3/29/2020 – Welcome to our Weekly Specials, something we try to post each Sunday

In the past week we have seen the concerns over the virus deepen which has caused some manufacturers like Okuma, Xtratuf and more to temporarily pause shipping and close down their warehouses. Products are generally available but some things may take a bit longer to get. Hopefully we see some good news so that the landings and manufacturers can open back up next month.

We are continuing to fill online orders as usual on the weekdays, and do allow in-store pickup for people who want to come in. Unlike some of our competitors we have followed the current regulations and closed the retail store to reduce foot traffic and hopefully reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Daiwa has released their new top of the line Saltiga spinners and we have received a couple of pieces but they still don’t have the larger 18000 & 20000’s in yet due to the delays in shipping from Japan.

They feature a big departure and redesign from the older generation. The have shifted away from the “Zaion” composite body and rotor for a much stronger aluminum construction. The new reels weigh a bit more than the old ones in the same sizes, but that weight doesn’t detract from the feel. These are as good as it gets as far as handle feel and quality. Because of the change to aluminum you won’t see any more complains about rotor flex during high drag use, and also why the smaller sizes have much more drag than the older generation. Another thing they addressed is the drag adjustment knob, the new one is all aluminum which keeps it from expanding as much as the older graphite composite caps on the last generation. This was a complaint because the drag could vary when the cap heated up during a long fight, but the new models have solved all of that.

They have continued on with the MONOCOQUE frame design which cuts down on unnecessary weight and allows for much larger gear sizes to be used despite their smaller overall size. With a main gear up to 15% larger the difference in power will be easily noticeable. The spool has been redesigned a bit to feature a more pronounced rim, which should improve casting distance, along with a hardened spool rim that will ensure less friction on the line. Another small thing to note is that the clicker has been upgraded significantly so if a fish is pulling drag you will definitely know it.

Overall these reels a big improvement in all categories, they’re a much more durable and reliable reel to fish with now and the new body allows for even better water resistance which should keep them feeling buttery smooth for years to come.

If you have any suggestions, complaints, questions or comments about the website please feel free to email me at: sergey@charkbait.com or give me a call at the shop.

As always, thank you for visiting our Weekly Specials and hope to see you at the shop!

Sergey Smith

Okuma’s Metaloid Series two speed reels set a new standard. The offered two speed capability with relatively high drag specs at an industry leading price with greater warranty support than other manufacturers.  Sold a lot of those wonderful reels. The new version of the Metaloid is now called the Cavalla. What we noticed immediately is that the drag curve is much smoother, there’s more range in it’s setting verses the Metaloid series. Shifting engagement is also smoother.  In most respects, the new Cavalla series is simply a more refined Metaloid. Weights are almost the same, dimensions same, drag numbers same, helical cut gears gone and price a little more expensive.

From the manufacturer: The Cavalla 2-Speed Lever Drag reels are a compact bodied machine built to handle the toughest of conditions. This reel is built with 6061-T6 machined aluminum frame and side plates. The rigid 1 piece frame continues around to the non handle side plate. This rigid frame combined with a cold forged, type-II anodized machined aluminum spool give you a sleek and rugged weapon.

The Cavalla reels feature a battle proven carbonite drag system with Cal’s drag grease that puts out 24 to 34 pounds of drag at full. The 17.4 grade stainless steel main and pinion gear as well as the CRC: Corrosion Resistance Coating process make this reel virtually corrosion resistant. Add to that 4 corrosion resistant stainless steel bearings and a silent retrieve system for complete smooth operation. The Cavalla 2-speed reels feature a 6.4:1 and 3.8:1 gear ratio on the 5 size reels and a 4.7:1 and 2.1:1 gear ratio on the 12 size. Both the 5 and 12 size reels come in left and right hand retrieve and feature an on/off bait clicker. This reel is compact and comfortable, and feature an Ergo Grip handle knob and anodized aluminum handle arm.

  • Rigid 1-pcs frame and left sideplate construction
  • 6061-T6 Machined aluminum frame and sideplates
  • 17-4 grade stainless steel main and pinion gears
  • Carbonite drag system with Cal’s drag grease
  • Cold forged, Type-II anodized, machined aluminum spool
  • 4 BB corrosion resistant stainless steel bearings
  • Ergo Grip handle knob with anodized aluminum handle arm
  • Silent retrieve system for cranking smoothness
  • On/Off bait clicker for all lever drag models
  • Cavalla lever drag reels are backed by a 3-year limited warranty
CAV 5NII4BB425YDS/50#300 YDS/15#6.4:1, 3.8:142.1″ & 24.8″15 strike, 24 full16.2 oz
CAV 5II*475/50#340/20#17.1
CAV 12NII4BB525/50, 380/60#350/20#4.7:1, 2.1:135.4″, 15.7″27/3423.8
CAV 12II*500/60#, 400/80#24.9

One of the most interesting new lures, introduced at 2017’s ICAST, is Yo-Zuri’s High Speed Vibe.  The lure has some functional similarities to the Halco Max 130, it’s an effective trolling lure AND cast and retrieve lure.  Both applications can be done very well with this versatile lure.  The lures are 5 1/4 inches (130mm), weigh 2 7/8 oz (80gm). They are thru-wired, sinking design.

From the manufacturer:

The brand new High Speed Vibe is a realistic lure manufactured to match baitfish found up and down the Atlantic and Pacific coasts. This unique lure can be trolled up to 15 knots, casted and retrieve or fished vertically in open water for a variety of saltwater game fish. The vibrating action of this lure is proven to entice strikes and the innovative through wire technology guarantees that fish won’t break off after the initial hook up. This is a sinking lure and can be fished at all depths/ranges. With key features like Yo-Zuri’s patented color change technology, powerbody and premium terminal tackle, the High Speed Vibe is sure to be your new go to lure!

Our take? Well, the lure’s finish is great, cosmetics excellent, rigged appropriately and can be enhanced with single hooks if that’s your preference (Eagle Claw and VMC both offer in-line replacement hooks).  The trebles which come with the lures are 3X strong, plenty good for schoolie tuna.  I’m really thinking these new lures will shine brightly when we get a good run of albacore down here.  For those in NorCal and the Pacific Northwest, these lures might be of great interest for your summer albacore.

This unique lure can be trolled up to 15 knots, casted and retrieve or fished vertically in open water for a variety of saltwater game fish. The vibrating action of this lure is proven to entice strikes and the innovative through wire technology guarantees that fish won’t break off after the initial hook up.

  • “Power Body” with through wire construction
  • Welded shaft
  • 3x treble hooks
  • Patented Color Change Technology

The MagTrak is a hollow bodied lure, made with ABS with an internal head weight. The lure had connecting thru-wire construction which can not be pulled out.  The hooks are EXTREMELY durable and super sharp.  You will not even consider their replacement, they are perfect for their task. On our recent Red Rooster trip to Guadalupe Island I dragged one of these lure. That trip was not intended to target wahoo, water temp was cool and that destination wasn’t intended for wahoo…those focused wahoo trips come later this season.  But, I wanted to see how the lure behaved in the water. PERFECT! You drop the lure in the water and it gains depth and trolls perfectly, straight and true. Not at all like the old YoZuri Bonitas and Marauders which can end up changing position in the trolling spread simply because they aren’t balanced. The plaining head is very broad, longer than lures which actually larger. The lure itself is fairly skinny, so the big plaining head really works to it’s advantage. These things are the straightest running lures I’ve seen and they can deal with realistic trolling speeds – even UP TO 20 knots! I’ve seen surface lures do that, never deep runners!  The MagTrak runs straight and true, and it does so under a wide range of speeds!  Durable? No wahoo will damage this lure that I’ve ever seen. These lures are tough. Having said that, they are also darn expensive!

MagTrak™ Wahoo Lure Features:

  • 10 Inch Dynamic Body with patented design to swim in a fashion that replicates small wahoo
  • HookMag Technology with 10/0 304 Series Stainless Steel Hooks
  • Increased Hookup Ratio
  • Increased Strike Ratio
  • No Hassle at High Speeds no Trolling Weight Required
  • Any Position from short corner to shotgun in the spread
  • Multiple Color Patterns
  • Through Wire Construction on Ultrasonically Welded Solid ABS Shells
  • Welded Rings on 500 lbs strength ball bearing swivels

From the Manufacturer: The MagTrak™ is truly a new breed of Wahoo and Big Game Lures.  The MagTrak features a patented design that allows the lure to swim straight and below the surface at speeds of up to 20 knots, or within short aggressive turns directly inside or outside the propwash.   The MagTrak also incorporates the patented HookMag™ Technology that keeps the front hook in the stinger position at any speed until a Wahoo or other strike occurs.  The hook is then released and direct swivel connection to hook and mouth of fish.  Please check out the videos below for a better understanding of the concept.  PATENT AND PATENT PENDING NO. US 15/783,764, CN 201811130554.8, EU & EPO 18196736.5, AU 2018233051, US DESIGN: 29/666,174, SE DESIGN 84191

They’ve developed a cult-like following bred from success in catching calico bass and many other species. The leadheads are not cheap, frankly they’re darn expensive but they are the nicest of their type you’ll ever see. The hooks are from Mustad, chemically sharpened, with a pair of tail keepers, too.  We’re stocking the heads in several sizes so you can reach the depth necessary to harvest your catch.

For the tails, two basic forms: straight tail drop shot style and ribbed paddle tail. Both are fairly small and skinny, can work on all their jigheads, but most guys will run a more traditional style swimbait behind the 1/2 and heavier heads. For the small 3/16 and 3/8 oz heads, absolutely run the dropshot or ribbed tailed Cool Bait trailers. The skinny tails allow the spinnerblade to do it’s thing…spin like crazy and attract attention.  Give that thing some room to work it’s magic.  A skinny trailer is a very good thing, helps maximize the lure’s effectiveness.

NEW FOR 2019 (introduced tail end of July 2018) is the weedless version of the Underspins in 1/2 and 3/8 ounce. Fishing heavy cover, dragging lures thru the grass and over the kelp, the Weedless Underspin may be of serious interest and well worth including in your tackle bag.  No doubt, these are some of the nicest jigs that have ever been developed, and it’s nice to see that they’re made here in America.

NEW FOR 2020 a giant 8 oz size has been released for the giant seabass, ling cod, grouper and more. Pair them up with some big swimbaits, single or twin tail scampi’s and you’ve go a recipe for catching the biggest fish. Unlike the smaller sizes these come with huge forged hooks to make sure they hold up to higher drag loads.

  • UV400 Wormkeeper. This keeps your bait on the hook without ripping
  • The only underspin lure utilizing dual ball bearing swivels for maximum blade rotation – freefalling through a school of suspended bass, grinding in on boiling fish, or slow-rolling the bottom, these high-quality swivels & nickel-plated blades are always turning
  • Detailed design down to flared gills, premium 3D eyeballs, and a natural overall balance time
  • Mustad 2x Hook for lighter weight, more strength, & optimal hook set

The 2019 Limited Edition Matte Black Makaira reels share the same features as the rest of the SEa lineup. Coming in a unique Matte Black color, Okuma has changed things up a bit from the last time they did a limited run of Black reels. This time you get more contrast with silver trim and a main color you’ll struggle to find on any other machined aluminum reel.

They aren’t for everyone, but for those who appreciate the enhancements and have the highest demands, they are reels to die for. Okuma’s Makaira Special Edition Long Range reels take things to another level in terms of specific changes that some in the long range community have requested. Before getting into that, let me state clearly, the existing crop of Makaira reels are absolutely state of the art, and for most of us, myself included, there is little reason to head in the SE direction. The changes you’ll see in the SE series reels appeal most to fishermen who are uncompromising in terms of their demands upon gear, guys who regularly head out to tangle with cow size tuna on the long range boats or aboard a sportfisher off Puerto Vallarta, those that will benefit most will be our most dedicated long range enthusiasts. Those that will benefit least will probably be private boaters, guys who tend to put on heavy miles on their gear and don’t take the time to maintain ’em regularly. In a lot of ways the SE reels are custom shop offerings, based upon feedback from some of the most experienced anglers, guys who jumped on the Makairas early and fished ’em hard on the long range boats in 2010/11. To those, Okuma listened and responded, showing their sincere interest in building the best gear possible. The pricing of the SE series reels is a tad higher than the original Makaira reels, reflecting the change in handle and bearings used on these pieces. If you are seeking the best freespool performance, flylining live bait to large grade tuna, this series of reels will put a smile on your face and very likely result in a personal best on the boat.

Okay, now for what’s different on the Special Edition reels, the SE Series reels feature:

  • Open Spool Bearings with TSI-301 oil. This increases freespool 2 to 2 1/2 times!
  • All non-spool bearings feature FULL grease pack for maximum longevity.
  • Special Edition Gun Smoke and Black anodizing.
  • SE reels have a yellowfin tuna etched into the side plate to further distinguish them from the Golds.
  • Frames have been machined out for increased clearance between the spool and cross bars.
  • Larger Handles, MK-10/15 reels will feature MK-20 size handle knobs for greater leverage.
  • Larger Handles, MK 20/30 reels use the 50 size arm and knobs.
  • New LOWER GEARING on the 20/30 size – 1.3:1!!!
MK-10IISEA4BB+1TB4.7:1 & 2.1:133.5″ & 15.0″34-LBS27-LBS460/15 (0.37), 380/20 (0.42), 280/25 (0.48)26.1
MK-15IISEA4BB+1TB4.7:1 & 2.1:133.5″ & 15.0″34-LBS27-LBS550/20 (0.42), 410/25 (0.48), 310/30 (0.55)26.8
MK-16IISEA4BB + 1TB4.3:1 & 1.3:139.2″ & 11.8″48-LBS34-LBS870/20 (0.42), 650/25 (0.48), 500/30 (0.55)40
MK-20IISEA4BB+1TB3.8:1 & 1.3:139.4″ & 17.5″55-LBS37-LBS870/25 (0.48), 660/30 (0.55), 530/40 (0.60)45.8
MK-30IISEA4BB+1TB3.8:1 & 1.3:139.4″ & 17.5″55-LBS37-LBS850/30 (0.55), 700/40 (0.60), 550/50 (0.70)48
MK-50IISEA4BB + 1TB3.2:1 & 1:137.8″ & 11.9″85-LBS60-LBS1000/30 (0.55), 650/50 (0.70), 400/80 (0.90)60.2
MK-80WIISEA6BB + 1TB3.1:1 & 1.2:145.7″ & 20.5″100-LBS70-LBS1000/80 (0.90), 850/100 (1.0), 660/130 (1.12)116