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Reel Review

Low Profile Design, Round Reel Muscle, the Shimano Curado 300DSV (continued)


Casting: Just a few seasons back we were often complaining about the casting ability of mid sized saltwater reels. Sure, casting accuracy and distance were not as important with saltwater tackle as it is with finesse freshwater gear, but the technology existed and it was a shame it wasnít integrated into all the saltwater reels.


We officially reach the guts


All changed with the release of the recent generation of saltwater reels. Today almost all the top selling small to mid size saltwater reels feature some execution of a cast control system. The Curado 300DSV brings the familiar VBS system with it, and is as easy to cast as the 200 versions. The deep spool doesnít start up as fast as the other Curado Magnumlite spools, but it doesnít need to with the much larger saltwater lures most anglers will be tossing.  


The handle-side sideplate is aluminum for rigidity

Anglers that want to use the Curado 300DSV as a straight freshwater reel will find that the spool is best used for heavier lures like cranks and larger wire baits rather than plastics. We found the Curado 300DSV exceptional for ripping big jerkbaits or topwater frog fishing. In fact when frog fishing we didnít even need to switch out the braided line, making this an easy choice for a crossover reel. 


The reel has a large opening for superior spool access

When casting saltwater lures the Curado 300DSV is as good as the best round reel, and certainly easier to hold when casting. I was able to cast the entire rig similarly to the way I would cast lures on a freshwater setup. Edge: When it comes to casting the Curado 300DSV is excellent, the reel benefits from both Shimano SF (Super Free) and reliable VBS cast controls, making it easy to cast far without fear of backlashes.

Zander tests the Curado's quick retrieves 

Retrieving (surface): How many round reels do you know of that are capable of burning back lures? The Curado 300DSV is capable of bringing in 28 inches of line per handle turn, and for many aggressive species this opens the door for some really thrilling lure fishing. We found that we were able to bring subsurface jerkbaits and topwater lures back in amazing fashion with the Curado 300DSV, and could leave round reels in the dust every time.


A look at the wide open top 


When we were targeting stripers we were able to get fish to aggressively strike plugs at sunset, and when fishing topwater for largemouth we were able to muscle fish in with ease. It really doesnít matter how big of a bait you tie on, the Curado 300DSV will bring it back to you at a brisk pace. The gearing is really optimized for speed, but the surprising thing is how little the bait retrieve or a fish on the end of the line taxes the stout gearing. Edge: The Curado 300DSV tops the competition here, this reel makes fishing big baits as easy as ripping a freshwater jerkbait with a baitcaster.


Cranking down quickly there is amazingly little resistance, the gearing on this reel is robust

Next Section: So what about deep retrieves?










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