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ICAST 2023 Coverage


Lew's Goes Lighter with HyperMag and a BFS Oriented Custom Lite Reels


Date: 8/6/23
Tackle type: Reels
Manufacturer: Lew's
Reviewer: Zander

Introduction: Lew's focused on lighter weight and offering more refined baitcasters this ICAST with the launch of two new low profile reels, the HyperMag and Custom Lite Shallow Spool. Both of these reels are designed with better ergonomics, lighter overall weight, and the ability to cast lightweight baits with ease.


The HyperMag is Lew's new high-end magnesium baitcaster


The HyperMag: Positioned below the Elite-Ti and Pro-Ti baitcasters is the new lightweight Lew's HyperMag. The HyperMag makes use of a one-piece magnesium frame and features a sleek form factor that is similar to its more expensive siblings. Weighing in at only 5.2oz. the HyperMag is extremely light and is able to achieve this weight with the combination of the magnesium frame, C45 carbon sideplates, and aluminum alloy gearing.


John Byrd at Lew's shows us the new HyperMag. It features the same form-factor as the Elite-Ti and Pro-Ti


To ensure that the aluminum gearing will hold up over time Lew's hardens the gearing with extra anodization and also uses their latest P2 pinion gear, the same design we first saw on the Elite-Ti.


The 95 mm carbon fiber bowed handle and Winn Grip knobs are a nice finish for this sleek looking reel


The HyperMag is designed to be a lightweight workhorse with 11 stainless steel double shielded bearings, an aircraft grade Duralumin anodized 32mm spool, and a robust carbon fiber based drag system rated at 20 pounds of pressure.


I personally really liked the look and feel of the very refined HyperMag


I personally really like the how the HyperMag looks and feels in hand, and the silver finish looks both subtle and elegant at the same time. The HyperMag also features a 95mm carbon fiber swept handle finished with barrel Winn grips. The HyperMag will be available in both 7.5:1 and 8.3:1 retrieve ratios for $349.99 each. This is a reasonable price for a magnesium reel of this quality and feature-set and $50 less than the Pro-Ti, and $150 less than the flagship Elite-Ti basitcaster.  


The HyperMag features a externally adjustable centrifugal braking system


Custom Lite Shallow Spool: Lew's is officially joining the BFS game with the new Custom Lite Shallow Spool baitcaster. This reel features the same small form factor of the Custom Lite but has been optimized for casting lightweight baits with a super shallow 30mm spool that is designed to startup quickly with light line and lightweight baits. The reel is immediately identifiable versus the Custom Lite with the gold spool and for quick setups there is a Speed Knot attachment feature that locks a knot in place so you don't have spend time and effort tying a loop around the spool.


Lew's has adapted the Custom Lite platform to address BFS


The reel features a lightweight Tanso Tech frame which is made out of carbon composite and the sideplates are C45 carbon which all adds up to a reel that weighs in at only 5 ounces. Casts are managed with a 6-pin externally adjustable centrifugal braking system.

The new reel features a super shallow 30mm spool which decreases startup inertia allowing for casting of lighter baits and light line. Notice the small Speed Knot vertical notch in the spool which makes line attachment quick and easy


Like the HyperMag this new BFS reel features hard anodized aluminum alloy speed gears and with the company's P2 pinion. A 95mm bowed carbon handle gives the reel an enthusiast look and to minimize weight the reel is finished with compact EVA knobs. The Custom Lite Shallow Spool will be available in a 7.5:1 gear ratio and both right and left hand retrieve for $299.


The Custom Lite Shallow Spool features an 6-pin externally adjustable centrifugal brake system


Our Quick Take: Lew's has really bolstered their high-end baitcaster offering in the last two seasons and the HyperMag is a very compelling reel for anglers that are interested in the features and form-factor of the Elite and Pro-Ti reels but at a lower price, and lighter overall weight. If there was any indication that BFS has finally gone mainstream in the U.S. it is the number of reel manufacturers joining the party with new reels that are optimized for the technique. The new Custom Lite Shallow Spool is a clever option that leverages the existing Custom Lite platform with a shallow spool. It is a bonus for anglers that Lew's is offering the reel at the same price as the standard Custom Lite, making the finesse oriented addition to the arsenal all the easier.










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