Daiwa BG Review: A Gold Standard in Spinning Reels

Working on a Daiwa BG review isn't really work, it's a pleasure. Daiwa is one of those tackle manufacturers that just seem to get it right every time. And their Black Gold series of spinning and casting reels are outstanding examples of that product excellence.

In particular, the BG spinning reel family is among the finest spinners available in terms of features, build quality and accessibility. So, what is it that sets the BG spinning reels apart from the competition?

DAIWA BG REVIEW: A BIT ABOUT BLACK GOLD

The first Daiwa Black Gold spinning reels were released in 1981 causing a considerable stir among spin fisherman. The reels certainly ruffled some purist feathers back then with outstanding features and minuscule price tags. However, the concept was rock-solid, and the BG family of reels is still going strong 38 years later.

In fact, the initial BG series of reels saw an unparalleled 35-year product run without any significant changes made to the original design. Now, that's an undeniable testament to Daiwa's BG design philosophy specifically and the companies standing generally.

What of the new BG reels, though? Well, if anything, Daiwa has taken a stalwart product and elevated it to superhero status. Out of the box, today's Daiwa BG spinners represent a marriage of value and quality that is very hard to beat.

One of the main ingredients in the success of the current BG reel family is Daiwa's shared technology philosophy. This practice has seen features and technologies specific to their top tier products filter down to enhance reels like the BG.

So, the current crop of Black Gold spinners include features previously found only on the Saltiga and Saltist reels. These include the DIGIGEAR system, Air Rotor, and Daiwa's proprietary Hardbodyz frame construction technology. This technology cross-pollination has taken the tried and tested BG reels and turned them into the best selling saltwater spinners in the world today.

THE DAIWA BG 4500: AN IN-DEPTH ANALYSIS

Daiwa BG Saltwater Medium/Xtra Heavy Spinning Reel,...
  • Black Anodized Machined...
  • Solid Screw-In Handle, Air...
  • Braided Line Ready Spool,...
  • Manual Return Bail (4500 and...
  • Line Capacity (Lb. Test /...

The Daiwa BG spinning reel family includes 10 members ranging from the ultralight BG1500 to the game fish taming BG8000. For our Daiwa BG review, we will look at the BG4500, which is a mid-range saltwater spinner suitable for both in-shore and off-shore angling.

THE DAIWA BG 4500 OVERVIEW

Daiwa BG Saltwater Medium/Xtra Heavy Spinning Reel,...
  • Black Anodized Machined...
  • Solid Screw-In Handle, Air...
  • Braided Line Ready Spool,...
  • Manual Return Bail (4500 and...
  • Line Capacity (Lb. Test /...

The BG spinning reel represents a bridge option between the light and heavy tackle sectors of the BG family. Here are some of the Daiwa BG spinner's many noteworthy features.

DIGIGEAR

MANUAL BAIL TRIP

AIR ROTOR

MACHINED ALUMINUM BODY AND ANODIZED FINISH

SOLID MACHINED SCREW-IN HANDLE

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Monofilament line capacity (yards/pounds): 350/14, 280/17, 210/20
  • Braid line capacity -- J Braid (yards/pounds): 340/40, 270/50, 230/65
  • Maximum drag: 22 pounds
  • Line retrieve rate: 43.1 inches
  • Bearing count: six plus one
  • Gear ratio: 5.7:1
  • Weight: 22 ounces
  • Reel class: medium-heavy/saltwater

BG 4500 PROS AND CONS

The pros and cons section in any Daiwa BG review is sure to be a very one-sided list. However, to be fair, here they are.

PROS

  • Extremely smooth operation
  • A powerful, predictable, and smooth drag system
  • Exceptional build quality
  • Rigid and strong construction
  • Braid ready spool
  • Very reliable and easy to maintain
  • A very competitive price point
  • Outstanding after-sales service and parts availability

CONS

  • The maximum drag, while perfectly acceptable, is less than some competitors
  • The BG is a little heavier than some competitors

OUR REVIEW PROCESS

To keep this Daiwa BG review as objective as possible, we will make a balanced comparison between the BG 4500 and two reels of similar specifications and from equally well-respected manufacturers. So, in no particular order, here are the Daiwa BG review competitors.

1. PENN SPINFISHER VI 6500

Penn is one of the oldest manufacturers of quality tackle and gear out there. It's doubtful that many anglers don't know of or haven't used a Penn reel at some point. And, much like the Daiwa BG's, Penn's BG spinning reel are among their most enduring products.

For this Daiwa BG review, we have chosen to look at the new generation Spinfisher VI in 6500 size in comparison to the BG 4500.

PENN SPINFISHER VI 6500 OVERVIEW

Penn introduced the Spinfisher line in 1961, making them among the longest-serving of any spinning reels. The modern BG spinning reel is similar to the BG 4500 in that it represents a transition from light to heavy tackle options. So, to continue our Daiwa BG review, what makes the Spinfisher VI tick?

CNC GEAR TECHNOLOGY

IPX 5 SEALING

HT-100 DRAG SYSTEM

MANUAL BAIL TRIP

FULL METAL CONSTRUCTION

SPECIFICATIONS

Let's look at the detailed specs for the Spinfisher VI 6500

  • Monofilament line capacity (yards/pounds): 390/12, 345/15, 205/20
  • Braid line capacity (yards/pounds): 485/30, 410/40, 335/50
  • Maximum drag: 30 pounds
  • Line retrieve rate: 42 inches
  • Spool braid ready: yes plus line capacity indicators
  • Bearing count: six
  • Gear ratio: 5.6:1
  • Weight: 22.3 ounces
  • Reel class: medium-heavy/saltwater

SPINFISHER VI 5500 PROS AND CONS

This is another reel that has a lopsided pros and cons listing.

PROS

  • Affordable
  • Smooth, predictable drag with a huge maximum rating
  • Braid ready
  • Rigid and robust construction
  • Very good after-sales support
  • Excellent water resistance
  • Smooth operation

CONS

  • No user complaints reported as yet

2.SHIMANO SOCORRO SW10000

SHIMANO Socorro 5000F SW Offshore Spinning Fishing Reel
  • The Socorro saltwater spinning...
  • X-Ship technology provides...
  • Incorporates Shimano’s...
  • Features Cross Carbon Drag...

Our second and last competitor reel in this Daiwa BG review is an offering from another industry giant, Shimano. The BG spinning reel is a similarly sized and featured reel to the Daiwa and Penn runners with an equally stellar reputation.

SHIMANO SOCORRO SW10000 OVERVIEW

Shimano reels have long held pride of place as top-drawer products. Although they are often seen as being overpriced boutique reels, there's no doubting the outstanding quality of the Shimano brand. The BG spinning reel is no exception and carries an impressive feature set.

Here are some of those noteworthy features.

HAGANE GEAR TECHNOLOGY

X-SHIP PINION SUPPORT

CROSS CARBON DRAG

SPECIFICATIONS

  • Monofilament line capacity (yards/pounds): 500/12, 320/16, 220/20
  • Braid line capacity (yards/pounds): 360/50, 290/65, 215/80
  • Maximum drag: 27 pounds
  • Line retrieve rate: 40 inches
  • Spool braid ready: yes
  • Bearing count: five
  • Gear ratio: 4.9:1
  • Reel class: medium-heavy/saltwater

SOCORRO SW10000 PROS AND CONS

Again, there are not likely to be many negatives with the Socorro. However, let's take a look anyway.

PROS

  • Very good build quality
  • Power and smooth drag system
  • Outstanding pinion drive stability
  • Powerful and reliable main gear
  • Excellent frame rigidity
  • Good support and spares availability

CONS

  • Slower retrieve rate

DAIWA BG REVIEW: OUR IMPRESSIONS

To honestly sum up a Daiwa BG review isn't an easy task. The big names in the game are constantly upping their games, and some exciting new blood is making a debut.

That said, the Daiwa BG series of reels is a comfortable class-leader and probably will be for a long while. Daiwa hit pay-dirt with the Black Gold product and has done nothing but improve on it ever since.

Our honest opinion in this Daiwa BG review is that you can't beat these reels for quality and value. We are by no means saying the competitor products are lacking because they are exceptional in their own rights. However, the Daiwa BG simply has too much gold standard mojo to be trumped.

If you have found value in this Daiwa BG review or have any advice or insights, please share them in the comments section below.

Featured Photo by Carl Heyerdahl on Unsplash

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