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10 Best Fly Fishing Reel 2019 in Review – Important, Must-Read Information

There is something interesting about fly reels. Their main job is to store your line but they hardly play a role when it comes to casting. But why do you still need to invest your hard-earned money in them?

The answer is simple – nothing beats convenience when it comes to fly fishing. Also, you need to keep in mind the fact that some of these reels are designed for specialist applications such as saltwater use.

So, whenever the conversation about the best fly fishing starts, it’s important to first understand what sets some of these reels ahead of the rest. We’ll talk about some of the factors that determine if a fly fishing reel is worth getting or not a little later. But first, here is a comparison list alongside some detailed product reviews.

Top 10 Best Fly Fishing Reel 2019 - Comparison List

So, first things first – here is a short list of some of the reels that have been making headlines lately. We’ll be discussing them in great detail below.

Ranking

Product Name

Primary Material

Weight

Price

1

Piscifun Fly Fishing Reel with CNC-machined Aluminum Alloy Body

Aluminum

8.8 ounces 

2

Redington Reels Behemoth 5/6 Reel, Black

-

8.8 ounces

3

Piscifun Aoka Fly Fishing Reels with Cork

Aluminum

6.4 ounces

4

Okuma SLV- 8/9 Diecast Aluminum Fly Reel, Light Silver

Aluminum

8 ounces

5

Piscifun Blaze Mid Arbor Fly Fishing Reel

Aluminum

5.9 ounces

6

Fiblink Saltwater Fly Fishing Reel

Aluminum

7.2 ounces

7

Piscifun Platte Fully Sealed Drag Large Arbor Fly Fishing Reel

Aluminum

9.1 ounces

8

Sougayilang Fly Fishing Reel Large Arbor 2+1 BB 

Aluminum

7.8 ounces 

9

667593 Wright & McGill Dragon Fly Reel WMEDFSLA56

Aluminum

4 ounces

10

Goture Fly Fishing Reel Waterproof 2+1BB 3/4 5/6 7/8 9/10 Aluminum Alloy Body 

Aluminum

7 ounces 

The 10 Best Fly Fishing Reel 2019 – Reviews

1. Piscifun-Sword Fly Fishing ReelsCNC-machined Aluminum Alloy

The reel is crafted from CNC Machined aluminum alloy 6061-T6, which is a corrosion resistant material for longevity. Actually, it makes the reel to be three times stronger than reels made from just diecast.Additionally, the reel is cold-forged and tempered to produce a rigid and sturdy unit.

Just as importantly it is hard anodized to protect the surface. Which enhances the reel’s corrosion resistance by up to 30% in comparison to other reels.

Product Description

The Piscifun-Sword Fly Fishing Reel is a top of the line reel with many innovative features.The reel has a concave, ported arbor design for increased strength and capacity and a mid-arbor design for easy and quick retrievals because of enhanced line pickup.

The reel features a multi-disc cork in addition to a stainless steel drag system. It has a CNC hollow design for a lighter reel than regular reels. The O-ring seals in the bearing protects it from corrosion.

More so, it has a smooth drag that is easily adjusted. Furthermore the retrieve is silent. On top of that, it has a one-way clutch bearing system for uniform and smooth drags.

Other Features and Benefits

By buying this reel you are getting value for money because it is affordable and durable.It is an easy to maintain tool, it is simply rinsed in fresh water after use.

There are other highlights too, the handle is ergonomically designed and easy to grip making it able to handle big catches. Secondly, there are various reel sizes available to suit different fishing needs. Thirdly, the reel is easy to convert from left to right-hand use.Apart from that, you have a choice between four color models.

Pros

  • Bargain price
  •  Durably constructed from CNC machined6061-T6 aluminum alloy
  • Corrosion resistant making it perfect for saltwater fishing
  • Four colors to choose from
  • Hollow design for a lightweight reel
  • It is easily converted from left to hand right use
  • Ergonomic knurled handle
  • Smooth drag system

Cons

  • A newbie angler can find it difficult to choose from the different sizes
  • It has a mid-arbor designand not large arbor design

2. Redington-Behemoth Fly Fishing Reel

The quality of a reel determines the outcome of a fishing expedition especially when targeting large sized catches. This reel pairs nicely with most regular rods. The Redington-Behemoth Fly FishingReelis called behemoth, as the name suggests, it is large. It is a product of Redington which is a reliable fishing gear manufacturer.

Product Description

This awesome fly fishing reel is designed to have the most powerful drag system in its class which makes it ideal for going after large-sized fishes. The reel features a large arbor for fast retrieves.

The reel is constructed from non-machined die-cast aluminum for durability. The adjustable carbon fiber system and large knob makes turning and adjusting it easy. The v-spoolhas the capacity to hold a lot of line and to hold extra line too. It is constructed to decrease line memory.

Other Features and Benefits

It is designed as a left hand retrieve, the good thing is that it is easy to convert it to right hand use. There are five different sizes to select from to suit your angling needs.Furthermore, it has ergonomic handles for secure grips.

The package includes a padded case for conveniently carrying the reel or for storage when it is not in use.

Above that, the reel comes at a medium price but has the same features as high-end models in the market.

Pros

  • Powerful drag system for the big game
  • Fast retrieval speeds
  • Large arbor design that picks lines fast
  • Adjustable carbon fiber drag
  • It can withstand harsh conditions
  • High line capacity
  • Ideal for salt and freshwater fishing
  • It is perfect for big species fishing
  • Over-sized drag knob for easy adjustments
  • Easy to switch it from left hand to right hand

Cons

  • Beginners may need to be guided on what size is fitting
  • It has a large arbor design which is usually heavier than other reels
  • Diecasts are less durable than Machined reels
  • It requires to be well maintained to hold up

3. Piscifun-Aoka Aluminum Fly Fishing Reels, Cork/Teflon Disc Drag

This reel has most of the features you would want in a reel and it comes at a bargain cost.It is a product of Japanese Brother CNC Machine. It features a mid-arbor design, Teflon disc drag, a machined frame, a one-way bearing, and a die-cast spool.

Even if this is not your main reel, you can have it as a spare to shift to it when you are handling a different type of catch.

Product Description

The Piscifun-Aoka Aluminum Fly Fishing Reel is sturdy and sleekly designed. It is constructed from high-quality aluminum for durability and the material is also light in weight. The mid-arbor spool design is able to hold a substantial length of line and it also enhances the line picking process.

Just as importantly, it is engineered with a drag system that is reliable. The drag system is made from cork and Teflon and it is strong and durable, able to handle large sized fish. The smooth Teflon disc drag system makes the retrieval of the reel smooth.

In addition, the drag system can be switched from silent to a click drag system.

The one-way bearing contributes to the smoothness of this reel.

Other Features and Benefits

For those who love different color designs, there are two colors to choose from. Additionally, there are two sizes of this model available which are 7/8 and 5/6 spool sizes to suit your particular fishing needs and your rod. Also, it is a left-hand retrieve that is easy to convert to right hand.

Pros

  • It can handle large fishes effortlessly
  • The frame is 100% aluminum
  •  Three-year warranty
  • It is pocket-friendly
  • It is a silent retrieve reel
  • Oversized handle for a comfortable fishing experience
  • It is easy to adjust it to right hand retrieve
  • It is light in weight for easy balancing

Cons

  • Its line retrieval is much slower than reels with large-arbor designs
  • The handle is not comfortable for persons with small hands

4. Okuma-SLV Diecast  Aluminum Fly Fishing Reels

The secret to successful fly fishing is in having a good reel. The Okuma-SLV Diecast  Aluminum Fly Fishing Reel is a product of Okuma fishing Tackle Company Limited. It is designed to handle large sized fishes. The reel is durably constructed with lightweight features.

This reel is finished well for a sleek looking unit. Its frame is made from die-cast aluminum which is rustproof and corrosion resistant.

Product Description

The Okuma-SLV’s its main selling point is its drag system. The reel has a high-performingand smooth drag system.

In addition, the reel has a large arbor spool design for smooth and fast line retrieval and a capacity to hold more line. In addition, there is no possibility of tangling lines.

Apart from that, it has a one-way roller bearing which drags in one direction making it strong.The lightweight materials make handling it easy.Just as importantly, the reel has stainless steel drag washers and a multi-disk cork for durability.

Other Features and Benefits

It is a left hand retrieve that is easy to change to the right hand.Just as importantly, there are various sizes to choose from to suit your fishing preferences. What’s more, the handle has a rubber grip knob which makes handling the reel comfortable.

Pros

  • Large arbor design for catching large fish easily
  • It has a multi-disk cork
  • It is light in weight
  • It is durably constructed
  • The washers are stainless steel
  • Adequate line capacity
  • One-direction roller bearing
  • It is easy to change it from left to right-hand retrieval
  • The handle is non-slip
  • There are different sizes available

Cons

  • Large arbor spool designs have the disadvantage of being heavy which can result in loss of fish
  • It is not constructed from machined aluminum but die-cast, which is of a lower quality
  • It has some plastic parts (threads)

5. Piscifun-Blaze Fly Reels Fishing CNC-machined Aluminum Alloy Body

A reel plays a major role in whether you are able to catch fish or not.The Piscifun-Blaze Fly Reels Fishing is a product of Piscifun.

The reel is constructed from CNC-machined 6061-T6 aluminum alloy which gives it sturdiness and a durable construction. More so, the reel has been cold forged and tempered to make it more rigid and strong. Furthermore, it is hard anodized which protects the surface.

It can withstand all weather conditions and it is corrosion resistant too. It is sturdy enough in its construction to handle fresh and saltwater angling.

Product Description

The Piscifun-Blaze Fly Reels has a mid-arbor design. The mid-arbor design keeps the line in a large loop which reduces memory loss. Therefore its line retrieval rate is good and not easy for the line to backlash.

On top of that, the concave ported arbor gives the reel more capacity and strength.

Additionally, the reel has a multi-disk design with a stainless steel drag system for durability.The one-way bearing system makes the reel strong because it drags only in one direction.

Other Features and Benefits

This is a good deal, it comes at an affordable rate and it is a low-risk purchase considering that it is covered by the manufacturer’s three-year warranty. Besides, there are two sizes to choose from and various color models namely Brown, Sapphire Blue and Gold available.Also, the drag knob is non-slip for a firm grip.

Moreover, although it comes from the factory as a left hand retrieve, it is easy to convert it to a right hand retrieve.

Pros

  • It is durably constructed from CNC-machined 6061-T6 aluminum alloy
  • Mid-arbor design for adequate line and fast line retrieval
  • It is corrosion resistant and ideal for salt and freshwater fishing
  • You have a choice between three colors
  • There are various sizes to choose from
  • It is affordably priced
  • The reel is covered by the manufacturer’s three-year warranty
  • It is light in weight
  • It is easy to convert to a right hand retrieve

Cons

  • Large-arbor spools have more capacity than mid-arbor designs

6. Fiblink-Fly Fishing Reels CNC machined Aluminum Alloy Body

Great fishing experiencesare influenced by having the proper gear and the gear should be of high quality, in this regard, a reel is one of the essential angling equipment.The Fiblink-Fly Fishing Reel boasts many features for high-performance. It is designed with the needs of saltwater anglers in mind.

It is manufactured from CNC-machined, cold forged high-premium aluminum. Its diameter is 3.15 inches, it has a 2+1 ball bearing system and a 1:1 gear ratio.

It has a sealed drag system which protects the parts from corrosion. Because of its corrosion resistance properties, it is ideal for both salt and freshwater fishing.

Product Description

This affordable fly fishing reel is engineered with a large arbor design spool, the combination of a large arbor design and 2+1 ball bearings enhances the performance of this reel for fast retrieval rates. Which translates to more catches.

It features a one-way bearing system for easy switch to right hand retrieve. The one-way bearing system also ensures quick retrieves.

Although it is a light-weight reel, it doesn’t compromise on the strength of the unit and it provides balance when fishing.

Other Features and Benefits

TheFiblink-Fly Fishing Reel has a sleek design.It is easy to maintain it, it is simply rinsed with fresh water after fishing. Other highlights of this reel is that it comes with a left hand retrieve but it can be easily changed to a right hand retrieve.

Furthermore, it has a shiny and sleek look and there are two size models and also two colors to choose from.To top it all up, it is very affordable.

Pros

  • It has a sleek design
  • There are two size models available and also two colors are available
  • It is competitively priced
  • Sealed drag stack
  • It is corrosion resistant and it is ideal for fresh and saltwater fishing
  • It is durably constructed from CNC-machined aluminum
  • It features a large arbor design which helps in fast line retrieval
  • It is easy to switch it to a right-hand retrieve
  • A storage/carrying case is provided
  • List Element

Cons

  • Quality control issues reported with this manufacturer

7. Piscifun Platte-Fly Fishing ReelsCNC-machined Aluminum Alloy Body

It is worth investing in a good fly fishing reel because it determines whether you will be able to reel in your catch or the catch will swim away.

If you are looking for a corrosion resistance reel that can withstand salty waters, then consider buying the Piscifun Platte- Fly Fishing Reel. First and foremost the reel is professionally manufactured with a smooth finish for a good-looking reel.

Product Description

The reel is engineered from CNC machine for strength and durability. It has a ventilated spool design which reduces the overall weight of the reel for a lightweight reel that won’t cause fatigue.

It features a large arbor spool design for fast line pickup and effective fishing. The large arbor design also holds more line and reduces line coil memory.

It features a sealed carbon drag system, which protects it from being corroded by sand, grit, and water. Which makes the reel easy to maintain, you simply rinse it after fishing.

The drag system alternates between stainless steel, Teflon and carbon which adds to the power of the drag system.

Other Features and Benefits

The knob has a diamond knurled design for a firm grip and easy adjustment when battling a fish.The reel comes as a left hand-retrieve the good thing is that it can easily be converted to a right hand retrieve.

There are various colors to suit different preferences. What’s more, there are four different sizes available to fit rods of varying sizes.

Worth noting is that it comes at a moderate price point, as such,it is a low-risk purchase because it has the manufacturer’s lifetime warranty.

Pros

  • Four size models
  • For both salt water and fresh water fishing
  • It is a low-risk purchase, thanks to the lifetime warranty
  • Fully sealed for durability and easy maintenance
  • It is crafted from CNC machine for durability
  • The spool is ventilated for a lightweight yet strong reel
  • Large arbor design for fast line pick up
  • The knob is easy to grip
  • A carrying storage bag is provided

Cons

  • It is a bit more expensive than other models in the market

8. Sougayilang-Fly Fishing ReelsCNC-machined Aluminum Alloy

A good fly fishing reel is able to balance the fishing rod. You can use the Sougayilang-Fly Fishing Reels to do general fly fishing. The frame is crafted from CNC machined aluminum 6061-T6 alloy for strength and durability.

Then it is cold-forged and tempered for enhanced rigidity and strength. Then the reel is hard anodized to protect its surfaces making it more corrosion resistance.

Product Description

The Sougayilang’s spool is crafterd from a low-profile aluminum alloy which is meant to provide smooth line releases.

The reel has a hollow design which reduces the amount of material used, for a lightweight reel that is easy to handle.

It features a large arbor design for fast and smooth retrieves and silent retrieves. Besides that, it features a 2+1 ball bearings system and it has a 1:1 gear ration. Above that, it has a one-way roller bearing system for engaging the drag system in one direction.

Other Features and Benefits

It is a competitively priced reel, in addition, it comes with the manufacturer’s five-year warranty which makes it a low-risk purchase. There are two sizes to choose from to suit different rods. The large size also comes with more power and capacity than the small size making it ideal for catching larger species of fish.

Apart from that, it is easy to change the reel from left to right hand retrieve. Furthermore, it is a left-hand reel that is easily converted to right hand retrieve because of the well machined, knurled metal screw caps.

Pros

  • It is easy to switch it to a right hand retrieve
  • Large arbor spool design
  • The reel is constructed from CNC machined aluminum 6061-T6 alloy for durability
  • It is affordable and on top of that it has the manufacturer’s five-year warranty
  • It is light in weight
  • It is resistant to wear and weathering

Cons

  • It is not ideal for saltwater fishing

9. Wright & McGill Dragon Fly Fishing Reels

Fishing gear for fly fishing can prove to be very expensive, however, you can still get an affordable reel like the Wright & McGill Dragon Fly Fishing Reels.

It is constructed from machined 6061 bar stockaluminum which is a high-quality material. It is engineered with the Graphite Disc Drag system which is reliable and durable. It features a lightweight design.

What’s more? This fly fishing reel has a large arbor design which ensures that you have a smooth casting experience. Besides that, this special design gives you a great time even when retrieving the line.

Generally, this particular arbor design is meant to give you a good fighting chance when faced with some feisty fish species.

Product Description

The Wright & McGill reel not only offers you a smooth casting and retrieving experience but also reduces line memory. This not only makes your angling experience more pleasurable but also boosts the life of your line.

At a glance, this reel might seem too big for ordinary rods, however, that’s not the case. If anything, we found it to fit quite well around most rods.

We also liked its graphite-made disc drag system. It is quite well-made although not properly sealed and so should not be used for saltwater fishing.

Other Features and Benefits

The good thing is that it comes at a budget-friendly price. Besides,although it comes with a left-hand orientation, it is easy to switch it to a right-hand retrieve. Also, there are several sizes, to suit your size of rod namely3/4, 7/8, 9/10.

Pros

  • Durably constructed with high-quality aluminum machined materials
  • Durable Graphite Disc drag system
  • It is competitively priced
  • It is designed with lightweight features for rod balancing
  • Storage case for carrying or storing the reel when it is not in use
  • The drag performance is advanced

Cons

  • The drag system is not sealed and therefore it is not ideal for saltwater use.
  • The screws may be a bit loose on delivery

10. Goture-Fly Fishing Reels

A good reel will enhance your angling experience. The Goture-Fly Fishing Reels is designed with the needs of fly fishing anglersin mind. It is reliable and comes at a good price. It is packed with various features.

Firstly, the frame is constructed from CNC machined aluminum for durability. Secondly, the surfaces are anodized to resist corrosion. In addition, it is cold-forged for additional rigidity and strength.

Apart from that, the main shaft is stainless steel for corrosion resistance and sturdiness.

Product Description

The Goturefeatures a 2+1 system, that is, it is fitted with two ball bearings and a one-way bearing system. Which provide a strong drag system for smooth casts and retrieves.

It is also waterproofed to protect the parts from corrosion. The gear is precision machined brass for quick drag engagement.

This reel has a mid arbor design which makes it light in weight to match the weight of most modern rods for balanced operation. It also has the capacity to reduce line memory and enhance the line retrieval rate.The U-shaped design also reduces the weight of this reel.

The combined features of this reel, namely a drag system that is robust, a smooth ball bearing system and spool release configuration make it a good reel.

Other Features and Benefits

There are three sizes on offer to fit different angling needs.In addition, it has an aluminum handle for a durable handle. However, aluminum can be a bit uncomfortable to handle.What’s more, the main shaft is easy to convert from left to a right hand retrieve.

Pros

  • It is durably constructed with CNC machined aluminum
  • It is competitively priced
  • Three model sizes on offer provide versatility
  • It is easy to convert it to a right hand retrieve
  • It is waterproof for corrosion resistant

Cons

  • The mid-arbor design has less line capacity than large-arbor designs

Different Types of Fly Fish Reel Depending On How They’re Made

Two main types of fly reels exist based on the method of manufacture used. The most common kind if the die-cast variety. Then there is the CNC machined variety.

Die Cast

Die casting is a special method of producing reels through the use of molten alloy. This alloy is simply pouted into a ready-made mold.

As you can see, this method is quite simple and straightforward. It’s actually the method that was used to produce reels in the 19-th century.

Most cheap reels are made this way. That’s because this method is suitable for producing reels in mass.

However, there is a downside to die casting in the sense that it doesn’t produce the best engineering tolerances. As such, reels made from this approach easily shatter when dropped from heights.

CNC Machined

The initials CNC stand for computer numerical control machining. It’s an advanced type of technology that involves the use of computer-aided technology to cut through high-grade aluminum. You simply feed the reel’s design into a computer, run it and the machine will replicate the cut for you.

Even though this process is still quite expensive to use, it produces the best-made reels available. In particular, reels made from this process are quite high in quality and also tend to outlast those made through the die-cast process.

How To Buy The Right Fly Reels

So, what are some of the key considerations to pay attention to when shopping for the perfect reels for use? Worry not. We have quite a few of these lined up for you in the following reviews.

What Fish Species are you targeting?

The type of fish you target matters. So, let us now get a little bit more specific. When it comes to fishing for salmon, your best bet is to go for a reel with enough line capacity.

Salmon are fast swimmers and, therefore, you need lots of speycasting line and backing. The good thing here is that manufacturers typically label their reels with the size specifications.

Also, if you are planning to use your reel for light river fishing, make sure it has a simple click & pawl system in place. You don’t need to go for one with an advanced disc drag system.

Remember, the disc drag system brings some extra weight with it. Therefore, if you’re planning for some light trips to the river, insist on getting a simple click & pawl mechanism instead.

When it comes to the best saltwater fly fishing reel, insist on it being corrosion-resistant. And again, a reliable disc drag system is a must-have as far as saltwater fishing is concerned.

What’s The Best Reel Size?

Does size matter when it comes to selecting the ideal fly fishing reel? Well, we think that it does. First and foremost, you want to ensure that the size you settle matches the kind of flexibility and strength you might be looking for.

You want to ensure that at the end of the day what you have is a well-balanced fly fishing combo. So, if you have a lightweight rod, be sure to also go for a light-duty reel. The same case applies to when investing in heavy rods – you want to go heavy-duty.

Also, if you’re targeting small fish species, there’s no harm in choosing a light-duty reel. However, if you’re planning to have a faceoff with the saltwater monsters, you’re better off going for a heavy-duty, CNC-made unit.

The Arbor Diameter

This is quite an important issue to consider only that most people tend to overlook it. Basically, three categorization systems exist on this front i.e. small, medium, and large diameter.

In most cases, small diameter arbors will suffice for freshwater fishing in rivers and light setups. However, as your fishing skills advance, you’ll also want to invest in larger arbor diameters.

In general, large diameter arbors are perfectly suited when fishing in saltwater spots or when having a faceoff with fast swimmers.

The main advantage to having a large arbor is that you get plenty of line backing. On top of that, this provides you with extremely fast retrieval rates. On top of that, under such arrangements, there is usually a lower risk of coils forming.

Which Hand Do You Use?

We are born as either left handed or right handed. Unfortunately, there isn’t much we can do to change this. Therefore, if you really want to land some big catches, make sure that the choice you settle for suits your hand orientation.

Unfortunately, since most people are right-handed, a vast majority of the reels out here have a right handle orientation. So, if you are left-handed, it’s important that you double check if a left-handed option is available.

The Drag System

It’s important that we talk about the drag system because we believe that it matters a lot in determining your fishing experience. Your best bet is to always go for a smooth and powerful drag system.

Remember, the drag system is the one that helps you deal with the fast swimming fish species. So, unless you are just a beginner training yourself to fish by the river banks, you might want to go for the disc drag.

A well-made disc drag system comes in handy in helping you win the fight. While at it, it’s worth double-checking if the drag system is well-sealed. Poorly sealed drag systems easily get corroded when used in saltwater environments.

Our Best Pick

It’s that time when we select the winner out of the ten product reviews above – our favorite time. Indeed, our editors compared all these reels and tested them out. Factoring in user-feedback and factors such as pricing, they settled on the Piscifun-Sword Fly Fishing Reels CNC-machined Aluminum Alloy.

Its CNC machined which means it’s quite strong and resilient. Most importantly, its drag system is made from stainless steel. As such this unit can also be used in saltwater fishing.

Final Thoughts

Fly fishing is one of the best pass-time activities you can embrace. Not only does it give you a chance to get one with nature but also provides you with an opportunity to learn a lot of new stuff. Talking about learning, it’s our hope that you have learned something new in the paragraphs above.

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