I RECENTLY wrote an editorial talking about the amazing advancements in fishing tackle, especially the benefits provided by the current crop of small yet powerful threadline reels. This little spinner from Daiwa isn’t in the class of the reels I was referring to in that piece. It’s a fair way down the ladder – price wise, at least – from Certates, Stellas and Saltiagas. But you wouldn’t necessarily know that. Its looks and performance belie its relatively modest price tag. I got the Advantage to match with a particularly nice St Croix rod – a 6’6″ medium-lite Legend Tournament – I bought to use for general estuary fishing. But so far it’s been used for bluewater work targeting snapper, black drummer and big bream with plastics and spinning up striped tuna, salmon and tailor with small metals.
I loaded the reel with 6lb FireLine and have mainly fished it with a 10lb Vanish trace. It’s a lovely balanced outfit that is ideal for kayak fishing. In fact, most of the fish landed so far have been out of my Hobie Mirage Sportfish kayak. Recent captures have included a couple of nice snapper taken in shallow water targeting bream, a big drummer and two 3kg stripies that really saw the little Daiwa’s drag howling.
It’s a real pleasure fighting decent fish on a balanced outfit like this. Everything feels so much more direct and enjoyable but you can still put some decent pressure on and get the fish in. It casts nicely, is easy to work and the smoothness and lightness of the reel makes working lures easy.
The drummer I target with 3″ Gulp Grubs around the Jervis Bay washes and bommies seem very susceptible to heavy trace. Fishing light gear definitely gets you more bites but makes life interesting when you hook up. The Daiwa/St Croix outfit is ideal for tossing the lightly weighted plastics into the shallow, washy reefs where the drummer hang out. You will lose fish with this light tackle but you can also pull a surprising number out as well. Lock up, hang on and you’ll be surprised at how well it all sticks together. I find it far more exciting to fish like this as opposed to using 8-10kg gear. You wouldn’t be able to cast the small plastics and light jig heads with this heavier gear, anyway. The team Daiwa Advantage 2000A boasts a heap of quality features, including aluminium body and sideplate, Digigear II drive system, Hyper tournament waterproof drag, machined aluminium handle, six stainless steel ball bearings including two CRBB bearings, ABS aluminium spool with titanium nitride ring, washable construction, micro precision click adjustable drag, spare spool and it has a five-year warranty for peace of mind. Gear ratio is 4.7:1 (which isn’t really fast enough for serious spin work, considering the size of the spool) and it holds just under 150m of 6lb braid.
I’m a big fan of precision gear and this little Daiwa has really impressed me with its smoothness. Best of all, it won’t break the bank!