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ICAST 2009 Coverage

Daiwa Advances Saltwater Reels and introduces the Aggrest Baitcaster


Date: 7/15/09
Location: Orlando, Florida
Admission: Buyers & Press only
Manufacturer: Daiwa
Reviewer: Team TackleTour

Introduction: As usual Daiwa had a big presence at the show and one of the largest booths on the show floor, and this year they were directly adjacent to their top competitor, Shimano. Daiwa spent a lot of time this year preparing new Saltwater reels for both inshore and big game, and we previously previewed these new reels prior to ICAST. In addition to the Zillion Coastal and Saltist reels Daiwa introduces the affordable ultra fast Aggrest Baitcaster.


Daiwa's new Aggrest baitcaster features a quick 7.3:1 retrieve ratio

Aggrest:  The Aggrest is a new baitcaster in Daiwa’s lineup and is capable of pulling in 32" of line with every crank of the handle, Daiwa's new Aggrest™ baitcasting reels are some of the fastest baitcasters ever built. Creating the speed is a massive, helical cut drive gear pushing a phosphor bronze pinion gear at a 7.3 to 1 ratio.  The helical cut of the gear teeth (cut at an angle) are designed to deliver smooth winding and even transmission of winding energy. To ensure adequate winding power, six ball bearings firmly support the drive train within a rigid aluminum frame.

The Aggrest weighs just 7.5oz and is loaded with a six ball bearing system 

The Aggrest features a clean design and draws elements from across Daiwa’s existing lineup including recognizable handle and knob components from reels of the past, the profile however is all new. The speed of the Aggrest makes it the good choice for fishing fast moving lures like ripbaits as well as target lures like plastics where you want to get your bait back and re-cast when it is out of the strike zone.

The Aggrest retails for only 179.99 and is targeted at mainstream anglers looking for an affordable high speed low profile batcaster

The Aggrest will be available in both right ad left hand retrieves and the reel weighs in at 7.6oz. with a line capacity of 12/150, 14/125. Each reel will cost a very reasonable $179.95 per copy and will be available in the weeks the following the show.

The Saltist LD Conventional reels were a big hit at the show and actually won "Best of Show" in the saltwater reel category

Satist Spinning: We previously looked at the Saltist conventional reels and in person these reels look even more impressive. The blue highlights in the reel really stand out versus the black anodized finish.

An accessory reel clamp helps lock down conventional reels even more securely

At Daiwa’s booth we took a closer look at the spinning version of the new Saltist pinning reels which match the casting reels in coloration. The Satist spinning reels are built for all-out serious saltwater fishing. Simple, straight forward mechanisms are designed to withstand the punishment of big baits and big fish, and features include a manual bail trip for fewer moving parts all of which adds up to greater strength and reliability. 

Designed for serious saltwater spinning performance the Saltist spinning reels are designed to take plenty of punishment and are Digigear digitally designed

A dual, full-time anti-reverse means redundant reliability with no lever to accidentally turn off or accidentally snag line.  The gearing is Daiwa's digitally designed and cut using the company’s Digigear™ system and produces an efficient mesh for maximum power and reduced wear. 

Bill Liston at Daiwa shows Zander the new high strength braided line Steez rods

The Saltist reels will deliver a retrieve ratio of 6.2 to 1 and this combined with the reel's large spool diameter bring in up to 53 inches of line with every turn of the handle. The Saltist Spinning reels will be available in sizes ranging from 4000 to 6500 and feature an all metal construction that is designed to be corrosion resistant and a sealed waterproof drag can deliver an impressive 22lbs of drag pressure on the smaller models and up to 33lbs of pressure on the three larger models. Line capacity is 12/260, 14/210 with mono and 40/320 with Daiwa’s own Samurai braided line. The 4000 size will weigh in at 20.3oz while the largest 6500 size weighs 24.4oz. and retail prices will range from $199.95 to $229.95 depending on model and size.

Most exciting in the new rods is the Steez XBD frog rod which is extremely powerful but as light as you would expect being made out of SVF graphite

Daiwa Steez SVF-XBD: When it comes to rods it was a relatively quiet year for Daiwa and the only major addition are new high strength braided line rods which makes use of uni-directional SVF-XBD graphite sandwiched between bias graphite throughout the entire length of the blank. The result is reduced weight and greater strength as well as resistance to twisting. There are two new Steez rods that make use of this graphite, the SVF-XBD Frog Rod and the SVF-XBD heavy Spinning rod.

The Steez Frog rod has plenty of backbone for working a frog through heavy cover, hook setting and fish control

The new frog rod is very exciting and will be among the lightest frogging rods on the market. It is 7’4” in length and is rated XH with a fast taper. Designed to handle 55-80lb braid and lures from ½-2oz. this rod is designed to target big fish and pull them out of the weeds.

For now Daiwa is keeping the new Saltiga under wraps....literally

A little tease: Daiwa also teased us and other attendees with a display showing a new Saltiga frame that was machined further than the current reel for an even more refined look and feel. No details were provided but suffice to say that Daiwa will be coming out with a new reel in the Saltiga series that will be positioned on top of the current already premium reels. Time frame on this unveiling is some time towards the end of the year.

Conclusion: Like Shimano Daiwa put heavy emphasis on saltwater reels this year, and the audience here in Orlando responded positively to the new offerings. The entire Saltist lineup looks like a winner from a design standpoint, and the new Zillion Inshore is likely going to find a home on a few rods that never touch the salt in addition to the many inshore anglers looking for an upgrade to the company’s Coastal baitcaster which was based off the Advantage series. Then there is the Aggrest which comes at a good time, sure it isn’t a Steez but with the economy still in question there certainly are many anglers who would welcome a Daiwa burner class reel at the sub 180 dollar price point.








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