Flextec AeroTec Fly Reel
Following on from his look previously at the Flextec Powertec fly rod, Tim Joyce now focuses on the Flextec Aerotec Fly Reel and tries it out on some feisty trout.
I received the Aerotec 6/8 weight reel for review. This classy looking large arbour reel is gunmetal grey. Machined from high grade aerospace aluminium. This reel looks sleek and stylish.
The spool and cage are both heavily ventilated to reduce weight bringing this 6/8 weight version in at a lightweight 6oz /.170g
It is obvious that this reel has been machined to high standards. There is no play between spool and cage. When stripping line from the reel the spool rotates very smoothly with little resistance on lightly set drag. Reel line back on the spool and the reel purrs. All the edges are curved and smooth.
The reel comes with a spare spool which is easily changed via an easy grip nut located at the centre of the spool. This nut is simply loosened and the spool is easily removed. Refitting the spool requires no realignment as it smoothly slips into place and you simply retighten the central nut. As this nut is part of the spool there are no loose parts too be lost.
The reel comes set up for left hand wind but this can be simply adjusted by removing the spool unscrewing the central bearing and flipping it.
The easy grab drag wheel is located on the flip side of the reel. The drag is tightened and released smoothly with an audible click between settings allowing precise drag setting.
The drag unit is sealed to protect from dirt and grime.
The Aerotec while not bulky or large has plenty of room to accommodate a good amount of backing and a full 6 to 8 weight line without feeling cramped. The large arbour of course reduces line memory while spooled on the reel.
The Aerotec is anodised and saltwater proof, and at this size and the next I could definitely see this as the perfect saltwater fly reel. I look forward to testing this and the 9/12 weight on the bass in the estuaries when the season starts up again. The reel also comes with a stylish protective neoprene case.
I took this reel out for testing on a medium Stillwater stocked with a small head of large grown on rainbows and a few browns. I deliberately headed for the shallow flats at the southerly end of the lake with the hope of hooking a fish and testing out the Aerotec drag system to its fullest.
Loaded with a 7 weight floating line and paired with a 9ft 6 fast action rod I set up a dry fly cast. The hope was to hook one of these large fish in shallow water, knowing that this should produce blistering runs , I would be playing the fish on the reel instead of by hand in my preferred style.
A couple of close offers and a fish finally head and tailed over my claret hopper , setting the hook the fish immediately took of to the horizon and great speed, clearing the water on more than 2 occasions.
Having had the drag set lightly in anticipation of this first run , the line peeled of the reel smoothly with out drama under a steady pressure, keeping my barbless hook well set in the fishes mouth.
As the initial run slowed I tightened the drag and began to make line back on the fish, again the Aerotec was smooth and the line laid on the spool neatly without bulking. Several runs later and the fish was a nettable distance. This is the time when most fish are lost on the reel, a last minute lunge can often catch an inferior drag system, and too many times fish are lost due to an over tightened or slow drag. But the Aerotec did exactly what it should remaining smooth and composed right through the fight.
The Aerotec performed perfectly, giving me the upmost confidence in the easy grab drag system. Overall this reel balanced the rod nicely, looks great, is machined and finished to a very high standard. And offers amazing value for money.
Where to Purchase
Available from Click here to purchase or find out more details.
Prices start at just £66.49 for the reel and a spare spool!