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Event Article: El Salto with Shimano

Fishing El Salto with pre-release Shimano Tackle and Jimmy Houston (continued)

New Shimano gear: Jeremy (Product Manager-Reels) and Justin (Product Manager-Rods) armed us with prototypes of their new products minutes before we hit the water at El Salto. We were equally as excited to fish the legendary lake as we were to get our hands on the tackle. The initial inspection did not disappoint. We told the two of them that we were going to beat these products up and see what they could really do, and to our surprise they told us to go to town.


Time to go fishing... good morning El Salto!


While we didn’t have all our normal test equipment with us we did our very best to stress the reels and rods with a series of torture tests. Letting the product speak for itself we did everything from crank the reels underwater to intentionally high sticking the new rods. The team at Shimano really let us try and tear these products up over three and a half days of fishing, but in the end the reels and rods simply shrugged off the punishment.


Alan from Shimano heads out with Jon the owner of Walton's Pond in San Leandro, CA

For all the exact details of the following product we have to wait until ICAST to give you the full story, but what we can do is try to stretch the limits of our information embargo and give you as much insight as we can on the new products.


Jeremy works some submerged trees with a Crucial rod


The Reels: For years anglers have been asking Shimano for a premium lightweight baitcast reel, one with a complete magnesium construction, something that really pushed the envelope and could run with the Daiwa TD-Z and now the Steez. Shimano is prepared to do just that with the introduction of two new Magnesium reels in a new series. Tackle junkies know all about the introduction of the Metanium Mg which has already been released in Japan, but the new US reel actually offers additional features!


Contact! Jeremy hauls her in...

What will the reel be named? We can’t tell you until ICAST… but here’s a hint, it rhymes with “more.” but not only will the new reel feature a ultra lightweight magnesium frame and both sideplates, it features a beautifully anodized red magnumlite spool (which looks downright sweet), HEG (High Efficiency Gearing), a cold forged aluminum drag star, Super Free, Escape hatch, VBS, the tapered Ti levelwind insert that deputed on the Calais 4x8 DC, septon grips, and a rubber shielded cast control knob.

...and lands one of countless 6lb bass that was caught over the course of three days


The reel will be available in two speeds, 6.2:1 and 7.0:1, and get this, one of the versions will even have the Instagage II switch! Jeremy has made a masterpiece in the new C*** reels, and it is the most enthusiast looking reel Shimano has ever deputed till date, and we like it!


Jeremy checks the weight


On the spinning side Shimano has gone all out, making improvements to their entire top end line from Stella all the way through Stradic. The challenge was a tough one, and the company was looking for a way to increase all aspects of the spinning reel performance for anglers. These designs took over three years of development and a host of new innovations.


The new magnesium based baitcaster from Shimano


To do this Shimano interviewed anglers, the media, guides, and dealers to do their complete analysis of what they expected, what they wanted, and what did they resign themselves to accept. The end result was three critical targets, gear durability, casting performance, and line management. What they came up with was a new gear durability enhancement called “Paladin,” a new propulsion line management system, and a new worm gear oscillation system called “Aerowrap II.”


The reel features a red magnumlite spool

We will disclose exactly what all these features are and do at ICAST, but can tell you the new Stradic Fl is going to be better than the old Sustain in many ways, making room for another brand new reel right under the Stradic called Saros.


The reel is extremely comfortable to palm


The Saros features all of the enhancements of the higher end reels minus the Aero Wrap II. Some of the most noticeable changes in the components include the long stroke propulsion spool, and a one piece SR bail wire. The design elements are both technically and aesthetically aggressive, and can confirm after a week of beta testing that you will not only see but feel the difference.


It looks right at home mounted on the new rod series

Next Section: How about those new rods?









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