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fivefingers 09-24-2012 11:19 PM

Importance of Reel Size?
I've been considering getting into Spey fishing. I don't entirely want to throw down several hundred dollars for a new reel to pair whichever rod I end up getting, though (most likely a #7 or #9 for steelhead and salmon, respectively). I would, however, be willing to spend the nearly $200 for a spool for my Lamson Litespeed 3.5X to balance whichever rod I went with for spey. As far as I can tell the only thing a larger reel is important for in spey is 1) arbor size and 2) weight. I imagine I could get a bronze cuffling to slide over the spoke of my reel and therefore add a precise amount of weight, of my choosing, to my reel. And with my 3.5X having an already large arbor (250y backing compatible) I have a hard time justifying getting a lower-end reel when I have a very, very slick one to use with just the cost of a DIY bronze cuffling and a spool.

Anyone have 2c on the matter?

Ard 09-25-2012 12:37 AM

Re: Importance of Reel Size?
Hi Fingers,

It sounds pretty much like you've got it figured out. I can tell you what I use but won't try to talk you into anything.

LL Bean 13' 8/9 with an Orvis Odyssey IV reel.
Hardy 13' 9' 9 weight with a Hardy Cascapedia 8/9 reel.
Winston 15' 10/11 weight with an Orvis Vortex 11/12 reel

Big heavy reels each of them but they are each in perfect balance with their respective rods.


fivefingers 09-25-2012 12:40 AM

Re: Importance of Reel Size?
I'm not trying to be set-in-my-ways, I just don't want to spend more than I need to if I can't help it.

I was erring on the side of getting a 7 wt rod (like the Sage VXP or Echo TR) and just chancing using it on Chinook. I'd imagine if I got a break, it'd be at the mono anyway (if I managed to hook into a 25#+ that ate my line).

Ard 09-25-2012 12:55 AM

Re: Importance of Reel Size?
I'm all about not breaking the bank when it comes to tackle. As for breaking the rod on a king........ I've caught them a little past 40 on that Bean rod using a level 15 pound leader. The other rods have caught fish but nothing over 20. If you're new to the whole Spey thing then you're smart to use what you have.

fivefingers 09-25-2012 01:07 AM

Re: Importance of Reel Size?
Given your knowledge of Spey, would I need to add any weight to my LS 3.5X for the 7wt Echo TR? I'm thinking I'd just need another spool outfitted with skagit, running line, various sink tips and leader and be ready to fish.

Ard 09-25-2012 01:38 AM

Re: Importance of Reel Size?
All you can do is line up the reel - mount it to the rod - string it up - then hold it in your hand and see how it feels. To me, 'any rod' when I say balance I mean if I loop one finger under the cork right up at the winding check....... Does it have a balance point there? If so I'm happy that it is what I call balanced. Perhaps I'm a bit weird in this sense but every rod / reel / line set I have balances as described.

Some folks call balance a model 5/6 reel on either a 5 or 6 weight rod balanced. I call balance a strung rod that has its 'static' fulcrum point at or very near the front of the cork grip / winding check area.

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