Chark, are they still planning a surfcaster's lever drag? Not something I'd anticipate buying, I'd rather plug than soak bait, but I am curious.
I'll see and post pics from ICAST. The new reel should be a done deal there and available shortly after the show. Planned as a lever drag, not star. I'll be VERY curious to see if they have modified the piece to allow better freespool performance than their SG's and LG's. Those are nice reels, initially built as private boater trolling and jigging pieces so casting was not key - limited freespool compared to the West Coast Avets and Accurates. As a factory, they are improving all the time, and I'm seeing that with their new production. I'll be interested in seeing their new Surf and seeing how they progress the rest of their line. They do a lot of things right, are on the right track, and have some easy things to refine...which they no doubt will do.
That's fine. I was told - on uncertain authority - that Release uses thrust bearings as opposed to standard ball bearings. If true,they might have a design edge there, compared to Avet's small reels.
I'd like to see the principals from Release and Tiburon sit in a room and chat, and see if Tiburon's designs could be licensed. Release isn't big enough yet to be deeply committed to a given design yet, it might just be possible.
That would put 'em over the learning curve in a major way, like 10 years or more. I think it's a matter or location and orientation. Release first focused on what the guys do locally in the South East - Tib was long range/ West Coast SD style oriented and had more than 20 years behind 'em to refine and develop. Casting was a key part of that, and a reel that spins well and pulls plenty of drag without binding issues got attention.
A thrust or angular contact bearing may come into play a great deal in lever drag reels, just look at the Penn Torque LD reels and Okuma reels. On the right side/pinion gear side of lever drags is where most lever drag reels have issues binding. Not to say you can take other lever drag reels and just replace the pinion gear bearing with a thrust or angular contact bearing to relieve this binding issue, trust me I have tried. I wish it was as simple as that but it really boils down to much more than just replacing a bearing, it comes down to the design of the reel from the get go.
Personally I can't wait to see that Release comes up with as inovation will gain marked share if it works well and that will mean to us the end user better gear.
I never did see a Tiburon reel on the partyboats in Long Island, NY, but neither have I read of complaints of design issues. The reels were distinctive products and made in the USA. I'd like to see the technology persist ... Chark, I hereby designate you to make the suggestion to the Tiburon brothers (?) to go talk to the Release principals. No license fee for the suggestion, I donate it for the good of the angling public. And I can see one shorefishing venue where a gear-shifting reel would be a distinct value; the beach and pier anglers who, from Virginia through the Gulf Coast, are fishing for sharks. Sometimes they hit big ones. Since sharks are fairly fragile, anything that brings them in quickly (admittedly they might be a bit green, and therefore lively) would contribute to survival after release.
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