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ICAST 2013 Coverage

The Lew’s BB-1 Lineup Expands and goes Pro


Date: 8/25/13
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Admission: Buyers & Press Only
Manufacturer: Lew's
Reviewer: Zander

Introduction: Lew’s reels have quickly become top sellers and anglers have grown to love the balance of performance, features and overall value that the lineup offers. The Lew’s baitcasters look and feel like a complete family of reels with offerings designed for various applications and at all price points. This ICAST the spotlight was on the venerable BB1 and the new variations that the company was rolling out which included a new Inshore and Pro Series.




When Lews redesigned the BB1 they priced it aggressively at 159.99 and offered it in a multi-stop anti reverse so that it would meet the expectations of today’s anglers. They also boldly offered a zero anti reverse model in three retrieves for purists looking for classic feel and ultimate casting distance. One fan of these reels is none other than Bassmaster Classic Champion, David Fritts, who knows a thing or two about casting long distance when cranking. We are currently in process of field testing these models and it was interesting to get his unique take on these reels at the show, and he also spent a few minutes talking about how to maximize casting distance.


The BB1 Series gets a new Inshore reel designed with extra corrosion resistance


Building off the success of the BB1 the company is targeting saltwater anglers with the Inshore model which is instantly distinguishable with the silver finish. This reel has three external drain ports and a double anodized spool, handle and spool tension knob for extra corrosion resistance.


This reel has anodized components throughout


The reel has a multi setting brake system with both internal centrifugal brakes and external centrifugal brakes. To step up to hard pulling saltwater fish the Inshore comes loaded with a carbon drag system that provides up to 14lbs of drag power. This new series comes 1ith 7+1 bearings, 6.4:1 and 7.1:1 ratios and weighs in at only 7.8oz., and will retail for $199.99 each.


The Pro Series further maximizes casting distance by minimizing line friction


Retailing for the exact same amount is the new BB1 Pro Series which picks up right where the BB1 leaves off. The reel is also available with a multi-stop or zero reverse anti-reverse and features a one piece die-cast aluminum frame with graphite sideplates.


The Pro BB1 has an externally adjustable centrifugal cast control system


The reel gets a 10 or 9+1 bearing system and comes in 5.1:1 in multi-stop and 6.4:1 and 7.1:1 ratios in zero reverse configurations. The reel has upgraded guts with a Duralumin drive train and spool and the reel has a sportier look and feel with a bowed lightweight carbon fiber reel handle. The BB1 pro has an externally adjustable centrifugal cast control system which makes it easy to change settings on the fly.


The BB2 has a wide deep spool


Finally the company is also rolling out a new swimbait reel based around the series called the BB2. The BB2 has a wide spool and is designed to handle everything from swimbaits to A-rigs with 190yds./14lb line capacity. These reels have an internally adjusted centrifugal cast control system and basically look like a beefier BB1.


The BB2 may look like the BB1 but is designed for big baits and A-Rigs


The new BB2 reels will be available in 6.4:1 and 7.1:1 retrieve ratios and weigh in a very reasonable 7.4oz. and will retail for the very affordable price of only $169.99 dollars. It seems that whatever your application this season the BB1/BB2 Series from Lew’s has you covered. Stay tuned for our in-depth review of the BB1 as we get close to finishing up all our new product reports from ICAST.  










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