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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been doing my research on a few new reels around the $100 mark for a 3000 +/- 500 series. I have exclusively fished the Shimano Sahara series, had two of the older ones for years, so I picked up two newer ones two years ago and they just aren't holding up. I guess I might be asking for more than I should for the price point, but I'd like something that'll last me a few years with decent care. I am torn between being a fan boy and giving the Shimano Nasci a go, but am hearing good things about the Diawa BG, and a distant third option being the Penn Battle II. Any experience with any of the three? I primarily fish a medium heavy rod and would want two (I like sameness).
 

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I have been doing my research on a few new reels around the $100 mark for a 3000 +/- 500 series. I have exclusively fished the Shimano Sahara series, had two of the older ones for years, so I picked up two newer ones two years ago and they just aren't holding up. I guess I might be asking for more than I should for the price point, but I'd like something that'll last me a few years with decent care. I am torn between being a fan boy and giving the Shimano Nasci a go, but am hearing good things about the Diawa BG, and a distant third option being the Penn Battle II. Any experience with any of the three? I primarily fish a medium heavy rod and would want two (I like sameness).
I was in the same situation a few years ago, wanting to stay in that $100 range, and to have all my reels the same or similar as possible. I tried a variety of big name brand reels without success, finally purchasing 9 Sahara 3000's which I really liked, but after only a short time they all crapped out but 1. Seems to be a problem with a lot of the Shimanos and I won't buy another. If you're just soaking bait anything will probably work ok, but if you chuck artificial baits only, and fish often, they won't hold up. Next I tried the Penn Battle 3000's and in my opinion they are junk, and mine all stopped operating smoothly in a very short time. I finally found the Diawa BG 2500, and now own 4, and in over a year of hard use, zero issues. These reels, in my opinion are the best reel for the money, and possibly as good or better than a lot of high dollar reels. Smooth operating, no internal crap failing or seeming to be wearing out, casts great, good drag. By the way, all of my reels are well taken care of, cleaned and dried before hanging back in the rack, and oiled as well. No excuse for the Shimano and Penn crap, they're are just living off their brand name recognition.
 

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Daiwa BG is the budget pick of Alan Hawk. http://www.alanhawk.com/ I don’t know who this guy is but I’ve enjoyed reading through his blog and crazy detailed and extensive spinning reel reviews. I’ve recently been purchasing the Penn Spinfisher V but he didn’t have a lot of love for them. I seem to get a 20% discount code almost ever month from eBay and have gotten some crazy good deals on gear from some of the dealers on there.
I’ll be trying a Daiwa BG next time I get something. I still have a few ancient original Black Golds I bought I think close to 40 years ago.
 
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I’ve had better luck with the sedona’s than the sahara’s! I know a few guides that use the sedona’s for they’re bait soakin customers and they swear by them. Tough to beat for a $50 reel too! I did mess up and let my wife use one of my Sustain/loomis combo’s the other day guess who gets a new combo next?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I primarily fish artificial lures, and try to fish 1-3 times a week depending on my work schedule. the only time I soak bait is when I have my boys on the boat and am helping them first, and fishing second. Thank you all for the intel, I will probably Diawa BG, not sure if I want the 2500 or 4000 though.
 

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I primarily fish artificial lures, and try to fish 1-3 times a week depending on my work schedule. the only time I soak bait is when I have my boys on the boat and am helping them first, and fishing second. Thank you all for the intel, I will probably Diawa BG, not sure if I want the 2500 or 4000 though.
The 2500's have worked fine for me. No issues handling Red's to 30" and Snook to 32", so don't see a reason to go bigger unless you're targeting bigger fish.
 

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I primarily fish artificial lures, and try to fish 1-3 times a week depending on my work schedule. the only time I soak bait is when I have my boys on the boat and am helping them first, and fishing second. Thank you all for the intel, I will probably Diawa BG, not sure if I want the 2500 or 4000 though.
Please post feedback once you fish the BG. I have been in the market for a 4000+ reel to fish jetty snook and reds and I am considering the 4500 or 5000 BG.
 

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Yeah, another vote for the BGs; Ive got both them and the Penn Battles, and there really is no comparison. As mentioned above, the 2500s work fine on upper slot drum, and if you happen to catch a good sale, the price difference is negligible--iirc I paid @ $75.00 last Xmas.
 

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I have fished the team Diawa SOL for many years with an occasional cleaning here and there and they’re still going strong. Diawa in my opinion has the best drag system on the market today as far as spinning reals go. I don’t think that you can go wrong with the Diawa. For me...Diawa for spinning and Lews for casting.
 

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WOW...Just looked up the Team Diawa SOL and shuddered when I saw the price. I have the original SOL and they didn’t cost near that much. Obviously they have held up for a loooong time.;)
 

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I have been doing my research on a few new reels around the $100 mark for a 3000 +/- 500 series. I have exclusively fished the Shimano Sahara series, had two of the older ones for years, so I picked up two newer ones two years ago and they just aren't holding up. I guess I might be asking for more than I should for the price point, but I'd like something that'll last me a few years with decent care. I am torn between being a fan boy and giving the Shimano Nasci a go, but am hearing good things about the Diawa BG, and a distant third option being the Penn Battle II. Any experience with any of the three? I primarily fish a medium heavy rod and would want two (I like sameness).
I own three Penn reels - all of them 10+ years old. Sometimes they get rough on the retrieve, I open them, clean with alcohol, then regrease the gears and oil the bearings. I think the most expensive of the 3 was $120. I used to have Shimanos, and Diawas, but they didn't last very long...
 

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I've used Shimano Symetres, Penn Battle IIs, and Wright & McGill Sabalos, all in that $100 range. Of those three, interestingly, the Wright & McGills have held up best.

I took a couple of them to the local reel repair place last year, and when I picked them up, just out of curiosity, I asked what they thought the best $100 saltwater spinning reel was. Without hesitation, they said Daiwa BG was head and shoulders about the rest.

Based on that recommendation and this thread, that's my next reel.
 

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Shimano Ci4 2500 has been great since I bought it 4-5 years ago. I also have two Diawa Ballistics and mechanically they have been flawless but the finish does not hold up in saltwater, especially the chrome parts. Penn Battle II’s are what several guide buddies use on their boats and they are bulletproof. One of his clients landed an 80” plus sailfish on one a couple of weeks ago after a 3 1/2 hour fight. That’s a pretty good test for a trout reel...
 

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WOW...Just looked up the Team Diawa SOL and shuddered when I saw the price. I have the original SOL and they didn’t cost near that much. Obviously they have held up for a loooong time.;)
I bought a Sol somewhere around 2010 or 2011 and remember it being somewhere in the neighborhood of $200. It's a damn good reel though.
 
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