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Reel Review

Does the Quantum's EXO Concept Translate to Spinning?


Date: 9/12/12
Tackle type: Reel
Manufacturer: Quantum
Reviewer: Cal

Total Score: 7.83 - GOOD

Despite the overwhelming manner in which casting gear dominates our discussion board and the rod lockers of bass anglers, spinning gear continues to garner more attention amongst our readership. We receive more private messages and emails with questions about this spinning reel versus that spinning reel and why don't we review more spinning gear than we do about the latest and greatest in casting gear. Perhaps that's because we already write a great many articles on casting gear. The interest in spinning gear was part of the reason for our finesse themed year of 2011.

Following us on Facebook? It's here we showed a sneak peak of a Quantum EXO PTi baitcaster in left hand retrieve, but even this news couldn't overshadow the interest in the spinning reel.

Earlier this year, we debuted our review of the evolutionary Quantum EXO baitcaster. A reel that we continue to fish and enjoy and one of which I am happy to finally see a left hand retrieve version. But the casting EXO is only part of the story. This year, Quantum is adding several new sizes to the even more popular spinning version of this reel. In anticipation of this debut, we acquired the 30 size to see if this reel to see if the exo-skeleton is as evolutionary in spinning reel form as well. Here now is our look at Quantum's EXO PT EX30PTi spinning reel.

Quantum EXO PTi 30 Specifications

Line Capacity 150 yds / 10lb (we spooled 300 yards of 8lb Sunline Supernatural)
Retrieve Ratio 5.2:1
Inches Per Turn (IPT) tested Rated at 31" tested at 29.5"
Weight 7.4 oz
Bearings 10 + 1
Drag 16lbs (manufacturer rated)
Origin Made in China
MSRP $200


Impressions: Spinning reels present an interesting dichotomy. They are easier to use than a casting reel, yet not so easy to manage. They are less complicated in appearance and conceptualization, yet, much more complex than a casting reel inside. Similarly, while the casting version of the EXO can be termed "evolutionary", the spinning version is more of an also ran. Meaning for years, manufacturers have been cutting holes and shedding ounces in the rotors, spools, stems, and frames of spinning reels to get their weights down and increase their cosmetic appeal. So while we were taken aback with the EXO PTi casting reels, the spinning version faces more of an uphill battle.


While we were taken aback by the EXO PT casting reels, the spinning version faces more of an uphill battle.

The EXO PTi Spinning reel debuted in only two sizes, a 25 and 30. These are somewhat akin to Shimano and Daiwa's 2500 and 3000 sizes. New for 2013 will be the addition of 15, 40 and 50 sizes all featuring the same, EXO Skeleton design of the original two sizes.

The EXO PTi 30 spinning reel is roughly the same size as Shimano and Daiwa's 3000 sized spinning reels.

Field Tests: We broke out our "What the Finesse" mindsets and took to the water to try out the EXO PTi spinning reel. I paired the EXO PTi 25 with a Quantum EX4 spinning rod too, so I could get a full feel for what the team at Quantum had in mind with their lineup.

We paired our EXO PTi spinning reel with an EX4 spinning rod.

Casting: I purchased our EXO PTi 30 spinning reel at Hi's Tackle Box in South San Francisco and had them spool it up with 8lb Sunline Supernatural before leaving the store. The advantage of having a neighborhood tackle shop you can visit to spool your reels is not just a matter of convenience, but with a spinning reel, it's also part of a smart line management regimen - more on this later.

We spooled our Quantum EXO PTi 30 with 8lb Sunline SuperNatural.

I chose a high quality monofilament because the EXO PTi spinning reels feature a standard, deep spool which makes it difficult to go straight fluorocarbon. Case in point? The EXO PTi 30 holds a whopping 300 yards of 8lb Sunline Supernatural.

We chose a high quality monofilament to make it easier to fill the large spool and avoid connection knots for leaders.

Yes, you can use mono or even braid as a mainline and then tie a high quality fluorocarbon leader if you desire, but that connection knot, no matter how small you make it, always finds a way to annoy me during a cast. This is annoyance is only with spinning equipment because depending upon how long you make your leader, the connection knot is usually nestled within the spool, but as it is uncovered during a cast, it becomes a point of resistance to the line that's fluttering off your spool. This resistance chokes off your cast affecting both distance and accuracy. You can bury the knot deeper by using an extra long leader, but as you tie and retie, your leader shortens and the problem surfaces. You can use a short leader and get rid of the knot early on, but as your leader shortens, you need to retie the connection knot more often.

Quantum makes use of a Nickel-Titanium alloy for their bail wire with a magnetic bail trip.

It's gotten to a point I'd just rather not deal with the knot issue on spinning reels with a standard size spool, after all who needs 300 yards of eight pound test line on their reel? This is why when purchasing a spinning reel for personal use, I prefer the shallow spool option afforded in the JDM market.

The reel's stem is of standard length making it easy to feather the spool on a cast.

Focusing back to the EXO PTi 30, the reel's stem is of standard length which means it sits a comfortable distance from the reel seat enabling you to easily feather your cast with your index finger. The bail sits back in casting position securely and snaps back to closed position with little issue on the turn of the handle though admittedly I close the bail by hand the majority of time anyway.

Our EXO PTi 30 had the same knobs as its baitcasting sibling.

Next Section: Quantum bearings in the EXO Spinning Reel









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