Shimano developed the Citica as a cheaper alternative to the Curado but a smaller price tag does not mean a drastic drop in performance. The 6.3:1 gear ratio turns the spool 6.3 times for each full rotation of the handle, making it easier to get those bass up and out of cover. Just a little oiling maintenance here and there, and the Shimano Citica takes care of the rest. The reel weighs in at 7.8 ounces.
I drive miles of dirt roads before finally hitting pavement, so dirt and grime are part of my daily fishing annoyances. Even in the pictures below, you’ll be able to spot some caked-on dirt; something that is not friendly to fishing gear. I have seen other reels come and go, but in this instance, I have not had any issues with the Citica in a dusty environment.
The Citica 200-series boasts a one piece aluminum frame that is both light and comfortable. It fits nicely in your hand, and the low-profile spool and thumb-bar accent the frame perfectly. You have three main bearings and one roller bearing that offer a smooth cast, and tossing light lures is a fairly easy task as long as you’re not casting into the wind.
The drag system is solid all around and has worked wonders with a few different largemouth bass. A top notch reel is nothing without a superb drag system, and I have no complaints in this department. I find it easy to tighten or loosen. It does the job and high marks to Shimano for paying special attention to one of the most important aspects of a baitcasting reel.
I researched for months before finally settling on the Shimano Citica 201E (left handed model; 200E is the right handed model). The features and the craftsmanship was clearly evident, and the $120 price tag certainly made the decision easier at the time. Baitcasting reels are a joy to fish with due to their ergonomics, and because of the styling and performance, I have yet to experience any wrist or forearm pain caused by uncomfortable casting.
If you’re looking for a baitcasting reel, the Shimano Citica is a hard piece of equipment to beat in the hundred-dollar price range. The reel has a great finish, and the inner-workings of the reel compliment the styling to makeup one heck of a deal.