Azores begin with proven power features including die-cast aluminum body, side plate and rotor, machine cut pinion gea... , MORE, Fishing, Reels n.queue=[];t=b.createElement(e);t.async=!0; But within the interior is where Azores gains massive separation from competitors. After putting sand and salt through the reel and taking it apart, I was surprised to find that the spool was just as clean inside as the Penn Battle II, the Daiwa BG SW, and the Shimano Spheros SW. That bodes well for the long-term durability of the Azores, despite the relative lack of internal grease compared with the Penn. The reasoning is that the two drags work against each other, which theoretically makes sense and might explain the reel’s formidable drag rating. That flexible tip means it won’t be ideal for manipulating lures, but we think the added versatility is more valuable to most fishers—especially beginners. Nevertheless, although machined aluminum makes for a higher-quality, more durable gear, cast zinc still gets the job done and is the industry standard in reels under $300. This model puts out a maximum drag pressure of 44 pounds, and with a 5.4:1 gear ratio, brings in 46 inches of line with each crank. For the average fisher, the 10- to 25-pound maximum drags on any of our picks will suffice. Similarly, you could go cheaper, but then you’d give up reliability. Again, think back to how smooth that drag was. This spinning-rod-and-reel setup is approachable enough for a novice to learn on, yet it performs well enough for a seasoned veteran to depend on. Fiberglass is heavier but more flexible (“slow action”)—like a whipping stick—and nearly impossible to break. Okuma AZORES Blue Saltwater Spinning Reels CHOOSE YOUR MODEL,Z-4000H-Blue,Z-6000H-Blue,Z-8000H-Blue,Azores Blue begin with proven power features including die-cast aluminum body, side plate and rotor, machine cut pinion gear and the Okuma Dual Force Drag system that utilizes a traditional top drag stack in concert with an oversized Carbonite drag washer beneath the spool to … Since we only had these reels in-hand for three days of fishing, we simply can't speak to it. My friend Captain Colin Kelly spent the better part of the fall bluefin tuna run off Cape Cod relying on these modestly priced reels, which compete with the $500 to $700 reels that have generally been the only options for catching fish over 200 pounds on spinning gear. The Quantum Cabo PTSE, which I picked up only after reading a rave review by Alan Hawk, was delightful to cast. It’s also a capable stand-in if the Battle II is unavailable, but it’s a bit too large to gracefully handle lighter-action artificial lures. The drag mechanism is the same one found in higher-end $200-plus reels, but unique in the $100 range. This construction, combined with little or no preventative sealing to keep saltwater and grit from entering the mechanical parts, means that most reels less than $50 just aren’t worth the money. A one-piece rod offers better stiffness and more control—fewer pieces make for fewer problems with durability and performance, although portability suffers. We also considered several high-end models to determine if paying a lot more would get you a much better product. If you want to be particularly diligent when cleaning your fishing gear (it will pay off in the long run), you can soak a cloth in freshwater (even with a little soap—boat soap works) and wipe everything down. Wirecutter is reader-supported. It has the same three-part pinion/clutch seal (the most important seal in a spinning reel, protecting the very center of the reel, which is virtually irreparable) as Shimano’s $1,000-plus reels. Azores begin with proven power features including die-cast aluminum body, side plate and rotor, machine cut pinion gear and the Okuma Dual Force Drag system that churns out up to 44-pounds of max drag. In addition to having a durable shaft, the GX2 is the only rod in its price category that comes fitted with one-piece stainless steel line guides, which can literally be smashed with a rock and still maintain serviceability. On a fishing reel, the drag is a stack of circular washers that can be made of anything from felt to cork to carbon fiber to metal (in higher-end gear). Okuma Azores reels incorporate a number of features. You can find reel grease in almost any outdoor-sporting store, but if you’re not confident in taking your reel apart to apply grease, having it done in-store would be worthwhile. (St. Croix offers a five-year warranty for its Triumph rod, which we tested as a possible upgrade pick.). That’s still a lot of drag for most...” In other words, you don’t need much drag to cover a wide variety of fish. Azores begin with proven power features including die-cast aluminum body, side plate and rotor, machine cut pinion gear and the Okuma Dual Force Drag system that churns out up to 44-pounds of max drag. That said, if you plan to do a lot of bait fishing from boats, buy a conventional open-faced reel with a more dependable dual drag system. The ball bearings in the BG SW, for one thing, are the very same Minebea bearings that are loaded into Shimano’s Stella SW series of reels, which typically run for $800 to $1,400. I haven’t found another $40 fishing rod I would trust this much. Okuma Azores spinning reels are the result of a multi-year engineering review that achieves new levels of strength and stability. If you’re planning to get only one rod and you don’t want to spend a fortune, it should be a 6½- to 7-foot Shakespeare Ugly Stik GX2, available in ultra-light, medium, medium-heavy, and heavy versions. This means it will perform well in the surf or at greater depths (60 feet or more), where excess line is often necessary. The Okuma Azores reels are simple but powerful, with a design and drag comparable to those of the Battle II, though they typically run about $20 more depending on the size you select (we recommend the Z-65S size for all-around use). n.callMethod.apply(n,arguments):n.queue.push(arguments)}; DetailsTo battle monster saltwater fish, the Okuma Azores Blue Saltwater Spinning Reel is a heavy-duty and affordable option in a sleek blue color. This reel offers build quality and durability comparable to those of models costing $150 or more. As a casting reel though, at only 700g and with a very ergonomic design, it felt extremely comfortable to … I beat up these rods and reels, from the mouth of the Hudson River in New York to the Cook Strait of New Zealand. by Harry Sawyers, Thom Dunn, and Doug Mahoney. In fact, if it costs less than $100 and it’s not an Ugly Stik, I’d just as soon use a hand line. On the other hand, if you’re going to spend the majority of your time bait fishing, consider the Teramar, which offers a little more play and would be a delightful tool when you’re fishing cut bait for striped bass from a boat in Long Island Sound. It will also be repairable should anything go wrong, whereas with cheaper gear, the cost of a repair can often exceed the worth of the reel. Azores Blue begin with proven power features including die-cast aluminum body, side plate and rotor, machine cut pinion gear and the Okuma Dual Force Drag system that utilizes a traditional top drag stack in concert with an oversized Carbonite drag washer beneath the spool to increase high-end drag output as well as spool stability under load. It’s strong enough to handle salmon and other saltwater fish, but sensitive enough for trout. If you’re a beginner, it’s much easier to pick up than either of the other options, and it’s far less likely to become tangled than a baitcasting setup. The all-new Okuma Azores Blue spinning reels are offered in four models, the Z-4000H-Blue, Z-6000H-Blue, Z-8000H-Blue and Z-14000H-Blue. This combo compares favorably to outfits costing twice as much. Available in a Z-55, Z-65, Z-80 … Okuma’s focus was to increase the strength, performance and durability of the popular Azores family of reels and take it up one notch on the evolutionary ladder. And finally, one small but brilliant finishing touch: The spool has a small hole drilled in it to prevent rust and allow trapped water to escape. Learn more. Okuma Azores Review. 3.1 Why You Should Buy Best Okuma Azores Reviews from Amazon; 3.2 How to Choose the Best Okuma Azores Reviews (with Price and Reviews) Most rods are made out of fiberglass, graphite, or a mixture of both. John Bretza, Okuma’s director of product development, put it into perspective: “Even when we fish North Carolina bluefin [tuna] (which can weigh hundreds of pounds), we use 18 to 22 pounds of drag for the strike and, most of the time, as our full-drag setting as well. Forty-four pounds of drag (or tension) is about as much drag as any human can handle before being yanked off their feet anyhow. I spent several days fishing freshwater rivers for trout and smaller salmon, and a couple of days fishing private ponds and lakes for largemouth bass. The 100 and 120 sizes are absolute brutes. OKUMA FISHING strives to deliver the ultimate fishing experience to everyone, as well as create the best fishing reels and rods for our fellow anglers, which are lightweight and precise. First, it’s heavier than more high-performance graphite rods (which usually run about 5 ounces for a medium-heavy 6-foot-6 or 7-foot rod), and some people find that tiring. As Alan Hawk discovered, it’s cast zinc. Compared with our previous pick, the Penn Battle II—not to mention many higher-end Penn and Shimano reels—the BG SW is equipped with a more durable rotor, as well as stronger, individual springs for the anti-reverse clutch (which keeps the reel from spinning backward), and most notably, the very same ball bearings included in Daiwa’s and Shimano’s most expensive models. a-1 okuma 23090036 bail arm support pin for azores z-55s, 65s, 80s, 90s, 5000, 5500, 6500, 8000, 9000, 10000, 16000 z-8000h-blue & z-14000h-blue spinning reels Overall, the Azores is a capable reel, but its larger size and slightly higher price mean that the BG SW is both more versatile and a better value for most people. (Daiwa’s 1500–2500 models are ideal for small trout streams but can also handle light inshore fishing for spotted seatrout and flounder, while the larger 5000 and 8000 models will handle larger inshore species and perhaps even small tuna and dolphinfish.). Okuma Azores. These rods are available in the same wide range of sizes as the GX2 (for the most all-around versatility, we’d still recommend a medium to medium-heavy rod in the 6-foot-6 or 7-foot range), but they have a cork grip instead of an EVA foam grip and contain 35 percent more graphite, which makes them a bit stiffer and lighter overall. The one-way clutch bearing is joined by a ratcheting anti-reverse which is molded into the bottom of the rotor for an increased diameter and larger teeth. Regardless of what rod or reel you get, salt is the enemy—even with gear specifically designed for use in the ocean. I’m thoroughly impressed, especially with the fact that Shimano includes a cold-forged drive gear (usually cast zinc in reels within this price range), though according to spinning-reel guru Alan Hawk, it’s made more cheaply than the higher-end drive gears. 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