It is not every day that one throws his reputation to the dogs but I think my day sure has come. I may possibly be about to commit heresy in the cheap fishing reel world. By the way, cheap being under $70, or within the range of being safe from being forced to spend the night on the couch after your wife finds the receipt(pflueger president $49.99). Cheap being you are still not quite the gear snob looking down on the mere peasant. Him with his Ugly Stick while you call for drinks and cast your high end Shimano. I’m cheap and because I’m cheap, I’m still married!
I may be cheap, but I have always been very picky when it comes to fishing gear. This especially holds true when it comes to my reels. Buy the right reel and you are good to go. Buy the wrong reel and you feel like you brought your mother-in-law with you every time you head to the lake or stream. So with that in mind, it is not uncommon for me to stare at a computer screen until my eyes bleed researching gear and tackle.
I recently spent a large amount of time seeking a new reel. It was such a large span of time that my wife was starting to use words like “deranged”, and “obsessive”. After all, she asked, who spends a week looking at a bunch of gears and spools encased in Chinese plastic? Well, this guy does, and if you are reading this article, so do you!
After spending my deranged week searching for the right reel, I was foaming at the mouth and had become a recluse like Howard Hughes. At about the time I was about to start collecting my bodily fluid in jars, I finally reached a decision. The Pflueger President. After all, if the forums said it was the reel to get, it had to be true!
I spent $56.39 online. I didn’t have the stamina to wait for it to be shipped, so I went right to the store. Of course you can’t just buy a fishing reel, so I bought a new rod. I grabbed a Shakespeare Light Ugly Stick. So for around $85, I had a new trout and smallmouth combo.
Stream side with the Pflueger President
The Pflueger President Model I purchased was the 6925X, rated for 6 lbs test and with a max drag of 6 pounds. I took it to the stream by our home a few days after the purchase. It was late March, and the Tennessee Trout season was well underway. Casting was as expected, but nothing special. It is of course no Shimano. While enjoying my sweet Cohiba cigar which I ordered few days ago from Famous-smoke I caught a few fish that morning, and I didn’t feel like I taxed the capabilities of the reel enough.
The next weekend was different, and after landing a few larger rainbows I started to notice that the Pflueger President spinning reel was not just cheap in cost, but it truly was a “Cheap reel”. The line started wrapping around the spool, often and it became a huge frustration. It cost me a nice trout at one point. I have had $20 cheap reels do better than this!
I tried fooling with it that night to fix it, and even switched fishing line. Two days later I was at it again, and after a few minutes I started having the same problem. I would have to remove the spool every time and untangle the line. I have had this happen to me a few times with reels, but never with a Pflueger.
Pflueger President Spinning Reel Conclusion
I felt that the overall construction of the Pflueger President was cheap, compared to Shakespeare, Abu Garcia, and low end Shimanos like Sienna. Their reel only came with one spool. Many other companies offer 2 spools with the reel for the same price.
To their credit, I contacted Pflueger, and they replaced the reel with a new one. The new reel did not have the same problems, but still felt cheap. I still use it today, but only as a backup rod I keep in the truck. If you are in the market for a new light to medium action reel, I suggest looking elsewhere. The Pflueger President gets 3 stars out of 5 for me, and there are certainly better options from Pflueger line out there. If you are looking for real quality take a look at Patriarch XT.
At the end, I highly suggest you still take advantage of the low prices going on , but remember to approach The Pflueger President spinning reel with caution.
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