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Reel Review

Still on Fire? Daiwa's new Fuego-A Spinning Reel (continued)


Casting cont'd: While functional this system did have an annoying side effect, the bail trip mechanism was much easier to reset with a little momentum and if the reel was retrieved very slowly and the lever comes in contact with the reset point at very low speed the reel feels like it locks up, and you have to either close the bail by hand or really press down on the handle to force it to flip the bail back. It was my biggest point of contention with the previous version and suffice to say I am very pleased to see that Daiwa has gone with an internal trip system on the Fuego-A.


During the tests I did a lot of drop shotting Trokar hooks


Retrieve: Hardcore Daiwa fans swear by the Steez spinning reel’s ultra refined feel and it can be argued that the Fuego-A is the next best thing in the US lineup. The fact is that while the Fuego-A is very smooth it does not come close to matching the Steez’s friction free feel but when compared to many competing reels from it does feel very polished. The Digigear design meshes up the gearing nicely and the reel feels smooth by itself while some reels from other brands feel a little “gummy” because of their reliance on oil and grease to deliver smooth rotation when cranking.


Daiwa makes use of their tubular  air-bail


Capable of winding in 25 inches of line per handle crank the Fuego-A 2000 does a good job bringing fish back to the boat once you feel that tick at the end of the line and set. The Fuego-A is so lightweight that it is easy to hold the entire combo at a relaxed angle so your attention is focused on line sensitivity rather than pressure exerted on your wrist from holding the combo and imparting action on the rod tip. I definitely recommend fluorocarbon or braided lines with a top shot for finesse fishing with this reel as you definitely can more easily detect strikes.


The titanium coated line roller is both durable and reliable


Even after complete submersion during stress testing the Fuego-A remained extremely smooth and both the CRBB and standard bearings held up well over time. The Zaion frame proved to be rigid enough to hold the Digigear master gearing in perfect alignment alleviating some early concerns that the reel would exhibit some degree of flex like more affordable graphite based reels.


The anti-reverse switch is positioned behind the rotor and the reel's underside


Drag: Daiwa drags are not always the beefiest but they are historically among the most consistent, the Fuego-A continues that tradition. Instead of flat out raw stopping power I found the Fuego’s drag to be more about gently doling out the right amount of line to tire fish out. I prefer this on spinning reels as I personally make use of them for more finesse applications. In the lab the Fuego 2000A delivered 8.3lbs. of drag pressure which is .5lbs. shy of the manufacturer’s specification and 5lbs. less than what we could achieve with the previous version.


Even the rotor is ported for weight reduction, how light is the Fuego-A? Almost as light as the Steez, the 2500 size is only .8oz. heavier


In the field I found that adjusting the drag in small increments was easy and the waterproof gasket is a nice touch. This system isn’t something that you really need while fishing but does help a lot afterwards when you want to rinse off your gear. You can basically run the reel right under a hose and the gasket will prevent contaminates like particles and salt from breaching your drag system.


Drop shot fish courtesy of the Fuego-A


Next Section: So is the Fuego really still on "Fire"










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