Stronger, lighter, faster, more realistic - you've heard those buzzwords for everything from lures to line and reels to rods. And that's not just market-speak. Sure, some advertisements ooze a bit of hype, but each year, we find plenty of reasons for those superlatives in new and innovative products.
This year, we see evidence that even economic downturn can't quell the creative mind. Many companies have improved on already technically outstanding gear, while others generated completely new concepts. Here is just a glimpse of what to look for in 2009:
Shimano Stella SW
The Stella name already signifies high-tech excellence inshore; now that translates to offshore saltwater fishing with added durability features such as a cold-forged, ceramic-coated aluminum spool, proprietary spool lip coating and diamond-like carbon line roller.
SWs come in six models in 10- to 30-pound classes, including an 8000SW with higher-speed gears (5.6-to-1) for butterfly jigging and an 8000SWPG with lower-speed gears (4.9-to-1) for Lucanus jigging. Gear ratios for all models range from 4.4-to-1 up to 6.2-to-1; max drag starts at 29 pounds for the lightest reel and jumps to 51 and 55 pounds for the heavier reels.
Other features include Shimano's Paladin Gear Durability Enhancement, Propulsion Line Management System and Aero Wrap II Oscillation. The SWs weigh 14.3 to 30.2 ounces and cost $729.99 to $949.99. Call 877-577-0600, or visit http://fish.shimano.com.