Abu Garcia Cardinal CARD STX30 Fishing Reel Review
by Fishin’ Prescription
Abu Garcia Cardinal CARD STX30 Fishing Reel Review – When the average person thinks of Swedish products they probably think of IKEA. When fishermen think of Sweden they might think of Abu Garcia reels! The Abu Garcia company was started in 1921 by Carl Borgstrom in Sweden. When the company began production they weren’t making spinning reels, they were actually making pocket watches, and taxi meters. During World War 2 demand for these things lessened leading to Carl’s decision to start manufacturing fishing reels. He did this in the year 1941. Ever since then production has been steady, they are now one of, if not the best reel makers on the planet. Despite their funny name, they do not mess around when it comes to making reels.
The reel I use most is my Abu Garcia Cardinal STX. This 9.2-ounce beauty has caught me many fish. The STX 30 has a 5.1:1 gear ratio which means that every time you turn the handle once, the line goes around the spool 5.1 times. Every time you turn that handle it retrieves 29 inches of line. All this for a pretty sweet price of around $50.
As for appearance, it looks very sleek but lacks color. It has a very metallic color scheme, with silvers and grays. I think it is nice but I have definitely seen much more visually appealing reels. To me, appearance isn’t that important, but I definitely enjoy things more if I like the look of it. As long as it catches fish right?
The handle is pretty comfortable, it is made of a hard rubber. Overall, no complaints there. It turns very smoothly and sounds nice when you catch a fish. Occasionally you need to tighten the handle as it becomes loose but over it works well.
The main thing I personally don’t like is that the drag setting is on top of the spool. I like when the dial is at the bottom of the reel for some reason. I just find it a bit more natural when I’m fighting fish. Maybe it is because my last reel, a Shimano, was like this. That is really the only negative thing I can find on this reel and it is a completely subjective problem that I’m sure most people aren’t even affected by.
All in all, I rate this reel 9/10. It looks pretty nice, but can be described as a bit boring. For around $50 it is VERY affordable. It is nice to know you can still buy great products for under $100. I like that it is comfortable and smooth. I have had it for two years now and the thing still turns like I just got it yesterday. The thing that keeps it away from being a ten on ten is the drag dial being on top. For me, it is a minor problem but for most people I’m sure it is fine. I would recommend this reel to anyone looking to get a solid spinning reel with the most bang for their buck!
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A solid and reliable fishing reel for spinning that is hard to beat on price.