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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Thoughts on this reel as a mid-priced saltwater reel (for an 8wt)? Mainly for snook, reds, and the occasional baby tarpon. Open to other suggestions too- looking in the $300-$450 range.
 

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I decided to get that real for my first reel on an 8wt BVK I got. Tbh I wish I hadn’t. The reel is very light and seems better suited for a lighter class. I haven’t had any problems with it aside from the mechanism to release the spool being very difficult to loosen.. which has really annoyed me. However, with more reels handled, I believe there are better options for the price. I think there is better value out there. It feels like I paid for the nautilus brand without getting the benefits. For instance, the hydros is very well priced and is a great reel from my experience. I wouldn’t say anything too negative about the reel but this has been my thoughts since I got it. I’m hoping to put it on a 6wt for calmer days fishing for snook and reds and bones.
 

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I just picked one up (XL, not the Max- but it's the same body, just different spool capacities I believe) and used it for the first time this past weekend. I'll echo what KyleW said, it was bear to get the spool off (seems okay now). It was also much lighter than I anticipated. It's well built and feels solid, but not solid like my NV-G 8/9.

It's on a 6wt and balances great. No issues or concerns with use, did fine in the salt. I debated between this reel and the Hydros. I went with the XL since I'm familiar with Nautilus and anticipate it will provide years of service.

For an 8wt rod, it "may" be too light. See if you can try it first on your rod.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I decided to get that real for my first reel on an 8wt BVK I got. Tbh I wish I hadn’t. The reel is very light and seems better suited for a lighter class. I haven’t had any problems with it aside from the mechanism to release the spool being very difficult to loosen.. which has really annoyed me. However, with more reels handled, I believe there are better options for the price. I think there is better value out there. It feels like I paid for the nautilus brand without getting the benefits. For instance, the hydros is very well priced and is a great reel from my experience. I wouldn’t say anything too negative about the reel but this has been my thoughts since I got it. I’m hoping to put it on a 6wt for calmer days fishing for snook and reds and bones.
Thanks for the feedback, that's very interesting to me. It sounds like it's just too light for its own good? I can understand how that would make it feel awkward for an 8wt.

I was also looking at the Ross Evolution LTX since it's the same price, not sure if you know anything about that one.. I don't see too many salt guys with Ross (I have no doubt they're solid reels) so that's why I feel more like gravitating towards Nautilus.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I just picked one up (XL, not the Max- but it's the same body, just different spool capacities I believe) and used it for the first time this past weekend. I'll echo what KyleW said, it was bear to get the spool off (seems okay now). It was also much lighter than I anticipated. It's well built and feels solid, but not solid like my NV-G 8/9.

It's on a 6wt and balances great. No issues or concerns with use, did fine in the salt. I debated between this reel and the Hydros. I went with the XL since I'm familiar with Nautilus and anticipate it will provide years of service.

For an 8wt rod, it "may" be too light. See if you can try it first on your rod.
Thanks for the feedback. I do like that it will cover lines down to a 6, so thats cool. I bet it's perfect on yours.
 

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Thanks for the feedback, that's very interesting to me. It sounds like it's just too light for its own good? I can understand how that would make it feel awkward for an 8wt.

I was also looking at the Ross Evolution LTX since it's the same price, not sure if you know anything about that one.. I don't see too many salt guys with Ross (I have no doubt they're solid reels) so that's why I feel more like gravitating towards Nautilus.
yea I mean, the capacity on the xl max isn’t all that. Plus, the drag is pretty low, and the weight. If I remember correctly you can’t fit 200 yards of 20# Dacron with a 8wt line. I did that and my spool is a little overfilled imo. The Reddington grande has great reviews, the hydros as well. Both seem a little more solid in build, with more capacity/drag. 3tand TX-80 also falls into the same bracket, but has little reviews out. Ted speaks highly of 3 tand and they look great. I don’t have any knowledge of the Ross Evolution but have heard good things in general
 

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I have guided with that reel on my 8 weights in saltwater for the species you mentioned for a couple of years with no issues. If you were bonefishing all of the time I would saw bump it up to a CCFX. But its fine for what you are talking about doing. The Lamson Speedster S is another good choice in that price range.
 

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I have fished this reel for 2 seasons on my 7 wt and love it. Its especially nice for walking the beach looking for snook because it's so light. I think if I had once complaint it would be the capacity on the reel, but it's highly unlikely that this will actually ever be an issue.
 

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I won an xl a while back and it's been a great reel for my 7 weight. I like the oversized drag knob a lot. If something gets more than 150 yards away on a 7 weight I'm probably under gunned to begin with so capacity isn't really an issue. I also feel that if I had to rely on more drag than this reel has I'm likewise under gunned. The light weight is noticeable while casting and at least on a meridian I think it's great. Anyway, it's a hell of a free reel! Haha.

You might also check out Galvans. I had the T8 on my 8 weight and now my 9 since putting an Everglades on the 8. Great reel. And if spool removal is your thing you'll love the simplicity there.
 

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I like mine. It is very light so needs a light rod to balance well. I haven’t had any of the issues previously mentioned. Drag is more than enough for double digit Jack creavelle and redfish. Drag is also very easy to adjust during the fight. Holds a ton of backing, more than enough, if you avoid using Dacron and go with GSP.
 

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I'll add my two cents. I had one on a Sage X. I wound up selling it as the tippet always was getting caught in between the spool and the frame. This necessitated removing the spool which as others have said can be a bear.

Gad
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
thanks for all the replies, guys! I've trying to respond to each of you for days now but there must be a glitch or something because I keep getting the same error message when trying to reply. I've contacted the admin but no answer yet.

i don't see bonefishing in my near future and truthfully I haven't even seen my backing once so I'm not super concerned about that but it's something to think about.

the hydros keeps getting mentioned, and for good reason, so i feel thats pretty high on the list. if im being honest, it would be nice to have something with some "sex appeal" like a nautilus or ross, but the hydros still a great looking real. i've heard nothing but outstanding reviews on build and performance. besides, aesthetics aren't going to help me catch fish..
 

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Here's my advice (when asked)... The first thing you ought to consider once you figure out size and capacity (and price) on any fly reel is exactly how you're going to use it... A great bullet-proof reel that you're going to be using from a boat might be a tad heavy for someone who intends to fish on foot, wading for hours at a time. By the same token, someone on foot may be willing to put up with a bit less line capacity or other drawbacks if the reel is more lightweight and comfortable in hand a long way from where you started out on foot...

Hope this helps.. I get to see a variety of reels on my skiff with anglers and have everything from a Billy Pate to a Finnor, to a half dozen Nautilus reels myself... Once you find a reel you like for a given line size it should provide a lifetime of service...
 
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