Designed specifically with finesse fishing in mind the Daiwa Aegis offers a host of features in a super lightweight package to suit today’s modern lure angler.
|Country of Manufacture
- Real Four
- Digigear II
- Silent Oscillation
- Zaion body
- Air rotor
- ABS II
- Twistbuster II
- Real Stopper
Straight out of the box the Aegis has a love or hate appearance. Taking many design elements from the original Team Daiwa Aegis, its striking red handle and spool highlights instantly grab your attention. Whether this is to your taste is a purely personal thing and I’m sure it wont be for everyone, but it does set this reel apart from the pack.
The next thing to stand out is the relatively new Zaion skeleton handle knob, first seen on the T3 Air, which replaces the conventional rubber I knob. Size wise it’s approximately the same surface area as the original knob but it is noticeably thinner.
Magseal first seen on the 2010 Certate also makes its way further down the hierarchy of reels, now available in a sub $300 package.
In the hand the Aegis feels tight and compact, there is no playback in the handle and winding is smooth and effortless. The Zaion skeleton knob may take some getting use too but rest assured it is comfortable and still easy to grip with wet or slimey hands.
SPOOL & DRAG
Designed for finesse applications, the Aegis will perform equally well with light braid and straight through fluorocarbon lines. Both the 2004 and 2506 are shallow spool options.
For those not familiar with the Daiwa Spool Sizing, a 2004 will hold roughly 100m of 4lb, a 2506 reel – 100m of 6lb and so on. For many this might seem like a strange concept. Why would you choose a reel with a smaller line capacity than a similar reel with a larger capacity? Most light braid and spinning fluorocarbons come in 100 – 120m spools, shallow spools allow you to properly fill your reel, without the need for backing. In many situations backing is simply not necessary. Stream trout fishing is a great example of this, where you will almost never need the capacity of a shallow spool let alone a conventional spool.
Fitted with Daiwa’s UTD (Ultimate Tournament Drag) the Aegis has an ample 2kgs of drag, which is capable of putting more than enough pressure on most species you will come across with this reel. Drag pressure is smooth and even as to be expected with reel designed for finesse applications and light lines.
The drag knob features a 50 point micro click adjustment, which allows you to dial in the precise drag setting to suit light line and/or fishing conditions. The drag knob also houses a rubber gasket which prevents water intrusion into the drag system. Although its function is flawless I find its appearance is a little lack luster and it comes across a little “cheap” when compared to those found on the higher end reels like the Luvias or Certate.
Upon deconstructing the drag, it was interesting to note the very basic drag stack , consisting of just a single felt washer, drag clicker plate and drag retainer clip.
CASTING & LINE MANAGEMENT
Utilizing Daiwa’s tried and tested ABS II spool, the Aegis offers great line management and casting distance as we have come to expect from this setup. We have the reel spooled with 12lb Sunline Castaway, and have experienced very few line control issues, wind knots are few and far between and there is no evidence of line twist. Line lay is even and slightly forward weighted thanks to the reverse tapered spool design, which helps contribute to trouble free casting.
PRICE & APPLICATION
The Aegis suits a wide range of light range spinning application, equally well suited for fishing tiny trout streams to opens flats for bream.
Unlike many other finesse reels in the past which have reduced their weight through the use of magnesium, making them freshwater only, the Zaion frame used in the Aegis will not corrode so is perfect for both salt and freshwater use alike.
Priced in at just under $300AUD the Aegis is a great option for the budget conscious angler who still wants a quality lightweight reel.
CONSTRUCTION & DURABILITY
The Zaion carbon composite body seems to hold up extremely well to regular day to day abuse that fishing reels succumb to. After more than 6 months solid use, there is no obvious marks or defects on any part of the body, rotor or spool, even on areas prone to wear such as the reel feet and stem.
The only disappointment was the lettering on the side engine plates which is just printed on and not etched in like on some of the more expensive reels in the Daiwa line up, this would be ok, but the durability of this printed lettering is questionable at best, with the lettering rubbing off quite easily, especially when trying to grip and turn the handle screw cap.
With “washable” listed as one of its features, we have taken this one step further (be it unintentionally), and have actually submerged this reel on several occasions (in freshwater) where it has slipped off a mossy log or gotten bumped off a rock in the commotion of landing a fish. While we do not recommend this, its good to know that the Aegis takes it in its stride, and a few shakes and a spin of the handle and the reel was back to normal with no short or long term negative effects.
Overall the Aegis offers a solid little package for those looking for a lightweight, well performing reel for finesse and general light line applications. Blending a great bunch of features with a affordable price tag makes the Aegis an option for even the budget conscious angler.
PROS & CONS
|No Spare Spool
|Quality at an affordable price
|Writing on side plates rubs off easily
|Excellent corrosion resistance and durability thanks to Zaion construction and Mag Sealed components
|Drag knob appearance
WHERE TO BUY
The Aegis series of reels can be purchased from most good tackle stores. A list of Daiwa stockists can be found here.