Stillwater | BPX Big Pit Compact Reel
OFFER PRICE: £44.99 | Online: chapmansangling.co.uk
A good reel is an essential part of your gear, as it is the drive train that does all the work. When I think back to some of the reels I used to press into service, I cringe at just how inadequate they were. As soon as I had more money at my disposal, I started to spend more cash on this particular item of gear; in fact, I became a bit of a reel snob. This all changed recently, when I got a set of Stillwater BPX Big Pit Compact Reels for long-term test, and I was impressed from the start. The reel looked good in its matt black and red livery, and had a good solid feel to it, which inspired confidence. However, like anything, it’s only when you use something that you can truly comment. I filled the reel with heavy-duty 0.40mm line, simply because the water I’m currently fishing is a harsh environment. The machined aluminium spool actually took more than it claimed, and a rough guesstimate would be that it swallowed about 230m, a slight increase on the stated 165yds. This went on smoothly, and in spite of its wiry nature, it sat beautifully on the spool. In use, the reel cast superbly and the line lay has remained impeccable so far, which is 3 months of heavy use. The clutch is also very smooth and has the capability to be slackened off to give line on the take, and can be locked-up solid in two full turns. During some prolonged and powerful battles, the clutch has been very impressive and displays no snatching or sticking; it’s a great performer and inspires confidence. This reel has the power and guts to be an excellent spod or marker reel, but don’t be fooled into thinking that it doesn’t also make a great all-round carp-fishing reel of a size that is perfect for most fishing situations. The BPX Compact is well worth a look and offers outstanding value for money, and when you consider you can pick up three for £120, you can’t really afford to ignore them, can you?