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Thread: Abel or Hatch

  1. Default Re: Abel or Hatch

    Quote Originally Posted by sageandonion View Post
    The spool release on the Abel Super is a joke. I've no doubt Abel are superb quality reels - and I love the look of them - but that detail alone made me sell mine (Super 3N and 4N) and go for Bauer.
    I agree with this. I know of more than one person who lost that nut in a boat! That being said, how many people actually use spare spools anymore? Most everyone I know has gone away from that and just carry an extra rig (rod and reel).

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  3. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
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    Holliston, MA, USA
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    Default Re: Abel or Hatch

    Quote Originally Posted by sageandonion View Post
    The spool release on the Abel Super is a joke. I've no doubt Abel are superb quality reels - and I love the look of them - but that detail alone made me sell mine (Super 3N and 4N) and go for Bauer.
    I don't have any experience with Abel reels, so I'm only replying to plug Bauer. I only have the now discontinued MX4 and MXP1, but I love them both and find their drags flawless. You can find discontinued reels with cork drags, but I think they've gone to solely CF now (I could be wrong about that).

    I'd also point out that Islander Reels can run right alongside Abel and Tibor for big game draw-bar drag reels. Moreover, the Islander customer service is, predictably, awesome.
    Cheers,
    --Rob

  4. #13
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    Apr 2012
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    Default Re: Abel or Hatch

    Quote Originally Posted by sageandonion View Post
    The spool release on the Abel Super is a joke. I've no doubt Abel are superb quality reels - and I love the look of them - but that detail alone made me sell mine (Super 3N and 4N) and go for Bauer.
    You have to think of an Abel or Tibor as a one piece reel. I don't consider the Abels to have a spool release.

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  6. #14
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    Default Re: Abel or Hatch

    I'm a huge Abel fan, and I own six of them. I like the fact that it is a local company, and I've been able to witness their craftsmanship and attention to detail firsthand. They make products that are meant to last, and will do just that. They perform as advertised, and are made by a company that will stand behind its products.

    The people there are passionate about what they do, and they also fly fish, so they're not just building a product for other people. It has to work for them as well. They are constantly tinkering and looking at different designs and ideas.

    For those who don't like the difficulty of changing spools on the Super Series, Abel also makes the Super Series Quick Change that allows for fast spool changes in the field. There's something for everybody over there, including some classic click & pawl reels.

    -VB
    ....Just one more cast...

  7. #15
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    May 2012
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    Snake, Clearwater and tribs
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    Default Re: Abel or Hatch

    Agreed. I thought the lack of quick release would be a big deal, but realized the only time I switched spools on my other reels was in the evening or before heading to different type of water. I just have large loops in the backing and switch lines at home with a line winder. If I do think that I might use more than one line in a day, then I just load the other line on one of my older Ross or Lamsons. But to be honest, I can't think of the last time I used more than one line on a rod in a day to justify a spool.

  8. #16

    Default Re: Abel or Hatch

    I fish reels from both companies very happily. What I do not do is employ either at the lighter end of my rod spectrum. It is important to balance the reel to the rod and the intrinsic weight to capacity ratio of both Abel Super and Hatch + reels relegates them to mid and heavier line weight outfits where their weight and potent drags are applicable.

    They enjoy an unusual set of commonalities: They are both California-built, intelligently designed and carefully crafted, despite exemplifying draw-bar vs. stacked and sealed drag design - each the poster boy in their own category - they are the only two quality reels that are genuinely and effectively scalable from trout to tarpon sizes and, lastly, they share excellent aspect ratios now that Abel has eliminated all their wide width reels in favor of narrow only and Hatch never committed the wide width reel design crime.

    I would happily fish either from 6-weight to 12 depending on the fine-tuned balance achieved with specific rods with a nod toward the draw-bar in the heaviest #10 and above range. I do like smooth disc drags in my light trout reels too but favor relatively lighter weight reels with less robust drags that are more appropriate to trout fishing. I all but never change spools so that is not an issue for me with Abels and the captive, threaded spool retainer on the Hatch is the only type of quick change spool design to consider; far more reliable and precise than any spring loaded lever or, worse, button.

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  10. #17

    Default Re: Abel or Hatch

    I have several Abel and several Hatch reels. It's like asking if Mercedes or BMW is better. Everyone has an opinion. Each are fantastic reels but just have different designs and features. As mentioned, the Abel drag in my opinion is the best out there. The quick spool changes and zero maintenance of the Hatch is great. Both reels are top notch pieces of gear.

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  12. #18

    Default Re: Abel or Hatch

    Quote Originally Posted by biggie_robs View Post
    I don't have any experience with Abel reels, so I'm only replying to plug Bauer. I only have the now discontinued MX4 and MXP1, but I love them both and find their drags flawless. You can find discontinued reels with cork drags, but I think they've gone to solely CF now (I could be wrong about that).

    I'd also point out that Islander Reels can run right alongside Abel and Tibor for big game draw-bar drag reels. Moreover, the Islander customer service is, predictably, awesome.
    Agreed….Islander should be more recognition….top notch reel, beautiful ….and fantastic customer service!

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  14. #19

    Default Re: Abel or Hatch

    I too will go +3 on Islander; along with Abel, Tibor and a few others, a true classic and robust, cork disc, draw-bar reel.

    I will also expand on spool release mechanisms: This feature usually involves some assembly of little springs, levers, buttons or "O" rings...the kind of little parts that are prone to eventual failure. No serious mid to big game fly reel incorporates these unreliable designs. Yes, a few include an easy spool removal method; Hatch, Nautilus NV and Hardy Fortuna employ a captive, threaded, knurled cap that can neither pop off, loose a spring or ozone degrade an "O" ring. But it is rare for an angler pursuing bonefish, Atlantic salmon or tarpon to change spools. Have other rods rigged with different lines on them? Sure. Each rod I fish has a reel dedicated to it that balances its weight and performance characteristics and is mounted with the line optimal for that rod. Yes, many of my trout reels have quick spool release features...and I wish they didn't.

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  16. #20
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
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    Bloomington, IL
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    141

    Default Re: Abel or Hatch

    I can't speak about Hatch; I've never used one or even held one. I have been in and out of Abels twice. I'm currently on the out cycle, except for a Spey and extra spool for it. The "Nut" issue is real. I have lost the nut on two different reels and thank goodness I was with a guide both times so he could provide a backup reel for me. The biggest problem I have is the price. Do I really need to pay that much for a line storage device on a trout reel? And, on larger reels, how much difference is there really in the drag system? While I don't want to lose the fish of a lifetime to a balky drag, I also believe that I'm far more likely to lose it to my incompetence rather than a faulty piece of equipment.

    And, I do change spools frequently. I use most silk lines for trout fishing and even with drying them frequently, I've yet to find one that will continue to float after six or seven hours of constant use, so I've always got a plastic line on a spool to swap out the soggy warrior late in the day.

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