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.

$58.75. That says a lot right there. For an introductory or mid-level fly reel; even a backup reel for the seasoned angler, we give SA high props for throwing its hat in the ring and accepting the challenge.
Score: 5 out of 5

How it “Met the Street”
Nice performance, all-around. Must say this reel held up admirably against the thoroughbred competition. It wasn’t silky smooth during the startup or the run, but it didn’t break off that 4X tippet. At trout speeds, it made us wonder how much a reel investment is really worth … adequate is adequate. This reel will stop Mr. Brown Trout in his tracks without assaulting the wallet.
Score: 3 out of 5

Functional Review
Let’s be brutally honest: the drag settings are abrupt. This isn’t a “well oiled machine” in the context of the higher-priced competition. But functionally, it’s just fine. Easy to operate, easy to open, easy to crank. And when all is said and done, if you break off the big trout, it isn’t going to be the fault of this reel. It’s stable, reliable and a very decent value.
Score: 3 out of 5

It doesn’t look particularly pretty. The drag control is archaic and simple. The “feel factor” is very basic, and the overall durability seems average to good. But in the context of coiling that line at the end of the rod, and offering some legitimate braking effect on running fish, this reel held its own. A smart, frugal option.
Deductions: -.5

Total Score: 10.5 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