Customer Reviews: Okuma SLV- 8/9 Diecast Aluminum Fly Reel, Light Silver
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Model Number: SLV-89|Change
Price:$46.98+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime
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on February 16, 2011
I bought an OKUMA SLV 4/5 for my 4 weight rod after a friend recommended it and it is awsome. Very smooth.
Now if you buy from Amazon read below, go to the OKUMA site first to figure out which reel size you need.

"I've flyfished for over 40 years and couldn't make heads or tails out of these designations until I got a look at a chart that listed the maximum length of the backing line (yds.) and its breaking point (lbs. - relating directly to its diameter). Obviously, the copy writer didn't have a clue about what's actually relevant here."

I couldn't have said it better. Without a trip to the OKUMA web site I wasn't able to figure out which line weight each reel was. I tell you, when I look at a web site if it's not clear on what they are advertising or can't find it, I just move on. I have been buying from Amazon for a while now, come on people please fix this. I hope this doesn't fall through deaf ears. Thanks

Okuma SLV Fly Reel
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on February 16, 2012
From what I can tell the reel sizes are as follows:

50/12 - SLV 2/3
95/12 - SLV 4/5
140/20 - SLV 5/6
145/20 - SLV 7/8
150/30 - SLV 8/9
170/30 - SLV 10/11 This one I'm not sure about because there is conflicting info on the okuma site.

I hope this helps!
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on October 8, 2010
I actually own 3 SLV's in different sizes. I am a custom rod builder, and I can say with no doubt that this reel is one of the best reels for the money, or even 2 to 3 times it's price, out there. It is not milled, but it is plenty light, end plenty tough with a very good drag system and super smooth retrieval. The large drag knob is very nice during the fight, and the reel is pretty nice to look at on any rod (if the looks matter to you). It is also a matte finish which I like when fishing for easily spooked fish. It is a no-brainer at under 60 bucks!
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on May 8, 2013
I bought the 5/6 Reel for $50.00 and I am really happy with the purchase. I am still an amateur in fly fishing so I don't know much, but I know enough to say that the quality you get in this reel is well worth the price if your still a newbie, but starting to get more serious, like me.

The reel is very light and reels smooth. The grip is made of rubber and not hard plastic. The drag works well. There is a noticeable difference when you change the drag.

I would recommend this product to those who like me are starting to get more serious about the sport. The reel that I owned before this was the plastic one that came on the $40.00 rod/reel combo starter package you find at Walmart and Dicks, there is a load of difference between the two.
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on August 19, 2011
First off I am a long time fisherman who is new to fly fishing. Second, I like function, don't care much about the name on the reel. So I was looking for the best bang for my buck. I have practiced with my friends top of the line Orvis that cost hundreds. I've also practiced with a St. Croix that was way more expensive as well. In my opinion this is right up there with the Orvis for a fraction of the cost. It's better than the St. Croix. Smooth as butter, lightweight, awesome drag, looks cool. I couldn't see a difference in quality or function between this and the Orvis. Both are awesome, but I can tell you one thing. There is definitely not a difference that warrants you spending hundreds more. For the money this is a wonderful reel. Pick it up and you won't be disappointed.

Just to add to my review I took this reel to have it spooled with line at an Orvis store and the Orvis salesman (a gnarly old dude that has fly fished since the beginning of time) said my reel is awesome and couldn't believe the price! NOW THAT'S SAYING SOMETHING. The cheapest Orvis in the store was quadruple the price and couldn't hold a candle to this baby. So if you ask me spending anymore on a fly reel is just silly unless you are dying to pay an extra couple hundred for a name. I have since bought an Okuma spinning reel and it is awesome as well. Next I am going to get a deep sea Okuma with line counter.
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on November 28, 2010
I have 3 SLV reels in different sizes, I've caught Steelhead, Carp, Kings, Silvers, Pike, and plenty of trout on these bad boys, the drag is smooth and easy to adjust, a much better reel than the Sage 1850 i paid more than 2x as much for!
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on October 5, 2011
I agree with all other reviewers. These SLVs are smooth, good looking, functional, lightweight and just plain work. They have tight tolerances and an exceptional drag system with an easy to use knob. I have both the 2/3 and 5/6. They cost 40-60% less than other comparable reels I own. If these reels had existed 15 years ago when I first started fly fishing, I would own several of them now.....and NO others!
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on October 10, 2011
I've got way too many fancy fly reels costing 5X+ more than this one. However, after taking the drag apart and examining the pieces, I realized the drag is as good as most of the expensive ones. Having used the Okuma SLV over a period of years, I think its earned its durability stripes too which is great since the SLV is surprisingly light. I just don't see how you are going to get a better deal on a cork disc drag fly reel.

One small caveat. Since this reel is cast aluminum, there can be some sharp edges and burrs. I examined the reel and had to sand part of the line guard where I considered it too sharp for comfort (i.e., might cut the line).

Don't know how this thing would perform on bigger or hotter fish or in salt water. I've used the 4/5 version for trout up to 24" and there it has had no problems. I can't imagine that the 7/8 version wouldn't be great for steelhead or salmon.

Update: So far I've had absolutely no problem with the 3 SLV reels I've purchased. I've been fishing the 4/5 version for big trout at Putah Creek in Northern Cal and have never had a problem with fish up to 26". The 10/11 version worked infallibly for big saltwater fish in Baja. I just bought a 7/8 for steelhead/salmon and expect the same kind of good performance I'm used to from this company.
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on October 10, 2013
I have both the SVL-56 and SVL-89, both seem to be holding up well and the drag works well, have landed some big Salmon on the 89. Tips for buying, the reels seem to run small for the lower side, as in the SVL-89 is great for 8wt, 100yds 30lb backing and a Pacific Angler Steelhead taper line. On the SVL-56 I have 100yds 20lb backing and my Rio Grand 6wt Trout line barely fits, it actually will start to rub when fully wound when not in use. I would go with the larger reel for your weight unless you are running less backing or a shorter fly line. The Rio Grand Trout and PA Steelhead line are both around 100ft in length.
One thing these less expensive reels lack is a smooth polished fairlead, so when your stripping out line you are pulling it over a rough natural finish. I took 220grit wet/dry sandpaper and cleaned up the area the line rubs and finished it off with 400grit to make a nice smooth surface with a cleaned up radius. The fly lines cost more than the reel and no sense wearing on them when it is so easy to prevent. On the 56 reel where my line barely fits, I cleaned up and smoothed out all the area where the over-spool may rub.
These reels may break in a bit, but another factor is the bump start of the drag, not super smooth, I run my drag very loose to start, where I can strip off line easy and the reel will just about free spool, as I need I turn up the drag when fighting a fish. You never set the hook on the drag or rarely so that is not a factor like with a spin reel.
Seems hard to beat these reels for the money and the cost of a complete reel is not much more than a spool so buy the spare reel if you need a spare spool and have a spare in your box.
My next reel with be the SVL-78 to switch my 6wt over too and use the SVL-56 for 4wt. I would rather protect my $80 fly line with 30lb backing then have a small reel, which the balance is still good.
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on March 21, 2011
I purchased this reel with some concern that I was getting a "cheap" reel instead of an inexpensive one. I traditionally have paid as much as 5 times this amount for my steelhead and salmon reels. I intended to use it for Steelhead fishing in the midwest, as a streamer setup, and figured that even if it wasn't that great, I would have a fall back for my other reels. Once I received it, I was very impressed with the quality of the drag system and the smooth retrieve. I changed my mind, once I saw it and have used it as a dry line, indicator rig, because I trust the action and the drag. Definitely an incredible value for the money, and warranteed for a year so if there are any problems, Okuma will stand behind the product. I am blown away by this item and may end up getting more of them based on the quality I have seen.
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