by Guide Blog


Uk anglers love to have the full range of options when it comes to Stillwater fly lines and therefore, in steps the need for a cassette fly reel. Many people only require a floating line, an intermediate line, and some type of sinker. However, this often isn’t the case with us Brits. Take a peak in the ‘average angler’s’ tackle bag and you’ll likely see an array of fly lines. These line cover the whole water column and presenting flies from the surface, right down to the lake bed. The problem with having so many fly lines, and yes we probably do have too many, is storage. This is why you need a cassette fly reel!

Stillmaniac Cassette Fly Reel with a Brown Trout caught while fly fishing on a Uk Stillwater

Stillmaniac Cassette Fly Reel – Ahead Of The Game

With the continuing growth of the Vision brand in the UK and the popularity of the Stillmaniac Fly Rods, it was time to give the UK stillwater angler the option of a complete Stillmaniac outfit by introducing a new cassette fly reel. Vision knows a thing or two about cassette fly reels. The Koma reel achieved massive popularity in the UK and was probably one of the best sellers of its time. It featured a classic, large arbor design – my favorite when it was introduced – and came with its own pouch and additional spare spools. Vision’s new reel, the XLV Stillmaniac Cassette Fly Reel, blows the Koma clear out of the water. It really is the ultimate in modern cassette fly reel design. It features amazing good looks and extremely pleasing lines, but the ease of use and functionality grab the attention.

Stillmaniac Cassette Fly Reel – Killer Looks

Engineers have designed it to be very light and robust, based on the incredibly popular XLV series. Like its predecessors, it’s an anodized, very funky-looking reel with a large arbor design. The mix of slate grey and coppery orange body, bright Stillmaniac orange handle, and clear polycarbonate spool really make this reel stand out from the crowd.

But looks aside, it’s the functionality and performance that do it for me. It features an awesome and easily adjustable, smooth disc brake drag system that will stop anything you will likely encounter. Moreover, I also love the unique V-shape design on the frame. This not only looks great but also brings extra strength to the overall cassette fly reel build.

UK fly fisherman changing the line on a Vision Stillmaniac Cassette Fly Reel

Stillmaniac Cassette Fly Reel – Fast & Fuss-Free

The quick change system is incredibly efficient, allowing you to switch lines in the blink of an eye and with minimal effort. Additionally, to release the spool from the frame, simply push in the lever; with a quick press, it effortlessly comes away. Furthermore, to remove the spool, all it takes is a half-turn of the locking ring, aided by the raised ridges – and you’re done. When you’re ready to attach the next spool, just line up the recess in the cassette with the handle and lock it in place. With this simple process, you’re back on the water in no time and covering a different depth.

The cassettes also feature a large flat area on the outer rim, perfect for marking which line is on the spool. I’d suggest a marker pen for this, a fast and easy ID system.

Inner workings of a Vision Stillmaniac Cassette Fly reel.

For an even quicker spool change, consider marking the handle recesses with a permanent marker for super quick alignment.

Additionally, the reels feature a built-in counterbalance system, ensuring their operation is ultra-smooth. Incidentally, the clicker sounds amazing; it’s a dreamy noise that I want for my phone’s ringtone! Moreover, they come in a very stylish and handy blue and orange neoprene case with a trio of cassettes – a pretty awesome setup to get you on your way. And if you ever need spare cassettes, they are available separately.

Stillmaniac Cassette Fly Reel – A Marriage Made In Heaven

The Vision Stillmaniac Cassette fly reel is the ultimate cassette fly reel and creates a devastating Stillwater setup when matched with the Stillmaniac Rod and Stillmaniac lines. Moreover, you can now obtain the perfectly balanced Stillmaniac setup with two size options available. The 6/7 size is ideal for the 9’9″ models, while the 7/8 size is better suited for the 10′ models.

Steve Cullen Fly Fishing

Steve Cullen YouTube Channel

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