By Neil Taylor


I can tell you that I have never owned a really good fly reel until I got the Speedster. I can also tell you that my clients have enjoyed it more than I have. Fly fishing has not been and still is not my forte. But I know good equipment when I see it. I got it on a recommendation and it was the right one. The first one worked so well, I got a second one.

The Product: Speedster fly reel . Like it is with anything else I have studied and made determinations in the past: You get what you pay for. In the Speedster this is another big “value” choice, again, my biggest determination on that “durability.”

To get the the real heart of the matter, when it comes to fly fishing gear and tackle I talk to Brad Lowman at Bill Jackson Shop for Adventure. This is my affiliate store that sells everything I use on my charters. I got the introduction to Dave Choinard with Lamson through the store. What a delight. It may be juvenile and silly but I honestly just like looking at this reel every chance I get. I really enjoy all my equipment choices I have made but I think the Lamson reel is just a very unique and beautiful piece of equipment.

To me, two words describe this fly reel: Light and durable. Servicing? What servicing. I have had mine for several years now and literally have done no more than just very basic cleaning.

Brad knows the details on the performance so I asked him to tell me what he thinks of the Speedster and here is what he told me. Brad, honest and forthcoming with the information the consumer would “need to know” when making purchases, put these thoughts together on this model reel:

When I’m recommending a “saltwater duty” fly reel, I look for 4 key features: 1.) A good drag system that is simple, smooth and has a wide range of adjustment. 2.) A durable, long lasting anodized finish to protect it for long term use in salt water. 3.) A large-arbor spool for fast line retrieve when reeling line in and slower revolutions of the handle for when the fish is ripping line out. 4.) A light weight design that balances well with modern rods and reduces fatigue for all day blind casting.

The Lamson Speedster is my go-to fly reel because it has all these features AND a wallet friendly(er) price -Not to mention it is as sexy as a fly reel can get!

The Speedster is a tough, American-made badass of a reel that will handle anything you throw your fly at! 

Who is Brad Lowman? Brad is the manager of the fishing department in this high-end outdoor store and is in his second full decade working in the fishing industry. Brad’s free time, most likely with a fly rod and reel in hand. The guy is as expert as there is. I asked him for his thoughts on this reel as a guy who both uses it and sells it Here is what he had to say:

Making a good thing better is what our company is about. The Speedster is a super-high retrieve rate reel with a narrower spool, inboard mounted handle and an outer diameter significantly larger than our highest performing reels. The narrow spool prevents line barreling, the added circumference and inboard handle improve retrieve rate. Mate these features with our time tested smooth as silk, maintenance free drag system, Classic Waterworks Lamson styling and attention to detail, and you have what the name implies: A Hotrod of a reel.
Format: Super Arbor
Materials: Machined 6061 Aluminum,stainless steel
Finish: Hard Alox
Speedster Specifications
Speedster 1.5 3.5″ .95″ 3.90 oz 3,4 WF4 100 yd 20# $279 $135
Speedster 2 3.75″ .95″ 4.20 oz 5,6 WF6 100 yd 20# $289 $140
Speedster 3 4″ 1.05″ 4.70 oz 6,7,8 WF7 150 yd 20# $329 $160
Speedster 3.5 4.4″ 1.15″ 5.70 oz 8,9 WF9 200 yd 20# $349 $170
Speedster 4 4.8″ 1.25″ 8.50 oz 10,11 WF10 150 yd 30# $399 $195

One of my clients bought the Speedster after he used it with my last year. He sent me this statement: “Neil, that trip worked out so well for me. I enjoyed the fishing but I am so happy you turned me on to that Speedster reel. I am going to buy another one the first chance I get. You were right: It is low maintenance. And what a fantastic reel! I have enjoyed this reel more than any I have ever owned.”

To talk to Brad Lowman, visit Bill Jackson Shop for Adventure in Pinellas Park. They are a Lamson dealer and reputable fly shop, “everything under one roof” outdoor store. He can advise you on your outfit choices. Lamson is a leader in the industry. My contact there is a Mr. Dave Choinnard who also carries the very popular line of Simms apparel and gear. Dave would be another person to consult as he is a fly fishing guide and expert in the industry. While you are in to see the Speedster, feel free to take a look at the Simms items as well because Bill Jackson’s carries both.

Neil Taylor
Owner and guide:
(Cell) 727-692-6345
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