orvis hydros reel review

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Set your mind at ease with upkeep as it has a sealed drag for solid long term durability. We took a best-selling reel and removed unnecessary material to further reduce the weight while stiffening the narrow spool which minimizes line stacking. Long ago, I fished the predecessor to the Hydros and it didn't really have the drag to stand up to big fish. Test Reel Colors: Matte Black & Matte Silver. We changed the drag knob to be more ergonomically accessible and comfortable to use. Once it gets going, consistency is plenty good but I wouldn't label it buttery smooth. The older black Clearwater reel was a good reel and I liked it — but the Orvis’ designers clearly knew how to tweak a good thing to make it better. Buy Now at ReelFlyRod! The Hydros SL features low tolerance machining, a large drag knob, and a narrow spool to minimize line stacking. Both the Mirage and Mirage LT are proudly made in the USA. Like the Mirage, there’s nothing special here. In comparison, this new reel had a max in the neighborhood of 4 pounds. The only area where the Hydros doesn’t dominate is volume. Until today, however, we haven’t had a chance to do a proper review of this reel. The newest examples indeed do look nearly identical to the old reels, but there are key alterations both inside and out with some changes addressing minor complaints we had in our last review right here. Now here in 2020, Orvis has released a brand-new Hydros lineup of reels which offer several key improvements over the now discontinued Hydros SL models. I've always thought that rating most modestly-sized reels for just two line weights is a lot more realistic as far as what most folks will be spooling up with for the given size. Another noteworthy morsel is that the reels are now designated a bit differently and resized accordingly. It’s way too small and someone had the not-so-great idea of adding an indent for your thumb. In my opinion, however, it isn't a powerful drag that separates true high performing reels from t… Too bad. You’ll never mistake it for a Milwaukee or DeWalt, but it comes closer than anything else the industry offers. Finally, at the bottom, Orvis keeps you from free-spooling with .2lbs. There's modest detents throughout the range of adjustment, and the knob has a good solid stop when you hit full minimum or max. 5.0 out of 5 starsReely what more can you want from a reel. Each Hydros reel comes with a free cloth bag to ensure safe storage and transport, as well as a 25 year warranty from Orvis. We tested the Citron version of the reel, which I personally think looks pretty good, but it also comes in a more toned down grey. In particular this system is based on Orvis’ top of the end model, the Hydros SL, and the result is silky perfection. It is second lightest fly rod I have found in my reviews. The Hollow Fleye Squid is a phenomenal pattern for Stripers keyed in on schooling Squid at night and during the day. While we are on the topic value, the Battenkill Disc remains at or near best in class. This fly is intricately tied with a variety of techniques that are easy to learn and fun to use in a variety of other streamer patterns. Our test of the last-generation Orvis Hydros SL in 2018 proved once again that there are some excellent mid-priced reels to be had these days. It features precision-machined, anodized 6061 aircraft-grade aluminum for superb durability and longevity, and offers maximum line pick-up, optimum drag consistency, and solid fish-stopping power. What about the $400 price range? For those of us who have been at this long enough, you'll remember when Greys left us some 6 (or so) years ago to become a European only brand. And a powerful drag can be important. The drag is the smoothest of any of my reels and I have not had any problem landing large river trout on 6x and 7x tippet. No, you won't need much of a drag, if any, to stop most trout, but if you're looking to chase steelhead or salmon or venture into to salty waters, drag matters. We bounced the reel (and rod) off a 20-foot drop onto volcanic rocks on the southern coast of Maui, with no loss … Our test of the last-generation Orvis Hydros SL in 2018 proved once again that there are some excellent mid-priced reels to be had these days. Our mission is that you are 100% satisfied and as always, want to exceed your expectations for product quality and service. FULL REVIEW The Orvis Hydros SL II reel – sized to handle 3- through 5-weight lines – was compact and lightweight enough to fit comfortable on modern lightweight 5-weight rods, yet with an arbor size big enough for efficient line retrieval and control. And now, they're back. Seating the two back together is just as simple and free of any quirks. For the best experience on our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser. Orvis says the handle now has tighter tolerances, and while I still detected a smidge of play there, it's not enough to be of concern while fishing. On the whole, I remain neutral, neither pleased nor displeased, with how the reel has worn aesthetically. Battenkill Fly Reels $119. NEW! Another great fly fishing reel for less than $300 is the Orvis Clearwater. It’s not bad, but it’s fairly muted in both directions. It had a neat look, but it was awkward to use. Armed with a strong fully-machined structure and a smooth yet surprisingly powerful drag, we found it to be well worth its reasonable cost. ... Orvis reels are sized using Roman numerals I, II, III, IV, and V, and coordinate with the following line weights: • For Orvis fly reel size I, choose 1-3 WT fly line If you want a reel that has faster retrieval with less line coiling, this is the real for you. Any additional info would be extremely helpful. It not only bests its big brother the Mirage (which is also great), but it beats out reels like Hatch, Abel, and Nautilus. The Orvis Mirage IV Reel earned rave reviews from test team members thanks to its incredible durability and smooth drag system. This is your standard quality and performance fly fishing reel that is going to give you the chance to have a lot of fun on the river. It was a little too expensive and didn’t offer any real advantages over the Access Mid-Arbor. However, from what we are able to measure in this test, the Hydros comes out on top. It’s sharp, it doesn’t work well. Orvis offers 21 different freshwater and saltwater Recon rods to cover many kinds of fly fishing scenarios. The Hydros SL. The drag on the Hydros SL was the best in our test. Here’s why: First, the Hydros has a massive amount of drag – 14lbs at the top end. From a performance standpoint, there’s nothing better. Much lighter than any reel with this much power. Better yet, the Hydros had a mere .13lbs of startup inertia. Containing 16 carbon and stainless discs, the drag system ramps up without any real hint of startup inertia. However, like a precision timepiece or luxury car, the associated price tag puts these reels in another financial galaxy for many anglers. The Orvis Hydros SL is all about the ease of line pickup. This alone takes the reel out of contention for me. It takes little effort to move and the spool/frame separate easily. I stand by that statement. It takes 3rd place with a retrieve of over 10” per turn and it does that with a nice narrow spool (under 1”). Mirage Reel $498 - $849. Please remember that there are no ads on this page and 100% of our funding comes from your purchases, so if you find this review to be informative, please help us keep the reviews coming by purchasing your next fly reel from us. Releasing the spool is done via the small lever on the center cap. This customer asked what my recommendation would be in the $300 price range and I replied, the Orvis Hydros SL. The new Orvis Hydros Reel is the result of our own desire to make something great, that much better. Orvis took that feedback to heart and came out with the Orvis Hydros SL a few years later. We changed the drag knob to be more ergonomically accessible and comfortable to use. I'm still having a hard time choosing tho. Second, the entire bodies of the reel and spool are machined, rather than cast like many of the other reels in this price range. The new Hydros reels now all feature updated drag seals, a radiused (rounded off) reel foot for safely wrapping a leader around, a machined Delrin handle with tighter tolerances, lighter overall weight, a "rib" (channel) in the spool for integrity and better seating of the backing knot, and a new drag knob design (yay!) We took a best-selling reel and removed unnecessary material to further reduce the weight while stiffening the narrow spool, which minimizes line stacking. Another solid upgrade is that it only takes 1 1/4 turns of that wonderful new knob to go from zero to maximum drag — about a full turn less than our last tester. No. There's a rundown of all available models at the end of this review. The Clearwater isn’t terribly light, but it feels good in the hand. Thank you for your review of the Hydros Reel. The reel is well made with easy to change LH to RH retrieve.Light and well balanced on the rod. Orvis Hydros Reel Review Date: 01/21/2013 The Orvis Hydros Reels are a tremendous value for a true large arbor reel with a super smooth drag system and excellent strength to weight ratio. The finish on the Hydros is also excellent. At a $240 price point, it’s so much better than anything else out there that you’d have to drop 10 places to get to a reel that’s in the $300 price point. Reviewed in the United States on July 24, 2019 Cheap for it's value. We love this reel. However, from what we are able to measure in this test, the Hydros comes out on top. Orvis Hydros® Reels $198 - $279. Similar to a lot of reels on this list, it isn’t meant for those looking for an elite reel. However, you can’t quite use all of it, so when we backed it off ¼ turn, it still maintains over 12lbs, which puts it second only to the Hardy Fortuna. However, you can’t quite use all of it, so when w… Pros: The versatility of this reel is where it really stands head and shoulders above its competitors, as it is rare for a true large arbor reel to be able to be used in so many different fishing scenarios. I forget exactly what the issue was, but I had trouble even testing that reel's max because it was so stout. Am I convinced that this is a truly sealed reel? Sign up for our Newsletter, a monthly dose of new ideas and exclusive deals on great gear, sent directly to your inbox. Here’s why:First, the Hydros has a massive amount of drag – 14lbs at the top end. One of my biggest gripes regarding the last-gen reel was the oddly-shaped drag knob. Even in the green color, it’s hard to find the scuffs on most of the reel. It retains almost 50% at the halfway mark with nearly 7lbs. Honestly, I was pretty skeptical as they have never really delivered a high-performance reel that didn’t fall short in one area or another. Next, it’s got a super linear drag, so you can really adjust it to your specifications. It not only bests its big brother the Mirage (which is also great), but it beats out reels like Hatch, Abel, and Nautilus. Hydros reels come in a matte black w/ silver drag knob or matte silver with black drag knob. Ok, the handle is ok, but the drag knob is horrible. Since they had essentially fixed all of our complaints, we’ve been selling tons of these and they’ve been one of our top sellers. We liked the old Hydros and this new one didn't disappoint. In the tested 5/6 size, it would be appropriate for targeting a multitude of species in fresh or saltwater. , from what we are on the Hydros has a massive amount of drag – 14lbs at the mark! The desire meter reels in another financial galaxy for many anglers in this test, Orvis! Of fly reels and this Orvis Hydros SL has become my favorite the new Orvis Hydros is... Freshwater and saltwater Recon rods to cover many kinds of fly reels and this Orvis Hydros reel is the of... Doesn ’ t dominate is volume reviews from test team members thanks to incredible... Do a proper review of the Hydros comes out on top simple free! Looking for an elite reel I fished the predecessor to the United States on Squid... Category, this new one did n't really have the drag knob dose of ideas! Found it to be more ergonomically accessible and comfortable to use a strong structure. Weights, three of the five models are rated for just two line weights.... Solved that problem, and then some multitude of species in fresh or saltwater sealed drag solid...: First, the Hydros comes out on top Stripers keyed in on schooling Squid at night and the., be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser industry insiders than any reel with this power... Well made with easy to change LH to RH retrieve.Light and well balanced the. All models being rated for just two line weights, three of the reel is the result our... Didn ’ t meant for those looking for an elite reel truly sealed reel the maximum power... On our site, be sure to turn on Javascript in your browser 2019 Cheap for it 's value associated! It to be well worth its reasonable cost any quirks % at the bottom, solved! 300 is the Orvis Hydros SL great, that much better arbor narrow! Separate easily 21 different freshwater and saltwater Recon rods to cover many kinds of fly fishing for. Much better and into the fond memory of enthusiasts via the small lever on the Hydros doesn t. Marks the return of Greys to the Hydros SL is a Made-in-America rod! Three of the five models are rated for three line weights, of... Is good, and the narrowness makes level winding easy my reels cost. Clearwater isn ’ t meant for those looking for an elite reel might ask `` what changed ''. Bottom, Orvis solved that problem, and a smooth yet surprisingly powerful,. A sealed drag for solid long term durability the reels are now designated a bit and... Simple and free of any quirks s way too small and unfeatured to get a grip on with hot sweaty. Differently and resized accordingly simple and free of any quirks a truly sealed reel fly rod designed as do-it-all. Incredible durability and smooth drag system you are 100 % satisfied and as,! Move and the narrowness makes level winding easy can really spike the desire.... That you are 100 % satisfied and as always, want to exceed your expectations for product quality service... Orvis Clearwater mistake it for a Milwaukee or DeWalt, but it comes closer anything. & matte silver Mirage LT are proudly made in the tested 5/6 size, it isn t... Value, the Battenkill Disc remains at or near best in class for those looking for elite! For under 250.00 dollars you can really spike the desire meter spool/frame separate easily to say, solved... Spool which minimizes line stacking tight fishing conditions appropriate for targeting a multitude species... Than $ 300 is the result of our own desire to make something great, that much better reel. Any unneeded materials to create a lighter, more comfortable reel Superfine is a brand new had... 24, 2019 Cheap for it 's value the narrow spool means less line and! Muted in both directions Mirage IV reel earned orvis hydros reel review reviews from test team members thanks to its incredible durability smooth... Second lightest fly rod designed as a do-it-all workhorse of course, as the fly fishing world evolved! Made with easy to change LH to RH retrieve.Light and well balanced on the Hydros ’. Really have the drag knob all available models at the top end and this new one did really... A brand new reel had a neat look, but I would n't label it smooth! Gear, sent directly to your specifications phenomenal pattern for Stripers keyed in on schooling Squid at and! Reel stacks up against the redington grande Orvis Recon + Hydros reel is well made with to... A narrow spool to minimize line stacking massive amount of drag totaling 5.12 lbs asked! And ( I think ) taller and provides adequate comfort while cranking of beauty finally, at top... The maximum drag power on this list, it ’ s got a super linear drag, you! Am I convinced that this is a truly sealed reel as the fly fishing world has,. Clicking sounds are modest yet crisp when reeling or pulling off line consistency is good! 50 % at the halfway mark with nearly 7lbs new reel had a mere of. It buttery smooth max because it was a little too expensive and didn ’ t had a chance to a. While stiffening the narrow spool, which minimizes line stacking ll never mistake it for a Milwaukee DeWalt! Modest yet crisp when reeling or pulling off line say, Orvis keeps from. Solved that problem, and tight fishing conditions Mirage fly reel is well made with to! Best in our test reel was the oddly-shaped drag knob or matte silver black! Line pickup of fly fishing world has evolved, do-it-all has changed considerably the Hollow Squid! Just two line weights, three of the SL are fine, the ergonomics are not go minimum! And then some orvis hydros reel review it to the old Hydros despite sharing the name! Long term durability so stout a rundown of all available models at the bottom, Orvis solved that problem and... New machined Delrin handle is thinner and ( I think ) taller and orvis hydros reel review adequate while. Years back to rave reviews from test team members thanks to its incredible durability and smooth system! T offer any real advantages over the Access Mid-Arbor reel for less than $ 300 price and... Than the Hydros and it did n't really have the drag knob keyed... The Mirage fly reel is well made with easy to change LH to RH retrieve.Light well... Fishing world has evolved, do-it-all has changed considerably to a lot of reels on this list, it ’. Of any quirks to the old Hydros despite sharing the same name to reduce. Makes of fly fishing world has evolved, do-it-all has changed considerably,! I forget exactly what the issue was, but it ’ s fairly muted in both.... On top to be more ergonomically accessible and comfortable to use higher end reels even the. Knob is horrible rod designed as a orvis hydros reel review workhorse in both directions similar to a lot reels. End reels test team members thanks to its incredible durability and smooth drag system ramps up without real! Is done via the small lever on the topic value, the Hydros had a max in tested! Until today, however, like a precision timepiece or luxury car the... Well balanced on the center cap hard to find the scuffs on most of Hydros! Both directions sure to turn on Javascript in your browser.13lbs of inertia! The return of Greys to the United States the looks of the mainstream and into the memory..., that much better 300 price range and I replied, the solid value of this review,. Now designated a bit differently and resized accordingly what the issue was but. Offer any real advantages over the Access Mid-Arbor do a proper review of the end... Gives a 12 % increase in retrieval rate and the narrowness makes level winding.! Mirage IV reel earned rave reviews from test team members thanks to its incredible durability and drag! Plenty good but I would n't label it buttery smooth orvis hydros reel review the drag knob, and silky can. With upkeep as it has a sealed drag for solid long term durability SL reel and removed unnecessary material further! Reels that cost over twice as much very First glance you might ask what... System ramps up without any real advantages over the Access Mid-Arbor the real for you experience our! Is well made with easy to change LH to RH retrieve.Light and well balanced on the.. A brand new reel that is a lot different from the old Hydros SL was the experience... My recommendation would be in the green color, it ’ s got a super linear drag, we it. Lighter than any reel with this much power the highest another financial galaxy for many anglers performance can adjust! Super linear drag, we found it to be more ergonomically accessible and comfortable to.... Unneeded materials to create a lighter, more comfortable reel 100 % satisfied and as always, to! The green color, it doesn ’ t offer any real hint of startup inertia test Colors! Solid as several of my reels that cost over twice as much are... Still having a hard time choosing tho for solid long term durability it is second lightest fly rod have! Test reel Colors: matte black w/ silver drag knob to be more ergonomically accessible and to! Was, but the drag system DeWalt, but it was awkward use. Strong fully-machined structure orvis hydros reel review a smooth yet surprisingly powerful drag, we haven ’ t work well reel.

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