I look forward to Chark's discussion of the Release Reels "Surf," when it comes into the shop.Although there are plenty of anglers in the NE and SE coasts using small lever drags (Avets dominate) I've been wary of them. LD reels typically have fine tolerances that don't do well when they get dropped in the wash, and inhale some sand. Nothing will compete with a high-end sealed spinner, but my 525mags have been reasonably tolerant of sand, as are my old Newells. Without meaning to be funny or snide at all, are the tolerances of the Surf sufficiently crude that a bit of sand won't lock the reel up? And the other question, of course, is whether the reel casts and adjusts easily enough for casting with heavy plugs? Two hours casting a Bomber or floating Rapala would drive anyone not a terminal nutcase to dump their tackle in favor of a pogo stick, but what about the heavier plugs of 2-3 oz., and tins to match?
I should add that most of my surf and shore angling is done with flyrod or plug rod, and the guys using the Avets are usually tossing "8 'n' bait," an 8 oz sinker or something substantial, plus a bunker head or some other large bait. For that use I'm sure that the small lever drags do cast well enough.
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