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ICAST 2019 Update Coverage

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Reel Review

Will you Twitch or Slide? Pinnacle’s Vision Slyder Baitcaster (continued)


Pushing the wheel forward allows anglers to move baits in small increments while faster continuous slides of the wheel allows anglers to pick up line quickly. I found that making precise movements with the finesse wheel was easier than with the Twitchin’ bar and the movement did feel relatively natural though fast retrieves were obviously still easier with a standard turn of the main handle versus continual spins of the finesse wheel.


With ten settings the Slyder gives anglers the ability to use the reel to make both long and pinpoint casts with ease


Like the Daiwa Megaforce the Vision Slyder features an ultra fast 7:1 retrieve so even small movements can advance lures forward. The patent pending Finesse reel is a clever implementation for anglers that really want to make subtle movements during particular applications, for example drop and split shotting and even shakey head or jig fishing. While this reel is good for finesse applications I found it a lacking when fishing reaction baits.


The plastic looking and feeling knobs are a turn off


When the drag is fully locked down there is some noticeable spool slip when fishing reaction baits like jerkbaits, you can duplicate this simply by pulling on the line, the spool will bounce forward slightly before the drag kicks in. If you are fishing using the Slyder in finesse applications you will likely never even experience this slip, but the tension on the end of the line created by reaction baits like jerkbaits can quite easily reproduce this observation. When there was a fish on the line the Slyder did a good job bringing them back to the boat, the Slyder’s 7:1 retrieve is fast but still powerful enough to move bass out and away from structure.


The Slyder's paint finish held up well throughout our season long tests


Drag: The Slyder features a pretty simple multi-material drag system which is contained within the reel’s master brass gearing. Unlike other Pinnacle reels that possess a large multi-stack the Slyder only has a few washers and in our lab was only able to generate 7.1lbs of drag pressure under full lockdown. This is less than the competing Daiwa Megaforce reel which delivered just over 8.5lbs. Though not very powerful the Slyder’s drag is relatively consistent.


The reel features a wide profile and easy access to the spool, from the back the Slyder looks like a normal reel

Price & Applications: The Slyder retails for 69.99 which is ten more dollars than the Daiwa Megaforce, both these reels feature a second way to retrieve finesse baits. Some anglers will find both implementations more of a gimmick than a real means in which to better fish finesse lures while others will welcome the ability to advance lures with just a twitch or slide of your thumb. Which execution is the better one? When fishing for extended periods we did find the Slyder’s Finesse Wheel a little easier on our thumbs and the ability to advance the spool in any range of small increments gives the wheel a slight edge in subtle movement functionality.


A look underneath at the reel seat


The Slyder also is noticeably lighter weighing in 8.1oz. versus the Megaforce which weighs 1.3oz. more, but when it comes to build quality the Slyder’s abundant use of plastic components like the drag star and spool tension knob are a big turn off. The Sylder’s brisk 7:1 retrieve and wheel feature make this reel best suited for slower moving finesse applications.  Hard core anglers will likely take a pass when it comes to the Slyder and you may wonder why the company doesn’t offer the “finesse wheel” on their premium reels but it all makes quite good sense when you think about it… tournament anglers will prefer to use traditional reels while weekend warriors will more likely appreciate the extra implementation.


The Slyder's Finesse Wheel is a unique take on a secondary retrieve system and proved to be effective for slow moving plastics including fishing worms and jigs


Ratings: (We've re-calibrated our ratings standard for 2008 and have included a key at the bottom of the following matrix as a guide):

Pinnacle Vision Slyder Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality The Pinnacle Vision Slyder is constructed with a graphite frame and while it does feel solid in hand the use of plastic components like the spool tension knob are a turn off, thus the FAIR rating in this category 6
Performance The Slyder does exactly what it is designed to do, the reel casts well with the magnetic cast control and the Finesse Wheel makes it easy to advance finesse baits in both small and large increments. he only anomaly we experienced was the slight spool sweet at max drag setting 7
Price The $69.99 retail price is reasonable but the Slyder faces stiff competition from the Daiwa Megaforce which retails for 10 dollars less 7.5
Features The two main features of this reel are the external cast control adjustment and the Finesse Wheel 8.5
Design (Ergonomics) The Slyder looks a bit wide but is actually comfortable to palm, the Finesse Wheel feels more natural than I expected and doesn't hurt your thumb after extended use. The Slyder also weighs less than the Diawa reels that feature Twitchin' Bars 8
Application While not as good for reaction baits the Slyder puts a new spin on fishing finesse baits 7

Total Score

Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

+ The innovative Finesse Wheel allows retrieve in fine increments - Not the smoothest retrieve
+ Finesse Wheel feels natural to use when palming the reel - Observed spool slip
+ Good for finesse applications - Plastic knobs
+ Reasonable price  


Conclusion: Pinnacle is definitely making strides and while the brand is still not as well known as some of the other reel and rod players the company is working hard to change that with products that exhibit more innovation and a higher level of performance like the company’s new Tournament Class reels and rods. The Slyder falls into the “more innovative” category but does come up short in a number of areas when it comes to refinement. The Slyder is affordably priced but faces stiff competition from the even cheaper Daiwa Megaforce and the choice between the two reels may very well come down to whether you prefer Daiwa’s Twitchin’ Bar or Pinnacle’s Finesse Wheel. The Slyder gives anglers a precise way in which to fish plastics and jigs and if you are all over finesse fishing this inexpensive reel might just be what you’re looking for but if you are seeking a well rounded reel you may want to wait for the company’s coming higher end offerings. The company's recently introduced reels at ICAST as well as the Perfecta rods we have already started testing showcase quite a bit more quality and refinement.


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