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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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First look inside the new Curado I baitcaster
 


 

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Reel Review


Relevant once again, the new Shimano Stradic CI4 (continued)

Drag: Shimano beefs up the Stradic CI4 with a waterproof drag system and to test the execution we fully submerged the reel for up to 30 seconds to see how it would affect the drag pressure. A small amount of water did enter the system but it was still able to beat the published 15lb published specification. In our lab tests we tested the drag out at 16.2lbs of drag pressure when dry and 15.2lbs of pressure when wet. The 2500 size benefits from a much larger total drag surface area and delivers more than double the drag pressure than the 1000 size.


The Stradic's spool is ported for balance and weight reduction

It is interesting that Shimano gave the Stradic CI4 a waterproof drag as the more expensive Sustain FE and Stella do not benefit from the same implementation. We found that during our tests there we were able to make a wide range of drag settings with the micro-click knob, in fact we were could adjust the drag in .2lb increments easily.


The 2500 size has a lot of drag surface area and is able to generate over 15lbs of drag pressure, the 1000 size is only capable of 7lbs.

In the field I found the drag system to be very dependable on the new Stradic and it delivered about the same max drag as competing reels of the same size from Daiwa. When I had the opportunity to hook into quality largemouth on a drop shot rig the fish would try and overpower the drag only to get quickly worn down as the Stradic CI4 doled out plenty of smooth pressure. I caught largemouth up to six pounds during this particular field test and none of them ever stressed the capabilities of the CI4’s waterproof drag.


A nice addition to the system is a gasket which helps make the drag system waterproof

Ergonomics: The Shimano Stradic CI4 2500F offers exceptional ergonomics now that it is so light in weight. It gets close to magnesium reel weigh in numbers without sacrificing corrosion resistance. Weighing in at only 7.0oz the Stradic CI4 is 2.5oz lighter than the more expensive Sustain 2500FE and even 1.2oz. lighter than the premium Stella 2500FD. Compare it to the competition and the CI4 is a full 1oz. lighter than the Daiwa Fuego 2500A and exactly the same weight as the flagship magnesium based Steez 2500, now that’s light! The CI4 1000F continues the diet trend and weighs in at 6.2oz compared to the Steez Z2508 which weighs 6.9oz.


The lightweight reel is great from working shakey head rigs and drop shotting

If you think back to the pearl white Stradic ST2000 you might remember the wooden barrel grip on the reel. While certainly not the most ergonomic grip it did add to the reel’s unforgettable character.  The new CI4 looks to do the same with an EVA barrel grip that is finished with a red bolt that matches the highlights on the spool. The EVA grip not only looks great but is a lighter alternative to plastic and also feels tactile even when wet.


The only ergonomic concern is the tiny anti-reverse lever which is positioned right behind the rotor

Taken as a whole the Stradic CI4 delivers brilliant ergonomics, the only thing we could possibly have a gripe with is the size and position of the anti-reverse lever. It is situated right up against the rotor on the underside of the reel and is absolutely tiny. Once you get used to reaching all the way to the rotor with your fingers flicking the lever back and forth becomes second nature but operating the switch with gloves on is a little tougher. 


The 2500 size was excellent for panfish and larger Crappie

Next Section: Durability, Price and the Ratings


 

 

 

 

 

 
 





 

 



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