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panfish12

Low cost baitcast combo/reel

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Hi guys I am thinking about getting a new baitcasting setup. I searched around a little bit on the forum and the general vibe I got was to not go cheap. I have an Abu Silver Max and like it a lot, so I was thinking about getting another one of those or a black max. Also are there any good rods you would recommend in the 30-50$ range? Do you guys think that this price range would serve me well or should I save up and get something better?

Thanks, Ethan.

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Probably around the same as the rod, but I would be willing to go up to around 80$ if it would be worth it.

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Yes it would be worth it. In my opinion I would get a lews lfs speed spool. 80$ on ebay. Rod I would look at cabelas academy or bps house brand rods. Better bang for buck. 

Also the h20 express mettle was my first reel. It's worth a look also. Best 50$ reel I can think of

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Ok, I will look into those. Thanks!

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Keep an eye on the flea market too. You can score some great stuff for a good price. eBay too.

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My favorite budget reel is the H2O Xpress mettle .  I have 3 of them and they all work great.  I also have a silver max and its a good reel but 
I do like the mettle better.  It has an aluminum frame and a centrifugal breaking system that seems to be a lot less fussy than the magnetic brakes on the silver max.  Academy is running a sale on the Mettle combos now you can get a silver colored one on a 6'6" MH/MF rod for $67.49 or a camo one on a 7' MH/F rod for $74.99.  I have never used either of those rods so I can't comment on the rods but the reviews look good and the price should fit your budget.   

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Lews makes great reels for a great price. Their American Hero line is right in your price point. 

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IMO you should save up a little more.

If I were in your situation I would wait until you had the cash to buy a Shimano Caenan and Cabelas Tournament ZX rod (on sale).

The rods go on sale for $70 and is a real bargain for what you get.

I doubt you will find the reel on sale any time soon, but I think it would be money well spent to save up for this combo.

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Another vote for the H2O Mettle. I have 3 and they've all been great reels for the money. Those paired with an H2O Ethos rod and you can get a nice combo for around $100. 

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From my experience, you need to at least look for a BC reel with a solid metal frame. Unless you're only going to fish a few times a year, a composite framed reel will let you down. And it won't fail on a small fish. Some will argue with that advice (but they're wrong ;)).

Lew's is a very good choice. I have the LFS Tournament MB reel and it has NEVER backlashed, even when I try to cast something too light with it. I also agree that the Academy H2O Mettle does seem to be a lot of reel for the money. It's $20 cheaper than the name brands for the same features.

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The H20 mettle is the only cheaper casting reel I would recommend. If you can save some $$ and go to the $100 range and you will really not have to upgrade unless you just WANT to. BPS Carbonlite rod with PQ reel can be had on sale for around $150. 

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Cabelas has Fenwick Silverhawk's on sale for $60.. great rod, graphite, Fuji reel seat, alconite guides, cork split grips.

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Lew's® American Hero 6'10" MH Baitcast Rod and Reel Combo @ Academy $79.95

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Thanks for all of the suggestions guys. I heard somewhere that the mettle goes on sale for 30$, does this happen often? If so it seems like a no-brainer to get one of those.

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1 hour ago, panfish12 said:

Thanks for all of the suggestions guys. I heard somewhere that the mettle goes on sale for 30$, does this happen often? If so it seems like a no-brainer to get one of those.

If you go online and sign up for an account, they'll send you emails about what's on sale. I get several a week.

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You said you like the silver, why change? Go get another. The black is also good. Your comfort and peace of mind is more important than a brand. 

As for poles, use what you are confident with. I see no reason, for me, to buy anything but Berkley poles.

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American legacy has a sale on Daiwa fuego for $78 (normally  $130).   I'd jump on this deal if I wanted a reel under $80.

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I have a few baitcasters (lews, pflueger, abu garcia, etc) but while at Bass Pro I decided to purchase one of their combos for $54 6'6 MH 6:3:1 megacast. I was a little skeptical at first because there have been mixed reviews (mostly good ones though), if you know how to set the brakes and spool correctly it works great! I've been using it as my primary set up now and have no problems with it, I've only had 1 or 2 birds nests but that was due to me forgetting to adjust everything after changing lures. Can't really tell just yet how it will hold up in the long run but I can definitely say that for $54 it is well worth the money. I'm not a pro angler or anything, I usually just fish when I get the free time so I don't want/need some real expensive stuff. So if you're on a budget and your circumstances are similar to mine as far as not fishing tournaments or all day every day then I think the BPS combo would be great for you! 

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Solid performance can be found in the daiwa htsa or htsl.  There sold cheap on fleabay and are tough as nails.  It was my first baitcaster and I still use two of them.  I hammer mine on a frog and spinnerbait rods.

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