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Best reel of its type you will find. Period. Casts well and reels smooth. Parts are cheap and readily available. There are more upgrades then you will ever need. Its kind of like the AR15 of baitcasters. I have four c3's from the eighties and nineties that I use from surf to river and they never give me problems. The new ones are even better. Can't go wrong with an ambassadeur.
 

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It's about endless what you can do with a 6500 C3.
Very capable reels. I've landed several sharks in the 100-120 pound class on those reels using 30 pound braid.
She'll hold 300 yards of 30 pound braid.

I prefer the newer ones or you can buy an older one and bring it up to what a new one is.
For the money in that though I'd buy new.

Alot depends on what you plan to do with it. There may be better 6500s more suited like the rockets or blue yonders.
But that is the thing about ABU. You can take a new standard 6500 C3 and make it a rocket.
Awesome tinkering reels. PLENTY of parts both OEM and aftermarket are readily available.
 

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I'm also interested, fished with a friend last month that had 4 of them.we trolled for stripers. On the Cape Fear and they will catch fish!
For the money....you can't touch them with anything else.
They are simple, capable, and durable. You need a part, it's not like pulling eye teeth to get one. As far as routine maintenance parts like drag washers,worm gears, and worm gear pawls, they are priced low and there are numerous places to order them online including directly from ABU. Those parts are so affordable you can afford to stock a few of those things for when you do need them. Alot of the parts will cross over to other models in the same line of ABU round reels.

I use mine exclusively in saltwater and keep them well maintained. It's a reel your grand kids will be fishing with after you are dead and gone.
 

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Not by a long shot but still decent reels for the money. I have a kalex 50 that I got for $30 new on ebay because they said it had a squeal. Cleaned the bearings and it works perfect. I like it alright but already the release sticks even when its been cleaned and lubricated. I would never have paid full price for it. Not at all a bad reel compared to others on the market but it is worth paying the extra money for a Swedish reel.
 

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6500s are Swedish.
At times there has been assembled in China and made in China but right now all 6500s are Swedish unless it's recently changed.
Several countries have produced them over the years.

But I look at it like this. ABU has a long standing good name in reels. Anything they produce in China is going to be to ABU specifications, not Chinese specifications. The Chinese factories are running the the same milling, machining, balancing, and CNC equipment we are here and that they run in Sweden. I know because every time I need to get a factory tech in for one of our machines.....they are all in China.
The BCX reels are an economy class reel produced in China to ABU specifications. Obviously they are cheaper in price and quality.
Like any other reel company they have different levels of reels at different price ranges to get the market share.


If you want a step up, look at the 6500 rockets and Blue Yonders. They've discontinued the Blue Yonder several times only to bring it back better than before. They have just brought them back again. The blue Yonders are non levelwind reels. So smooth on the cast. Those reels have won numerous casting awards over the years. A little pricey though. The latest offering is up from 169 dollars to 250. Rockets are around 190.

But just a plain 6500 C3 is a solid reel. They'll come with carbon matrix drags and at some point you can upgrade to higher quality bearings like ceramics for 20 bucks, Put a power handle on it......and you got a whole different reel.
If I intended to use them in salt I wouldn't get a C4. The C4 has bearings in the levelwind. They'll quickly turn into bushings in saltwater.
 

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I've always liked the 5500's...in the day, they were the only company that produced a good quality, left hand retrieve reel. I had about 10 of them and loved them! I had them for at least 10 years each but when companies started making good quality, low profile reels that were easier to palm, I migrated away from the 5500's.

If the 6500's hold up as well as my 5500's, then they are TANKS!
 
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i'm not left-handed, but i never understood why most right-handed folks reel spinning reels with their left and baitcasters with their right. i use left-hand retrieve baitcasters, so all mine are 6501s and 5501s. i've got C3s and one C4. the C4 has seen over 10 years of salt and freshwater use with no issues and i haven't babied it by any stretch.
 

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I am right handed, crank my spinners on left, I have just started learning baitcasters and find my lefty Caenan much easier for me to adapt too than the right handed one I bought.
 

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what gets me is the right-handed guys will cast with their right hand and then swap hands so they can reel with the right too. makes no sense to me, but whatever.
 

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I cant remember who it was as it was years ago but some Pro Bass guy mentioned he uses lefties because he doesn't have to change hands and gets many more casts a day that way. I have always remembered that.
 

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I cant remember who it was as it was years ago but some Pro Bass guy mentioned he uses lefties because he doesn't have to change hands and gets many more casts a day that way. I have always remembered that.
when my lure hits the water the reel has already changed hands......i change hands while the lure is in the air . pro or not same reel same lure the only way he is getting more casts is maybe he is better shape...
 
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when my lure hits the water the reel has always changed hands......i change hands while the lure is in the air . pro or not same reel same lure the only way he is getting more casts is maybe he is better shape...
Agreed. You can't reel until it's in the water, and you can get ready by then whichever hand you cast with. I do the same as you, and I even reel right-handed with spinning reels. I feel I work the lure better with the rod in my left hand. 'Course, I ain't half the fisherman you are.
 

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Here is One of my abu's.... The power handle is awesome when it comes to winching in cats...Jim, I aint too hot when it comes to fishing, its all about where you fish, fish bad water you catch less, good water more fish. Same as Big bucks . You cant kill a Booner Buck in Florida.....

Water Vehicle Lake Aircraft Bicycle handlebar
 
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