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Often, we see images of men in boats, patiently waiting for big fish, before they click on the fishing reel to get the fishing line, and wow, they got a pretty catch. Such pictures show the usefulness of fly-reels. But are these fly-reels? Well, a reel is a tool used to position and retrieve the fly line using a spool that is mounted on an axle. Fly fishing reels are important, irrespective of whether you are a beginner or an experienced angler. And if you think the reel is not as important, you'll realize it when the reel fails as you try to land that trophy fish.
History of the American reel
Reels were first invented in England in 1650. However, the first reel invented in America was by George Synder, a native of Paris. George's work became very famous such that he became the most widely known reel supplier in the 19th century. Due to the popularity, although the fly-reels were first invented in Great Britain, George Synder's name is often associated with them. Kentucky reels trace their foundation from Synder's design.
Charles Orvis, in 1874, patented Synder's reel design and came up with the first modern fly reel. Reel historians describe Orvis' creation as the benchmark of the American reel design.
Over the years, new technologies have been applied in the manufacture of fishing fly reels. Many new features have been added to the traditional simple design to come up with the reel we know today.
Choosing the best American reel
There are several considerations you should make before choosing an American reel. If you think of buying one of the new American reels, factor in the following:
- What fish you are targeting
Certain reels may be suitable for certain types of fish. For instance, you want to fish for trout, you might want a reel that allows you to strip the line manually and one that provides you optimum control. If going for a salmon catch, you might want a reel that has good action and a usable handle because you'll probably be using a handle on the reel.
- Reel weight
There are times when you want to use a lightweight reel. Other times, you'll want something heavier to increase stability. Whichever the condition, there are fly reels suited for every event. Remember to match the weight of the fly reel to that of the fly line.
- Saltwater/ freshwater
When hunting the fresh waters, you might consider a single-action reel, as most anglers have reviewed it as best for freshwater. However, saltwater fishing calls for an automatic retrieve or a multiplying retrieve.
Of course, no one wants to spend much when they can save for a similar product. There are a variety of low-cost and high-cost reels in the market. In as much as you want to be cost-effective, be sure not to compromise quality. Look for a reel that blends good performance and pocket-friendly price.
- Good drag
Nowadays, you might not find the need to have the click and the pawl. A reel with a good disc drag replaces the click and pawl.
Top American fly reels in the market today
When choosing a reel, remember the basic purpose you want it to serve. Based on several considerations, here are the top recommendations for modern impressive American reels for each of the categories described above:
- Best overall fly reel- Tibor Everglades reel
Made in Florida, this reel is the most renowned among the world's fly fishing enthusiasts. The reel is small in size, allowing for easy portability. It is the most versatile reel in the market today featuring great maximum strength, lightweight, stainless inner parts, and an excellent spool diameter.
- Best reel for trout- Abel TR Reel
Going for trout fishing? The Abel TR never disappoints. It's the best in handling mid-weight fish such as trout. Its precise mechanized parts are designed to give you maximum control for a great and reliable performance. The reel is lightweight and offers easy and comfortable use. You'll be amazed at how evenly, smoothly, and quickly it will be bringing in the fly line.
- Best light-weight reel- Brookie, Galvan Reel
The Brookie reel is made with a special finish that keeps off excess weight and gives the reel an appealing and cool look. The super light-weight is just what you need to adjust the tension with only a few turns. It can adjust tension easily according to the condition you are in, and with the right tension, even the fastest moving fish in fast-moving water becomes easy to catch.
- Best alt water reel- Ross Evolution LTX Reel
When you hear of saltwater, corrosion comes into your mind. And when you are in a condition that accelerates corrosion, you want a product that resists the rust. This Ross Reel is made of an aluminum alloy, making it carrion resistant even when exposed to salty water. Other features that might impress you about the reel include a lightweight feel and a smooth drag.
- Most affordable reel - Teton Classic Reel
Topping the list of highest quality reels, yet the most affordable is Teton classic. The reel is built of thick material that makes it durable. It's also machined using aluminum thus it can withstand corrosion in salty water. It can also be used comfortably in a freshwater environment. It has a good drag, and just by the appearance, it's difficult to ignore the cool look. This reel is generally exciting to use and durable. Its reasonably priced and will never fail you in terms of performance.
- Reel with the best drag - Aspen 400 Reel
Made in California, America, by a company the specials in fly reels, you can be sure that this reel stands out among many others. It's a large arbor reel superior for its highly adjustable and silky smooth drag. This reel allows you to drag in your massive catch with relative ease by just putting in the appropriate portion of tension on your fly line.
american made fly fishing reels