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Complete list of all current ICAST 2014 coverage
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Glide Week : Riding the S-Wave!
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Abu Garcia Raises the Speed Bar with their Rocket!
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Daiwa’s Steez EX 100XS offers a Deadly Combination of Both Speed and Precision
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First look inside the new Curado I baitcaster
 


 

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Reel Review

 

2009 High Speed Reel Shootout : And the Winner Is... (continued)

Main Gear: Shimano, long ago coined the term "HEG" for high efficiency gearing. What this really referred to was the provision of an oversized main gear to afford the reel's owner more power and leverage over the use of a smaller gear. We felt it was about time to compare Shimano's HEG with the main gear from the other manufacturers' reels to see just what an advantage, if any Shimano's gear affords today.

 

The main gears from our shootout reels from left to right: Revo SX, Zillion 50th Anniversary, Chronarch D, Tour Edition PT.

 

What we found was Shimano, indeed did have the largest diameter gear at forty (40) millimeters compared to thirty eight (38) for the Revo SX, and thirty seven (37) each for the Zillion and Tour Edition PT. A small advantage really, but an advantage nonetheless.

 

From overhead, the same gears starting on the upper left and working clockwise: Zillion 50th Anniversary, Chronarch D, Tour Edition PT, Revo SX.

 

However, what we found surprising was the actual thickness of the Chronarch's main gear was surpassed by both the Revo SX and Zillion. So much so, that the Zillion's main gear felt much more substantial in hand than that of the Chronarch's even though the difference between these two reels specifically was only half a millimeter (actual thickness measurements of each main gear were 4.5 mm for the Zillion, 4.25 mm for the Revo SX, 4 mm for both the Chronarch and Tour Edition PT)

 

From top to bottom: Quantum Tour Edition PT, Chronarch D, Zillion 50th Anniversary, Revo SX.

 

Backing up this feeling of substantiality in each reels' main gear was the combination of the gears' weight together with the measurement of the thickness of material from the tip of the gear's teeth, to the cut out in the gear for the drag washers. The Revo and Zillion had the most material behind the teeth at six and five millimeters respectively versus just three millimeters for the Tour Edition PT and Chronarch D.

 

A close-up of the amount of material behind the teeth. On the upper left is the Chronarch D while on the bottom is the Quantum Tour Edition PT.

 

Certainly all this material is probably not needed given the varying amount used by each manufacturer, but those with more material just felt more substantial and confidence inspiring. Speaking of which, the Quantum's main gear felt very vulnerable. Not only is it the smallest in diameter, thickness, and material behind the teeth, it is made of aluminum and is significantly lighter than the other reels' main gears ( 5 grams for the Quantum, 13 grams for the Chronarch D, 17 grams for the Zillion, 21 grams for the Revo SX).

 

Same objective as the previous photograph with the Zillion 50th Anniversary (top) and the Revo SX (bottom).

 

It was one thing to fish the Quantum knowing about the aluminum main gear, but after handling it in comparison to the others, I have to say, all those on the water experiences where the reel felt underpowered really come to light and I have to really question the long term viability of this reel's internal gearing.

 

The Tour Edition PT's aluminum main gear.

  

Main Gear
 
Revo SX
Zillion SHS
Tour Edition PT
Chronarch D
Diameter
2
3
3
1
Thickness
2
1
3
3
Weight

4

3
1
2
Substantiality
2
1
4
3
Category Rank
3
1
4
2

 

Retrieve: For pure smoothness of retrieve, it's all about the Chronarch D. Even with only one bearing under each knob, that trademark Shimano smoothness is there with this reel followed closely by the other three reels. While Shimano is still at the top, the gap is definitely closing.

 

The Tour Edition PT gets a workout from Mari.

 

In the power subcategory of retrieve, Shimano and Daiwa run away from Abu and Quantum. Maybe it's the short handle, but despite having the second largest main gear of the group, the Revo SX feels labored by comparison under load and as mentioned in its individual review, there were times I could barely get the handle turned around to bring a hard fighting fish in. Similarly, the Quantum Tour Edition PT, while smooth, lacks any reel power with that small and thin aluminum main gear.

  

Retrieve
 
Revo SX
Zillion SHS
Tour Edition PT
Chronarch D
Smoothness
3
2
4
1
Power
3
1
4
1
Category Rank
3
2
4
1

 

Next Section: Drag & Casting Performance...


 

 

 

 

 

 
 





 

 



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