Equipped with armfuls of new rods and reels, the Outdoor Life new tackle test team descended on Buras, Louisiana to put the new gear through its paces against some of the toughest fish that swim: bull redfish.
Shimano Core 50Mg7
The Core 50Mg7 is billed as Shimano’s most compact and lightest baitcaster ever. After wrapping our paws around this sweet little package, we have to agree. The 5.5-ounce Core is constructed of magnesium (hence the “Mg” nomenclature), a metal lighter than aluminum.
A significant amount of thought went into the design and manufacture of this reel. For instance, the largest component, the gearbox, rests below the reel seat. The unconventional positioning lets the reel crouch low on the rod, which we found particularly ingenious.
The paddle-style grips (with stylish red anodized porting) house internal bearings, and the legendary Shimano drive system tracks motor-oil smooth. As diminutive as this reel is, it is surprisingly fast, with a retrieve ratio of 7:1.
The Core handled 1/8-ounce baits with ease and can easily be fished down to 4- or 6-pound-test when a bite in gin-clear water demands ultra-light line. A tapered titanium level-wind insert enables the 50Mg7 to accommodate superlines while remaining gentle on pliable monofilaments.
All this forward-thinking engineering comes at a considerable cost, though. The boat-payment price tag could be a tough pill to swallow for casual fishermen. [ shimano.com ]