On the other hand, the casting versions are more difficult. I know that there are a few decent options out there, but also plenty of absolutely terrible ones as well.
My father just ordered this:
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/Bluesea ... st=ae803_3
I only handled it in the room, but it looked absolutely terrible. I do not even think it was properly assembled as the brake was so jerky I have never seen anything like that before. The whole reel felt very underwhelming so stay away. There are plenty of variations of this reel out there, I guess they all the same.
What I hear that from around 50 or 60 dollars, you can start finding decent reels. In my country the white Haibo Steed is popular (the red one has terribly implemented magnetic brakes) and I hear the the Tsurinoya XF-50 is also decent. If you are into high-end stuff, you should absolutely stick to the traditional brands though, at least for now. It may change in a few years, who knows.
- Platinum Angler
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There are several tackle manufacturers associations. It's never bad business to reach out and educate.