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Latest BFS Featured Articles

ARK Fishing's Intriguing and Affordable Gravity BFS
Two years ago, ARK burst onto the scene with not just one, but three tiers of casting reels. For this year, they are refining that lineup with a specialty reel in response to the burgeoning trend of finesse casting gear. Here's our look at ARK Fishing International's Gravity BFS casting reel.
Abu Garcia's Formula for BFS Success - Part One : The Rods
As manufacturers scramble to develop components to participate in the burgeoning BFS (bait finesse system) market, few are as equipped as Abu Garcia is t o address both sides of the combo equation. Most can offer a quality rod or reel, but how many can credibly offer both? Yes, I said credibly.

Peeling it Back - The BFS Shallow Spool Challenge
Coming out of the TackleTour lab we peel things back in a look at some historical reels and shallow spool designs as we put these designs to the test in a challenge to see just how much variance there is between the various BFS designs. Let the "peel weight spool test" begin...

Catching the BFS Wave with Phenix Rod's New Series
Until recently, most bass anglers turning to finesse techniques relied solely upon spinning gear to present their baits. However, over twenty years ago in Japan, manufacturers, third parties, and anglers were tuning their casting gear to do the same. Today, Bait Finesse Systems (BFS), are all the rage with large, US based manufacturers rolling out reels and rods to support the burgeoning approach.
KastKing’s Kestrel Elite Magnesium Baitcaster Takes Flight
Usually aimed toward the casual angler, KastKing reached outside of their comfort zone and set their sights on JDM competitors with the release of the Kestrel Elite. Does the Kestrel Elite have enough wind under its wings to soar with Shimano and Daiwa?

JDM Calcutta Conquest for Finesse - The Calcutta Conquest BFS
Shimano Japan has been busy this season updating their Calcutta Conquest platforms on both ends of the spectrum. In addition to launching the new MD reels for big bait anglers the company is also introducing a new BFS reel with the proven Finesse Tune Braking system which is designed to deliver lures as light as a single gram.

Abu Garcia's BFS Flex : The Revo Ultracast BF8
Following on the heels of my very positive experience with Abu Garcia Japan's Limited Edition LX992Z BFS casting reel, I was on the hunt for another reel to sample only this time, hopefully, in left hand retrieve. I came across a second candidate from the same manufacturer with a very familiar look...
Function Meets Fashion, Daiwa's Silver Creek AIR TW
With the expanse of BFS fishing in the last few years, Daiwa dove into a niche within a niche with BFS trout fishing, releasing the Silver Creek Air TW. This proves that BFS fishing is on the rise, and for good reason. Being a majority of my BFS fishing is stream fishing for trout, it was only natural for me to run the Silver Creek AIR TW through the paces.
A Rod that Not Only Stands Out, but Surprises : Legit Design's Bait Finesse Special
Despite the series' name, the Stand Out series is a little more low key and much more affordable with roughly ten models from which to choose including three models designed for travel. We acquired a couple sticks from this new-to-us series for a closer look. The first of those two sticks is the Legit Design Stand Out SO66L+
The Ultimate Abu Garcia Reel for BFS? The Limited Run LX992Z
Abu Garcia Japan partners with founder of Imakatsu, Katsutake Imae, to deliver a custom tuned reel for the Japanese Domestic Market (JDM) worthy of attention. Today, we take a closer look at one such reel that sits atop Abu Garcia's BFS division, the 2020 limited edition LX992Z.

Built to Brawl - Shimano's Curado BFS XG Baitcaster
Manufacturers are now designing new BFS reels with the goal of making the technique more accessible to all anglers. The Shimano Curado BFS takes the brands most popular baitcaster series in the Americas and offers a compact reel with casting and drag systems designed specifically for finesse presentations.

There's Finesse and Then There's Daiwa's Gekka Bijin Air TW PE Special
If there's one thing Daiwa, especially Daiwa Japan, does well it's limited edition reels. With its black and red color scheme, the Gekka Bijin is impressive out of the box but it has a shape and profile that reminds me of the Alphas 800 TW SV...
Shimano Japan Renews Their Shining Star : The 2022 Aldebaran BFS
Making its debut in 2009, the original Aldebaran was positioned as Shimano Japan's answer to Daiwa Japan's little purple wonder, the Alphas (debuted in 2004). Since that time, Shimano's compact casting wonder has slowly evolved into a finesse casting specialist.
An Introduction to the Bait Finesse System (BFS) and Recommended Tackle
Bait Finesse may be new technique to many US anglers but the practice of using finesse baitcasting equipment has been a popular technique overseas for years and continues to gain momentum here in America as more anglers are discovering just how effective and enjoyable the technique can be.

Obsolete Before Its Time? Shimano Japan's SLX BFS
While a great majority of bass fishermen participate in the various techniques that make up the overall classification, for whatever reason, few are willing to admit to it. It's as if using light line and tiny lures isn't as masculine or cause for as much bravado as yanking a defenseless fish out from beneath a thicket of vegetation or fooling one with a life size replica of a baitfish species.

Built for Finesse. Shimano's Curado MGL 70 K Baitcasters
The newest addition to the Shimano Curado line is the smaller 70 MGL K, and the biggest upgrade is not only the more compact form factor but the addition of a lightweight MGL spool. Designed to help anglers make pinpoint casts with lighter baits, this new reel looks to carry on the Curado Series tradition of being a benchmark baitcaster. Let's see how it stacks up to today's tough competition, and history.


Additional BFS Articles
Round Reel Refinement - The JDM Daiwa Millionaire CT SV70
Originally brought onto to TackleTour as a specialists of sorts, concentrating primarily on enthusiast tackle, my responsibilities have expanded through the years to include product spanning the spectrum from affordability to "you've got to be kidding me." Recently, I've been writing about far more of the former than the latter, but enthusiast level tackle will always have my soul.
Complete with a Prize Inside the Cereal Box : Abu Garcia's REVO EXD
Abu Garcia's Revo EXD looks like just about every other Revo, Gen 4 reel, except it's not. It is built with an X-Craftic alloy frame and C6 carbon side plates, features carbon fiber pattern accents around the gear case, has a nice, long ninety millimeter, swept carbon handle, and purple highlights at the dragstar, cast control knob, knob caps, handle nut retainer, and spool. And yes, it comes with two spools...
Beware the Bait Finesse Addiction : Shimano's Scorpion BFS
Once only available to the most dedicated enthusiast with a big budget, reels like Shimano's Brenious and Daiwa's Alphas SV are built to deliver BFS capabilities for right around $250. No where is it more evident that the BFS movement has gained real traction than in the availability today's subject of review - the Scorpion BFS.
Shimano's Fully Machined BFS Masterpiece
The first thing to strike you when lifting the Calcutta Conquest BFS out of its box is the reel's finish. It does not feature the traditional gold/bronze anodizing of its Conquest brethren but instead has its own stealthy pewter finish...
Daiwa's Beloved Alphas Gets Another Variant - SV
This year, Daiwa Japan has taken the very popular SV spool design from their SS SV baitcasting reel, incorporated it into the Alphas platform, and have introduced the brand new Alphas SV. Does this reel have the same magic or even surpass that of the original? We procured one from Japan to find out!
2013 Bait-the-Finesse Finale : Daiwa T3 Air
The T3 Air came away from our late March 2013 Product Insight article with the early lead in this shootout. It is a reel based on Daiwa's first generation T-Wing platform, the T3. Made in Japan, the T3 AIR is a modified version of the flagship variant in this line and not the Ballistic which is made in Thailand instead of Japan.

2013 Bait-the-Finesse Finale : Shimano Aldebaran BFS
As its name would suggest, the Aldebaran BFS is built off of the Aldebaran, Shimano's 2009 compact magnesium baitcaster introduction known stateside as the Core 50Mg. The interesting note here is that while the BFS shares the overall same dimensions as the original Aldebaran, there are a few differences.

Bait the Finesse?!? Shimano -v- Daiwa Product Insight
In bass fishing, there's a certain fascination with baitcasting reels. Among experienced bass fishermen especially, there exists a stigma associated anyone who favors spinning gear over baitcasting gear. Anglers who fit this description are simply not taken seriously...
What the Finesse No Trigger? Evergreen's Stingray 66
What really intrigued us about this new product, a fishing rod, from Evergreen was its reel seat. Presenting our look at the intriguing Kaleido Stingray TKDC-66MLBF-Pro.
Daiwa Pixy Epiphany : PX68/68L SPR
The PX68 SPR is an interesting departure in Daiwa Japan's casting brake philosophy. Normally relying upon their magnetic brake technology, Daiwa decided to go centrifugal on the SPR to help deliver brake assistance during the early part of the cast.
What the... Finesse Alphas?
It's been almost eight years since we published our very first Enthusiast Tackle review. Eight long years of fishing some of the best the tackle industry has to offer. Do you recall the subject of our first, published enthusiast tackle review? It was the original, and now legendary Daiwa Alphas.
What the Finesse ?!? : Daiwa's PX68/68L
If there is one fishing reel that personifies the diehard, TT Enthusiast, it is the Japanese market only, Daiwa Pixy. Since 2004 when we first wrote about this fabulous little finesse baitcaster from Daiwa Japan, the Pixy has been the subject of, or shared bi-lines with other reels in at least five separate articles.
Cardiff or Conquest? You Choose: A Battle of 50s
Admittedly, I had no interest in the Cardiff 50/51DC when it was released initially because of one thing – actually a combination of two. I wanted a “Conquest” 50/51DC not a “Cardiff”. In North America, to those almost exclusive to top end gear, the “Cardiff” line is a cast off – good if you’re on a budget, but certainly not Calcutta GT TE material.
A Look Inside Daiwa Japan's New Pixy
As of this writing, the PX68 has been out for about a month and information is slowly trickling in. The left hand version of this reel has just been released and finally arrived on pre-order from JapanTackle.com to TackleTour headquarters.
Redefining the UL Market : The Uber-Ultra Light Daiwa Presso Baitcaster
Based on the venerable Pixy, but marketed as a true ultralight baitcasting reel for trout, the Presso comes to us in an even lighter overall presentation and shrouded in a black and orange color scheme.
The 2004 & 2005 Limited Edition Daiwa Liberto Pixy Reels...is there a casting advantage?
In late April of this year, the 2005 Limited Edition Pixy debuted sporting a lighter Duralumin spool instead of the traditional GIGAS resulting in a reel that overall, is even lighter than its already feathery predecessors. How could this be possible? If true, how would it affect performance?
An Ultra-Light Baitcaster Worthy of Serious Anglers - The Daiwa Liberto Pixy
Tired of the line twist issues inherent with spinning gear? Ever wish for just a little more control while throwing finesse baits? Ever wonder what it’d be like to fish 4lb test on a bait casting rig? Well, wonder no more.









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