Best Spinning Reels Reviews For 2019

If you found this article on the web, congratulations! I take it you want to know more about Best Spinning Reels and how to find them. You, my friend, are at the right place.

“Fishing” is a popular pass time here in America, and we love a quiet weekend where we can set off to a lake and fish for a day or two. But to enjoy the act thoroughly, you need to prepare yourselves. While fishing is pretty rewarding, you need to have the proper tools of the trade by your side. That includes a high-quality rod, a basket, a kayak (for me) and most importantly, an apt spinning reel.

Don’t fret just yet! In this elaborately designed guide, I’m going to educate you about what these things are, why are they better than most variants and how to find the perfect one for you.

As a bonus, I’ll be sharing with you a short list of these devices that are popular and provide a top-notch performance too. So, hop on, we’re setting sail.

What is a Spinning Reel?

A spinning reel is a particular type of device that is used for fishing. It is instantly recognizable with the cylinder-like appearance. It has a rotor that spins and a spool that holds the line (the wire with which you attach the bait) once you retrieve it.

You load it with a suitable bait and cast the line into the water. When a fish takes the bait, you wind the line and in the process, catch the fish.

It can vary regarding quality, price, and features. The Top Spinning Reels are suitable for using both in fresh and saltwater fishing.

Comparing to Conventional Ones – Which is Better?

I’d say “Spinning Reels” in a heartbeat. Although some people will still go for a traditional product, but for me, convenience matters. Spinning ones are often braided. You can cast the line and retrieve it faster than the conventional ones. Thanks to the “Drag System,” there are no backlashes as well.

Another reason for me to choose a Spinning Reel over normal variant is the fact that the line doesn’t get tangled here with the spool. You can afford a longer leash for the fishes. Also, the possibility of suffering from a wind knot is virtually zero.

Many would argue that the conventional fishing equipment is lightweight. But so is the current spinning reels with aluminum and graphite construction. So, obviously, these are better by a long shot.

How to Find the Ideal Spinning Reels?

We’ve established the fact that spinning reels are better than most when it comes to fishing. Yet, another fact is, fishing enthusiasts are often playing blind when it comes to buying the perfect model for themselves.

This is because they don’t know what the best spinning reel have to offer and thus can’t decide which one they want. So, in the following section, I’ll point out few aspects that you should keep in mind while buying one.

Look at the Making


When surfing online for these things, be sure to check what the makers are using as a construction material. You should look for a model of a reputed brand that can withstand harsh weather conditions, impact and even quick line snapping. I’d advise getting equipment that uses an “All Metal” construction.

If you want lightweight reel, go for Aluminum. Carbon fiber or Graphite is also useful when you are looking for something that can survive the weather and all sorts of harsh things you throw at it.

While you are at it, make sure you buy a product that has sealed ball bearings. The seal prevents water from getting inside and keeps rust and dirt at bay.

Purchase a piece of Equipment that Complements your Conditions

If you belong to a part of the world where a particular weather condition (such as heat or cold) is dominant, you need a spool and intricate parts which can survive the extremes of that weather. Also, if you are going for a particular fish, the fishing equipment needs such as fishing sunglasses, fish finder to be specific also to counter the challenges associated with that fish.

You should look at how much line is needed to catch the fish and compare it to the capacity of your spool. If it is within that capacity, congratulations, you’ve found the best possible spinning reel that you can get.

Measure the Power of your Equipment of Choice

You’ll have to calculate the gear ratio to measure the power of any product you choose. More power it has, better it is. High gear ratio means the product will retrieve fish faster out of the water. If the gear ratio is 4:1, it means in one turn, the line wraps four times around the spool.

It is the lowest gear ratio that is good to go. I personally prefer equipment with 6:1 gear ratio. If you can’t afford any, go for a medium 5:1 ratio at the very least.

Buy One that Provides the “Least” Resistance

So, here’s the rule: “Resistance is Bad.” Less resistance means you’ll cast the lightweight baits precisely with this kind of models. Also, resistance, in this case, counters smoothness. So, less resistance means you’ll be able to retrieve the line without any hitches.

A good way to measure resistance is to look at the ball bearing count. A spinning reel works well with a minimum of four ball bearings. Then there are those which have as many as seven or more. Those aren’t meant for inexperienced fishermen.

If you want to buy a decent product, buy one that has five ball bearings. Go higher if your wallet permits you to.

The Ideal Reel Must Have a Good Drag System

While you should look for an item that has low resistance count, you should look for one that has a great “Drag System” as well. When you are in a hurry of catching an excellent fish, you need to cast the line quickly. It should go through the lips quickly and get to the water. Jerking or touting at that time isn’t good. A good Drag System prevents that from happening.

You should also find a product that has a “Closed” drag system. Exposing key parts of your setup can result in rusting, jamming and any other sort of damage. Make sure the equipment remains waterproof. When you are fishing in saltwater, salt should not get inside and clog the reel mechanism.

Find a Product that Has the Best Retrieve

The item you choose should have no backlashes. The top reels stay rigid and don’t move back when you are setting the hook for fishing. Also, these things have a spacious spool. The line spreads evenly and looks nice on the spool. Don’t fall for things that have tangled line.

An organized line means that it will not snap when you pull it out or even cast the bait at a rapid pace.

Choose a Product That Has the Appropriate Weight

“Appropriate” is the key word here. You’ll find products that are heavy. Heavy fishing equipment often takes a toll on your back. As fishing requires you to hold the rod for long periods, a heavy reel increases overall weight count of the bar. You might end up with backaches and muscle spasms.

But only buying lightweight alternatives isn’t the solution here. With lightweight products, you must sacrifice few things that lower the quality of the reel in question. For example, buying an aluminum-made model means you are getting a durable and sturdy product. But it is not as flexible as a graphite-made item would be.your need good quality spinning rods than best performance for reel.

The more expensive your product of choice is; chances are the heavier it will get. Makers don’t want to sacrifice quality for weight. You must strike a balance between weight and performance.

Recommendations for Top Fishing Reels in 2017


Now that you know the key factors that make a spinning fishing reel good, you must be scratching your heads. Keeping these things in mind and then matching every brand and model number of that brand with this checklist is a nearly impossible task.

Let me help you further. In the following section, you’ll find the Top 10 Spinning Reel Recommendations from me for 2017. You can choose any one (or more) you like. These match most of your requirements and provide excellent performance on any kind of water.

1 OF 10 Okuma Avenger ABF Graphite Bait Feeder Reel

Best Spinning Reels

Fishing reels have developed and improved a lot with time. One of such examples is the Okuma Avenger Bait Feeder. After knowing all the details, you will also agree when I say that it is one the best spinning reels.

The body is made of graphite, and so it is corrosion resistant. The graphite construction helps a lot when fishing in salt water. Salt cannot damage graphite-like it damages other materials. In fact, Okuma offers a 1-year warranty on the product. This bait feeder is lightweight, and so it will not add extra weight to your fishing pole.

When you are out fishing, it is crucial that your pieces of equipment are working fine. To ensure that, the Avenger ABF has been designed with 6 plus 1 ball bearings. The 6 are for natural motion and the extra for quick set anti-reverse roller motion.

The bearings are made of corrosion resistant stainless steel. This not only makes them durable but ensures that they keep working seamlessly. It has a gear ratio of 4.5:1 and has a maximum drag capacity of 22 pounds. This sturdy reel is provided with a sturdy handle. The handle is rigid and made of die-cast aluminum. The ported spool is equally strong as it is made of two-toned anodized machined aluminum. It comes with a spare graphite spool.

Among other features, it has a unique On/Off Auto Trip Baitfeeding System. This system allows you to disengage the spool with a single step and without having to remove the bail. This is possible because there is a micro-adjustable drag system on the back that enables making a precise adjustment of the spool easy.

So, when fishermen want to disengage the spool, all they have to do is turn the handle, and the On/Off lever on the back will disconnect the bait feeding system all by itself. The Okuma also has multi-disk Japanese oiled felt drag washers for easy action.

Pros

  • It has patented “One Handed” On/Off system.
  • ​Anti-reverse function kicks in quickly.
  • The graphite-centric design makes it corrosion resistant.
  • ​The drag seal it comes with is water tight.
  • Manufacturers equalized the rotor using computers for precision.​
  • I like how it balances price with features.

Cons

  • It features plastic parts in the handle. Eventually, they’ll wear out.
  • At times, the reel doesn’t line evenly.

2 OF 10 Shimano Stradic Ci4 Spinning Reel

Shimano Stradic Ci4 Spinning Reel review

If you have been online checking spinning reel reviews, you must have come across the Shimano Stradic Ci4. Out of numerous features, the one that I found to be noteworthy is it being lightweight. It is very common to expect it to be heavy due to the making. But it isn’t. This reel has a weight range of 5.9 to 9 Oz.

The two gears of the Stradic Ci4 use aluminum and brass in the making. The drive gear uses cold-forged aluminum, and the pinion gear uses hardened brass. This combination brings out the best in this fishing spinning reel.

The unique combination of the two metals provides it with durability, which is even more reliable than stainless steel. This also decreases its entropy. Meaning, it will not get easily damage through use. Plus, it will maintain its smoothness for a longer period of time. This is one of Shimano’s distinguishing features.

The Ci4 is designed with a 6 plus 1 ball bearing mechanism. The first 6 are for forwarding action, while the other 1 is for anti-reverse motion. The anti-reverse lever is under the wheel, against the rotor. It requires a bit of trick to using it successfully as it is small in size. With time your fingers will get habituated to it, and you will be flicking it even without seeing the lever.

The Ci4 utilizes X-Ship Technology. The perk of this design style is that it helps to keep all the gears in line. This technology uses special bearings on both sides of the pinion gear. This contributes to maintaining the alignment, regardless of the load weight. In fact, it plays a big part in keeping the rotating motion smooth and thus adds to its long life. It has a gear ratio of 6.0:1. It is surely not one of the cheap spinning reels, but the money will be worth it.

Pros

  • You can use it for either freshwater or saltwater fishing.
  • ​The thing is very lightweight.
  • ​Catch large fish with this without any problems.
  • This reel is durable and strong.​
  • The “Drag” performance is impressive.

Cons

  • Reviewers have complaints about “Cranking” noise

3 OF 10 Pflueger President Spinning Reel

Pflueger President Spinning Reel Review

Cost does not determine how good product will be. One such example is how the Pflueger President has secured its place among the top fishing reels. The Pflueger has a graphite body and rotor. Graphite is sturdy but light. It does not easily get corroded by the salt in seawater. And so, the build keeps the reel working smoothly for a long time.

It uses double shielded ball bearings that protect the whole thing while protecting themselves. Pflueger has used 10 ball bearings, and it is what that sets it apart. The first 9 of them are made of stainless steel and work in normal motion. And the last one is called the Instant anti-reverse one-way clutch bearing – the name says what it does.

Along with graphite, Pflueger utilizes aircraft-grade aluminum in constructing the handle. So durability and long lasting use are ensured. And then they have used stainless steel in making the main shaft and adjoining components. And surely this is corrosion resistant and so keeps it protected.

As if that was not enough, titanium has been used to make it function as efficiently as possible. The spool lip and the line roller are both titanium coated, and we know very well that nothing beats titanium. With all the metals, the Pflueger stands out as the best spinning reel for the money.

The spool has more to it. It has a distinctive hole pattern and is made of ported, machined, and double anodized aluminum. The hole pattern is unique because it actually makes the spool lighter.

The Pflueger has a braid-ready spool. This means that you can tie the braid directly to the spool. This saves a lot of your time, and you can fully focus on your fishing. This equipment model from the reputed company promises you consistent drag pressure owing to the inclusion of Stainless Steel/Oil Felt Drag System. This is corrosion resistant and so keeps functioning seamlessly.

Pros

  • ​The spool is braid-ready so easy to setup.
  • ​Nine ball-bearings provide a smooth performance
  • ​It is a lightweight equipment.
  • Good for fresh and saltwater but excels in freshwater fishing.

Cons

  • Saltwater fishing may suffer a bit due to the lightweight feature.

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4 OF 10 Penn Battle II Spinning Reel

Penn Battle II Spinning Reel  Review

If you are looking for the best in fishing equipment, the Penn Battle II can be your thing. It is built with composure, in construction, and in usage. This spinning reel has a full metal body, side plate, and rotor. This construction adds a lot to its efficiency.

This product helps to maintain a precise gear alignment that is critical when fishing. And it has been found to do this successfully even under severe conditions. Still, it is lightweight – it has a maximum weight of 12.8 ounces. It has a range of 220 yards (201 m) and a test line of 10 pounds (4.5 kg). Penn Battle II offers a maximum drag of 15 pounds (6.8 kg).

In building the drag washers, Penn has used HT-100™ carbon fiber. The bright side of this black material is that it is resilient and provides a smooth and seamless surface. 5 plus 1 bearing system makes its functions easier.

As you can guess, the first 5 are for regular action. These bearings are made of stainless steel and are sealed for complete protection. The other one is for instant anti-reverse action, and it does it with efficiency. These allow the reel to work up to your satisfaction. It is perfect for catching both big and small fishes.

This Penn spinning reel model has a gear ratio of 6.2:1. The handle is made taking care of ergonomics. It is very comfortable to the touch and helps you to work with ease. It has a super line spool and line capacity rings.

The spool is "Braid Ready," and so it is fuss-free when putting on the braid. It has a retrieve rate of 37 inches (94 cm). One other feature of Penn Battle II is its rubber gasket. Due to this gasket, no additional backing is necessary as it keeps the super lines from slipping.

Pros

  • The metal body, sideplate and rotor are corrosion-free.
  • ​Carbon-fiber washers and Instant Anti-reverse make it my favorite.
  • ​The ball wire can withstand whatever you throw at it.
  • ​The spools are braid-ready as expected from Penn

Cons

  • It will require lubricating after you’ve used it for some time.
  • Casts can suffer from kickbacks resulting in windknots.

5 OF 10 Penn Pursuit II Spinning Reel

Penn Pursuit II Spinning Reel review

The Pen Pursuit II may be one of the cheap fishing reels, but it promises to deliver professional quality performance. It is built with materials that can withstand great deals of labor. The Penn Pursuit II has a graphite body.

This Construction serves more than one purpose. At first, it makes the wheel lightweight. And then it makes it durable. Graphite is not easily corroded by saline water, and so it lasts longer than other materials.

The rotor uses the same graphite for construction, and so it is as durable as the whole thing. The side plates, however, are made of metal. But they prove their efficiency satisfactorily.

The ported, machined and anodized aluminum spool adds more to its bright side. This structure is sturdy and makes its functions smooth. The spool assists your fishing in other ways as well. It has Line Capacity Rings. These rings help you know how many lines you have left.

Three lines are standing for 1/3, 2/3 and a full spool. It has a thick bail wire that helps to recapture the line when the retrieved handle is cranked automatically. It has an Oiled-Felt Drag System that you can always rely on. It makes the system function seamlessly, as it keeps the drag slippery. It has a nice gear ratio of 5.2:1 and a maximum drag of 10 pounds (4.5 kg).

We cannot forget the ball bearings. As part of the Penn Pursuit II, 4 shielded ball bearings have been used. They use stainless steel, which along with the shielded feature makes their action smooth and effortless.

Along with the conventional four, there is an instant anti-reverse bearing. This makes sure that the rotor does not back play even the slightest. This diminishes any reason to waste time when hooking up the fishing spinning reel.

Pros

  • A budget-friendly option for people.
  • ​Durable piece of fishing equipment.
  • ​Much improved design than previous models.
  • Good investment in terms of money and performance ratio.

Cons

  • The size might prove too big for some.
  • The drag system needs frequent lubricating.

6 OF 10 Daiwa Crossfire Front Drag Spinning Fishing Reel

Daiwa Crossfire Front Drag Spinning Fishing Reel review

The Daiwa Crossfire is such fishing equipment that fits both your budget and satisfaction. It has the qualities to be one of the best fishing reels that you can get for the money. It comes in many sizes and measurements. A key feature of this spinning reel is the Micro Click Front Drag Adjustment.

This adjustment system allows you to make changes in the front drag with precision. It is very easy to function. The handle is made of machined aluminum, and so you can be sure of its sturdiness. The handle has a folding mechanism, and you can use it just a single touch.

Considering the price, Daiwa Crossfire is probably a showstopper. It is one of the cheap spinning reels, but the word cheap only applies to its cost. It utilizes a 4 ball bearing system, which is actually a 3 Plus one roller bearing design.

The first 3, as you can guess, are for regular action. The last one is for Instant Anti-Reverse action. This last one helps to diminish back play after you are done cranking the equipment. Plus, it also has a wire bail, to make things a lot easier. This spinning fishing reel will surely satisfy you every time you go out in the water to catch your fish.

It has other features too. The rotor keeps everything in line. That is, the rotor is Gyro Spin Balanced. This helps you to keep your stead no matter how much struggle the fish is putting in to get out of your hands.

Moreover, it has Twist Buster feature. What does this do? It does what it says – it busts any twists in the line. As a result, the line remains steady. Now they also had to make sure the spool is as good as everything else. And so they have used ABS Aluminum. This is one of the best structure materials, and it is sure to prove its worth.

Pros

  • Durable and lightweight design.
  • Micro-Click front drag adjustment is simple but effective.
  • ​Equally effective in fresh and saltwater.
  • It has “Twist Buster” technology that prevents wire from tangling.

Cons

  • It favors the “Beginner” level fishermen

7 OF 10 PENN Spinfisher V Spinning Reel

PENN Spinfisher V Spinning Reel review

The PENN Spinfisher V is one of the promising placeholders on the list of spinning reels. This actually highlights that buying this one can prove to be the best decision of your fishing life. It has a full metal body and side plates which serve two purposes at the same time.

The construction provides the reel with protection and then with precision. The side plates here play the key role in maintaining precise alignment of the gears so that everything functions properly. It also has a Techno-Balanced Rotor, which keeps the product well balanced against adversities.

This model of the PENN brand has a 5 Plus 1 ball bearing system. While the first five help in "Forward" action, the last one is the Instant Anti-Reverse bearing. This last one makes sure there is zero "Back Play" after cranking the reel.

It has “Sealed HT-100 Slammer Drag System.” What is so great about this? Well, this system uses 3 drag washers in total. There are two washers in the bottom of the spool and one on its top. The combination of all three of the washers delivers utmost satisfaction in performance. Plus, the washers assist the reel in working without friction.

The Superline spool is made of machined and anodized aluminum that has Line Capacity Rings. The rings help you to keep track of how many lines you have in hand. This spinning reel comes with a spare spool in its package. From the first use, you will notice that the line lay very evenly over the spool, which is a big plus. The handle has mounted seal that protects the inner parts from getting wet and damaged. So under any kind of condition, the fishing accessory will prove its worth.

Pros

  • Performance of this reel is flawless.
  • ​The water tight feature makes it a prime choice for saltwater fishing.
  • ​Smooth fishing accessory for the price.
  • It holds up well even after heavy using.

Cons

  • It is made in China. It might be an issue for users who prefer American product exclusively.

8 OF 10 Okuma Trio High Speed Spinning Reel

Okuma Trio High Speed Spinning Reel review

Okuma Trio is known for its hybrid construction. While graphite construction gives it some much-needed durability, you can expect subtle performance from the Aluminum lip that holds in or discharges the line. The spool resists any drag or tension the line exerts on it.

This is indeed a high-end spinning reel with the rotor being impact resistant. You can catch big fishes and in any kind of water thanks to the high-impact design. The spool, on the other hand, is spacious. It holds an impressive amount of line. You can allow the fish some slack with the extended line. Another thing is, the spool resists jerking when fishes try to escape.

The Okuma Trio Reel is fueled by DFD or Dual Force Drag System. The tool implies pressure on the fish when they try to get away. Meaning, the more a fish pushes in the opposite direction of Okuma Trio, the more pressure it applies. This is the reason why fishes won’t escape once they take the bait. The improved mechanics of the reel utilizes both ends of the spool for that purpose.

It has as many as ten ball bearings and one reverse bearing to make sure the fishermen can throw the line at a great distance and retract it when needed. The stainless steel ball-bearings are corrosion resistant as usual.

Pros

  • Durable product; you can even submerge it in water yet nothing will happen.
  • Ball bearings and the roller give you a smooth performance.
  • ​Anti-reverse feature kicks in quickly to keep everything secure.
  • Lightweight and comfortable fishing accessory.

Cons

  • The spool could’ve been wider so that it could hold more line.
  • Doesn’t come with an extra spool.

9 OF 10 Shimano Saragosa SW Reels

Shimano Saragosa SW Reels

Have you been looking for an ideal fishing reel for all types of water? If you have no budget constraints, check out the Shimano Saragosa SW Reels. They have one of the best fishing reels for sale in today’s date.

Sargosa has a Hagane Body. The pros of this structure are that it has high rigidity, stiffness and impact resistance. It can work under severe conditions and still not falter to deliver quality service. Along with the body, they have also used the Hagane Gear. This gear is as good as the body. That is to say, the Saragosa SW has ensured durability and long lasting usage.

This model of Shimano has a total of 6 S A-RB ball bearings. The bearing system is actually 5 Plus 1. The first five bearings work in regular motion, while the last one is the Super Stopper Anti-Reverse bearing.

The bearings assist the reel to function smoothly and seamlessly. Plus, being shielded, they protect themselves against salt water. The spool is made of Cold Forged Aluminum. This makes it reliable against continuous rough use. It has a One Piece Bail Wire. The wire is better than most others. The handle is designed to provide you with comfort. It is made of machined aluminum and has ergonomic Septon Handle Grips.

The Saragosa SW is better than many electric fishing reels. It has got X-Ship, X-Rigid Gear, X-Tough Drag, X-Shield, and X-Protection. The X-Ship design uses two shielded ball bearings on both sides of the pinion gear, which helps it to maintain precise alignment, even when under heavy loads.

The X-Rigid Gear, as the name suggests, offers rigidity and tremendous power to your fishing experience. The X-Tough Drag provides smoothness that further enhances its performance.

The X-Shield has an exclusive design. It uses sealing gaskets that have been placed in 12 critical places, which makes the whole system water resistant. And finally, the X-Protection uses a three-lipped rubber sealing. The first lip stops low-pressure water, and the rest stop high-pressure water from entering into the gears.

Pros

  • You can catch big fishes with these small reels.
  • Long lasting products from Shimano.
  • ​Great options to have in terms of performance vs. Price ratio.
  • Perfect mid-range accessories with the convenience of high-end reels at relatively moderate price.

Cons

  • These don’t come with any baitrunners.

10 OF 10 KastKing Sharky Baitfeeder Spinning Fishing Reel

KastKing Sharky Baitfeeder Spinning Fishing Reel review

It is not necessary that advanced features should cost a higher price. The KastKing Sharky Baitfeeder is such an example. It has great innovative features and advanced computerized system that puts it directly at the top of the list.

It has dual drag system – one in the front and one in the back. And these drag systems can be adjusted as per your needs. Sharky uses high-tech Carbon Fiber Drag Washers that delivers, probably, the best result ever seen in a fishing reel. According to the manufacturers, the maximum drag is 33 pounds.

However, in practice, it has been found to reach up to 40 pounds. The central rod is made of stainless steel, which is surely the best companion of carbon.

This Baitfeeder utilizes a 10 Plus 1 ball bearing system. This is a high-level bearing system, which makes sure that Kastking Baitfeeder is functioning as smoothly as you can imagine. Of course, these bearings are corrosion resistant. They are then paired with a 5.2:1 gear ratio. Kastking Sharky Baitfeeder doesn’t gamble with precision. Only a few products can rival this reel in terms of precision.

It is quite obvious now when I tell you that it has high modulus graphite body. The body is corrosion resistant and will withstand saline water better than many other body materials.

KastKing has a CNC Machined Aluminum made spool works well against dynamic pressure. A spare graphite spool is included with the product. A computer balanced rotor has been used in its manufacture. It works efficiently in keeping the system aligned and well balanced.

It has a double bearing supported brass pinion gear. This gear is one of the key parts of this reel. And it has a durable and sturdy cast alloy drive gear that provides it with strength. Kastking Sharky has double drive aluminum handles that can be interchanged from left to right. However, you prefer. Now if I say, KastKing is one of the best reels, will there be any doubt?

Pros

  • ​It is durable enough to survive after catching a big fish.
  • ​You’ll be amazed to see how quite this product is.
  • People can retrieve line fast without any problems.
  • It is a good reel when you consider the price and how well it is built for the price.

Cons

  • Doesn’t hold as much line as you’d expect it to.

Final Verdict

If you’ve gone through the entire guide, congratulations are in order again. After reading the entire article, it shouldn’t take you long to find a product that best matches your requirements. You know all the tips and tricks to finding the ideal reel for you now. If you throw enough bucks in there, you should get a model that will last for a lifetime without lowering the performance graph. Then again, don’t go spending too much on these things. Best Spinning Reels can be quite cheap if you know what to look for and where.

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