TESTED: Van Staal C-VEX 7/8

VAN Staal’s Australian importer Jarvis Walker kindly lent me the Van Staal C-Vex 7/8 fly reel for a recent fishing trip to Christmas Island (story in Fisho Jan 2011).

The C-VEX is a very sexy looking reel. However, this premium reel offers much more than good looks – it’s an awesome fly reel to use. Just like the entire Van Staal range, including the well-known range of spin reels, it’s fully submersible, lightweight, and super tough. The fully sealed drag cartridge allows the reel to be dunked in water and still maintain a working drag.

In a place like Christmas Island where the day is spent wading knee-deep sandflats, this feature alone is almost essential. I could literally drop the reel into the shallow water while posing for a photo and expect none of the problems associated with wetting a conventional drag system. Of course, each afternoon, the reel was thoroughly washed down to eliminate any salt from entering moving parts. After a solid week of fishing and catching dozens of bones along the Christmas Island flats, the C-VEX’s drag remained faultless, showing no signs of deterioration.

The overall weight of the reel at about 250 grams makes it effortless to use, yet it easily copes with the blistering runs of a bonefish. The strength, and the C-VEX name, comes from the reel’s convex machine cut shape, which Van Staal says creates a uniquely strong reel for its light weight. Made from aircraft grade aluminium and anodised for saltwater protection, this reel is also available in two larger sizes for bigger fish and is available in three colours.

Contact: Jarvis Walker on (03) 8787 6900;

By Scott Thomas

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