Designed after the saltwater T series, this is hot off the production line. The TF-50 looks like a mini saltwater reel. A scaled-down version of the sealed carbon drag at the centre, the spool has a hidden counterweight, and the spool attaches to the half frame body with a captive nut.
This reel feels delicious! Deceptively light in the hand, smooth machined surfaces, no play between spool and body. The drag-knob turns with a pleasing click, the range of useful drag is good, not as wide as its big brother, the T-70, and it hardly needs to be. Very smooth drag, easy to set the resistance I want. The spool clicks on the way out and stays silent as I bring line in. With the spool removed I can see a one-way clutch-bearing housed in the back of the spool; switching wind is a matter of turning that bearing around – simple job.
The reel weighs in at 3.8oz – light! – and it takes a WF5F with 130 yards of 20lb backing, or a WF6F with 115 yards. These are very impressive dimensions. To control weight, 3-Tand has fitted a much smaller, lighter drag, then machined the body (and especially the spool), so the walls are thin. They’re still rigid, but a fraction of the thickness of equivalent parts of the T-70.
The combination of low weight, quality finish and the medium arbour saltwater styling is very appealing. Priced at £199.95 this is an attractive reel at a fair price, but faces some stiff competition from similar priced reels.