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Reel Review


Higher End Affordability, Pflueger's Patriarch XT Spinning Reel


Date: 8/22/18
Tackle Type: Reel
Manufacturer: Abu Garcia
Reviewer: Cal

Total Score: 7.75 - BEST VALUE AWARD

Of all the freshwater reel manufacturers out there, one that often gets overlooked is Pflueger and it's difficult to ascertain why. Afterall, if there is one reel manufacturer that consistently delivers solid performance at a reasonable price, it is Pflueger. Enter the subject of today's review, the Patriarch XT spinning reel. This is a magnesium alloy reel that retails for only $249.99.


Pflueger Patriarch XT SP35X Spinning Reel Specifications

Line Capacity - Rated 8/140
Line Capacity - Spool Volume 10.7 cm3
Retrieve Ratio
Inches Per Turn (IPT) - calculated
27 - 34.5
Weight 7.2 oz
Handle Length 90 mm
Bearings 10XCR+1
Bearings per Knob 2 bearings
Line Roller Bearings 2 bearings
Origin Made in China
MSRP $249.99

Introducing Pflueger's Patriarch XT SP35X Spinning reel.

Impressions: Pflueger's Patriarch XT SP35X spinning reel is roughly equivalent in size to Shimano's 3000 spinning reel platform, and it has a shallower than normal spool for a US market reel - though not quite as shallow as the spools of spinning reels made specifically for the JDM market. For instance, the Abu Garcia 30 sized spinning reels come with a spool capacity of approximately 13.4 cubic centimeters, Shimano's new Stella C3000MHG-J has a spool capacity of 5.3 cubic centimeters, and the SP35X, 10.7 cubic centimeters - almost smack dab in the middle.


The reel is finished with a bright matte silver finish that photographs almost white.


This latest Patriarch XT is finished with a bright matte silver finish that photographs almost white. The metal or metallic parts are finished in pewter, and there are some anodized blue highlights hidden within the reel at the base of the handle and underneath the rotor. It's not quite as striking as the white previous generation spinning reel, but this is still a pretty smart looking reel.

This is a smart looking reel.

Real World Tests: I spooled the Patriarch XT SP35X with some eight pound (8lb) Sunline Sniper Fluorocarbon and paired it with a new Fenwick HMG spinning rod for its real world tests. That's right, I said new Fenwick HMG. Fresh off their Best Value Award win last May, Fenwick has refreshed HMG, so not only was I anxious to try the new Patriarch XT SP35X out, I wanted to see how the new HMG would stack up too.

Spooled with some Sunline Sniper and matched with a Fenwick HMG spinning rod and ready to go.

Retrieve: The Patriarch XT SP35X comes with a 6.2:1 retrieve ratio. This equates to somewhere between twenty seven to thirty four and a half inches (27"-34.5") of line pick up per turn of the handle depending on how much line you have out on your cast or how full your spool is with line. This is roughly equivalent to a casting reel in the high sevens or low eights (depending on spool size).

The stylish handle of the Patriarch XT SP35X.

The Patriarch XT features a machined aluminum main gear that delivers a smooth, but connected feel during your retrieve. The magnesium rotor moves smoothly too and there is no perceivable wobble in the reel during a standard retrieve.

Nestled within the very stylized spool of the Patriarch XT SP35X is a drag stack consisting of two carbon and two aluminum washers.

Drag: Nestled within the very stylized spool of the Patriarch XT SP35X is a drag stack consisting of two carbon and two aluminum washers. This is a system built for some hard charging fish but also features relatively smooth and consistent performance. I was only using eight pound test, as I've mentioned before my fishing style depends on a drag that allows the fish to pull line with consistent pressure and not a drag that stutters or stops. Most of today's reels have overcome that hurdle and the Patriarch XT SP35X's drag performs well.

The Patriarch XT does not have a back reel switch.

Next Section: Light but still powerful under load









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