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sweetandsalt 02-18-2012 10:37 AM

Fly Reel Drag Design
Leaving aside a debate about the drag requirements of a small stream trout reel, what do you look for in a reel for anadromous or saltwater gamefish and what. if anything, have you found exemplary in its performance and why?

grassonfly 02-18-2012 10:51 AM

Re: Fly Reel Drag Design
lots of backing room and a drag that can last a long while on a heavy drag setting.

gatortransplant 02-18-2012 11:51 AM

Re: Fly Reel Drag Design
A wide drag range, in case light tippet is being used (such as with steelhead in very clear water) and the tippet needs to be protected on a very light drag setting. Smooth start-up would also be necessary in this case.

With regard to the drag design itself, like Robert said, the material of the drag (cork, carbon, rulon, whatever) would need to be able to hold up for long protracted runs, in the case of tarpon-style drag slugfests. I am not hugely familiar with the materials used in drags so I can't say what would be best in this case. I'm sure someone else that knows better than myself will be able to weigh in here. However, I know I will be chasing a tarpon on the fly sometime this year, and all I can hope is that my drag holds up and helps me land the fish!

Ard 02-18-2012 12:14 PM

Re: Fly Reel Drag Design
Hi Richard,

The mechanical system that Hardy used in the Mk. II 8/9 that I use has been the best so far for me. However my Odyssey III which uses a draw bar cork & rulon disc / gear is dependable also. I use the hardy more but both systems are good here.

With my search for a 15 ounce reel ongoing I am considering the Henschel #5 anti reverse and the Saracicone 4 1/4" for this new rod I have. I am not familiar with either so any comments about the reels would be much appreciated.


throssing 02-18-2012 05:08 PM

Re: Fly Reel Drag Design
I, too, like the drag on the Hardy disk drag reels (e.g., the Uniqua 2). They describe it as an offset drag with a "Rulon disk". I'm not sure what that terminology means. but i am sure that it is a very effective system. I know that they used this system on the larger Orvis CFO reels when hardy was manufacturing these for Orvis.

Ard 02-18-2012 06:25 PM

Re: Fly Reel Drag Design
Now that you mention it I have a pair of Viscount LA disc reels that are very strong. They managed to build a sort of medium large arbor reel while keeping the classic appearance of the brand at the time they made these.

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