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Reel Review

Shimano's new Citica 200E - Completely Redefined (continued)

Casting cont'd: We compared this observation with many of the dealers that were also fishing Dream Lake and they also noted they had observed the same thing. They also went on to say that though this was the case the Citica E cast as good or better than the previous Curado version. What we also noticed was that the new Citica E while small in overall size did offer generous access to the spool, making it easier than ever to thumb the spool for greater accuracy.

A look underneath the reel, notice how compact the gearbox is on the new reel 

Retrieve: The Citica D exhibited a small to moderate amount of backplay in the handle shank, and this has been greatly reduced in the Citica E. The reel feels much more precise, and the gearing is noticeably more connected. During our trip to Dream Lake when Cal and I were fishing one morning we got into an incredible topwater bite, during which I caught more topwater fish on poppers in the thirty minutes following sunrise than I have in the last two seasons combined.

The Curado E is noticeably better at casting weightless rigged plastics but once there is any weight on the line the Citica E is just as good

Fishing a TD Mouthwasher we could see splashes in the water as shad were being chased into the shoreline. Once in a while a bass would completely explode out of the water as shad would scatter across the surface trying to flee. I would toss the popper just beyond the blow up and time and time again the popper would either be sucked down or just completely smashed by an aggressive bass the minute it landed.

The Citica features VBS cast control which is accessed beneath the 1/8 turn sideplate

I barely had time to put the reel back in gear and my hands on the knobs before the fish would take off with the popper. The Citica E proved up for the challenge and dropping the reel into gearing quickly I was able to pick up any slack line and immediately put pressure on the hard hitting Alabama bass.

The new Citica 200E is smaller than the Curado 100D, and yet it has the same capacity as the previous 200E reels

When comparing the Citica E with the Curado E the Curado is noticeably smoother on the retrieve thanks to the increased bearing count. The knobs on the Curado E spin much more freely, especially once they have been loosened up after a few days fishing. We could not discern any frame torque when fishing big swimbaits or when a big fish was in tow. The graphite sideplates do not feel hollow like many we have seen in the past, and if you didnít know they were graphite you would swear they were aluminum.

A look at the back shows the Citica's flattened profile

The reason the graphite works in this reel is because it is such a small reel that the smaller plates do not have the opportunity to flex as far, couple this with the fact that Shimano spiders the graphite for increased rigidity and adds strategic connection points to the aluminum frame to isolate any flex points. While we still prefer aluminum if you have to use graphite to reduce weight or lower the cost this is the way to do it.

Exceptional topwater and more stuck fish thanks to the Citica's fast responsive gearing

Next Section: An upgraded drag









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