Savage Gear SG8 Reel Review. I’ve used a lot of Savage Gear products since their break into the Australian Market back in 2016. I’ve arguably used their range of rods and reels more than anyone in the country. It’s been an interesting journey watching and testing their product range. Over that time, we have seen continuous improvement in their product range, particularly around weights, sizing and being aligned to Australian standards when compared with other brands.
So, 2021 is an exciting year for the brand that will finally manufacturer and go to market with its own developed fishing reel series. In fact, they hit the market with multiple new reel series including the SG4, SG6, SG8 and soon SG10. The SG4 the entry-level reels valued at $99 the mid-level SG6 valued at $149 and the SG8 of which our article will focus on and their premier reel at $199.
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From 2017 to 2021 Savage Gear had a very limited range of branded reels under their umbrella. The Stealth, the Black and the Manic. They did suffer from several issues that stopped them from becoming household names in the fishing market. This included over heavy weights, nonstandard sizings and poor aesthetics with the stealth reel having clunky rotor arms which made it struggle to compete with reels at a similar price point.
However it’s a very different story this time around, the new reels feel refined, properly aligned to Australian standards, well priced and smartly designed. Taking many great technologies that we’re seeing in other branded reels and adding in their own take.
I did a significant amount of product testing on the Savage SG8 reel before it was released on the Australian market. I was impressed and pleased to see that the manufacturer had really taken the time to listen to key feedback given about previous generations of reels, and tweaks to new reels which should see this as a success story.
Savage Gear SG8 Reel Highlights
The things that really stood out for me with the SG8 were the following.
- Fantastic drag systems, and great drag sound when battling fish. The 2500 and 3000 have a 12.5-kilo drag capacity and the 4000 has a 15-kilo drag capacity
- Greatly improved weights. About 30% lighter than the previous reel series and it’s really noticeable.
- On point with sizing’s of reels to match Australian standards
- Very smooth reel overall when winding the rotor arms and enabling the drag
- Comfortable reel handles CNC aluminium which resembles the handles of a Shimano Stradic or Vanford
- Shallower spool than previous models this is great when spooling the reel with braid that matches the length of line needed.
- Larger drag knobs make it easier to adjust the tension when fighting a fish
- Improved waterproofing technology to increase durability
- Aesthetically so much nice than the previous reel series
- The SG8 reels balance perfectly with the new Stealth 1DFR rods.
- Spare spool with each purchase
- Great value for money
Savage Gear SG8 reel comes packed with 10+1 stainless steel ball bearings, HS Sealed drag, CRC, BR-S, Torque Shift, and self-designed Dura grease.
I’ve used these reels almost exclusively now for 6 months ( prior to Australian Market Release ) and I’ve been really impressed. I primarily have been using the 4000 sizes to target snapper around Port Phillip Bay whilst flicking soft plastics, ive also given it a good thrashing chasing big Gummy sharks in Western Port with bait. I’ve also spent countless times with the 2500 and 3000 sizes targeting pinky snapper, flathead, whiting, squid and salmon on my kayak and runabout boat in my local waters of Port Phillip Bay. As mentioned above the reel has handled really well and accounted for many many fish with ease.
To be fair my only criticisms of the SG8 reel is that the brand could have done more to make the design and look of the SG4, SG6 and SG8 more different. The 3 reels look quite similar apart from minor features such as the spool colours and handles. It’s only a very minor criticism but making the spool different on the SG8 may have been a good idea.
Savage Gear SG8 Specs
Savage Gear SG8 Conclusion
Overall it’s great to see the improvements, the careful attention to detail and the focus on aligning the product with Australian standards. As we head into Summer this reel offers great value, performance and durability for a reel that’s under $200. It will battle against items such as the Shimano Nasci, Daiwa Exceler, Okuma Helios, Daiwa Tierra but it stands up to that competition well and you will be pleasantly surprised with its performance and capability.
You can buy the Savage Gear SG8 reels exclusively through your local BCF store or using this online link here. Buy Savage Gear SG8 Reel.