Pros: Balance, anti-reverse, fit and finish, price and ease of use.
This Shakespeare reel is one of the nicest reels I've used. I am an avid fisherman who's budget doesn't allow for those high brow reels. I fish on the cheap so I plan my fishing purchases wisely! I have been more than pleased with this Shakespeare!
I have one of those odd affections for my fishing supplies and had been using my former favorite for about 6 years before it gave up the ghost and broke something important in the drag. I took my time to pick the right reel in my budget.
The Catera I bought is matched up to a 6' Berkley graphite rod. They balance very well together. The reel is very easy to the hand. It's light enough not to wear out your hand holding it all day but there's enough weight to last for several years.
I have one full season fishing this reel and it has met all my needs very well. This is an excellent reel for the price.
It casts very easily. The bail bumps out very nicely and keeps well clear of your fingers and the line. It flips back smoothly and has never hung up on me.
When taking the line back in the titanium line guide keeps the line going onto the spool very neatly. The spool is matched very well to the gears and doesn't leave the line slack.
The anti-reverse is right on. You can't mess it up! And the crank is the perfect fit and counter balanced. It cranks very nicely. I haven't hooked onto anything over 6lbs yet but it did very well with the bass. And it does well when you're only getting back what you sent out! the Shakespeare has yet to bind up or leave me a rat nest.
The drag is controlled from the back by a large knob. It has a rubber bumper on the back and makes for a nice feature when you do as much bank fishing as I do. It's nice when you have your rod pinned in the rocks that you have that bumper there to protect the reel. The drag is very easy to adjust on the fly. It's turns easily and doesn't leave you guessing.
I love this reel. It has become my all time favorite and would suggest it to anyone who's looking for the best you can get for under $50.
For a great place to fish with this reel!
Some other great gear:
Plano Soft Sider
Plano StowAway 5-Pack