Ryobi’s new tough-as-nails Carnelian spin reel is engineered and designed in Japan for big-fish tasks such as jigging with 80lb braid for kingfish, samson fish, amberjack or dogtooth; to popper casting for big GTs; to cubing offshore for tuna. Or, fill the spool with 50lb braid, making it handy for pitching live baits at marlin, too. The best news is that the Carnelian’s mid-range price is affordable, throwing down a genuine challenge to reels offering these capabilities but at double the price, or more.
The Ryobi Carnelian has an all-metal body featuring a rubber-sealed side plate, waterproofing it from saltwater intrusion. The all-metal rotor has a stainless steel cover plate and a unique one-piece bail arm. The bail mechanism grips securely when the thick bail wire is opened, thanks to clever design using a rubber ring underneath the rotor.
The aluminium spool is secured with an aluminium drag knob—yes, even this minor part is built tough—and it has another rubber seal to stop saltwater reaching the washers. Further attention to detail is evident in the two line clips on the spool—both are spring-loaded so you can secure heavy leader.
The machined handle’s screw fitting and shaft are thick stainless steel. The oval rubber handle knob is comfortable for jigging, offering good grip, and when you pull back you can feel the solid instant anti-reverse design that features two (yes, two) heavy-duty one-way clutches, for extra strength and security when fighting big fish with a heavy drag.
Inside, the robust stainless steel main shaft runs right through the reel to a support at the rear. This added strength combines with a patented Ryobi block-and-shaft design for ultimate gear meshing security when the reel is winding under extreme loads.
The two-part drag comprises a multi-stack stainless steel and carbon fibre set-up, both above and below the spool. This double drag system delivers an easy 15kg of power, with plenty more in reserve if you can handle it.
The 4.4:1 gear ratio offers torque for the tough fights and the ample spool diameter will deliver speed when needed.
The top shelf waterproof-, strength- and power-orientated design features of the Carnelian—plus the premium parts used throughout the reel, the big line capacity and quality double drag system—all combine to make this big Ryobi an absolute bucket-load of reel for the money.