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ICAST 2019 Update Coverage

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Reel Review

Pflueger’s “Supreme” Baitcast Offering (continued)

Drag: The Supreme fared well in both casting and retrieve tests but when it came time to test the drag it was a different story. The President delivered 5.5lbs of counter pressure which was reasonable three years ago, but since that time full size reels, and even magnesium ultralights have upped the ante in terms of drag pressure and refinement. The Daiwa TD-A HSTA for example which retails for 159 dollars is capable of coughing up 10lbs of pressure, the magnesium based Shimano Core can deliver 8.8lbs, and the Abu Garcia STX is capable of an astonishing 24lbs! So what did the Supreme yield in our tests, just 6.2lbs, enough for most fish but we hoped for more in a modern day full sized baitcaster. 


The sideplate slides downward...

No matter how far we tightened the drag it simply would not deliver any more pressure. You could still quite easily strip line away from the spool with just two fingers. The drag proved to be smooth both in our lab and in the field, but with a big fish on the reel yielded copious amounts of line with each and every run. While it is unlikely that a fish will break off by over-tightening the drag, we would have liked to have some more stopping power, especially when targeting fish like striped bass.

...revealing the magnetic plate and centrifugal brake weights in the dual cast control system

Ergonomics: The Pflueger Supreme weighs in at 8.5oz which is right about average for a reel of this size. There is some limited porting in the frame and handle of the reel but some of the weight is made up with the solid base of the frame and generous use of metal in the reel’s forged handle and drag star, not a bad thing at all.

A look under the sideplate and you can see the actual magnets

When it comes to pure ergonomics the Supreme is easy and comfortable to palm and the spool access is quite good. One area that Pflueger did do a very good job is on the soft touch sculpted knobs which feel just as grippy as Shimano Septon grips, and the same material on the clutch button which feels excellent under your thumb. Also very nice is the audible star and spool tension adjustment, making it easy to make minute adjustments on the fly.

The Supreme is capable of winding in 28 inches of line per handle turn, and does so smoothly and confidently due to quality metal components in and out

It is in the area of ergonomics that Pflueger seems to have made the most strides. While many of the company’s reels in the past performed in the major areas that counted they always seemed to have something lacking when it came to refinement and comfortable ergonomics. That trend ends with the Supreme which ergonomically has what it takes to compete with even higher priced Tier-1 offerings. We expect that the new Summit and Patriarch will probably take Pflueger ergonomics to a level far beyond what we have seen from the company to date.

A titanium line guide able to handle all types of line

Next Section: Durability, Price & Conclusion









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