Review of Okuma Trio 30S Reel
Okuma have a reputation for producing decent products at very competitive prices. The Trio was designed to meet the needs of the modern day high tech lure bass fisherman.
Lets get the specification out of the way first of all, then we can talk about what really matters – how the reel performs.
Trio 30S specification
Bearings : 10 stainless steel bearings (9 ball bearings + 1 roller bearing in bale arm)
Gear Ratio : 6.2:1
Line retrieve per handle turn : 31 inches
Capacity : 200m of 6lb (0.22mm) mono, 110m of 10lb (0.30mm) mono
There are a whole load of buzz words and acronyms, many of which I cannot pronounce, let alone understand…
Multi disc, Japanese-oil felt drag washers
DFD : Dual force drag system
precision machine cut brass pinion gear
CRC : corrosion resistant coating process
HDGII : Corrosion resistant high density gearing
Crossover aluminium and graphite hybrid body/rotor design
Precision elliptical gearing
Hybrid spool design with graphite arbor and aluminium lip
ADC Aluminium Drag Chamber precision spool system
Rigid forged aluminium handle design
Hydro block water tight drag seal
Heavy Duty aluminium anodized bail wire
RESII Computer balanced rotor equalizing system
Back in the real world, let have a look at the reel. The box contains a couple of small washers…
These can be added to the spool spindle to change the profile of the line lay on the spool ie. to move the line lay from the back to the front. A nice touch, particularly if you are serious about your plug chucking.
As you can see from the image, the reel looks the part, lots of aluminium and carbon. Quite an unusual looking reel – the aluminium components are attached to the graphite body – weather this means the individual components are replaceable is doubtful – but it does look good and the reel is well made.
Starting at the front of the reel, the roller is big and chunky and looks like it will resist saltwater and stop the line from twisting…
The 30S does not come with a spare spool, which is a shame for a reel of this price. The spool itself is quite shallow – ideal for braid. The front drag is very, very smooth – this was one area where I was very impressed. The spool also contains the usual line clip.
The bale and other components of the reel look like they are tough…
The anti reverse switch is located under the reel…
The reel stem looks strong, time will tell…
Moving around to the other side of the reel, the single handle looks well made. The reel does not come with a spare handle.
The knob on the end of the handle is made of soft foam – this adds a bit of comfort when continually casting and retrieving lures all day.
That concludes the tour of the reel – but what about the most important thing; “How does the reel perform ?”. I decided to take the reel to Wales for a spot of kayak fishing, and chuck a few plugs around to find out.
I loaded the reel with some new Varivas 9Kg yellow braid (I love this stuff – things have changed so much since I started using braid many years ago).
I tied on a long fluorocarbon leader and added a silver holo Maria chase BW plug. The reel was matched to a Teklon Concept Spin 702L rod. The outfit felt very balanced.
I couldn’t resist a couple of gratuitous photos before fishing !
I managed a small bass before losing my beloved Maria Chase BW plug. I had caught a decent bull huss on the Okuma Cortez rod and then a crazy thought entered my warped kayak fishing mind….
“I wonder what this outfit can handle ?”
The Teklon rod had alot of backbone, and the reel seemed to be pretty string – the clutch was defiitely up to the job of handling something bigger than a bass.
So I strapped on a set of baited feathers and a 3 ounce weight and cast it out over the reef to see what events would unfold.
I didn’t have to wait long for an answer. The tip of the little spinning rod lunged forwards as some unseen fish tried to tow the kayak to Ireland ! I struck, but there was really no need – whatever was on the other end was not happy. The clutch on the 30S was singing – but was coping well. The rod was bent double, but holding its own. After a couple of initial runs, slowly I started to regain a bit of line.
Eventually, I caught a glimpse of the fish in the clear water below the kayak. It was a bull huss – but it was huge ! The fish made another couple of dives before finally I managed to get it alongside the kayak and drag it on board for some photos. I have caught alot of huss from the reef, they are quite common, and lots of them run around double figures, but this one looked more like 15lbs – Crazy stuff on such light gear – what a scrap !
So in terms of strength – I would give the Okuma Trio 30S top marks – I know the reel is designed to cast lightweight plastics, but I could not have given it a better test. It passed with flying colours.
Will it last the test of time ? Well the specification contains all of the anti-corrosion buzzwords, but one of my kayak fishing friends had issues with his Trio reel seizing; so be aware. I will be using this reel in the coming months, and you know that I will test it to the max – watch this space !
The Okuma Trio 30S is available from Veals mail order for £69….