When it comes to inshore tackle, price is not always a true measure of quality. The new Shield spinning reels and Carbon Shield rods by Tsunami are perfect examples. With sticker prices that won’t break the bank, this tackle has the features and performance of outfits costing twice as much. I’ve been using the 3000 Shield reel and 7-foot medium action Carbon Shield rod several times in recent weeks and both exceeded expectations with upper-slot trout.
The Shield reels (four models from 3000 to 6000) are built tough to handle the rigors and abuse of the saltwater environment. With up to 13 internal seals, they can take a dunking and keep on cranking without pause. I purposely submerged my test reel while wading and it never missed a beat. Other construction qualities include an anodized hybrid body, beefy bail and a machined aluminum spool with braid-friendly rubber insert. A butter-smooth drag with CF3 carbon fiber, audible adjustment clicks and five sealed stainless steel bearings add to the silky operation. The 3000 can hold 220 yards of 10-pound braid and has a 5.1:1 gear ratio.
The companion Carbon Shield rods (two each in 7-foot and 7’6” lengths in medium and medium heavy actions) are built using IM9 graphite blanks with a solid carbon tip for extra strength. Premium cork with split grips and Fuji guides with aluminum oxide inserts complete the package. The medium rod casts light shrimp lures a nautical mile and has plenty of backbone to whip trophy fish without sacrificing the sensitivity to detect subtle taps.
With water resistant integrity and durable construction, the Shield reel/rod combo is ideal for smaller boats and skiffs, kayaks or wading where high-sticking and splashes are often a problem. Sporting price tags of $99.99 for the 3000/4000 reels and $109 to $119 for the rods, this is one Tsunami you’ll be glad to see heading your way!
Available on-line, at major sporting goods retailers or independent bait and tackle shops.