Graeme Stewart

Light Tackle
« on: September 19, 2018, 11:14:34 AM »
Open to advice/opinions here chaps.

After spending 25 years fishing 9'6 and 10' #7's and #8's, I've struck out in search of pastures new and picked up some lighter weight tackle - an 8' #3 and a 9' #5.  Barrio lines duly bought and paid for.
My question is - reels.
I've got one of the cheap plastic (Danica) reels with plenty of spools for 7 or 8 weights - cheap and nasty, I know, but I just like it - I have other "better" reels (Greys, Scierra etc but they are heavier). The reel and spool only weigh 140 odd grams. Now, I've seen some of the #3 reels that weigh in at 185 or 250g - a darn sight heavier than my Danica.
Does the circumference of the reel (or diameter or whatever) make any difference at all or is it simply the weight (for balance)?
I'm happy enough to have all my lines on the same reel (makes things simple), and with #3 reels available at almost twice the weight, "logic" would suggest that I stick with the Danica.

Right or wrong? (I know the standard answer is "use whatever feels right")


James Laraway

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #1 on: September 19, 2018, 11:43:04 AM »
'Large arbour' is large diameter - they tend to be narrower but 'deeper' spools.

In theory they will mean your lines should get less memory and you should be able to retrieve faster....

however lets face unless you are fishing for something like a bonefish do you really need a 'large arbour' reel ? probably not me thinks...

i'd say get a reel that balances the rod weight wise and you cant go far wrong...

James Craig

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #2 on: September 19, 2018, 12:33:57 PM »
I have a basic (current model) Orvis Battenkill reel that I have on my carbon 9ft 4wt and couldn't ask for a better combo. It's a click and pawl design, which kind of suits the weight of the rod and I really like the simplicity. It's a shade over 80g unloaded, so it's light - but I do like that.

I'm building a 7ft 6" glass rod at the moment, and will use that reel on there. I have a WF line on there with a tapered leader spliced through the core of the fly line.  I think it will be a good setup for wee broons with light flies.

Just my 2 pence  :z12

Derek Roxborough

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #3 on: September 19, 2018, 15:35:48 PM »
I have a 6/8 SKB reel , I use this on my 5wt, it helps with line memory and speeds up the retrieve, I have never really got on with the Balance thing, as long as my reel is light enough and not lead weighted, some people seem obsessed with "balance" , a decent reel on a decent rod with a good line is all I ask for, :z12
Derek Roxborough

Graeme Stewart

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2018, 23:22:11 PM »
Well, just surprised myself - dug out my reels and the kitchen scales:
Danica compo 69 (7/8) with spool - 140g.
Grey's GTX No 3 (7/8) with spool - 212g.
Scierra XDA 5/7 -  230g.

Thus, the cheap and nasty Danica, being the lightest, is the best fit for my lighter weight rods?!?!
My impression was also that the Grey's, having a bigger circumference than the Scierra, was heavier, because "it looks heavier", but, no. However, the Scierra looks better than the other two (shiny)!!
It's the age old question of looks over functionality. And for those of you who haven't guessed yet - the Scierra XDA and the Grey's will be on their way to the for sale section in the next wee while.
I accept the weight difference may be due to the Danica having no drag and absolutely no frills, but I still like it.
And,  I managed to find a good deal on a new 5/7 reel with spools that weighs only 15g more than the Danica, has drag and is metal - which can be used with my lighter weight rods.

 :z8 :z8 :z8

Hamish Young

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2018, 23:26:49 PM »
A large arbour reel isn't necessarily a light one, but they do provide several advantages.

Having sold an Orvis Mirage Vii earlier this year with the 'freak' shallow spool (and then regretted it...) an extreme large arbour reel recovers line at a phenomenal rate compared to most other reels and is much (much) better for minimising line memory issues.  I have several large arbour reels, but also quite a few mid-arbours and one or two standard arbour reels - each has a characteristic that I like and for me the character of a 'thing' is often the deciding factor.

LA reels are not often as light as you might expect as inevitably the large arbour reel will be bigger than the standard or mid arbour reel. So I guess the question to ask yourself Graeme is do you want a large arbour reel for looks or for weight - if you want it for low weight then a plastic one will be just fine, I've yet to have a quality plastic reel detonate on me.

I think the real (no pun intended...) test here is to see what reel balances the rod nicely in the hand. Probably more important than arbour in the long run.

Vive la difference :!
Never argue with an idiot. They will only bring you down to their level and beat you with experience ;)

Terry Coging

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #6 on: September 20, 2018, 09:17:14 AM »
How a reel balances a rod is more to do with rod length and casting action.  For single handed rods I prefer a light reel because my casting style involves a fair bit of shoulder and fore arm, with little wrist movement (arthritis). This means that the reel has to move further during a cast. Maybe those with a more 'wristy' action would benefit from a heavier reel?

I have been experimenting with very long < 15' rods for trout fishing and my old Magnum 200D salmon reel helps the balance.
Interesting day on the reservoir during the gale. Obviously no boats allowed but a few hardy souls tried to beat the elements from the bank.  Using a 15' 4" concoction with a #3 line I was able to sweep a decent line out from the left with a gale on my right shoulder. Used D/H style and it was quite easy. Others tried casting with the wind behind and no chance.

Rob Brownfield

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #7 on: September 20, 2018, 09:58:24 AM »
On the issue of balance...don't forget to have a line and backing on the reel when comparing...they change the weight significantly.

All my light rods (3's and 4's) are used with large arbor reels. Main reason is that with light gear, I want the line on the reel asap as often I have to follow a fish up or down stream. With 10 yards of line out in the flow, this can be a problem.

For my French leaders etc, the reels are super large arbor and I go up several sizes of "acceptable" reel, so I a using  5/6 on what is effectively a 2 weight rod.
Ok, I admit it, I quite like this salmon fishing lark....

Derek Roxborough

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #8 on: September 20, 2018, 13:40:29 PM »
I wonder if we are actually talking about balance or Mass in hand, years ago I read about some one who liked a heavy reel as it helped with his casting allowing the rod to cock up with less effort, if you are a traditional Caster (book under the arm type) then the reel should not move much , only in a very slight arc, this for single handed casting, one of the Hardys books on casting recommended ,for double handed casting , tucking the right hand thumb into your belt, to counter lifting the butt too high during the back cast, These are things I have read , I am not saying we should be doing them , just that there are many different approaches to casting, I did try the thumb in belt thing , but my pants fell down and I was dismissed from the course  :z4 :X2 Derek Roxborough

Graeme Stewart

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #9 on: September 20, 2018, 18:45:08 PM »
I think the balance aspect is more important to me than the quick retrieve - I've always played fish by hand and not from the reel, although I can understand the need to play from the reel with bigger game fish.
As far as casting goes, I have a very horizontal, back and forward action more from the shoulder than elbow, so weight, I'm guessing will be more important .
The more I think about it, the more I think the Scierra XDA 5/7 and the Grey's GTX should go to a new home.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 19:56:18 PM by Graeme Stewart »

Derek Roxborough

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #10 on: September 22, 2018, 14:56:35 PM »
I see where you're coming from Graeme, I play from hand as well but the actual storage of the line decreases the memory, my reel is lighter than some of the smaller reels I have, and when clearing up it's somewhat quicker, especially in a boat,but, as they say one mans meat is another mans poison
Derek Roxborough

Terry Coging

Re: Light Tackle
« Reply #11 on: September 22, 2018, 18:22:26 PM »
The lightest tackle of all is the Tenkara.  No reel at all; well a little spool maybe. How Tenkara fishermen hand line fish to the net while holding a rod and balancing on rocks is a feat worthy of an Olympic event!


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