What is the deal with the Shimano Calcutta's? I know Abu's and Penn's are the traditional conventional favorites, and I see some talk about Diawa's and even Newall's, but why do not more people use Calcutta's - cost or function (problems)?
It's a precision reel. Well made but the 700 doesn't cast that well; the 400 casts great but doesn't have much capacity unless you use spectra. The drags are a bit lacking if you want to go over 20# and the 700 is uncomfortably wide. For the price, the 700 is a lot, but the 400 is a light-tackle gem.
Closeout specials on the non-Mag Penn 525 and others (like J&H's Quantum 325 for $39!) make the 700 even more unattractive. The "TE" series are totally tricked out Calcuttas with Trinidad-style internals. 6BB and drilled out spools, hence the sky-high price tag; normal Calcs run around $150-170.
I mostly fish on the Outer Banks. The biggest complaint that I have seen leveled at the Calcutta's is that they cannot tolerate even small amounts of sand and that it is very difficult to get sand out of them.
Pretty much everyone I discussed this issue with acknowledges that they are very well built. However, their tolerances are too tight and foul up very easlily.
My two cents worth.
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