Daiwa has finally announced the release of their 2020 Saltiga’s at the Yokohama Fishing Show this month. Let’s keep up to speed with all the new and old features of the 2020 Daiwa Saltiga.
To the uninitiated, the Daiwa Saltiga vs Shimano Stella debate has been going on since the birth of these two top-tier fishing reels, and we don’t see it stopping soon. Shimano released their latest iteration of their amazing Stella SW range in 2019, which caused a stir amongst the Daiwa loyalists. Bewilderment ensued as the Daiwa camp was keeping mum about their flagship reel. Wanting to affirm itself as the ultimate saltwater spinning reel, the people at Daiwa extensively redesigned and re-engineered the reel from the drag knob to the body and frame.
(mon·o·coque – an aircraft or vehicle structure in which the chassis is integral with the body.)
A unibody designed chassis will theoretically be stronger than bodies made up of multiple pieces. Daiwa made sure to improve their frame strength by creating this monocoque design, allowing them to hold a much larger internal gearing system.
The body is not cast-aluminum but is machined from high-strength aluminum for maximum durability, torsional strength and sealing. Only time will tell if their aluminum machining can stand the test of time in terms of durability and sealing.
A set of parts that go through wear, tear and abuse on a reel is the gear components. Metal to metal friction can never allow gears to last forever and this is true throughout the reel world. Daiwa plans to combat wear and tear by providing the new Saltiga with an overall larger drive gear.
The teeth size and orientation are deeper and thicker and is said to reduce wear to the pinion gears. The thickness will allow it to resist twisting and deformation that can happen during a high-torque battle with a monster fish. Again, can’t wait to find out how they perform in real life.
If there was one thing that the previous generation Saltiga everyone hated, it was their “MAGSEALED” bearings. The theory of “magnetically sealing” the bearings and other high wear components of the reel with the use of an oil that has magnetic additives which constantly adheres to components that need constant lubrication. The theory was sound, but the execution of the said theory was unimpressive. The previous Saltigas suffered poor reviews due to failure of the said bearings and oils and Daiwa simply refused to provide their customers with replacement oils to allow them to maintain their own reels at home.
Anyway, we’re not here to complain about the older Salitga but to celebrate the birth of a new one! Obviously, water resistance is very important because saltwater intrusion into the reel will cause damage thus making it a must have feature in a flagship reel. With the help of the monocoque body which basically has no seams or screw holes where water can penetrate, the magsealed bearings will have little to no saltwater exposure. There have been no announcements of a “new and improved” magseal system so we are keeping our eyes and ears open for news.
The Daiwa team has also incorporated their magsealed bearings into their line roller for more saltwater protection. The line roller on the bail arm is fully exposed to the elements and is usually the part that needs replacement often. Having a magsealed bearing here can be good and bad. Good because if the bearings are well made, they can help to prolong the life of the line roller bearing. Bad because if their magsealed bearings are like before, Saltiga owners will have to stock up on the bearings in advance.
Aluminum Air Rotor
One of the bigger changes in the reel is the switch to aluminum on their rotors. This will be great for added rigidity to the rotor but will add to the total weight of the reel. Daiwa promises a very minimal increase in the rotor weight and that the strength and rigidity will cover for the added weight.
“A consistent and smooth drag release is key and written descriptions just can’t compare to a real life test.”
New Generation Drag System
Improvements have been made to the drag washers and Daiwa describes them to be 10 times stronger than previous iterations. It will take longer to burn them out thus less headaches when servicing time comes. They’ve added more drag washers to the drag stack and have increased the maximum drag capacity to 25 – 30kg.
To aid cooling the drag system, long gone is the plastic drag knob and an aluminum knob is now at your fingertips. Having an aluminum drag knob will help in heat dissipation, helping the drag washers do their work for a longer period during extended battles with fish. Can’t wait to see the reel’s drag get tested out in real life fishing situations. A consistent and smooth drag release is key and written descriptions just can’t compare to a real life test. Can’t wait for the Yokohama release!
You’ll notice the lack of porting and vents on the spool. This is another obvious attempt to perfect their waterproofing, but this also creates a more elegant look to the reel in general. Apart from looks and sealing, the spool has a redesigned lip which Daiwa says improves line lay and allows for longer casts. Again, something I’d like to test out for myself.
Daiwa has seemed to follow suit in the reel sizing numbers department. Happy days! No more confusion in reel sizes. We’ll see soon at the Yokohama Fishing show if the size connotations are similar to Shimano’s.
8000-P The specialty of this reel is PE3-4 Jigging. It will accommodate all types of jigging techniques.
8000-H High gear with powerful crank. Mainly suitable for PE3-4, perfect for casting or jigging inshore and offshore.
10000-P PE4-5 and can spool up to 300m of PE5. This little powerhouse is perfect for jigging deeper water for bigger pelagics.
10000-H Minimum PE5, built to suit Kingfish or Tuna SW Casting Game.
14000-P Ideal for PE5-6 with deep jigging. If you are chasing Kingfish or Amberjack, this is the reel for you.
14000-XH Minimum PE6, can take up to PE8. Great cast-ability, speed and also torque. This reel has it all. Perfect for someone targeting GT, Tuna and Kingfish.
18000-P Ideal for PE6-8 deep jigging with slow pitch or power jerk motion involved. Suitable for targeting truly giant fish in all areas of the globe.
18000-H Designed for someone who would like to use heavy line yet would like to gain the distance casting. PE8 300m on LC ABS is definitely for the angler who is chasing giants.
20000-H Made for anglers to target the biggest Bluefin and Yellowfin Tuna. Line capacity, torque and speed, this reel has it all. The largest one of the series. Perfectly balanced specs will blow your mind.
Can’t wait to get my hands on these and try them out while fishing in Vanuatu with the crew!