View Full Version : Conversation with the Founder of Ardent reels

02-22-2007, 02:38 PM
I just got off the phone with David Gray who is the founder of Ardent reels. We had a an interesting conversation about the fishing tackle industry in general and specifically about his reels. We made arrangements for me to test their new all American made spinning reel this next year. He offered to send a reel for a 30 day test as well, but frankly 30 days isn't enough time to test a spinning reel properly, but after reflecting on our phone call I changed my mind and decided like to take advantage of the 30 day test. If after the 30 days I decide I like the reel I will purchase it and then test it for the full year.

I mentioned USREEL to David during our conversation and he let me in on something that really disappointed me. USREEL is made in China!!! Ugh. How deceptive. He mentioned that it says that on their boxes and reels.

I'll let you all know when I get the reel and what I think. In the mean time go take a look.



crappie cowboy
02-22-2007, 06:05 PM
Hey Grizz, I was reading your post and was wondering the reason for high price's of these reels. Is it the labor cost here in the USA or what, I can't afford those price's, but that don't make me or other buyers unpatriotic, and I know you understand that.
It seems you can't buy nothing these days that isn't somehow connected
with the overseas country's.
It chapp's my butt to know walmart forces it's merchandiser's to have to go
to China to be competitive to have there products sold in there stores.
I have a obligation to support my family and the only way I can do that is try
to buy the cheapest price product I can, and that means buying products from overseas, it's a catch 22.

spider rig man

02-22-2007, 07:18 PM

I had quite a long talk with him. They are positioning their reels to compete with reels like shimano stradic and quantum energy. At this stage of development in their product and company I don't think it would be cost efficient to produce an inexpensive reel. From his description of the spinning reel and their initial casting reel they introduced, the goal of the company is to build a reel that lasts, and performs better than other reels on the market during that time. From what I have read and what David told me, they accomplished that goal with the Ardent casting reel, and will with the spinning reel too.

Look at it this way. Compare the reels to shoes. You can go to walmart and get a $30 pair of shoes that will wear out in a year. They were made in China, and in the mean time your wearing poor shoes that are probably bad for your feet and don't look good. You would have been better off spending $100 for a pair of shoes made in America that will last 5 yrs, look better and feel better. Reels are exactly the same. Ardent also has a 3 yr warranty. The closest warranty on the market is only 1 yr. Even Van Staal reels that cost $800 only have 1 yr.

How much do you spend for hunting boots, fishfinders, boats, rods, coats, trolling motors, etc. Spending a little extra money on a reel or a rod is worth it in my book.

I have to agree with you that it is a catch 22, but here is a chance for us to support an American company that has the guts to buck the trend and build a quality reel here in the US. If its a better reel, why not? We'll see when I get it.

02-22-2007, 07:40 PM
Another thing about reels, there's not much profit margin for a retailer. BPS doesn't give employee's a discount on them for this reason. They're just expensive to make. I have a couple of $100+ baitcasters, they are better than cheap ones. I'd like a $120 spinning reel but I like a lot of mid to low priced models and they probably don't get as much abuse as my baitcasters. I like the looks of the Ardent.

02-23-2007, 01:45 AM
There is another reason to spend some doe on a reel. I fish my reels hard and wear em out quick. Seems like every reel I've bought only works really good for a year or 2. If I can pay $130 bucks and have a reel that can take the punishment its well worth it. Diawa, shimano, Van stall, make elite reels designed to take punishment too but they cost $500-$800, and I'm not quite ready for that yet.

02-23-2007, 03:57 AM
Its just like anything else, you get what you pay for. I bought a little Browning spinning reel back 13 or 14 years ago.IT was around $55.00 back then, Its is still the first one I reach for when I need a spinning outfit. It was the color black when I bought it, it is now kinda gray from the sun. I do keep it clean and lubed and it works just as good as day one. I have a ammo box about half full of cheap reels that have failed in some way.

old fuzzy
02-23-2007, 05:24 AM
while it's stylish to have those high dollar reels and rods,but you know what,it's sure a lot less stressful on the system when the high dollar outfit decides to go for a swim and you cannot get to it in time,a lot easer to replace two or 3 rod and reels for 200.or 300 or what evere they cost than just 1 jmho---fuzz

02-23-2007, 05:32 AM
I guess I shop with the idea that if I need a tool to use very often and it is very important that it function well then I will spend as much as I can to get a good one. If I plan on using the tool only on occasion and if it will get the job done even with some annoyance or if the chances of me losing it or it getting broke, then I will get the cheaper one. Its almost like when fishing a tournament with a lot riding on your fishing line not breaking. Most tournament fishermen change their line before every fishing tournament even when it is still almost new.
I use cheaper reels on rods I use for spider-rigging and don't reel in often and I use the better reels on rods that I cast with almost constantly. I will always buy USA made over foreign made if the price or quality is anywhere close.

02-23-2007, 01:16 PM
while it's stylish to have those high dollar reels and rods,but you know what,it's sure a lot less stressful on the system when the high dollar outfit decides to go for a swim and you cannot get to it in time,a lot easer to replace two or 3 rod and reels for 200.or 300 or what evere they cost than just 1 jmho---fuzz


I don't think this subject includes spider rigging setups. I'm referring to a rig that you use as a primary single pole application that gets used by itself the bulk of time. I think the crappie tackle industry has done a good job of producing quality affordable rigs for applications that take 2-16 setups. No one could be expected to spend $200 a rig when they need 12 rigs, though I know some that do.

When I fish I primarily use 1 - 7 ft ML spinning rig or 1 - UL spinning rig.