Abu Garcia Orra SX Spinning Reel Review - 2017

Abu Garcia Orra SX Spinning Reel Review – 2017

Abu Garcia Orra SX Spinning Reel Review - 2017

Reviewed Reel: Abu Garcia Ora SX

Overall Rating:

A great spinning reel for the angler that values weight savings and features over absolutely needing an all-metal construction.   An excellent value at this price point.  Only concern would be for heavy surf fishing.

At Fish.Sleep.Eat., we tend to favor spinning reels from companies with established firms with long storied histories.  While not fool-proof, a company that has made fishing gear for decades isn't likely to risk their reputation with bad components just to save a dollar or two in costs. Abu Garcia is an example of a company with a rich history.  Founded in Sweeden in 1921, there is enough of a following of the company's tackle that books have been written about the subject.   That kind of loyalty only comes with time and delivering a solid product.

The Abu Garcia Orra SX spinning reel is a solid step up in price from the sub-$50 category of gear.  How well does the Orra SX live up to the reputation of AG?  Read on to find out!

  •  Innovative carbon/metal hybrid construction can shave weight without sacrificing much in sturdiness. 
  • Nine HCR (alloy) ball-bearings will resist corrosion which should lead to years of reduced friction in casts and retrievals.
  • The "Rocket" enhancements help to reduce the issue of line twist - something close and dear to my heart.
  • In return for a lighter construction, you do give up some power transfer with the carbon-hybrid body.
  • Gearbox construction is considered by some to be more difficult to service than other reels.
  • Some people have trouble with play in the handle connection.  I haven't personally experienced this, but it is a reported issue.


  • Machined aluminum spool is braid-ready - means you can tied braided-line directly to the spool without any slip.
  • Carbon Matrix drag system is designed to give consistent, smooth drag across the entire drag range.
  • Rocket line management system provides improved control no matter what type of fishing line you use.
  • Rocket spool lip design combined with slow oscillation helps control line tangle​.


Maybe get a You-Tube Video in here, otherwise another picture.


Construction/Quality - 9/10

Ergonomics and Design





Pflueger President Spinning Reel

If you'd rather spend near $50 and aren't worried about debris getting inside the rod, you can't go wrong with the President spinning reel.  Sure the components aren't as high-end as on the Orra but Pflueger is known for quality engineering. It really shows on this dependable, not-flashy inexpensive model.

Shimano Stradic FK Spinning Reel

The Stradic FK is an example of what you can get for around double the price of the Orra SX.  If you are willing and able to pay $150+ for a reel, it's a great reel.  Seals are added to the all-metal body to keep out water and everything else.  Forged gears add to precision and power. The quality of the spinning reel isn't in doubt - it's a matter of how much you want to spend for the additional features.  Not everyone has a trust fund, amiright?

The Shimano Stradic FK spinning reel is a great choice

Penn Battle II Spinning Reel

The Battle 2 is a sharp-looking reel priced slightly above the Orra SX.  The body is all-metal - which does give it a bit more stability.  You give up a feature or two and add some weight in return to keep it at this price.  A solid choice if you need the extra strength an all-metal body can provide.

Should I buy the Abu Garcia Orra SX spinning reel in 2017?

The Abu Garcia Orra SX is a solid pick for a spinning reel that you will use for most everything.  It is made well and should last a long time if properly cared for.  You don't need to be afraid to get it wet - either in the salt or freshwater. 

It probably isn't the right reel for you if you are looking to hook into monster fish.  It isn't like this reel body will explode if you get into a fish above it's spool size - but that's not who it's made for.  Try the Battle II if size might be an issue.

About the Author Arnold Martinsen

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