A fishing reel is one of the most important components of the fishing rod. It is the connection that brings the catch from the water to the boat or the shore. Since its invention by the Chinese years ago, it has been adopted worldwide to the extent that the modern fisherman is paralyzed without it.

Abu Garcia Black Max is a series of quality fishing reels that have been used by anglers for a while. Today we shall single out one of them to see why they remain one of the most sought after products in the market.

The Abu Garcia Black Max Low Profile Fishing Reel


Abu Garcia Black Max

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It is a lightweight fishing reel ergonomically designed to ensure you can easily maintain your grip, and it does not slip from your hand no matter the circumstances.

The reel has an almost frictionless retrieval system and is smooth when casting for a nice fishing experience. It outlasts most of its peers because of expert craftsmanship that has been employed on quality material.

Abu Garcia is a well-known brand in the fishing circles and has won many awards over the years for their impeccable designs and innovative products.

They fall under the umbrella of an even bigger name in the fishing world – Pure Fishing. This is a platform for unlimited resources for the development of cutting edge solutions.

The Abu Garcia Black Max casting reel is no exception, as we are about to see.


  • Ergonomically designed
  • Light weight
  • Made of durable material
  • Smooth casting

Considerations for a Top Quality Fishing Reel

Drag System

The drag system is a representation of the amount of tension in the spool. It is what applies pressure to the hooked fish and lets out the line during the struggle.

A smooth, high-quality drag will absorb the shock of surging fish without snapping your line or losing the fish, allowing you time to adjust and start reeling it in. The line should pull out steadily without hesitation regardless of the tension settings of the drag.

Spinning reels have front drag systems and rear drag systems. The difference between these two is where the drag controls are located.

  • Rear drags are easy to access, especially against struggling fish, but they struggle against larger, more aggressive fish.
  • Front drag systems come with a few drag washers that give better performance and are more durable than rear drag models.

The reels come fitted with knobs that help to adjust the drag.

The Spool Capacity

The bigger the spool size, the higher its capacity. Some manufacturers will give you a backup spool with your new reel, which you can use to explore a different kind of line or carry an extra line if you plan to be out for a long time.

There is a way you can increase the spool capacity without having to get a bigger spool. You can shop for quality braided fishing lines with thin diameters and less volume, allowing you to fit more length into the spool.

Not everyone needs a high spool capacity, though, you should do a cost versus benefit analysis to determine what suits your fishing needs.

Frame Material

This affects the quality of the reel in three ways: weight, durability, and aesthetic appeal. Reel frames are mostly made of plastic, aluminum, magnesium, carbon, or graphite.

The finishing will attract you, but you need to determine how long it will last. Plastic and aluminum are very common, with plastic being the cheaper option that does not guarantee longevity.

Magnesium, carbon, and graphite are found on higher-end reels because they are tough, durable, light, scratch-resistant, and corrosion-resistant.

Get the best quality material that is within your budget.

Gear Ratio and Line Recovery Rate

Gear ratio describes how many rotor rotations can be completed with one full rotation of the handle. This is closely related to the line recovery rate, which is a measure of the amount of line the reel takes back on the spool with each handle’s full turn.

When reeling, a bail usually wraps the line onto the spool as you turn the handle, so ideally, you will be counting the number of times the bail rotates around the spool with a single turn of the reel handle and the amount of line that goes with it.

  • A 5:1 speed reel is adequate for many fishing styles. This means five wraps of the spool for every crank. A 4:1 gear ratio is slower, as a relatively small amount of line will be picked up. This is ideal for reeling in large fish because it provides more torque.
  • A high spin-to-gear ratio like a 6:1, on the other hand, enables you to get your fish from the water into the boat or on to shore faster.

It can be cumbersome for a novice fisherman, though, as it requires technique. With time, you will establish your best gear ratio, depending on the type of fishing you are doing. There is no harm in having a separate reel for your different fishing needs.


These are responsible for the harmony in motion between the handle and the spool, and any good spinning reel requires a few of them.

You need one ball bearing for the main handle shaft, one for the main gear, another for the anti-reverse, and one roller bearing for the line roller.

For durability and better control, sealed stainless steel bearings are advisable as opposed to bushings. Go for the reel with the most ball bearings your budget can sustain, at least five essential bearings for the functions stated above.

In a nutshell, the more bearings a reel has, the smoother the performance. Budgetary restrictions may prevent you from going for reels with 8, 9, 10 or more bearings, but it will still be smooth enough.

The extra bearings are mostly just replacements of the bushes inside the reel, which has advantages but is not mandatory.


This function prevents your reel handle from spinning backward and unwinding unintentionally. This maintains your hook sets, ensuring accuracy and power, so you don’t lose your catch.

The function is mostly controlled by a lever or switch located near the butt of the reel. Some fishermen switch off anti-reverse when fighting large fish, but generally, it is kept on.


Your reel choice should be one that has an ample arm and knob that will enable you to quickly find them while in action. It should allow a firm grip with minimal slippage because of sweaty hands or during wet weather.

It should also accommodate your dominant hand, whether you are left-handed or right-handed.

Most manufacturers cater to the right-handed majority, which comes as a disadvantage to the left-handed anglers. They can’t maximize their strength and technique with the less dominant hand.

Unraveling the Abu Garcia Black Max

It has been ergonomically designed; it has a recessed reel foot with a compact bent handle to ensure you have a firm grip even when handling large fish in rocky waters. They have both left and right-handed versions to take care of all people. It fits snugly on the palm and is comfortable to fish with.

It is conveniently lightweight, composed of a one-piece graphite frame and graphite side plates with stainless steel ball bearings and a machined aluminum spool. This assembly is also easy on the eye and very durable.

This fishing reel has a magnetic brake system dubbed Magtrax that can be adjusted externally, which applies constant force throughout the cast. Combined with the Power Disk drag system with four stainless steel ball bearings and one roller bearing, it guarantees the best drag in terms of smoothness, accuracy, and range

The reel incorporates a Dura Gear brass gear with a gear ratio of 6.4:1 that allows you to manipulate your line recovery rate to suit the prevailing demands. This reel is tournament ready and can hold its own amongst its peers.

Black Max features

Special Honors Column

Here we look at a few spinning reels we feel can be great alternatives for this Abu Garcia Black Max Low Profile reel.

parts of a spinning reel

Bass Pro Shops Pro Qualifier 2 Spinning Reel

Bass Pro Shops Pro Qualifier 2 Spinning Reel

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It has a lightweight, durable aluminum body and side cover coupled with a stainless steel main shaft and a premium 8-bearing system ensuring a smooth performance and a titanium-coated line roller.

It is superior to the Black Max because of the 8-bearing system, which is sealed to prevent exposure to elements that can compromise the drag systems and inner gears like water and dirt. Ensuring maintenance of drag and preventing the development of mechanical problems. This comes at a higher price, though.

The Abu Garcia Black Max Combo

The Abu Garcia Black Max Combo

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This is an upgraded Abu Garcia Black Max Low Profile Reel, which comes with a 24-ton graphite fishing rod designed to be fully compatible for the best fishing experience.

It has all the features of our low profile reel without the hustle of looking for a suitable rod. This can be a disadvantage if you need different specifications for a fishing rod, though.

Pflueger President XT Spinning Reel

Pflueger President XT Spinning Reel

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This is an enhanced model in the President series of the Pflueger spinning reels that has embraced the sealed drag technology to protect the system from external compromise.

It has a high speed-to-gear ratio and is made to last, with an aluminum main shaft and pinion gear, carbon fiber handle, and a rubber cork knob.

Pure Fishing owns both Pflueger and Abu Garcia brands, explaining why the technology used bears a close resemblance. It also sets a standard for the quality expected from this fishing reel.

You can also check out a few other outstanding fishing reels to feel out your available options.


When you set out to fish, you expect results that will require you to commit to certain equipment and technique standards. No angler can succeed without a good quality fishing reel; otherwise, how else will you wind and cast the line? You need a bearable, smooth casting, durable, and accurate fishing reel that compliments your type of fishing.

The Abu Garcia Black Max Low Profile reel has risen to the challenge countless times, and we believe it is a worthy addition to your fishing arsenal.