Angus

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Ok a new concept for the Tackle section...

We all love product reviews as they offer an incite into the new toys we may be able to play with in the near future...

However product reviews in any off the shelf magazines are not much better than advertorials. Many magazines will not actually publish reviews unless they are specifically for the product of a paying customer. I 100% completely understand the reasoning for this, however it does lead to a relatively skewed view of what the product offers, and what other products are on offer!

In short, I would like this sticky thread to consist of "real" anglers, first hand experience trying new products. This his will hopefully give members a true incite into what new products are out there, where they can get them for the best price and what they should expect...

Sponsored/Afililated Anglers: In an effort to keep it real sponsored afilliated anglers are discouraged from reviewing their own goods but may review whatever else. For example, I will never review a Nordic Stage rod, but may review an Eco Gear lure or whatever.

I thought a simple table would assist as a cut and paste but feel free to add more as some products will require different fields (rods over lures for example). The details I have given below are more for lures. Also, members feel free to counter review, offer cheaper options for purchase etc as this information may be critical in someones purchase.

Product:

Type: Plastic/Hardbody/Chrome/Spinnerbait etc.

Colour Range: Limited/Medium/Expensive

Preferred Colour Thus Far:

Price:

Quality:

Action:

Experience: A brief account.

Pictures: Optional...

Look forward to seeing some usage!

Angus

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An example using a tried and tested favorite... These reviews do not need to be positive. In fact reality will lend more credibility to this section. In saying that, no malicious personal attacks will be tolerated

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Product: Damiki 3 Inch Armour Shad

Type: Plastic

Colour Range: Medium

Preferred Colour Thus Far: Skin Blue

Price: Under $10

Quality: Excellent

Action: Typical minnow style plastic.

Experience: These have been my favorite plastics to date. They have been called "to soft" by some as they do get mauled by fish. However the fact that fish maul them causes me to care only a little. I have used these for everything from rock fishing to shallow reefs in the bay and even the tuna love them. Probably no good for deeper reef but the 5 inch models should be good for that.

Pictures:

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Hey Angus, Do we allow for conversation about each review to occur in here as well? or do we want those conversations outside of this thread? it could just end up being a massive thread with a lot of struggling to find "reviews" in between conversation.

We could have the first post act like a table of contents for each review... but that's a fair amount of management.

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Product: DUO Press Bait 85

Type: Sinking Metal Lure

Colour Range: Extensive Range

Preferred Colour Thus Far: Blue Pink Sardine

Price: $20-$25

Quality: Excellent craftsmanship and finish

Action: rolling/wobbling side to side action

Experience: A brief account. I have been using these lures since late last year specifically on pelagic fish, Mackerel and Tuna. They are an 85mm solid metal lure when retrieved slowly they have a great wobble/side to side action yet when retrieved faster the lure preserves a similar action just a lot tighter. Can be retrieved many different ways and even when the lure sinks it has a wobble action as it dives. have caught, Tuna, School & Spanish Mackerel in the bay - great durability means the lure will last a lot longer especially when mackerel get there teeth on it and its castability especially when chasing moreton bay tuna that helps. downside is price but after seeing how it performs against conventional metal lures i’d purchase more of them in future.

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Hey Angus, Do we allow for conversation about each review to occur in here as well? or do we want those conversations outside of this thread? it could just end up being a massive thread with a lot of struggling to find "reviews" in between conversation.

We could have the first post act like a table of contents for each review... but that's a fair amount of management.

Ill have a think mate. Valid point.

After the success of threads like "Show Us Your Hook Up Shots", "What Have You Bought Recently" etc I just thought a rambling thread of informal but honest product reviews could be cool...

So maybe discussion is ok?

Imagine signing in for the first time and finding 20 pages of relevant interesting discussion

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As long as each post maybe quoated the original so we knew what was being disucssed? If one product seemed to be take up significant air time we could maybe split it out into a review thread of its own?

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Good idea Gus, although I think this thread only has merit provided that contributors are upfront with their association with a brand. There are obviously a number of people lucky enough and talented enough to have their work published, receive a discount/free gear, etc. or be actively involved in the sale of gears/lures.

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Product: Laser Lures

Type: Metal lure

Colour Range: Extensive range

Preferred Colour Thus Far: Chrome silver 35grams

Price: 6.50

Quality: Good, Dont even have to change hooks.

Action: Darts through the water spins straight when ripped back

Experience: I love using lasers. They are by far my favourite slugs for jigging beacons or casting at mackerel schools in the bay or even at the GC.

I have 100s of schoolies, spotties, and a few spanish and wahoo on them.

Also caught alot of tuna on the 25 grams. They arevery realistic and dont break the bank them purchasing.

Pictures: Optional. I dont normally take photos with mackerel as once we get into a school we try to get our bag first before posing for photos haha

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Product: TT HeadLock Jighead

Type: Jighead

Colour: Black Chrome finish

Price:$7.50

Quality: unreal!

Experience: Awesome! While i was up in Hervey Bay I was using them a lot on tuna and other sorts of fish, the amount of fish you can catch on the one plastic without it falling off in insane! you can pretty much use the same plastic all day without issues.

Pictures:

[attachment=62985]Hookupshot.JPG[/attachment]

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Product: Shimano Sienna 1000fd

Type: Spinning reel

Colour Range: depends on ago

Preferred Colour Thus Far:

Price: $49.95

Quality: Great with maintenance like all reels

Action:

Experience: for a cheap entry level reel, it is awesome. I've caught multiple sharks (some at the 1m mark), Jew, rays, bream, bass, flathead, snapper, the list goes on. All caught on a 1000 sized reel. Cannot beat bang for buck, great reel to start off on for a variety of species. Used it with bait, hard bodies, soft plastics.

Pictures:

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Guys I like the way this is shaping up already and may offer diversions on those rainy days

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I have just added to disclaimer to the first post which I think makes sense in an effort to keep it true and honest.

Sponsored/Afililated Anglers: In an effort to keep it real sponsored afilliated anglers are discouraged from reviewing their own goods but may review whatever else. For example, I will never review a Nordic Stage rod, but may review an Eco Gear lure or whatever.

As previously stated if there is a product that receives several reivews a front page review may be built from it using input from several points of view. This would be a fairly unique and benefical tool for this community.

Angus

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Product: Jackall TN's

Type: Hard body

Preferred Colour Thus Far: AYU

Price: $25 depends where you go

Quality: Awesome details

Action: Slow roll

Experience: Have caught 90% of fresh water fish on these lures, and also landed a few flathead. Only thing is upgrading the trebles for the bigger fish. have landed a 78cm Murray Cod on standard hook but was well bent at the end.

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Product: Ecogear ZX40

Type: Vibe

preferred colour: #419

Price: $18-$20

Quality:Great!

Action: Vibe with a great action on the drop

Experience: Been using these vibes for a fair while now and I am slowly gathering a good range of species together! The best part of this blade is the way it falls on the drop: Instead of plummeting to the bottom, it falls at a nice rate that hangs in the fishes face for just that second longer than a normal blade does! The best tip I can think of for using this blade, is always watch your line as the blade is sinking. The slightest "twitch" should be met with a firm strike as those little hooks need to be in nice and deep for a good hook hold!

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Product: 13 Fishing Omen Black Rod

Type: Fishing Rod

Price: $169.00

Specs: 6'10 4-10lb

Action: Extra Fast Medium to Light

Quality: A1

Experience: 13 fishing is a new brand to Australia that comes from the states and is main target over there would be the Bass fishos. Over here i've set mine up with a Steez 2508 and 8lb line and have been using it mainly as a heavy Bream rod but so far it has been able to handle everything from big Bream and Bass through to Squire, Tuna and even a hooked Sailfish. These rods are really light in weight and have an A1 build quality, they don't use Fuji branded parts as they make all their own parts in house but once you get past the stigma of having to have Fuji guides etc you'll find they function just fine. The rod will cast weights down to 1/12th and anything up to 1/2 ounce and its just as happy throwing a small crank as it is throwing a bigger spinnerbait or even a popper for Trevs in the estuaries. So if you're looking for one rod to cover alot of bases and want to spend under $200 you couldn't go wrong by picking up an Omen, i'd go as far to say i'd happily buy three of these instead of one really expensive rod like a Steez.

Cheers

Mark

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Product: Pontoon 21 CrackJack

Type: Hardbody Crank Bait

Price: $17-$20

Specs: Available in 38mm, 48mm and 58mm

Action: Suspending, Tight swimming action

Quality: A1

Experience: By far my favourite hardbody lure, Great all rounder, especially for estuary and bay fishing. Can be cranked, Slow Rolled, twitched all with great results. Well weighted for casting allowing long casting distances on light gear. I have found the standard hooks acceptable and quality of the workmanship A1. Have caught many species including Bream, Bass, Golden Perch, Spangled Perch, Squire, flathead, trevally and even Flounder. Great lure!

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Size 3 Stump Jumper

Anything with gold in it.

It has become my go to flathead lure, been slaying them for the last 6 months, and its ability to get down deep quickly in the snags makes it great for tight mangrove creeks. Not bad for bycatch of the odd Cod either. Only fish I got in the Coomera river on the weekend was a cod on a gold stumpy.

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Size 3 Stump Jumper

Anything with gold in it.

It has become my go to flathead lure, been slaying them for the last 6 months, and its ability to get down deep quickly in the snags makes it great for tight mangrove creeks. Not bad for bycatch of the odd Cod either. Only fish I got in the Coomera river on the weekend was a cod on a gold stumpy.

[attachment=63149]stumpjumper.jpg[/attachment]

[attachment=63150]Pb041217.jpg[/attachment]

Do they still do the changeable bibs?

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Product: Damiki Monstermiki 2.5" 4.5" and 6"

Type: Plastic, shrimp scent

Colour Range: 6, plenty of solid colours to choose from

Preferred Colour Thus Far: white

Quality: strong scent, soft with heaps of movement

Action: best when lightly weighted and wafted down the water column

Experience: the downside is that they are a pain to cast when lightly weighted. Better suited to dropping over the side or with the 2.5 inch I like to present them to bream and bass with a intermediate line on a 6wt flyrod.

Has produced the goods skinny water bassing and chasing bay snapper. Throwing a 6 inch one onto a 2oz nitro jighead and drift through pearlie terrain and it outfishes bait every time I have been out on a baitfisho's boat.

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Product: lucky craft Sammy 65

Type: surface walk the dog lure

Colour: clear for saltwater, dark for fresh (although a pearl white colour has had most success on bass for me)

Colour range: so many colours I havnt seen all of them yet

Quality: excellent

Value: worth every bit of $20

Action: has an irresistible walk the dog action on the surface. Very fun to use and casts like a bullet.

Experience: this lure is one of the best of its class in my opinion. Caught me lots of surface bass and they hit it hard! My go to lure along with the tiemco cicada and osp bent minnow, depends what I feel like using at the time.

The advantage of the Sammy is it's casing ability. Can get exceptional distance and accuracy.

Even the little ones have a crack!

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After the weekend I Second the cr*p out of this lure, Worked awesome, even when I got lazy and started dead sticking it and pulled a in a 30cm sweetlip

Product: Ecogear ZX40

Type: Vibe

preferred colour: #419

Price: $18-$20

Quality:Great!

Action: Vibe with a great action on the drop

Experience: Been using these vibes for a fair while now and I am slowly gathering a good range of species together! The best part of this blade is the way it falls on the drop: Instead of plummeting to the bottom' date=' it falls at a nice rate that hangs in the fishes face for just that second longer than a normal blade does! The best tip I can think of for using this blade, is always watch your line as the blade is sinking. The slightest \"twitch\" should be met with a firm strike as those little hooks need to be in nice and deep for a good hook hold!

[attachment=63041']886554_573345802690349_710996350_o.jpg[/attachment]

[attachment=63042]901695_576602782364651_1914409043_o_2013-04-21.jpg[/attachment]

[attachment=63043]902239_576595965698666_2103899870_o_2013-04-21.jpg[/attachment]

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Not new gear by any means, but I have a couple of must haves in my tray when going fishing. This is my second in line and has accounted for a few jacks, bream, bass, trevally, tarpon and many more species.

Product: Megabass Anthrax

Type: Hardbody

Preferred Colour Thus Far: Natural colours, however they all work really. I've found action and technique to be more of a deciding factor than colour.

Price: ~$40 but can be had for cheaper in bulk online purchases.

Quality: Paint job has improved with the 2nd generation.

Action: Top water and sub surface.

The Anthrax is a pretty unique lure in that it's intentionally retrieved upside down to mimic an injured bait fish. This leads to some spectacular and very aggressive hits, especially from even small bass which are not shy in hitting such a large lure. Jacks have also made a mess of some of my hooks.

The small one I have is actually an older model with a fixed anal fin (which sits out of the water), the paint job on these older models are good but don't last long with continued punishment and will wear over time with ultra sharp hooks. The newer versions have a more durable paint job and hinged fin which rocks side to side which I noted to give the lure a wider action.

Top water and sub surface action can be influenced by either retrieving with a high or low rod tip respectively. I've found it to be most effective very slow rolled to allow the audible inner ball bearing to rock from side to side with pauses to mix it up. The lure can also be twitched erratically jerk bait style.

The beauty of the these lures and the Dog-X series, is that I have found the lure will actually rest tail heavy. The importance of this is that when you fire in a cast into a snag (or throw in a pause) the lure will actually 'reverse' about 10 mm or so which technically allows you to cover more ground and may entice the fish for a quick strike. Since many fish hit most lures (whether plastics or hardbodies) on the pause.

One thing I have noticed is this lure begins it's intended action from the very first crank of the handle, other imitations I've used require a bit of momentum (i.e. 5-10 cm) before doing so. This is crucial especially if you are fishing tight snags or have a very small strike zone and you want that lure action working straight away.

Pros: Versatile lure that is good for a beginner to get into surface fishing but also has scope for an advanced angler, ultra sharp hooks as standard make for excellent hook penetration, well balanced, can be worked very slow and well designed.

Cons: Expensive, good paint design but poor durability in older versions, thin hooks don't last long with jacks. Like with most surface lures the hook up rate can be relatively low, but I find that is due to short striking than the lure itself.

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a drag net lol. if it's low light morning i will usually slow roll with a high rod tip and mix in a pause depending on action. will work sub surface as the sun rises then switch over to something else.

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They look great and VERY competitively priced.

Very seriously considering one.

Thanks for the review.

Mate I try and avoid giving stuff "blatant" plugs as I don not want to put business interests etc in front of an honest review. However with this product I find it easy simply due to quality VS value.

In short most hulls of this quality are going to set one back more than the total buy price (more than likely by several hundred). So considering that you get all the above mentioned extras, it is a no brainier really! Really looking forward to getting back into some proper skinny water action.

Angus

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No secret I have become a fan of higher end reels. Unlike some elitist however I would never try and persuade a new angler to spend 900 bucks on a reel. I believe like any sport, hobby etc it is just a decision you make when you get more involved and interested in the gear itself as well as the actual art of fishing.

With this in mind, and with my stella 1000 in service I thought I would give a little Symetre 1000 a run on the weekend. Honestly could not fault this reel. Still nice and compact, light and nice drag. Will it stand the test of time considering how much I love pushing the hell out of light gear? I do not know but for an entry level 1000 size I would highly recommend these.

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Hi Surf

I bought a used Stradic 1000 and noticed that it is not smooth and makes like a 'rasping' sound when you are winding. Does it sound like the bearings have gone similar to the issue you had with yours?

Alright, Im going to have a go at this but reviews are not my strong point, you've been warned!
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Product: Shimano Stradic FJ 1000

Type: Spinning reel

Colour: Pearl white finish

Price: Around $200

Quality: Very good

Experience: I have been using my two Stradics for some time now and am very impressed. These reels have spent a lot of time hanging off the side of the kayak getting dunkings (fresh and salt), I have used them just about every week for the last couple of years, I've caught many many fish on them- including some absolute brutes and they're still hanging in there doing the job for me. As a quality reel on a reasonable budget you'd be hard pressed to find better.

Pros: Good line capacity, smooth drag, maintenance port, Xship, wind-in handle (my favourite part).

Cons: Drag clicker spring loses tension over time, bearings can become quite noisy.

Mods: These are a pretty fun little reel to play with if you are so inclined, I have upgraded the single drag washer to a carbontex one and have also replaced the 2 bushings in the handle with bearings which makes it a little smoother with the added advantage of metal in place of plastic. I have also taken measurements of all the internal bearings and will upgrade them over time and will also add an extra one to replace another plastic bushing, this will bring the bearing count on par with a Sustain.

[attachment=63599]STRADIC_1000FJ__99719.1311102670.1280.1280.jpeg[/attachment]

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Hi Surf

I bought a used Stradic 1000 and noticed that it is not smooth and makes like a 'rasping' sound when you are winding. Does it sound like the bearings have gone similar to the issue you had with yours?

Alright, Im going to have a go at this but reviews are not my strong point, you've been warned!
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Product: Shimano Stradic FJ 1000

Type: Spinning reel

Colour: Pearl white finish

Price: Around $200

Quality: Very good

Experience: I have been using my two Stradics for some time now and am very impressed. These reels have spent a lot of time hanging off the side of the kayak getting dunkings (fresh and salt), I have used them just about every week for the last couple of years, I've caught many many fish on them- including some absolute brutes and they're still hanging in there doing the job for me. As a quality reel on a reasonable budget you'd be hard pressed to find better.

Pros: Good line capacity, smooth drag, maintenance port, Xship, wind-in handle (my favourite part).

Cons: Drag clicker spring loses tension over time, bearings can become quite noisy.

Mods: These are a pretty fun little reel to play with if you are so inclined, I have upgraded the single drag washer to a carbontex one and have also replaced the 2 bushings in the handle with bearings which makes it a little smoother with the added advantage of metal in place of plastic. I have also taken measurements of all the internal bearings and will upgrade them over time and will also add an extra one to replace another plastic bushing, this will bring the bearing count on par with a Sustain.

[attachment=63599]STRADIC_1000FJ__99719.1311102670.1280.1280.jpeg[/attachment]

Yeah mate, the bearings in them are pretty poor.

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Teckee,

I had the same problem with my Stradic 1000fj to the point I took it back due to stiffness and noisy bearings. The one I replaced it with wasn't any better, but I can tell you it definitely smooths out over time. I'm very happy with my Stradic and will continue to use it in years to come. Super tough reel!

Edit- just realised you said you bought a used reel. It has become quieter for me over time so hopefully it doesn't go noisy again! Haha

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Actually just got a swag of new gear to upgrade some older stuff

Daiwa Generation Black Finezza baitcaster

Finding this to be a beautiful little rod have been throwing a few HB and plastics around on it definitely better than my Raider I had before it. Loving the lighter rod.

Tcurve Revolution inshore 741 snapper

Tcurve Revolution inshore Ultra Lite Spin 732

Both rods Im shocked with how nice they feel for the price they are at. The 732 with a 1000fi Stradic and 6lb fireline crystal casts a mile. Beautiful bream/flattie rod. Been using the 741 for bigger plastics and some baiting also very very nice.

Revolution Coastal 902/ Stradic FJ5000 15lb Powerpro

Probably one of my favourite combos at the moment for tossing big plastics and spinning metals. Been great for baits as well. Casts a 105 Roosta a mile.

Revolution Coastal 1302 / Ultegra XTC 20lb mono / 50lbwhiplash crystal

haven't had much time with this one yet but feels just like my Tiralejo over head rods (LOVE THEM) so its going to be sweet I'm sure. Could handle a slightly heavier reel to balance the combo out a little more. May stick a weight up the but of the rod to balance it. Fantastic feel and SHITLOADS of grunt. Reel is smooth but I don't like the plastic section the sits under the spool another spot for line to get caught on. The would of nailed this reel if that part was metal. Still an awesome reel in anycase. CASTS A MILE

Daiwa 7HTmag

I bought this for the sole purpose of going onto my 10ft Tiralejo rod for throwing 4-7balls in the surf on 15lb mono. I can definitely see why they rave about these reels took it out the seaway and flogged it out. Definitely the best casting overhead I have ever used tried a spool of 20lb on it but quickly went back to 15lb. Have set this aside for the surf. (Also have a Speedmaster 20lb and Torium 14 braid&Torium 30 on 30lb for bigger stuff/rocks etc)

Powerpro 10&15lb braid

Very impressed with this braid so far. Zero tangles and casts like a dream. Have the 10lb on a Baitcaster and the 15lb on a 5000 Stradic

OH yeah I loved that Motackle sale lol

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Product: Shimano Hyperloop

Type: Spinning reel

Price: Around $69.95

Quality: Very good

Product Description: The Shimano Hyperloop 6000 model fishing reel is a simple to use and great value entry level fishing reel with line already spooled on the reel you are ready to take this model fishing from the beach, rocks or boat. Capable of punching well above its price tag, the Shimano Hyperloop 6000 fishing reel is responsible for some quite surprising catches over the years.

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Features and specifications:

6000 size has a capacity of 274m of 5kg line

Pre-spooled with monofilament fishing line

Perfect sized fishing reel for beach, rocks or boat fishing

Generally will suit most, 8,9,10 or 12 foot fishing rods or any heaver style short boat fishing rod.

Gear ratio 4.4:1

Dyna-Balance

Aerowave line lay

Graphite spool and body

Power roller

P3

Pre-spooled with line

Drag rating of 6kg

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Saw this thread and thought I might contribute to it...

So here we go!

Product: Shakespeare Tidewater 2000

Type: Spin Reel

Price: $75.99

Quality: Poor Quality - Drag is rubbish, clunky to wind the handle, handle becomes loose after a few retrieves, but the handle knob is fair.

Experience: Only used it once - caught a couple bream on it fine in close quarters, then started using it on the flats where long casts where needed. And the problems begun, the spool would begin to lock-up on the reel with a loose drag, the bail arm and handle begun to come loose after punching long casts out and putting pressure on the reel trying to get some flathead in made the spool lock-up even worse..

Rating: 1/5 - Complete lemon for that price, don't buy it! not worth it

Ideal Match-Up Rod: Nothing! Leave it in the glass box at the tackle store.

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