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Reel Review

Super high speed gearing in a conventional saltwater package, the Daiwa Sealine X 50SHV (continued)


Retrieving: When a striper is on the end of the line the SealineX 50SHV demonstrates exactly why it is good to have both speed and power. While the reel doesn't feel as powerful as the lower speed 4.9:1 SLX50HV it is noticeably faster. The reel can easily catch up with just about any fast running fish with just a brisk turn of the handle. The reel comes loaded with bronze and stainless steel gears and three stainless steel bearings. We were surprised how smooth the SealineX 50SHV was for just a 3 bearing reel. The reel feels fluid on the retrieve and you know exactly how fast you are going by a small and constant audible click, which sounds quite similar to the Penn 320 actually. The reel feels solid on any rod during the retrieve because you can bolt the SealineX 50SHV down for additional security with the included rod clamp.


A well sealed sideplate prevents contaminates from entering the inner reel components


Power: The price you pay for a higher speed is reduced power, you hardly notice this with the SealineX 50SHV however, unless you are hauling heavy weight vertically. For example, we did not notice a reduction of power when fishing for stripers but we could feel a difference when we were trying to haul in a Humboldt Squid from 80 feet below. The 30+ pound squid was so heavy we had trouble even turning the handle so we quickly switched out to the much more robust Sealine SLT. If you are targeting fish like Salmon, Stripers, Wahoo, and Halibut the SealineX 50SHV is a good match for the application.


Still plenty of power for fighting fast running fish like stripers and Wahoo

Drag: The SealineX 50SHV is cool under pressure, literally. We tested the drag on a line spooler and found the drag to remain shockingly cool in temperature even after a extended simulated run. An oversized six-element drag complete with Teflon impregnated felt and stainless steel discs makes for one heck of a drag sandwich. When tested for maximum drag resistance the SealineX 50SHV was capable of delivering 17.2lbs of maximum drag counter pressure. During our field tests we found the drag to be smooth and reliable. A nice touch would have been an aluminum drag star but we really can't complain considering the cost of this reel. The fact that the drag star had a clicking mechanism was a big plus.


An included proprietary rod clamp eliminates wobble when fishing big fish


Durability/Maintenance: Under pressure the reel doesn't exhibit much flex at all, a testament to the well reinforced body. In terms of overall durability the SealineX 50SHV gets good marks. The reel is well sealed and very few particles entered the reel after multiple trips, none of which successfully penetrated the inner gearing. After each use a damp cloth to remove any salt residue from the reel, and then use a dry cloth to remove any water spotting. You will only need to lubricate the SealineX 50SHV once a season under normal use. Lubrication consists of a drop of light oil on the spool ball bearings and shaft ends, handle knob shaft, and clutch lever bushing.


This reel can be used for a wide range of fish ranging from Stripers and Wahoo to Rockfish and Halibut


Price: Lets get down to it...is the SealineX 50SHV worth the 135 dollars you will have to shell out to own one? If you are a surf angler or fish for fast running species like Wahoo or Stripers then the answer is a resounding yes. If you require more power and speed is not a priority then you can opt for a standard SealineX HV reel, which offers the same bearing count and relative weight with a slower retrieve. There are not many reels at this price point that have a proven track record like the SealineX 50SHV, and the new high speed models help breathe new life into the mature lineup. If you absolutely must have a metal bodied reel you can step up to a Daiwa Saltist which ranges in price from 169.99 to 189.99. But for a sub 140 dollar reel the SealineX 50SHV is a downright excellent value.



Daiwa Sealine Tournament SLX50 SHV Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality For a composite reel the SealineX showcases fantastic construction throughout. The quality of aluminum reinforcement makes this reel superior to many graphite reels on the market. 9
Performance This reel can cast! Casting on this reel feels as effortless as tossing a swimbait with a baitcaster. The separating spool on the SealineX actually feels trademark Daiwa 9.5
Price At a MSRP of 134.99 this reel is a downright value. You won't break the bank fishing this one, or feel too bad when you subject it to the elements 9.5
Features In terms of features the SealineX 50SHV is near identical to its proven siblings. The real feature on this reel is simply the new high speed  gearing 8
Design (Ergonomics) The reel is designed well and the only thing we wish for is a matching gold drag star in place of the composite one, but overall ergonomics are top notch 9
Application Fishing from shore or from the boat the SealineX feels right at home. Just don't try hefting anything too heavy in weight as you will do better with one of the slower more powerful reels 8

Total Score


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J Excellent proven design L You sacrifice some power for speed
J Blazing speed in a saltwater reel L Would love an aluminum drag star
J Casts like a champ!  
J Surprisingly smooth retrieve  
J Excellent drag performance  
J Outstanding price  

Conclusion: Whether it is fresh or salt Daiwa continues to build some of the very best products out there. The SealineX 50SHV may not be the newest reel on the block, but it has staked out a place for itself, proving that you can deliver a balance of speed and power with a price point that is well within reach of all anglers. When surf fishing one of the last things I want to worry about is getting grit into a very expensive reel and having to deal with constant cleanings. The SealineX 50SHV is designed for this very application, and is affordable enough that you won't find yourself despondent should you repeatedly submerge the reel in sand churning surf. For just over a hundred dollars the SealineX 50SHV is a reel that should be high up on the list of any angler that braves the surf for Stripers or enjoys tossing bombs for Wahoo.










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