It’s only in the last 10 years or so that fixed spool reels like the Shimano Ultegra for surf and shore fishing have come to the fore. Before this beach fishing was pretty much dominated by casting multipliers and particularly Abu 5500 and 6500 size reels, along with Daiwa Millionaires and Penn 525’s. These reels are fine for clean steady fishing with an angler that knows how to use them. They are light and well balanced on the rod but have a few major disadvantages. Apart from the incessant line birds nest tangles, they are too slow for speed fishing or trying to bring bait and fish back over weed and rocks and the rig or fish tends to get stuck. Anglers have now turned their attention and favour to reels like the Shimano Ultegra Reel which is at the forefront of fixed spool development and with the latest designs and angling techniques these reels have been brought a long way from when purists used to label them ‘cement mixers’. With plenty of sealed bearings that don’t need maintenance and a small screw open oil port the top end Shimano reels just need a quick rinse in fresh water and 3 or 4 drops of Bantam oil in the port hole, then set on the shelf ready for the next session.