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Reel Review


Slowing Things Down with Abu Garcia's Revo 4 Winch Spinning Reel (continued)

Power: The Winch W30 comes with an aluminum gearing system that provides reassuring torque when battling your catch and when working moving baits through the water column. My primary bait offering with this reel was a small paddletail bait (Keitech Swing Impact fished on a VMC Ike Finesse Rugby Jig), so ultimate cranking power is not something I really needed. Still when a fish inhaled that bait, there was no hesitation on the reel's part when I turned the handle to reel the fish in.

Bail operation is very good.

Bail Operation: A spinning reel's bail system is an often overlooked aspect of the reel. Many anglers take this component for granted until the bail fails to close automatically. The Winch W30's bail has an internal trip mechanism that was very reliable each time I cranked the handle to engage the reel. It also closes with a very reassuring "click" when flipped over by hand. Sometimes, bails can hang up when you open them right at the point where that internal trip mechanism is located so when you manage to turn the handle of the reel, that rotor rotates and the bail gets stuck in the open position.

The back reel switch as just under the rotor at the front of the reel.

I intentionally left the W30's bail in this position during several casts, and each time, had no difficulty getting the bail to close while forcefully turning the reel's handle. This reel has a very reliable trip mechanism.

Line twist was minimal over the course of several trips.

Line Twist: I didn't notice any problems with line twist while using this reel either and took it into the lab afterwards for a closer look. What I discovered surprised me. The Winch spinning reel features two bearings at the line roller to ensure smooth operation of this very critical element on the reel. A rotating line roller helps the line spoon back onto the reel with little to no friction when changing angles from vertical to horizontal.

Thanks in part to the bearing supported line guide.

This is where all the difficulty with line twist starts in that transition from the angle where the line comes down through the guides on the rod, to the turn it has to make to lay back down on the spool. Most reels in this price point will have one bearing under the line roller, so it was nice to find two in the Winch.

The EVA knob is comfortable but I prefer the PVC knob on the S spinning reel.

Design & Ergonomics: The Winch W30 has pretty typical ergonomics for a spinning reel of its size. The distance from the reel foot to the spool's top lip is a comfortable reach with your index finger if you feather your spool during a cast. It weighs in at 8.1 ounces as measured in our lab.

The only real talking point ergonomically with this reel is the handle knob. Abu Garcia equips the Winch Spinning reel with a custom shaped EVA foam knob, it is a very comfortable shape and texture to hold though I confess, I prefer the PVC knob they use on the Revo S spinning reel to this one.

This is what an entire 200yd filler spool of 6lb test Sunline Sniper looks like on the spool.

Price & Applications: The Revo Winch spinning reel is available in only one size. Abu Garcia's 30 size spinning reel is roughly the same size as the Shimano 3000 or Daiwa 2500 - at least in terms of spool capacity. In hand the reel feels a lot more like a typical 2000 size reel to me. It is made for moving bait applications like cranks, spinnerbaits and the like. What I enjoyed fishing with this reel was small paddletail swimbaits. Retail on the Winch W30 is $159.99.

The Winch spinning reel retails for $159.99.


Abu Garcia Revo4 Winch Spinning Reel Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Feels like a quality reel out of the box 8
Performance Very reassuring bail performance, and nice, consistent drag 8
Price Right on the verge of becoming a higher end product 7.5
Features Two bearings at the line roller, carbon rotor, carbon drag, EVA knob 7.5
Design (Ergonomics) Pretty typical of other spinning reels the same size 7
Application Built for slower speed presentation 7

Total Score


Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:


+ A good way to slow your retrieve but keeping the same cadence as other reels - Available only in one size
+ Flawless bail operation - No shallow spool option
+ Nice, smooth drag  


Conclusion: It's strange, but I've never really considered rate of retrieve when purchasing a spinning reel. But actually, since I primarily fish finesse applications on spinning tackle, really, the slower the reel the better as far as I'm concerned. I fish finesse techniques painstakingly slow. So it was interesting to me that Abu Garcia has come out with a spinning reel with a specifically slow gear ratio and when paired with the Vendetta Winch Spinning rod makes for an interesting combo throwing moving baits.


If spinning gear is your preference, Abu Garcia has reel for your cranking needs - the Revo Winch spinning reel.


I can see this combo working very well with small cranks and spinnerbaits only because I was using 6lb test line. In practical terms, you can spool this reel up with 10lb test line and have a very adept, general purpose combo for moving baits - if spinning gear is your preference. As a stand alone item, I think the Revo W30 Winch is capable of so much more and would love to see a shallow spool option for finesse applications.


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