What Sets Fly Fishing Reels Apart?
Angling success is the culmination of many different things most of which is time and experience on the waters one fishes. It takes dedication to remain attentive to the details and patterns that go unnoticed by most casual anglers. For all this effort, in the moment of connection with our quarry, we expect our angling tools to function at their very best. Therefore, the more experienced and accomplished anglers place a premium on high quality fishing gear; rods, lines, fly tying materials, and fly fishing reels. For someone who is entering the world of fly fishing there is a greater diversity of quality equipment available then at any time. This can be both a blessing and a curse for some because making a simple choice about equipment needs can feel over whelming. Where does one begin?
Fly Fishing Reels – Innovation in Design
The last 15 to 20 years has seen many innovations in reel design. Today, there are many types of drag systems and drag materials available allowing anglers to target species that fall outside of what most anglers who have either been away from fly fishing for some time or have limited to no experience with fly fishing have associated it with; a technique used on smaller fish such as trout. This association is simply no longer the case. The demands placed on fly fishing gear when targeting larger species of fish, now often in marine environments, has placed an emphasis on durability and strength in both the drags and the construction of the reels themselves.
Fly Fishing Reels – Cost
Cost is always a factor in determining what gear to purchase however there are many other things to consider as well one of which is how a reel is manufactured. The truth of the matter is that it is totally possible to fish for and land larger fish with relatively simple and inexpensive equipment. There are some amazing anglers out there with small pockets who rely on their skill to make whatever equipment they have work for them but even those anglers, if given the chance, would most likely prefer to have higher quality equipment. Serious anglers always want to put the odds in their favor and ultimately keep the focus on both the delivery and presentation of the fly. Dealing with rods and lines that cast poorly or reels that stick or do not release the line smoothly simply detracts from this focus.
Fly Fishing Reels – Materials
There are many types of fly fishing reels on the market today but not all of these reels are made equally. It is important to consider what materials are used in a reel and how the parts are manufactured. Many reels, in order to save manufacturing costs, utilize materials such as plastic in key areas of the mechanical processes of the reel. This can compromise performance and durability. Reels that are fully machined from metals such as aluminum and stainless have a greater capacity to withstand extreme use while maintaining consistency in performance. Some reels are produced by relatively less expensive processes such as extrusions or molding however the precision attained does not match that of a fully machined part. Most made in the USA fly fishing reels on the market today are machined on CNC (Computer Numeric Controlled) machines. These machines are designed to cut metals into very exact high tolerance parts. The net effect is that these parts fit together with greater precision and ultimately this translates to the performance of the reel. Fully machined reels are generally more expensive however the gains in durability, performance and ultimately angling success will pay for themselves over time.
Solitude Fly Fishing Reels
Designed for 4-5-6 lines, the Solitude II is perfect for western rivers, large spring creeks or chasing Alaskan rainbows. Use of crest- to- crest wave spring in the drag allows for a near-infinite range of settings. The fine, silky-smooth drag system helps protect light tippets and delivers even, consistent pressure during demanding runs. Made from fully machined 6061-T651 aluminum.
An ideal choice for 6-7- 8 lines, the Solitude III is a dream come true for anglers pledged to summer steelhead, smaller salmon species and light saltwater fraternities. Made from fully machined 6061-T651 aluminum. Ideal size for 8 weight switch rods 11’ long and under utilizing Skagit and Scandinavian shooting head systems.
Perfect size for 7-8- 9 lines when chasing NW salmon/steelhead, big bonefish, small tarpon, permit or stripers. Ultra-smooth drag system is unmatched for applying steady, consistent pressure on large fish. Made from fully machined 6061-T651 aluminum. Ideal size for 5/6 wt spey rods in the 12 ½’ foot length utilizing Skagit or Scandinavian shooting head systems.
deal for 9-10-11 lines when pursuing larger fresh and saltwater species. Offers absolute reliability. Near-infinite settings. And an uncompromising, smooth-running drag system that you’ll never second guess in the heat of battle. Made from fully machined 6061-T651 aluminum. Perfect size for spey rods in the 13′ to 13.5′ range utilizing Skagit or Scandinavian shooting head systems.