If you’ve got £75 to spend on a new reel, your choice has never been wider. Where once you were limited to just a couple of brands, these days most tackle companies have a range to suit all pockets.
This wider choice has led to keener prices for the budget-conscious angler. Buy wisely and you can expect them to perform well and last you a long time. Here, then, are six budget-priced crackers to get your tackle-buying juices flowing...
Best specimen all-rounder
Want a reliable all-round freespool reel at a bargain price? Then Korum’s new Latitude models are well worth a look. In 5000 and 6000 body sizes, they hold a generous 300m of 0.33mm line. The larger version is perfect for pike and carp, while the 5000 is better suited to barbel, tench and bream. Features include S-Stroke oscillation for perfect line lay, an anti-friction spool lip and a one-touch ambidextrous handle.
Price: 5000 £54.99, 6000 £59.99, www.korum.co.uk
Best match all-rounder
Matrix Aquos Ultra 3000 & 4000
Offering trouble-free performance at a budget price, these reels have super-light compact bodies, multi-disc front drag systems and an advanced bail-arm shape aid for faster line
pick-up – ideal for trotting. Seamless drive is provided by eight ball-bearings, and the 5.1:1 gear ratio generates an impressive line retrieve of 87cm (4000 size) and 75cm (3000 size).
Price: £49.99, www.fishmatrix.com
Best all-round freespool model
Daiwa Black Widow BR
Daiwa’s cheapest freespool reel, it’s still a quality offering. It comes in four sizes from 3500 to 5000 and is perfect for big-fish and feeder work.
The Black Widow has many recognisable Daiwa features such as Airbail, Twistbuster, and the BR freespool mechanism. The largest 5000 model weighs 473g, and will hold 310m of 14lb line.
Price: £67.99 (but shop around), www.daiwasports.co.uk
Best value for money
Shimano Baitrunner ST 10000RB
This reel has it all – reliability, durability, flexibility and unrivalled Baitrunner technology, all at a fabulous price.
The RB comes in a 6000-body size for specimen use and a larger 10000-sized reel for monster carp. Key features include a double handle grip, sleek XT-7 body, and die-cast gearing. The larger model holds 250m of 0.40mm line and weighs 555g.
Price: From around £49.99, www.shimano.com
Best Float reels
Drennan’s proven 3000 and 4000 FD (front drag) reels are up there with the best – especially for floatfishing. The three spare alloy spools take between 90m and 100m of standard mono line.
Best used with reel lines from 3lb to 6lb, they’re perfect for all styles of floatfishing. Spools have a knot depression and a deep groove to give a perfectly flat line bump and snag-free line lay.
Price: £55.99, www.drennantackle.com
Best novice reel
Maver’s eye-catching Reality is an excellent choice for novices. It’s easy to use, with a faultless self-trip bail-arm, and its oversized line roller prevents line spin. The smaller 3000 lends itself to floatfishing, while the slightly bigger 4000 is better suited to light feeder and leger work.
Price: 3000 £29.69, 4000 £31.49, www.mavermatch.co.uk