Low Profile Reels........Recommendations?

DSRTEGL

Well-Known Member
#1
Been wanting to get a decent low profile reel for a while now......But it HAS to be able to handle some light Saltwater use........Any reel recommendations under $100
 

mav

Well-Known Member
#2
Don't want to make things complicated but your selection may depend on what you are going to use the reel for and your maintinence habits. Gear ratio and Inches Per Turn (basically speed) can relate to which species you are targeting and what lures you use. Maintenance will determine how long the reel lasts.

For bruisers and slower fish, I use a slower reel. A slow reel allows you to winch in a large fish and also allow a slower fish to hit your bait. Lures like spoons and crank baits are best used on slower reels.

Fast reels are best for jigging for fast pelagics, horsing fish away from structure with a large power handle, or fish that can quickly close on you. If you use ball n feather, a fast reel is preferred.

As for maintenance, most reel frames are made of metal (including aluminum), and/or some sort of formed material like graphite composite. I prefer a reel that doesn't flex and aluminum is more rigid than most graphite composites BUT if I'm fishing the surf or somewhere that salt water is going to get into the reel, I'd prefer a graphite composite reel because it doesn't rust. Otherwise, my OCD side would be cleaning the salt out of an aluminum reel every time I fished the surf with it.

ABU low pros can take in water from cast mist after hours of casting. Their MAX series reels have some of the most rigid graphite composite frames. Lews reels are very similar but less water gets in. Daiwa bearings tend to rust easy.

If I were to pay a $100, the Lews Speed Spool LFS looks good. It has an aluminum frame. I liked the old Lazer. The new one flexes.

I know nothing of the new Shimano offerings but they have that SLX for $100. I couldn't figure out what it's made of though.

If you're looking for a graphite framed reel go with the ABU MAX series. I own a Pro MAX but the Black MAX works good, as a couple of my friends own them.

As for Daiwa, I don't own any any newer reels that are $100 or less. Just bought a fast 8:1 gear ratio reel though.

There are other brands but I don't know how well they stand up in the salt.
 

DSRTEGL

Well-Known Member
#4
Thanks Guys.......May have to hold off a while on a new reel.......I just counted the number of reels I already have......ummmmmm.........YIKES
 

pinfish

Well-Known Member
#5
I use the Abu Garcia black max, I think. It works, centrifugal brakes, and cheap enough to replace every two years.Because all reels die in the salt eventually.
 
#6
If you manage to lighten up the reel inventory (of course, letting us know what you would be ok to relinquish first...) there are a lot of choices in the $100 dollar range. Daiwas/shimanos in and under that range perform very well new. However, I suggest looking into the secondary market. A lot reels such as older curados, daiwa tatulas etc can be had in the same price range. I still use my old Daiwa Coastals that I picked up for sixty bucks used. Do keep in mind what pinfish said, don't expect them to last forever in the salt. cleaning/lubing often helps prolong their life but all good things come to an end under constant use.
 

mav

Well-Known Member
#8
Don't feel bad the Black Max is actually a good reel for it's price. One was beckoning me to buy it last weekend. There was one reduced price at $29.99. Buy Me! Buy Me! I resisted though. I have too many other reels and a couple more I need. (Debatable if I really need the ones I need though) lol

If you manage to lighten up the reel inventory (of course, letting us know what you would be ok to relinquish first...) there are a lot of choices in the $100 dollar range. Daiwas/shimanos in and under that range perform very well new. However, I suggest looking into the secondary market. A lot reels such as older curados, daiwa tatulas etc can be had in the same price range. I still use my old Daiwa Coastals that I picked up for sixty bucks used. Do keep in mind what pinfish said, don't expect them to last forever in the salt. cleaning/lubing often helps prolong their life but all good things come to an end under constant use.
I would have suggested this too. I love a lot of my older reels. My old round greenie Bantam Curados n Citicas, the Es, Abu round Ambassadeurs, and I still use an old late 80s upgraded Daiwa 7:1 Procaster, not to mention my old Penns. It's just sometimes you may come across lemons. Not a problem for me as a person who likes working on reels. I'll just try and get the reel for cheaper. BUT it may leave regret in the mind of a person who doesnt enjoy reel mechanics.
 

DSRTEGL

Well-Known Member
#9
Don't feel bad the Black Max is actually a good reel for it's price. One was beckoning me to buy it last weekend. There was one reduced price at $29.99. Buy Me! Buy Me! I resisted though. I have too many other reels and a couple more I need. (Debatable if I really need the ones I need though) lol



I would have suggested this too. I love a lot of my older reels. My old round greenie Bantam Curados n Citicas, the Es, Abu round Ambassadeurs, and I still use an old late 80s upgraded Daiwa 7:1 Procaster, not to mention my old Penns. It's just sometimes you may come across lemons. Not a problem for me as a person who likes working on reels. I'll just try and get the reel for cheaper. BUT it may leave regret in the mind of a person who doesnt enjoy reel mechanics.

I collect and repair Penn Reels........Have over 40 now.....from Penn 27's all the way up to 6/0 senators.......The Squidders are about my favorites of the old school Penn Reels.......You can ask Redfish just how well I can cast with those.......I just wish I had more time to fish.....
 

mav

Well-Known Member
#10
I collect and repair Penn Reels........Have over 40 now.....from Penn 27's all the way up to 6/0 senators.......The Squidders are about my favorites of the old school Penn Reels.......You can ask Redfish just how well I can cast with those.......I just wish I had more time to fish.....
Yea, the Penn Squidder is one of my favorites too. I learned how to cast a non weighted sardine with one on the party boats. Casting a Squidder is one of my favorite things. There is just something about it.

I honed my mechanical skills, working on my Penn 65 Long Beach, which was handed down to me from my older brother. I only got into low pros when I found that I couldn't cast a 1/2oz jig past 30+ yards with my Penn 65.

I'm not as much of a Penn connoisseur as yourself. I currently only own 29 Penn reels. Lol Presently, I'm working on an upgraded brown 85 Sea Boy and hope to build an open drag hot rodded narrow (baja special) Senator 4/0 in the future.
 

pinfish

Well-Known Member
#11
I remember now. I have a Silver Max. I also had a Curado D that lasted several years, caught many fish, and was outstanding. Better than the newer ones. But it died.
 

mav

Well-Known Member
#12
I remember now. I have a Silver Max. I also had a Curado D that lasted several years, caught many fish, and was outstanding. Better than the newer ones. But it died.
Did your Silver Max have the flippin' switch? Was thinking about getting one because of that feature. I don't use it as intended. I use it for free lining live bait or jigging dead bait. The instant spool release and engagement is perfect for that. Luckily, a few of my older reels have that feature.

I think the Curado D were some of the best of the line. My older brother owns a few along with some Curado Bs. The Bs were great casters as with the other reels that had that same design. I still use a similar Citica (Curado B in Citicas clothing) to this day because it handles full power headwind casts pretty well.
 

DSRTEGL

Well-Known Member
#13
Yea, the Penn Squidder is one of my favorites too. I learned how to cast a non weighted sardine with one on the party boats. Casting a Squidder is one of my favorite things. There is just something about it.

I honed my mechanical skills, working on my Penn 65 Long Beach, which was handed down to me from my older brother. I only got into low pros when I found that I couldn't cast a 1/2oz jig past 30+ yards with my Penn 65.

I'm not as much of a Penn connoisseur as yourself. I currently only own 29 Penn reels. Lol Presently, I'm working on an upgraded brown 85 Sea Boy and hope to build an open drag hot rodded narrow (baja special) Senator 4/0 in the future.
I am a Squidder nut......Have several 140's, 145's and 146's....Some Magged.......Some not........My 525 is pretty sweet as well
 

DSRTEGL

Well-Known Member
#14
Got my Black Max loaded with black 40 pound Power Pro Braid..........Wanted orange or red but nobody local had it is stock and I can't wait 3 weeks for a shipment from China........My vacation starts on the 21st
 

mav

Well-Known Member
#16
I am a Squidder nut......Have several 140's, 145's and 146's....Some Magged.......Some not........My 525 is pretty sweet as well
Lol I just picked up some black squidder side plates yesterday. I own three 146s, one 145, and four 140s. I’ve also been holding onto my brothers 146. Not sure if he still wants it or it’s mine by default. Lol

Got my Black Max loaded with black 40 pound Power Pro Braid..........Wanted orange or red but nobody local had it is stock and I can't wait 3 weeks for a shipment from China........My vacation starts on the 21st
I got orange on my old Daiwa. Black with orange styling matches the braid.

I have also been looking at the reviews for the KastKing Low Profile Reels that are on Amazon.......among others
My friend is looking at one of those KastKings also. He wants something in the $30 range. He’s also been asking me about experimenting with braid. I basically told him, “Get that reel, put braid on it an tell me how you like it and how it holds up.” He’s a novice and has never even heard of Abu and didn’t want one. Personally, I’d take the Abu Black Max over the KastKing in the same price range.
 

DSRTEGL

Well-Known Member
#17
Lol I just picked up some black squidder side plates yesterday. I own three 146s, one 145, and four 140s. I’ve also been holding onto my brothers 146. Not sure if he still wants it or it’s mine by default. Lol


I got orange on my old Daiwa. Black with orange styling matches the braid.

My friend is looking at one of those KastKings also. He wants something in the $30 range. He’s also been asking me about experimenting with braid. I basically told him, “Get that reel, put braid on it an tell me how you like it and how it holds up.” He’s a novice and has never even heard of Abu and didn’t want one. Personally, I’d take the Abu Black Max over the KastKing in the same price range.
They KastKing ROUND reels are pretty well thought of.....no idea on the low profile......most of the KastKing and other off brand low profile reels on Amazon average $40-$90 from what I have been seeing......

And you KNOW you have the fishing gear bug bad when you are thinking of building a custom rod to match your reel and braid......I have 40 rod blanks collecting dust in my livingroom......Its sad
 

mav

Well-Known Member
#18
They KastKing ROUND reels are pretty well thought of.....no idea on the low profile......most of the KastKing and other off brand low profile reels on Amazon average $40-$90 from what I have been seeing......

And you KNOW you have the fishing gear bug bad when you are thinking of building a custom rod to match your reel and braid......I have 40 rod blanks collecting dust in my livingroom......Its sad
Sounds like my brothers place. Lol I’m pretty bad myself. I got around 14 blanks sitting in those shipping tubes. Got a 9.5’ and a 10’ blank in the garage because they don’t fit in the house.

Lol I once took the opposite route. I rebuilt an old chocolate Sabre. Wrapped it a metallic green and brown. Well, I decided to build a reel to match the rod. It took a while to find the parts but I built a green and chrome Abu Ambassadeur 5600 round reel with 6 bearings, 6:1 gear ratio, and carbon mesh drags. It also has the orange thumb release button. Gotta have that. Lol

If you have spare reel parts lying around, sometimes the reel builds itself. Lol Had parts for an Abu Wiffle Spool, a C4, and some Hank Parker Special side plates. They were just sitting around. One day I was thinking that all those parts can make one reel. Those parts ended becoming my shallow water rock fishing reel, mainly used for sculpin.

It’s not sad. It helps me keep my sanity. Lol I embrace the fishing gear bug.
 

mav

Well-Known Member
#20
No disrespect, but $30 reel that can handle salt water fishing and last it’s this a joke?
Would you eat a sushi’s from a gas station?
Well, If you are talking about my novice friend, he’s just going to have to learn the hard way. I tried to advise him and get him on some better gear and give advice about braid as a tool, but it goes in one ear and out the other. There’s no point for him, asking me advice. He wants what he wants, cheap and one size fits all for everything. He was also looking for a universal bait. I just told him to get some ghost shrimp.

As for Abu Black Max’s, I've seen those things hold up, non abused. So, I’m not knocking them.