I love Lew's (maybe BB1NG) with a 4.4:1 ratio, but I use a Quantum Energy E-400 (5.1:1) because it matches my other reels. I believe you are better off using all the same type of reel so that your hand positions while casting and reeling do not have to change from reel to reel. I'm sure you will receive all kinds of answers on this one.
Up until last September, I would have said a Shimano Curado. Period. But then I had the chance to try out my dad's brand new Shimano Scorpion 1000. I'm hooked on that reel!! For guys with small hands like me, the Scorpion is terrific. The new CU100 Curado is very nice too, they just don't make one in a left hand version yet(dangit!!)
Jason, my best crankbait reel has been the Shimano Corsair 301A.
A lot of people don't like the Corsairs (the original, pre-model "A" series had reliability problems). It's a shame because they cast medium to large crankbaits very well, and have a good ratio and line pickup rate to keep a deep running, big wobbling crankbait moving along at a nice rate without having to apply too much muscle.
For shallow running, lighter crankbaits and minnows, I prefer a reel with a 6.2 or 6.3 ratio.
I've got the Shammao Cruado 201, which is a left hand crank. This is my
FIRST baitcast reel and was recommended to me by an online bassfishing
friend. I LOVE IT! Being my first, took a bit but got use to it fast. I want another
one only right handed this time. The break system is awsome in my veiw.
Your gonna get birdnests, but show me a baitcaster user who dont, and
I'll...well....never mind, dont wanna do that! lol, but I love mine!
Uh-oh...... I had thought / hoped I'd never see the day...... I've got something in common with Todd C...... Small hands that prefer left-hand cranks....... I'm also odd man out in this discussion - I like the Royal Express reels made by Abu Garcia for BPS.
Scott, the Corsair 301A is a lefty and I dig lefty reels. I went to town on lefty reels when I first started. After a couple of long days of fishing with all lefty equipment, I realized that mixing lefty and righty was the best thing I could do to avoid wrist and elbow problems, so I'm shooting for half and half this time around.
I have a lefty Royal Express that Jeanne and I refer to as the "lucky reel." It always seems to be the one that gets hit when we have two or three shiners out.
When we fish Truman, you'll have to try out my BPS MP1-L. It's the smallest lefty round reel I've seen. It's inexpensive, no frills, and I reeled in a lot of fish with it last summer. I think you'll like it.
Check out the Rick Clunn Crankin' reels from BPS....5.3:1 ratio and available in right and left hand. They're low profile and very comfortable......i like the smaller reels too, and these are perfect for me. They're worth your time to check them out,....I wish I had a couple more myself,....I'll use them for Crankbaits, Spinnerbaits, and some Topwater lures, and I'll switch to hi-speed (6.3:1) stuff for other baits. But the RC Crankin' reels are great,...check'em out!!
My favoite real is my old Quantum MG310 (goin on almost 12 yrs and about 1000 fish). It was my fist baitcaster that I've ever used. Now I can't seem to get used to any others. I like the push button up high to the right of the real. I find that the thumb bars get in the way when I thumb the spool to control back lash. It's all what your used to I guess. Anyway, It's a classic that's been around a while. This year I'm finally buying 2 new ones. The MG1310 now has anti-reverse and comes in 3 different models and gear ratios. I'll get the 3.8:1 for my soft plastics and the 5:1 for crankin'.
Marke,...i noticed you like 3.8:1 reels for soft plastics....have you ever had trouble getting big fish out of heavy cover (deep weeds) with that low of a ratio??...I use a hi-speed (6.3:1) reel for my worm and jig fishin'...2 reasons why,.....i'm working that bait with my rod tip anyway,...the reel is only taking in line.......secondly, if i do hook up with a toad in that deep stuff,...a quick powerful hookset and 2-3 good cranks and he's up and outa that stuff before he knew what hit'em!! Try it sometime,...just work the bait with your rod tip as you normally would and that hi-speed reel will get them up out of the slop and into the boat much faster,....good luck and big limits!!
Thanks Mac,...I never thought of that way, I just like a slow retrieve with my plastics. I never put much thought into getting a fish out of cove quickly to fight him in open water. I don't tourny fish so I guess I've never been in the mind set to get fish into the boat fast. I prefer lighter tackle and fight'em all day. I play every fish likes it'll be my last one of the day.