Motorcycle Fly Reel Test: Abel Pt. 5

We graded each reel on a 1-5 scale in three areas:
1. Price
2. How the reel felt and reacted as the motorcycle sped away
3. How we like handling the reel

Then we made “judges deductions” for any beefs we had about the reels.

Price/Features
This was the first "big time" trout reel most of us ever bought. It's still a standard around the world. We tested the non-ported version, which retails at $360. The ported (lighter) version costs $50 more.
Score: 4 out of 5

How it "Met the Street"
Frankly, a bit disappointing. We tested all trout reels with 4X tippet connections to the bike, and the Pt. 5 was the only one to break the tippet … twice. Definite vibrations resulted when we started the pull, and the drag, while probably one of the strongest in terms of capability, hiccupped at slower speeds.
Score: 2 out of 5

Functional Review
The ported model is probably worth the extra $50 bucks, if only to lighten things up. True, while a tad heavy, this reel is seemingly indestructable, and aside from this roadside test, we can vouch for the fact that it has caught thousands of trout on three continents without much back-talk.
Score: 3 out of 5

Knocks
Having to use a screwdriver or coin to unscrew the reel to pop the spool free (then having to be careful so the internal components don't fall away) seems like overkill, especially on a trout-sized reel. The spool-popping process is more cumbersome than it should be.
Deductions: -1

Total Score: 8

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