It works great...until it breaks.
I purchased the Abumatic 276i as a replacement reel for my fishing rod. I dislike spinning reels, so I was drawn to the 276i's classic looks and metal body. It was well-lubed out of the box, was impressed with it's performance during my first fishing trip. It seemed to cast well, even if it did seem to be not as far casting as I was used to. The reel had a nice line speed and was loaded with pretty decent line for the money.
However, the second time I used it, it broke. I caught a Largemouth Bass (probably about 5 lbs) and during my catch, the reel stopped reeling. I thought my drag was too light, but when I tried to adjust my drag, the roller knob would not budge. I managed to keep the fish, but my reel was wasted. It ended my day.
I understand this is a value reel, but I have had much cheaper reels last much longer. If anything, the line should have snapped, not the insides of my reel.
Fit/Finish: 3/5. For a value reel, it wasn't bad. The drag roller-knob is pretty poorly fitted, but it was functional enough. The metalwork was well-finished and had no burrs.
Design: 3/5. Nice materials, two ball bearings, Titanium Nitride line guides. For the money, it has lots of decent features. Not to mention, it looks classic.
Function: 3/5. Again, good for the money. It was quite smooth. It wasn't overly coarse or noisy. quick reeling.
Durability: 1/5. Terrible. A 5lb bass broke mine.
Overall: 2/5. Good prospects but comes up short in execution.
May 27, 2013
Not the worst, but close enough.
I was pleased on my first fishing trip with this reel, but My second fishing trip left me dissapointed. It seemed like every time I casted my line, it just stopped in mid air and plumetted straight down. The line would only go a few feet in front of me. It made it impossible for me to place it in the right spot. Finally I got tired of dealing with the piece of junk and I bought a new reel. I'll be honest, the new reel that I bought is an Abu Garcia (Ambassadeur 6500). I've used Abu Garcia reels for a long time and I know that they are great, but the abumatic is complete junk. This is the only reel from Abu Garcia that I've had trouble with. I strongly reccomend that Abu Garcia fix the problem or stop selling this reel. It may look nice, but it doesn't preform to my standards.
May 23, 2013
Thumb Release Defect
I purchased a 276i at Bass Pro Shops recently and had to bring it back the next day...only positive thing I can say about this reel is that it reels in smooth. I rigged the reel and did a couple of practice casts...the "plastic" thumb release mechanism broke at the pivot point on my 3rd cast. I had to drive 30 miles back to the store to return it...wasted a lot of time and gas. I was extremely disappointed.
March 11, 2013
I purchased one of these fine reels a few months ago. One of my first spincast reels ever. (grew up a dock rat and young dock rats were always given old broken cheap spincasts to use, so I developed a bad attitude towards them until recently)
I have a 1950s Shakespeare Wondercast in perfect shape which worked well for bank fishing. Fished for 50 years using spinning tackle, which can be finicky.
I replaced the line on the fine reel with Spiderwire EZ Mono 8lb, and in doing so found the reel did have a problem as described in a couple of posts. The problem was me not putting the line on correctly, or not enough which was the problem. This was causing the short cast problem. Too much line can be bad too. In any reel, and reel type. One must find the perfect line fill for each reel.
My advice and experience taught me to double check any rod or reel before using. I have expensive rigs which a screw, or spring sometimes needs adjusting.
In short I know of no reel, or tackle for this matter which works 100 percent of the time 100 percent. Great reel!
July 1, 2012