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standman

Ardent fishouflage baitcast combo

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Complete baitcasting noob here.   

When I restarted fishing (15 Year layoff, used exclusively spinning gear),  I figured I would try and learn to use the baitcasting setup.  Without much research, I stopped by DSG and picked up a cheap combo by Ardent - called Fishouflage.  Needless to say, I failed miserably -  couple bad backlashes later went back to my trusty spinning gear.   I guess the question is -  if I wanted to really commit to baitcasting reels, would I benefit from purchasing something like Abu Silver Max from FFO, or should I just stick with the ardent reel I have and once I figured it out, spend some more $$$ on a better reel?  The ardent doesn't have the dual brakes (dial on the handle side).

Tia

Pretty sure this is the reel....

281514_ts.jpg

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I don't have any knowledge of that specific reel but you should be able to access the brakes through the palm side plate, (the side pictured.)   The dial on the handle side is the spool tension.  

While that reel isn't a high end reel by any stretch, (neither is the Silver Max) it should be more than adequate to learn on.  My advice is to spend a little more time getting the Ardent dialed in and practice with it.  

There is plenty of info on this site about getting reel settings dialed in.

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I think you've purchased a good catfish reel.   A quality bait casting reel will shorten the learning curve in learning how to use it.  I'd recommend a current or recent model Curado or Chronarch to start.   Others will recommend different brands depending on their religion.

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Learn on the Ardent then upgrade. I doubt a high end reel will accelerate your learning curve. Cast, adjust and cast....

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7 minutes ago, Al Wolbach said:

Learn on the Ardent then upgrade. I doubt a high end reel will accelerate your learning curve. Cast, adjust and cast....

Well, for most guys a better reel with dramatically impact the learning curve, but I don't actually know a thing about this particular reel. The entry level reel I recommend is the Shimano Citica, one of which is offered in our Flea Market currently for $50.

 

:winter-146: 

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Operator error is most often the basis for first time casting reel users, not the gear itself; it would be like blaming an inexpensive auto because the first few times one drove it was challenging.

Learning to cast spinning gear is a little easier than getting the hang of revolving spool tackle.  There is a different set of techniques involved that often do not translate from spinning to casting.  One can snap cast spinning gear and that usually ends in disaster with a casting reel.

 There's no secret to it and everyone has their own "way".  Most all of them work.  It just takes practice. Learning how to set up the reel right will help but will not overcome incorrect technique.  Take the time to be able to make a smooth presentation with the gear you have - then fish it. 

The experience gained will assist later during any upgrade process you may feel is needed.

Good Luck

A-Jay

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Keep at it.  I learned on a $60 Black Max combo, backlashed like crazy, got the hang of it, and now I use any sort of baitcaster with minimal issue.  Just get the hang of the breaks, once you get the side plate off, and the spool tension and practice practice practice.

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Thanks for the replies...  I think I'm going to stick with the ardent and pickup a cheap LH silvermax or promax.    I still like the idea of holding the rod with my dominant hand.     

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4 minutes ago, standman said:

Thanks for the replies...  I think I'm going to stick with the ardent and pickup a cheap LH silvermax or promax.    I still like the idea of holding the rod with my dominant hand.     

I thought that it would feel funky holding the rod in my left after so long holding it in my right with spinning rods, but after 3 years of doing it, the balance feels so much better.  I've tried using my buddy's LH baitcaster and it feels alien to me.  I think it has something to do with the difference in balance and how you hold it that makes it easier one way or another.  I'm not trying to convince you either way, just relating my personal experience. 

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With this crappy weather in Chitown. I decided to play with the reel/rod in the backyard.   Not too bad!  Made about 100 or so casts without a singlebacklash!   Might have to hit up a local lake with warm water discharge and give it a shot sooner rather than later ?.

 

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