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  1. #1

    Default Cassette Fly Reels VS Conventional Fly Reels

    How many on here use the Cassette Style Fly reels, Example Hardy CLS, ASR or the Greys and Pflueger QRS Type ?

    What do people feel the pro's and cons of the Cassette style are.

    I own two Cassette Fly Reels being the Hardy CLS and Greys GTS 500 and am thinking of purchasing one more. I love the fact I can use one reel and have lines ready on the cassettes for various situations or rods. Seems to me I can now buy a machined cassette reel with a nice drag cheaper most other reels and not have to buy a spare spool or two. Just wondering why they have not become more popular than they seem to be.
    Last edited by Ontarioflyguy; 01-07-2019 at 09:25 PM.
    Life is too short to not own at least one piece of Hardy fly fishing gear

  2. #2

    Default Re: Cassette Fly Reels VS Conventional Fly Reels

    If this topic has been beaten to death before let me know lol. Thought I'd get a few opinions.
    I also have a original lamson guru 1.5 on a 3 weight that I love...would love to find an extra spool for.

    Looking for's and cons. I figure if I have another Greys.QRS 5 to 8wt I have enough cassette type reel to do me for most of of my fishing rods 5 to 8wt, forever, So many lines and different set ups.

    I am looking at the Pflueger QRS system I can get locally but may have picked up on distinct difference between it and the Greys....funny thing is here in Canada I can order the Greys reel from England cheaper than the Pflueger from the USA and they appear to be the same reel....although I think I picked up a distinct difference and I would bet the Greys is built in South Korea and the Pflueger in China...could be wrong but......

    I would love to own a good Ross or Lamson or any good American built, Sweden too, reel but in Canada around me is hard to find high quality reel and when I do find one plenty are the cassette type out of Europe.
    Life is too short to not own at least one piece of Hardy fly fishing gear

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Wasilla / Skwentna, Alaska
    Blog Entries

    Default Re: Cassette Fly Reels VS Conventional Fly Reels

    Not off topic at all, I'd have offered an opinion but haven't owned any. What I will say is that if you like them for personal use that's all that matters when you make the decision.


    Anywhere can be the land of great expectations, broken dreams, or paradise found, it's all up to you.

    Life On The Line - Alaska Fishing with Ard
    Ard's Forum blog, Alaska Outdoors

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Sheffield UK

    Default Re: Cassette Fly Reels VS Conventional Fly Reels

    Never had a cassette reel, I once bought 2 spare spools for one reel I had, still got the spools but the reel gave up long ago.
    Cassette reels are popular with the competition guys.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Ontario, Canada

    Default Re: Cassette Fly Reels VS Conventional Fly Reels

    My first fly reel was a cassette type and one of the cassettes got stuck on to the reel, I tried everything I could to separate them but I ended up breaking the arbour in the process. I was pretty bummed as the 3 other cassettes I had were rendered useless... haven't had one that style since.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Cassette Fly Reels VS Conventional Fly Reels

    I have one. It's the cheaper Greys model that was discontinued a while back. I do remember wanting one of the STH cassette reels when they came out many years ago but I never bought one. That lingering memory might be what influenced me to buy the Greys.

    I bought it because it was marked down considerably and it ended up sitting on a shelf in the basement. Years later, I went on a fly rod buying spree and needed the reel. I also wanted another spool or two for it. It was a chore, but I finally found two more spools thanks to a kind gentlemen in England.

    I've only actually used it a few times, but it's a very nice performer.

    Tight lines,
    Last edited by desmobob; 01-08-2019 at 06:56 AM.
    At the southern tip of Lake Champlain

  7. #7

    Default Re: Cassette Fly Reels VS Conventional Fly Reels

    Yes it seems they are not as popular here in North America. I love my Hardy CLS, the Greys GTS 500 is a much cheaper reel but the drag system for an 8wt is more than adequate. I recently came upon the Greys QRS then noticed that it is the same as the Pflueger although the Greys looks better to me...was thinking of buying one more cassette style and then a more traditional large reel if I get into more spey/switch rods. I guess not a huge following on these types of reels on here although their practicality is amazing. Most see it as just about how many lines can be used but for me its about how many different rods can utilized with the same reel, Lamson Guru 1.5 on my 3 wt is awesome and if I can't get another spool for the original I may have to purchase the newer version of one. Love the Made in USA/North America thing.

    In certain parts of Canada we really get blocked to most of the variety of good fly reels which is a shame! We can mail order but the duty charges are brutal.
    Life is too short to not own at least one piece of Hardy fly fishing gear

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    clinch river regular

    Default Re: Cassette Fly Reels VS Conventional Fly Reels

    The Canadian made, “Islander” reels are of excellent quality but were a bit pricey. Not sure if they are still in Production. I had an Orvis “Rocky Mountain” cassette style reel that was pretty bulletproof for a while and it never failed me.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  9. Default Re: Cassette Fly Reels VS Conventional Fly Reels

    Here in the UK cassette reels are popular for loch-style fishing where competition anglers carry at least six different density lines and maybe different variations on tips and sinking profiles that might result in ten or more lines. Aside from the considerable cost advantage cassettes are more compact to store ready for use than spools.

    I used to fish loch-style with a pair of rods set up with a pair of STH cassette reels (one machined, one cast). Following the failure of one of my STH reels I took the opportunity to change to large arbor reels and I now fish with a pair of Greys cassette reels (again one machined and one cast). It's worth considering buying a second compatible cassette reel as a way of buying extra cassettes.

    It's horses for courses - if you expect to fish with more than two or three densities of line of the same weight then you'd be crazy not to use cassette reels.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Cassette Fly Reels VS Conventional Fly Reels

    Right now looking at the Greys or Pflueger QRS type that have the cassettes to handle up to 4 different weight lines on the same reel, Was thinking of getting the 5 to 8 weight version as I usually fish 5 weight and a 8 weight and on the 8 weight cassette I can get 100 yards backing and WF 8wt line.

    With this one reel I can have many different line set up for my 5wt and my 8wt and if I ever buy a 6wt then just need another cassette of the size I want. Of course I would be done buying reels momentarily until I find the perfect large reel for a true switch rod/spey rod down the road........

    So much little time
    Life is too short to not own at least one piece of Hardy fly fishing gear

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