Field Test Favorites: Shimano Thunnus CI4 6000
Two years ago I was looking for a reel for my first surfcasting rod. As an angler who mainly fishes from a boat, I liked the idea of a reel with a baitrunner feature that I could use for live-lining on the boat in between surfcasting trips. Having a good history with the Shimano Baitrunner Reels, I decided to try the newer, sleeker, and lighter Thunnus CI4 6000. My first impression of the reel when it arrived was that it looked and felt bullet proof. This usually means added weight, but I found the Thunnus to be surprisingly light. In fact, weighing in at only 18 ounces, it’s a few ounces lighter than the same size Baitrunner. After two seasons fishing this reel, I can easily say it is one of the most versatile spinning reels I have ever owned. Complete with carbon drag washers, the drag system is extremely smooth, with enough power to stop 30-pound-class stripers in strong current. The spool lends itself to long casts with 50-pound-test braided line, and the baitrunner feature allows me to easily fish live baits from the boat or chunk baits from shore. With a waterproof drag and corrosion-proof aluminum construction, right down to the handle, this reel has been virtually maintenance-free for the last two years. A freshwater spray-down and a squirt of reel lube every now and again is all it has taken to keep the Thunnus functioning as it did the day I took it out of the box.