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Reel Review

 

Designed for Sending Big Baits - Shimanoís Curado 200 DC (continued)

 

Casting cont'd: Like other DC equipped reels, the Curado 200 DCís electronic module emits a high-pitched whine when it is cast. Some anglers find the whine distracting, others love the signature sound. I fall into that second camp and like listening to the reelís recognizable whine as it is pressed into service. This is only more satisfying with this larger reel as casting big baits enables the DC to really sing as you launch heavy deep diving cranks, glides, wakes, and rats.

 


The Curado 200DC is designed to fish larger diameter lines and braider superline

 

The Curado 200 DC comes with the same I-DC4 cast control unit as the smaller Curado DC and is easy to adjust on the fly as it only has four settings. Mode 1 is designed to achieve maximum distance (least amount of magnetic braking), Mode 2 is designed specifically for managing braided line, mode 3 is for fluorocarbon or stiffer lines, and Mode 4 offers maximum control (largest amount of magnetic braking) for applications like skipping. I found myself running the 200 DC with Mode 1 for fishing glides and Mode 2 when fishing wakes or rats with braided line. All four of the settings do a great job managing casts even on the windiest days.

 


Ready to fish some glides

 

Compared to other Shimano legacy DC systems the I-DC4 is the easiest to tune, in many ways Shimano has made the technology more accessible by reducing the number of settings and making the digital casting system available in more affordable reels like the Curado and SLX Series baitcasters.

 


The I-DC4 cast control module is fully sealed

 


The I-DC4 module's electronically controlled magnets interact with the spool to make split second adjustments to eliminate backlashes and maximize casting distance

 

The Curado 200 DC also features a large spool that is 28mm wide and 35mm in diameter, providing both line capacity and generous access to the spool. Overall, the new reel casts very well, which isnít a surprise given the proven DC system and larger approach angle from the wide spool to the levelwind guide. I find the simplicity of the system helps keep the focus on what is happening on the end of the line as anglers can basically set-and forget their I-DC4 mode depending on the lure type, line, or targeted application.  

 


The spool weighs just over 20 grams

 


I got to test the Curado DC on both stripers and bass over the last six months fishing everything from paddletails to large hard bodied swimbaits

 

Retrieve: Over the last few seasons Iíve started modifying a lot of my larger reels with longer handles from DRT and Gomexus and have found the extra handle length a big plus both from an efficiency and leverage standpoint. There was a time when the 90mm handle on the Curado 200DC would look huge to me, but these days it just looks and feels normal.

 


Adjustments to the DC system are made via the knob on the top of non-handle side sideplate

 

With the stock handle the higher speed XG model can retrieve 36.6Ē of line per crank, and the HG model isnít far behind with 31.9Ē per turn. If I was only to buy one reel it would be the higher speed XG model as I find the 8.5:1 retrieve ratio excellent for fishing fast moving wakes and topwater plugs and can always slow down for fishing glides or soft bodied big baits. With the XG there is a slight amount of power sacrificed but I felt almost no difference when retrieving deep diving cranks or even when fighting fish.

 


The sideplate on the Curado 200 DC is constructed from CI4+

 

Shimanoís micro-module gear system offers some of the finest and most precise cut gears we have fished and the brass gear, while heavy, holds up very well to fishing stress and offers excellent durability and reliability over time. One of the reasons that this system feels so smooth under load, and the gears hold up well is because they are precisely aligned and supported with two bearings, a design that Shimano calls X-Ship.

 


A look at the main brass gearing. While heavier than aluminum this gear will hold up well over time

Next Section: A Refined but Familiar Drag

 

   

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