Ardent's Tour Reel
Series Offers an "Edge" for Anglers
Total Score: 7.91 -
Ardent continued their "made in the USA" tradition with the introduction of
their Edge reel series a season ago. In addition to sporting a brand new profile
this aluminum based series makes use of the company's patent pending DTT (Drag
Tracking Technology) which is designed to improve line management. We take a
closer look at the Tour model to see just show “sharp” the new Edge really is.
Ardent Edge Tour
Capacity (lbs / yds)
Measured Max. Drag
14 lbs measured
7075-T6 aluminum triple bearing spool, power carbon fiber handle, carbon
fiber drag star, 6 pin centrifugal brake system, instant anti reverse,
backed by a 3 year warranty
Ardent Edge Tour low profile baitcasting reel
It has been nearly five years since we tested a reel from Ardent
and our last look was at the XS1000. While we liked the fact that this reel was
born right here in the USA we couldn't overlook a number of shortcomings that
this original reel exhibited primarily from an ergonomics point of view. This
original reel was made out of magnesium yet was among the heaviest magnesium
reels we have ever tested, with a manufacturer specification of 8.7oz. In many
ways this defeated the purpose of using the more corrosion prone material, and
this combined with a cumbersome cast control adjustment system made for a reel
that was somewhat middling.
spool provides plenty of access to the spool and features a compact overall
Since the X1000 Ardent has only released a number of reels
including the very application specific F-500 and F-7000 pitch and flip models
which while certainly unique are a very niche product. These reels demonstrate
the fact that Ardent is willing to walk to the beat of their own drum, an
admirable trait in a sea of sameness that often happens in mature categories
like “baitcast reels.” This past ICAST the company made a major move with the
introduction of the Edge series. On paper this series looked good and offered
anglers a range of products to choose from at various price points, and best of
all the new reels look both modern and attractive.
reel sits quite low making for easy palming
The Edge Series is made up of six reels which range in price from
$149 to $329. All of these reels share the same basic profile and are separated
by component quality, refinement, and finish. When we first checked out the
reels at ICAST 2011 we were immediately impressed by the new design and
Time to go fishing with the Edge at Clear Lake, CA
Real World Tests: To test the Ardent Edge Tour we employed the reel on numerous
trips to the California Delta as well as during the winter season at Clear Lake.
We strapped the Edge on a number of different rods ranging from Shimano to
Megabass offerings and employed the reel for a wide variety of applications
ranging from fishing traditional Texas rigged plastics to lobbing Umbrella rigs.
Edge proved to be a very good long distance caster
The Ardent Edge Tour makes us of an aluminum 7075-T6 spool which will freespool
in a major way if there are no brake weights applying resistance. There is a
total of six weights located on the edge of the spool directly behind the
non-handle sideplate. These are accessible with a quick release alongside the
back of the reel adjacent to the clutch bar. By pushing upwards the plate can be
pushed out and remains attached to the frame via a pinion while anglers address
the centrifugal weights.
Once dialed in precision work like pinpoint casts and pitches was no problem
When it comes to casting distance the Edge Tour is a very capable
caster and flinging any weights 1/4oz. or heavier is really a no brainer. On
short lob casts or pitches the Edge Tour is quite good as well but I found it a
little harder to dial in versus a Shimano or Daiwa offering. The spool tension
knob does not have a clicker and the knob on our test reel was extremely tight,
making it a little harder to adjust on the fly to accommodate different lure
weights. When it came to casting the heavy stuff like loaded up umbrella rigs
the Edge Tour delivers in spades and paired with a heavy action rod can catapult
the rig with both ease and proper control.
Edge Tour feels smooth and powerful
Next Section: Just how smooth is the Edge Tour?