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Gear Review & Giveaway: Ross Reel Flystart Outfit

So have you ever wondered if an entry/base level fly rod reel is any good considering the cost is much lower than the fancy expensive models? Ross Reels sent me their Flystart #2 (4/5wt) Outfit on the premise that I would test it out and then give it away to one of you! I was quite curious to give it a spin and see how it held up.

My Experience:

I took this reel out on several trips the last few months. I always want to make sure I have plenty of time with products I try out so I can give you honest feedback. From big Rainbows (well, my definition of big) to small Brookies, the Flystart handled like a champ and reeled them all in with ease. Pulling the line out to cast was a breeze, but I did find the drag adjustment to be very touchy (not much between on and off) and a little annoying to adjust mid-fish fight. The line and leader were sufficient, but the set-up that comes with the reel is permanently tied together, so for you to change out the leader, you’ll have to cut it off the line and tie up your own fly line to leader connection. I’m used to buying my fly lines with a welded loop and using a loop to loop connection to the leader. The reel is a bit bulkier than some of my other reels and the black matte finish on it was easy to scratch. I still like my Ross Vexsis better (which they no longer make). Why? When reeling fish in, it just feels smoother and the drag is easier to adjust and feels more precise. I found myself using the Flystart as more of a backup reel.

Would I suggest the Flystart REEL to a beginner angler who’s just ‘testing the waters’ or as a lower cost reel option? YES! Why? It’s solid. It works. It comes with a lifetime warranty – and it’s affordable! Would I suggest the OUTFIT (the reel plus the flyline etc)? No. Why? Because I think you’d appreciate the reel more if you picked the exact fly line for your needs (dries, nymphing, streamers etc.) AND the fact that you’d most likely get a line that comes with a welded loop and be able to switch out your leaders quickly would be more helpful in the long run as well. Most of my frustrations with this reel stemmed from the line and leader it came with, not with the reel itself.

DETAILS From Ross’ Website:

The Flystart reel outfits come pre-spooled with a premium American made fly line, backing and a 9′ tapered leader. Simply attach one of these reels to your favorite fly rod, tie on a fly and you are ready to fish! The Flystart reel outfit are available in three different sizes, covering everything from small streams to light saltwater. Each outfit is built around a Ross designed disc drag aluminum fly reel that will meet the expectations of even the most experienced angler. You will be amazed with the quality in manufacturing tolerance, drag performance and durability. The Flystart reel outfit is top quality! In fact, they are the same fly reels we sell individually, but when purchased as part of a complete outfit, you save money! The Flystart reel outfit is a great option for anglers that demand quality, but do not want to spend a fortune gearing up to fish.

The Flystart reel outfits include the following products:

  • Flystart series flyreel – offset gear-to-gear disc drag with radial pawl engagement
  • Premium American made fly line
  • #20 Micron backing
  • 9′ Tapered leader
  • Lifetime warranty on reel

Available Colors – Black, Granite Grey 

  • #1 – 3/4wt, SA Fly Line, 75yds Backing, 9′ Tapered Leader $80
  • #2 – 4/5wt, SA Fly Line, 100yds Backing, 9′ Tapered Leader $90
  • #3 – 6/7wt, SA Fly Line, 200yds Backing, 9′ Tapered Leader $99


Would you like to add this Flystart #2 Reel to your arsenal? Just leave a comment here on the Blog, or ‘LIKE’ the Giveaway picture I’ve posted on Facebook or Instagram and you’ll be entered to win! Super easy. ONE random person will be picked to receive this lucky Flystart #2 reel that I’ve used and reviewed. It’s in good condition, I just suggest you might want to change out the line/leader to something you’ll love. :) I will cover shipping costs to USA address only.

For more information about Fly Fishing Rods and Reel Reviews. Please visit https://flyfishilicious.com