Reel & Line

Field & Stream Online Editors

Shimano Calcutta TE DC Baitcasting Reels
The new electronic baitcasters from Shimano are generating lots of buzz. At about $500, yes, they're expensive. But even as a parsimonious old Yankee, I'd pay that much for one. They're just that good. The science behind the performance works like this: A stationary electromagnet sits inside the large spool core. That magnetic control is both electrically powered and continuously varied by a small circuit board in the side plate. When you cast, a ferrous component attached to the revolving aluminum spool helps generate electricity. An optical sensor reads the spool's rate of rotation and varies the power accordingly to avoid backlash. By means of an external dial, you can set the reel for a range of eight different situations. _$500; 949-951-5003; _

** Berkley Vanish Transition**
When Berkley's Brian Thomas first showed me this new fluorocarbon line at a recent trade show, I made him do the demo twice. The first time I saw it, I just didn't believe my eyes. Their well-known fluorocarbon line has been reformulated to glow bright golden-yellow when exposed to ultraviolet (UV) light. That means it's easy to see above the surface for better bite detection. Below, where water quickly filters out the UV rays, the same line turns clear-read invisible. Amazing, and hence comes this glowing report. I've since fished the new line on both spinning and baitcasting reels. It behaves quite well, and knot strength seems ample. _$15 for a 250-yard "filler" spool of 8-pound-test; 800-237-5539; _