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Old 07-03-2009, 01:06 PM
 
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Default smallmouth reels

guys, i need a little help. i am planning on buying a new 6wt for smallies and i am having trouble on a reel. i would like to spend under 200 bux for the reel. is it imperative that i buy a l.a.? i do have a english made battenkill on my 5wt. any thoughts will be appreciated.


btw, i was hoping on an american made reel or possibly another english-made battenkill on ebay.

thanks for any help.
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Old 07-03-2009, 03:29 PM
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Default Re: smallmouth reels

Reels for SMB are just line storage devices.I have never had a SMB or a LMB take me into the backing and ive chased both for many years.My favorite reels for 6wt freshwater are a J Ryall #6 and a Hardy Lightweight Princess.Both have caught many smallies.I feel LA reels are so overrated I dont even see a need for most saltwater fishing.I fish the salt almost daily and have taken lots of stripers with a SA reel with no problems.A LA reel for smallies is totally unnecessary unless you prefer that style.A Battenkill would be a good choice for a SMB reel.
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Old 07-03-2009, 05:02 PM
 
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Default Re: smallmouth reels

thanks, skip. my thougts also. (however, i am fairly new to fly fishing).
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Old 07-04-2009, 12:50 PM
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Default Re: smallmouth reels

Only time I had to use a reel on a smb was one on Lake Michigan that weighed like 5lbs. Besides that stripping should work fine.
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Old 07-04-2009, 10:30 PM
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Default Re: smallmouth reels

Hmmmm....I was fishing for smallmouth this afternoon/evening. I brought a
9' 6wt, and a Ross Rhythm size 3 reel. The reel balance the rod nicely, has
a very smooth and stable drag system (I hate stripping line off with an erratic
drag!), and the mid-arbor picks up line quickly when it's time to move along.
I've really become fond of reels that take line in quickly, and feel like I'm
waiting forever with smaller reels. I have bluegills run at me faster than I
can take up line with a mid arbor, so I don't use it for that reason.

Having said that, I used Okuma SLV reels for a few years, and never had a
single problem. They cost $60 retail, have a silent retrieve, silky smooth (but
sometimes needs adjustment) drag, and are tough as nails. I've dropped a
few of the SLV's off the top of my car more than once, and nothing happened. Parts are available from Okuma USA in California if needed, however.
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Old 07-05-2009, 01:27 AM
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Default Re: smallmouth reels

I also use a 9' 6wt for smallies, sometimes a 8'6" 4wt.
I like the Orvis Battenkill Large Arbor reels the best. They have a great drag, very light, and modestly priced!!
Like Frank said above, when you go to a large arbor reel, you will never go back!
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Old 07-05-2009, 09:31 AM
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Default Re: smallmouth reels

I use a Medalist....$25 almost anywhere

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Old 07-05-2009, 04:42 PM
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Default Re: smallmouth reels

I live in a place that has pretty big Smallmouth (see my avatar ) and fish for them alot. I end up with many of them on the reel. All you really need is a drag that starts and runs at the same pressure. No "jerky" drags. I have a Gander Mountain Guide Series X-3 #5/6 I have no complaints with. I use another rod sometimes that I have a system 2 SA reel on. Neither reel was to expensive. As long as the drag won't give you problems when you do hit a big one, any fairly good reel works.
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Old 07-05-2009, 05:59 PM
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Default Re: smallmouth reels

I am not afiliated in anyway with this business, but they have a great policy and their stuff is really top-rated, with decent prices.

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Old 07-05-2009, 11:07 PM
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Default Re: smallmouth reels

I would suggest a Lamson Konic or possibly even a Guru, or a Sage 1650. I believe both Lamson's are made here in the US.

You don't have to get a large arbor reel for smallmouth, but in the price range of $80-$200, why not take advantage of faster line pick-up, less line coiling, and more consistent drag?
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