rinse gets any sand out. So, I was considering a guru, speedster, or konic in a larger size. However, the 2wt needs new line, and some of the stores offer free line on the three other brands.
Can anybody give feedback on the Hardy, Nautilus, or Galvan? I have gotten mixed thoughts from these shops. Anything at all would be helpful, as I have read everything I could find through search on here and google. Ease of maintenance? Durability? Quality of machining? Element resistant drag? Other quirks/pros/cons?