The North American Fly Fishing Forum
Go Back   The North American Fly Fishing Forum > Tackle Talk > Gear Reviews

Gear Reviews Get the reviews you need. Hear it from the pros. Post your own reviews...


Like Tree8Likes

Comment
 
LinkBack Review Tools Display Modes
Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review
Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review
A quick review of Orvis' new small click and pawl trout reel
Published by almonde
07-07-2013
Author review
PerformanceN/A
Build Quality
80%80%80%
8.0
Appearance
80%80%80%
8.0
Value
90%90%90%
9.0
Overall
80%80%80%
8.0
Average 83%
Default Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review

I recently decided i fancied a smaller lighter weight setup, previously my lightest setup was an 8'6" 5wt. I had my eye on the Orvis Superfine touch 8' 4wt. When i visited the local Orvis store and chatted to the manager there, he suggested that a 7'6" 3wt might suit better for the sort of fishing i had in mind, small streams trout fishing and some panfish closer to home in Houston. So i had a quick wiggle and cast and decided the 7'6" 3wt felt great and i'd buy one.

However what reel to pair with the rod, the obvious choice was the CFO, that Orvis pairs with the Superfine if you buy the outfit. However that reel is $250 and i'm not really convinced on the need for a disc drag on a reel for a 3wt. The manager agreed and so we checked out Orvis' new Battenkill reel. The reel is made abroad (i think China) but is machined from bar stock aluminium, the machining tolerances appear tight with no play in the wrong places. The anodizing appears of good quality, with no signs of scuffs or blemishes so far. The reel is only available in the finish that Orvis describe as black nickel, there is also a Mirage in that colour too. The colour could best be described as a slightly brownish finish. Although the sizing looks a bit weird, it matches the reel seat on my Helios 2 8wt nicely, so i think would be a nice choice for the small H2's as well. It has a nice classic look with the drilled porting on the spool and reel, which should allow it to dry out nicely should it take a dunking.

The reel is available in 3 sizes, for 1-3, 3-5 and 5-7 weight line sizes. I opted for the Battenkill II for line weights 3-5, it's only 0.1 ounces more than the Battenkill I. In a 3wt line, the II reel can take 100 yards of 20lb dacron backing, the I reel has a capacity of 50 yards. Although probably not a big deal for fighting fish, i thought the extra backing would increase the effective arbor of this standard/mid-arbor reel, there by reducing line coiling issues and increasing retrieve rates. I'll post the backing capacities as a photo below as they are not currently on the Orvis website.

The reel is easily to switch between LHR and RHR, by reversing the pawl. From mid July onwards the reels will be sold with a second mirror image spring to improve the check performance when converted to RHR (some people complained it wasn't effective enough in the current design) Orvis have said they'll swap out any reel with the original design for one of the revised reels on request. I wont bother though as I'm LHR.

The amount of 'check' available has 4 settings, changeable by rotating the little square near the pawl inside the reel. So no adjustment while the spool is fitted. I liek the clean look achieved by removing the external adjustment. I have been using it at the factory setting (mid-range), which is enough check to prevent spool overruns when stripping off line. There is a perceptible difference in the strength of the check when adjusted. The reel clicks both ways and sounds good to my ears. The spool is easy to remove, there is a spool release latch at the centre of the spool, similar to the clearwater and Access line of reels.

The reel is super light at 2.9 ounces for the Battenkill II, and seems to balance the superfine touch really well (although i've never been a 'reel balance snob'), it think it would match up well with short rods and modern ultra light carbon rods.

I haven't had anything on it yes that's really tested the click n' pawl, although i did let a couple of small bass pull a bit on it to see what happened, as you might expect, nothing surprising. There is plenty of rim exposed so you can employ some human old skool drag if required.

At $98 I think the reel is a good little product for the money and wouldn't hesitate to recommend it or buy another.




Click the image to open in full size.


Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.

Click the image to open in full size.
Featured Reviews
  #1 (permalink)  
By mcnerney on 07-07-2013, 06:47 PM
Default Re: Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review

Very nice review, that reel matches the Superfine perfectly!
Reply With Quote
  #2 (permalink)  
By double d on 07-07-2013, 07:17 PM
Member reviews
Performance
80%80%80%
8
Build Quality
80%80%80%
8
Appearance
100%100%100%
10
Value
100%100%100%
10
Overall
80%80%80%
8
Average 88%
Default Re: Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review

Agree with you on your summary of the Orvis reel, I actually bought mine for the same reasons you did and really like the reel-well made, lightweight and sturdy. Did not like the fact that it is made outside of USA, but overall, I like the reel as much as you do.
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
By notenuftoys on 07-11-2013, 10:02 AM
Default Re: Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review

Perfect timing on the review. Thank you.

I'm looking for a new reel for my Redington CT 4wt, and the price and Orvis reputation have made this very attractive. I think I'll place an order for one today.
Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
By ryu1er on 07-11-2013, 05:04 PM
Default Re: Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review

sweet, i just bought this reel to go along with my new Redington CT 5wt
Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
By biggie_robs on 07-11-2013, 05:44 PM
Member reviews
Performance
70%70%70%
7
Build Quality
90%90%90%
9
Appearance
90%90%90%
9
Value
100%100%100%
10
Overall
80%80%80%
8
Average 86%
Default Re: Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review

I grabbed a Battenkill III clicker yesterday and am pretty pleased with it. It reminds me a lot of the LL Bean "pocket water" reel--but lighter, with a narrower spool, and a nicer color.
Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
By sreckner on 03-25-2014, 11:07 AM
Default Re: Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review

Does anyone have any thoughts on how loud the click is compared to the Redington Drift, which I find objectionably loud?

Thanks!
Reply With Quote
  #7 (permalink)  
By bmbailes on 03-26-2014, 07:53 AM
Default Re: Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review

the battenkill is quieter than the redington for sure!
Reply With Quote
  #8 (permalink)  
By jesser on 04-07-2014, 12:15 AM
Member reviews
Performance
100%100%100%
10
Build Quality
80%80%80%
8
Appearance
90%90%90%
9
Value
100%100%100%
10
Overall
90%90%90%
9
Average 92%
Default Re: Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review

I bought this same reel for my Superfine Touch 8' 4 wt.. I also couldn't see what kind of fish I would be pursuing with this rod that would require a $250 disk drag reel.

I love the size, the looks, the feel, and the sound of this reel. A also love the weight of it on the aforementioned rod.

I called Orvis to complain about it being made in China. I probably would not have bought it had I realized this before hand - but I took it fishing right away and only noticed days later. Somehow I just presumed that Orvis' iconic Battenkill reels would be made in their US factory--silly me. I returned other products after I discovered they were made in China, and before I used them

Anyway - the reel is excellent, and the only complaint I have is the country of manufacture. Seriously, I love this reel so much that I told Orvis I would easily pay an extra $50 if they would only make them in the USA.
Reply With Quote
  #9 (permalink)  
By shotgunfly on 04-07-2014, 09:33 AM
Member reviews
Performance
80%80%80%
8
Build Quality
80%80%80%
8
Appearance
70%70%70%
7
Value
80%80%80%
8
Overall
70%70%70%
7
Average 76%
Default Re: Orvis Battenkill II Click and Pawl Reel Review

I bought this as a cheap throw on for a st croix imperial (made in USA) 4wt. For $98 you can't beat it. It's right there along side the Redington drift, but the Battenkill is slightly lighter which is what I needed.

It's performed well having 18-21" rainbow stockers on it. I can't complain (too much) about it not being made in the USA…at that price what do you expect? Sure, it'd be great if it was and if someone can find me a similar reel, of similar performance, quality, material at a better price, please speak up.


Actually, I wanted to give it all 8's but I'm not a big fan of the bold clunky type/paint on the reel. Smacks of 'cheaper' to me.

---------- Post added at 08:33 AM ---------- Previous post was at 08:29 AM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by jesser View Post
I would easily pay an extra $50 if they would only make them in the USA.
That'd be nice if that were possible. Shoot it'd be more like hundreds more right? What is the lowest price on a USA made reel? $400 probably.
Reply With Quote
Comment

Review Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Review Review Starter Category Comments Last Post
Orvis Made in England Click and Pawl edsass Fly Reels 13 02-16-2013 12:03 AM
Orvis Battenkill 3/4 Spring and Pawl Fly Fishing Reel (Made in England) Ebay USA Fly Reels for Sale 0 04-14-2012 08:20 PM
Vintage Orvis C.F.O.V Click and Pawl Fly Reel Ebay USA Vintage fly reels for sale 0 02-12-2012 08:50 PM
Vintage Orvis Battenkill 3/4 click and pawl R or L hand Fly Reel made in England Ebay USA Vintage fly reels for sale 0 10-02-2011 09:40 PM
Older Orvis Battenkill 5/6 click & paw Made in England catman Fly Fishing Tackle Member Classifieds 0 04-18-2010 08:48 AM













All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:22 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Search Engine Optimization by vBSEO 3.6.0
2005-2014 The North American Fly Fishing Forum. All rights reserved.