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.

The Hatch Outdoors 9-Plus is the biggest reel the company markets … so far. There’s a bigger brother in development, but we threw this one to the lions. Retail is $800.
Score 3.5 out of 5

How it “Met the Street”
No warmup, no worries. We just tied it on and hit the gas. In terms of pure startup – that initial grab where the drag engages and the reel starts paying out line – this reel is one of the best. There are just no surprises. And that speaks very highly about the engineering of the drag.
Score: 4 out of 5

Functional Review
Aside from the motorcycle test, we recently fished Hatch reels down the length of the Baja and back. In the sand and the salt, and the grit … with all sorts of species pulling on them. The reels really perform well in terms of tolerance (no wobbles on the spool to frame connection) and the self-enclosed drag is very worthy.
Score: **4.5 out of 5 **

The one beef we have with these saltwater-sized Hatch reels is that the drag’s top-end braking power could get amped up just one more click. We also fished them for tarpon in Costa Rica, and had the drag maxed out. It was fine … perfect … but we wish we could have just one more gear in our back pockets.
Deduction: .5

Total Score: 11 out of 15

Watch More Reel Tests:

Trout Reels Hatch 3-Plus Nautilus 5 Abel Pt. 5 Ross Evolution Orvis Battenkill Mid Arbor Scientific Anglers System 2L Model 45L Bauer JM2 Bonefish Reels Sage 3400 Nautilus 8 Bauer MX4 Orvis Battenkill Large Arbor **Big Game Reels ** Orvis Vortex (VO2) 8-11 Nautilus 12 Hatch 9-Plus Abel Super 10