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LIVE ICAST 2018 COVERAGE from Orlando Florida

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Reel Review

Sustain-able performance over the long haul? (continued)

Here’s where it gets even more inequitable for the venerable Sustain series. The Stella 2500FB weighs in at 8.1oz and the Sustain weighs 9.6oz. While the weight gap between the two has narrowed the Stradic has an Mg version which weighs only 8.4oz. We have always felt that Mg design should have gone to the Sustain, but to the delight of anglers the Stradic Mg is one of the best values on the market for a magnesium bodied spinning reel at only 189.99. The Mg option in the Stradic lineup is a major plus ergonomically for anglers concerned about weight in a mid sized spinning reel. Edge: Stradic series wins this category by a hair.


The anti-reverse switch is conveniently located on the rear of the reel


Durability: On day two of our test near the end of the day as the sun started descending behind the hills temperatures began to drop…quickly. We quickened our pace back to camp and the Sustain soon got an unintended accelerated durability test.


Side by side with the more expensive Stella, testing both of these and the Stradic at the same time helped us really compare the Sustain to its siblings


On the trek back as I stepped across two rocks I realized too late that the rock I extended my right foot to was covered in ice. Before I could retract my leg I lost my balance and slipped 4 feet down and was past my knee in the frigid water. In an effort to balance myself in the fall I had reached out with my left arm and my right arm holding my fishing rod slammed into a boulder alongside the river. The fall caused a direct impact to the cork handle of my rod and the sideplate of the Sustain…..ouch.


The drag adjustment is more refined now


I wasn’t sure what was hurting more… my leg, or the Sustain, but my mind was undeniably on the reel. The minute I pulled myself out of the river I inspected the reel for damage. The impact had made a gouge in the painted graphite sideplate, but it hadn’t cracked. When I started retrieving again I was relieved to find the gearing still within perfect tolerances. I was lucky on account of both my leg and my reel, though the rest of the three hour trek seemed a lot longer with a soaking wet pair of jeans, sock, and boot.


A look at the drag system


Since then I have put many more hours into the Sustain 1000FD and have found it to be equally as durable to the Stradic, which also features A-RB bearings and graphite sideplate and rotor.


The waterproof drag knob forms a seal when screwed in


The Stella is the only reel of the three to make use of SR-Concept design, and a component of that design is the S-Finish, SR-Guard, and S-Shield, all of which are designed to enhance durability and the overall life span of the reel. Take the SR-Guard fin, this protruding edge along the length of the back of the reel elevates the surface, reducing damage from impacts or boat rash. The fin is even coated with titanium for increased resistance to collision damage. Edge: Give it up for the SR armored Stella.


The inside of the spool


Next Section: How easy are they to maintain?










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