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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Can anyone tell me the best way to use a multiplier when casting to avoid birds nests and what is meant by setting the brakes. I have been using my reel wth the brakes on as tight as i can get them as this is the only way i avoid birds nests but i cant seem to get the distance. Also is there a big difference between an expensive rod and a cheaper rod for distance as i am currently using a shakespeare XK4000 and i was thinking of getting a better rod to improve my distance but i am stuck as in which rod would benefit me. Could someone please give me some advice. cheers

1,749 Posts
There is a good article that will show you that expensive rods are for certain people, and cheaper rods are for fishermen.

I do think this article is correct (from my point of view). A link to the article is below.

My point of view is:-

If I can cast 100 yds with a cheap rod and the fish are 90 yds out - then I have the perfect tool for the job.
If I buy an expensive rod and I can learn to cast 200 yds with it, but the fish are 250 yds out - then all I have is an expensive rod.

I guess what I am saying is - find out what you need for where you fish. Most of my fishing is on rock marks where distance casting is not required. Therefore a rod for me needs to be robust to take the bangs from rock fishing, and cheap enough to repair or replace if I break it. The most I have ever paid for a rod is £135, and I will never pay that much again - because I do not need to.

Question - how much distance do you need?

I saw an TV program with John Wilson and Neil Mackellow (world champion for distance casting at the time), and only Neil Mackellow could catch any fish and that was at maximum distance. If you fish in a place like this - then I suggest you buy an expensive rod, and a race tuned multiplyer and find a casting instructor, (or take up boat fishing).

However - if you are like the vast majority of fishers, then save some money on the rod, and spend it on another piece of must have kit (flotation suit, head lamp etc).

The reel is a bit different - the more money you spend the better engineered piece of kit you will get. Better machining, better alloys, better design, etc. For a novice starting off - or a fixed spool user moving over to a multiplyer, I would recommend that you buy the highest spec reel you can straight away- not because you need it straight off for distance - but because it will help you learn to cast - it will last you for years and years.

You will have seen all the guys postings on the forums advocating the use of reels like the 7HT, SL20SH, Abu mag elite and Penn 525 mags etc - they are all correct, as that is the bit of kit they got used to, and are familiar with.

For years I have used the Abu 6500C, Abu 7000, and more recently the Penn 525 mags - all have been fine reels. My Abu 7000 is 25 years old - looking a bit tatty, but still mechanically as sound as the day I bought it.

As you will never know what is the best rod and reel combination that is best for you (none of us do, but most of us always seem happy with our choice once we have bought it and used it for a while), I can only suggest that you look for a special combo deal that throws in a quality reel. Don't rush into it - wait for the deals - you will get a great Abu Suveran rod with a Mag Elite, or a Penn beachcaster with 525 mag or maybe even supermag thrown in with the price. See if any of the mail order companies are doing any specials in sea angler magazine etc.

Meanwhile, keep using the kit you have - when you can get the hang of it - then you will definately appreciate and value the difference of the upgraded stuff.

Anyway - have I gone on a bit? back to you question.

Inside your reel, you should have two or four spindles attached to the spool onto which you can slide brake blocks - these are the centrifugal brakes. As the spool rotates, the brake blocks spin out and rub against the end cap of the reel, thus controlling the speed of the spool depending on the friction created by the blocks. big blocks = slower speed or no blocks = higher speed These are the main spool control features. I think though you are using the spool tension knob on your end plate to additionally tighten your spool. This is fine to get you used to the multiplyer, however each time you make a successful cast or two - slightly back off the tension knob to increase the spool speed - until one day the spool has ever so slighty left to right play (movement). This slight left to right play is usually the optimum set up for a reel. If you get to this point and are casting successfully - then it is time to put in smaller brake blocks, or remove some brake blocks.

Now that brakes have been talked of - you had better check that you have some fitted.

Oil - you will have seen comments about spool speed due to oil. This involves taking apart your reel, clearing the bearings in parafin or petrol, and re-oiling the bearings with new oil. This new oil often comes in the box with the reel and this is fine for general use. Distance casters and tournament casters use lower viscosity oil so the the spool rotates faster - and therefore more distance. Personally I don't do the oil thing - as long as I know that my reels have some form of bearing lubricant I am happy.

Ask 20 anglers for an answer to the rod and reel question and you will get 20 different combinations of kit.

The people who have the Greys Nitra or a top of the range Zziplex probably need these rods for the areas they fish - but they have to pay a lot of money for these rods - if you don't need it, don't be tempted just because you see people rave on about them.

188 Posts
What an answer Lew very good , I agree the best advice on rods and reels is what you like ,what suits you , and what suits your pocket, I have no retrictions on the money I spend ,but cheap as chips gets me 100 yards ,Abu lover I am but that's on the mechanical service they have given me over the years ,Reliable is the word therefore i'm a happy chappy ,I've paid over the top on rods and cheap bargins on e bay results 100yards that's my casting abilty not what my wallet can do so suck it and see ,but 100 yards is 100yards
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