Shoot for the moon, the well machined Daiwa Luna
The 300 size makes use of a takedown sideplate which
provides access to the same Centriflex automatic centrifugal system found on the
Daiwa Coastal. Centriflex is adjusted by moving a collar back and forth and the
system applies braking at peak spool speed. While the system can be adjusted
quickly it is a pain to have to physically remove the entire sideplate to access
the system in the first place.
The 300 size
with a wide clutch
The sideplate seals out the elements nicely but having to
remove the sideplate in the field just increases the chances you will lose it
with slippery hands and on a moving boat. The Shimano TE reels also require you
to open up a sideplate to access the VBS, but the sideplate swivels out and
remains attached making it faster to adjust settings than the Luna 300.
size reels feature the familiar Daiwa knobs
With these round reels it is possible to toss everything
from a small crankbait to a massive swimbait, so the ability to adjust your cast
control on the fly is a major plus. The ported spool on the Luna also makes a
difference in casting, and the fast startup helps make the reel feel more like a
baitcaster than a traditional reel.
The Breakdown: Luna wins. When it comes to
cast control systems the Daiwa Magforce-Z feels very precise and while the
Calcutta TE system is better than the Luna 300, the Luna takes the cake in all
the other sizes when it comes to casting feel and ease of operation. Now if you
bring the Calcutta TE DC into the mix then the DC definitely trumps the Luna.
The 300 size
features power handles for more leverage
Luna sizes are equipped with 5CBBB bearings and 1 roller bearing, which is a
surprisingly low count for a reel that feels this fluid. The Luna feels very
refined despite its low bearing count, and makes up for it with precision
machining. Both the frame and sideplates are machined from bar stock aluminum
which provides exceptional alignment of both the exterior and internal
components. The spool is also machined from aircraft grade aluminum. When the
gears lock in on the retrieve the engagement feels solid and there is very
little backplay in the handle. The result is one refined reel with a silky yet
look at the external cast control
The Calcutta TE comes in standard and GT models and bearing
counts range from 5 to 12. When we compared the retrieve on the Luna and
Calcutta the two reels exhibited very different personalities. The Luna felt
silkier than the Calcutta TE, but there was much less friction resistance in the
retrieve of the TE. The Luna exhibited slightly less backplay in the handle and
the clutch could be engaged or disengaged by pressing up and down the clutch,
whereas the TE needs to be cranked to re-engage the reel.
the reel to adjust the cast control for various swimbaits
Both reels feature non-disengaging levelwinds, and feature
titanium nitrided stainless steel line guides. The Luna feels more fluid, and
the Calcutta feels more powerful due to the enlarged offset high efficiency
gearing. In our field tests the Luna felt good reeling in 12lb stripers, but the
Calcutta absolutely manhandled similar sized fish with its gargantuan torque.
The Breakdown: Calcutta TE wins. The Luna like many other Daiwa offerings feels
refined, and the response on the gearing is solid and instantaneous. The
Calcutta still reigns supreme however with a friction free feel and powerful
retrieve are still the benchmark by which other round reels are judged by.
The Luna is
a deep gold color thanks to hard anodization
Next Section: A monster drag