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Weed Shark

Quality drag on closed face for gators/kids?

10 posts in this topic

I'm taking the whole family to Canada on a fly in: wife and 3 boys ages 9, 9, and 7 (a little crazy...I know). I need two rods each, one for walleye and one for northern. The kids are still most comfortable with closed face reels. They might be happier if I buy some one-piece baitcaster rods to use with closed face reels, to rig with heavier line for those gators. I have four zebco 33 reels now. Is there a better drag system out there in a closed face reel?

The plan could change, I have a couple pike baitcasters for my wife and I; also two extra, one-piece, heavier open face rods the older boys could use.

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This is just my personal opinion!... I would start training your boys on larger spinning reels. The problem with the pushbutton Spincast reels is they dont cast larger lb test lines well. And I have seen spiderwire and other braids destroy the catch pin on them as well. If it were me, I would go a med size spinning reel like a Shimano Sahara 2500 amd put 30 lb power pro or other braid line on it and a 6'6" MH rod...Cast #5 mepps baits till their arms fall off catching them pike.

Have a great trip!

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I agree with Deitz. I used to work at a tackle shop and saw many closed face reels destroyed by a super line. The super lines do not work very good in the push button style of reels. They do make some larger push button reels that will handle a 17 lb. test mono, but you start to limit the line capacity. I used to guide in the summers during my college years, you would be suprised how fast kids can learn how to cast a spinning reel with distance and accuracy. One thing, give them some room and stay away from treble hooks when they are first learning how to cast!

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I tried closed face reels with my kids. They were OK for bluegills, but they were very poor for general fishing. If they can learn to use a regular spinning reel, things will work better.

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i was 8 when i made the switch to spinning reels. my only advice is to get the best quality for what you can afford. i started with an old cardinal. lots of issues with that one. reel problems will make for angry young fishermen. and if ya get good rod/reel combos for them, you've just added three more weapons to your arsonal cool.gif

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I agree with Deitz, the Sahara would be a good choice. And since it comes with two spools you could run 30lb Powerpro on one spool and 6-8lb P-Line floroclear on the other for Walleye's. For rod's the St.Croix PS66MHF2 for Pike (6'6" MedHvy, 2pc) and PS66MLF2 for Walleye (6'6", MedLight, 2pc) would be my choice as they are easy to travel with and perform well.

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Thanks for the info, everyone. The older boys do handle my open-face reels; I'll get them some more practice both on and off the water before we go. Makes sense, they won't really use the closed faces that much longer. I do like the extra spools.

It's irrelevant to me now, but I found out Zebco has a top of the line called Omega, triple cam multi disc drag, spare quick change spool, worm gear drive, seven stainless steel bearings, a level wind oscillating spool and 3:1 ratio which is good for a closed face...but slow, another disadvantage to a spincast. It wasn't big enough, holding 85 yards of 10# mono. There also is a Zebco 733, a bigger version of the 33, which holds 90 yards of 20# mono.

I like St. Croix rods, yet I have alot to buy and they're spendy. Kids don't always take care of stuff, either. I do enjoy quality, so I will consider them. Sometimes you save money by buying the right stuff to begin with.

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The best thing about kids is they learn alot faster than we expect I think. I would get them into the spinning reels and they will enjoy them more, less problems with tangles which leads to more fun on the water. I just bought another Sahara and love it. Just remind the kids to keep their hands away from the line if they are using superbraids, its alot sharper than mono.

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Hey Weed..you might want to consider taking the barbs off those treble hooks, or taking the trebles OFF altogether! Might save a kid-or you!- a trip to the emergency room. There have been quite a few tests that show hooking efficiency of a single hook vs. a treble not that much different and in some ways MORE efficient. You can have the boys help you and it will lead into a discussion of catch-and-release maybe. And so what if a kid loses a slough snake....there'll be another along in a minute. Have fun with the boys and be save. Sounds like a wonderful trip. wink.gif

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Good "point" about the hooks. No emergency rooms where we're going. However, they just bought a satellite phone, after one of their customers had a heart attack shortly after his trip.

I didn't know about the treble/single studies. I strayed away from singles. Had a single hook on once, fishin' in the rain (using my pike temperature secret; never read about it, but seems to work). I caught a big one and released it, then had 4 big hits in a row. I missed them all with that hook. Right then the outfitter droppped out of the sky in his puddle-jumper for his weekly visit, and we had to stop the boat. But it always amazes me how they sometimes cannot get hooked on a Rapala, too.

We are excited. The original owner of the outpost, now deceased, was ahead of his time. His two outposts were "trophy-only" lakes before there really was such a thing. Still in the family, none of them ever wanted to promote it too hard (sorry...you know fishermen, I can't say where it is). Should seal the deal on making the kids fishing addicts for life. Mostly a walleye trip; kids can get a good feel for jigs. For sanity's sake, I imagine we'll use alot of bobbers, too. I loose alot of jigs on the rocks up there...kids got to drink a pop before they reel in their jig. smile.gif

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