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Reel Review

 

Low Speed Cranking Reel Shootout : And the Winner Is... (continued)

Round 5 - Drag: When it comes to drag performance some anglers place more emphasis on smooth and consistent performance while others desire maximum stopping power. A number of the reels in this low speed roundup manage to deliver a surprising balance of both.


The Winch features a simple drag star which controls the reel's exceptional monster drag which doles out 20 plus lbs of counter pressure

In terms of pure brute strength none of these reels came close to the beastly Carbon Matrix drag employed on the Revo Winch. In the lab we were not able to achieve the published 24lbs of counter pressure but we did measure a close 21.8lbs of pressure which is already nearly double what other reels of this size and class are able to put out. But how smooth was this beastly drag? Surprisingly smooth. While not the smoothest drag in the roundup it was consistent throughout all tests.


The Ziliion Crazy Cranker has the most refined drag and can be adjusted in very fine increments, but it is also the weakest

The smoothest drag in our roundup belonged to the Zillion Crazy Cranker which uses a eight disc wet drag which is extremely consistent and easy to adjust in fine increments. With each clicks of the drag star we were able adjust the Daiwa wet drag in very fine increments. The multi-drag makes use of varying materials and the grease between the washers actually helps reduce corrosion and contaminates from altering performance. Unfortunately while very refined the drag was only able to deliver a maximum of 9lbs of counter pressure in our drag tests, putting it on the lower side of the max drag pressure ratings.


The Curado E5 makes use of Shimano's reliable dartanium drag

Shimano continues to make use of their reliable dartanium drag material and in our lab we were able to get the drag to 12.7lbs under maximum rotation. Compared to the previous D version this is near identical to the much larger 200 sized reels and two pounds more than the previous 100 size. The Curado E5's drag strikes a nice balance between power and consistency, and while it is able to do both well it doesn't really stand out in either category either.


 The drag star on the Energy PT looks awesome but is a tad sharp

Quantum has been promoting their ceramic drag technology for a number of years now and the system has proven to be both reliable and capable when it comes to generating above industry average drag pressure. In our lab we tested the drag and observed a max drag of 15.6lbs, this is slightly over 2lbs. less than Quantum's published specifications but still well above industry average. In field tests the ceramic drag didn't feel as refined and consistent as the more traditional drag materials but it was able to stop fish in their tracks when dialed up.


Quantum makes use of ceramics in their drag which fight performance robbing heat, and proved more than enough to stop hard running stripers

In this category the Shimano Curado and Energy PT both put up respectable numbers but fall short of the Daiwa's precise wet drag system as well as the absolutely monstrous stopping power of the Revo Winch. This is yet another round where the Winch shows that it has the quality features to stop the competition.


The Winch takes this category with the reel's incredible max drag performance

Drag
 
Curado E5
Zillion CC
Revo Winch
Energy PT
Substantiality
2
1
3
4
Max Drag
3
4
1
2
Category Rank
3
2
1
4

Next Section: Round 6 - Price and the Shootout Winner

 

 

   

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