Plenty of Muscle to take on Big Game, the reasonably priced Shimano Tyrnos
Total Score: 8.33
Introduction: Shimano has built a high-speed offshore reel for targeting big game fish either on the troll or tossing bait. The Shimano Tyrnos levelwind reel is bulletproof and lighter than most reels of its size, and this season we had the opportunity to put the Shimano Tyrnos up against some good size Albacore tuna in the deep blue waters of the Pacific Ocean.
Shimano Tyrnos (TYR30) Specifications
|Line Capacity (lb/yds)||30/600, 40/450, 50/350|
|Drag (Max)||33 lbs|
|Drag (Strike Max)||16.5 lbs|
|Additional Features||A-RB, oversized gears, diecast aluminum frame, oversize handle shank, twin pawl anti-reverse, loud clicker, ratcheting drag lever, reel clamp|
Introducing the Tyrnos with a high gear ratio of 5.0:1
Impressions: The first thing many anglers notice when they set eye on the new Tyrnos is the color of the reel. Some have even mistaken this reel for being a larger Torium or even a Tekota. Though the Tyrnos holds the same brand and reliability of the Torium and Tekota, it is a completely new beast. The Shimano Tyrnos is designed to tackle big game fish either on the troll or tossing bait with supportive features to ensure the highest performance. You will find such things as Shimano’s trusty A-RB (Anti-Rust Bearings), oversized gears, oversized handle shank and knob, and twin pawl anti-reverse mechanism. The Tyrnos 30 is actually quite lightweight compared to some other reels of this size and weighs in at only 38.1 ounces thanks to its graphite sideplates with structural aluminum braces. Though the side plates are made of graphite, you won’t have to worry about durability because the reel sports a die cast aluminum frame.
A loud clicker is incorporated into the Tyrnos
Complete Rig for Tyrnos 30 Tests
Quantum CaboPT Offshore
Shimano Tyrnos (TYR30)
|Lines||50 lb Ande Premium|
Field Tests: Built for high-speed applications with a gear ratio of 5.0:1, the Tyrnos isn’t for every type of fish. Rather this reel is good for smaller big game fish such as small Bluefin tuna, Albacore, Dorado, Wahoo, etc. Using the Tyrnos TYR30 we trolled and fished irons and swimbaits on the slide for Albacore tuna 40 miles off the coast of California.
Graphite sideplates reduces the overall weight
Casting/Trolling: Like most big game reels, the Tyrnos wasn’t designed for casting, and while we didn’t put this reel to any real casting tests, we did perform a few underhanded chucks when setting the trolling spread and live baiting and fishing on the slide. To let line out pull the lever drag towards you to decrease the amount of drag pressure on the spool until a desired line flow is achieved. If you wish to let line out at freespool, set the lever to the “free” position to completely disengage the drag. Do so with caution when letting line out at freespool because you still can create a nasty birdnest with thick 50 pound fishing line. We recommend you set the clicker on when freespooling line off the spool to prevent birdnests or loose line on the spool, which can become problematic when a fish peels line from the reel while trolling.
Though high-speed, this conventional reel has plenty of power
Retrieve & Power: Most single-speed offshore trolling reels are designed with a lower gear ratio for greater power under the load of a huge fish. At first we were uncertain as to how the Tyrnos’ 5.0:1 would do when battling Albacore tuna but after I landed our first fish, a 27 pounder, a big smile lit up on my face. While I was playing tug-o-war with the tuna I knew I had an upper hand when with each turn of the handle I gained a lot of ground. Thanks to the oversized gears and powerful long shank handle and large knob, I was able translate my muscles through the reel to bring the fish to the surface.
Oversized handle shank and knob provides comfort and power when reeling in big game fish
When power is needed, the Tyrnos is engineered for success. Aside from the afore mentioned, this big game reel also employs an alternating twin pawl anti-reverse system. In this design we found that it provided a solid hookset and minimized the amount of backplay on the spool. Even when fish hit or decided to run once reaching the sub-surface, the pawl did its job without flaws each and every time.
The gears are housed inside the graphite sideplate. Also notice the alternating twin pawl anti-reverse
Drag: Coupled with a powerful alternating twin pawl anti-reverse system, the Shimano Tyrnos uses a drag lever similar to other reels but also incorporates a ratcheting system to prevent the lever from unintentionally sliding while the boat is bouncing up and down. The drag has a range from Free to Strike to Full, and any pressure in between. It is very important that you pre-set the strike pressure ahead of your trips and do not mess with the drag on the water unless absolutely necessary.
The drag washers are completely sealed
In our lab we tested the drag for its performance at maximum pressure and over 10 runs it produced about 36 pounds of force (specified rating-33 pounds). On the water we set the drag to 10 pounds and throughout the day the Albacore that we caught really showed us how the drag performed. At initial strike the drag is consistent and smooth. Each time the tuna hit, the rod bent over and line immediately began to peel off from the spool. In the past, with some cheaper reels, we’ve noticed the rod bouncing up and down due to a sticky drag, but with the Tyrnos none of that was experienced. The drag washers on this Shimano reel are completely sealed to protect any saltwater and other grit from entering, keeping the drag washers as clean and smooth as possible.
Lever drag is easy to operate and Shimano designed this one so it won't slip as the boat is under way
Ergonomics: Most big game reels are solid and heavy, but that’s not the case with the Tyrnos thanks, in part, to its graphite sideplates. This feature, plus the diecast allows the reel to be lighter than comparable models yet still maintain the necessary structural support to perform under heavy loads from big fish. The Tyrnos weighs in at 38.1 ounces compared to Penn’s Graphite Series (sporting a graphite frame) that weighs 39 ounces, and Daiwa’s Sealine Saltwater Reels that comes in at over 40 ounces. Aside from its lighter weight, this conventional reel uses a huge power handle and knob that’s not only comfortable to grasp when cranking, but will not slip even when your hands are slimy and wet from a day’s catch.
Battling this 27 pound Albacore tuna far offshore with the Tyrnos was effortless
Durability/Maintenance: Though the Tyrnos isn’t Shimano’s top of the line conventional reel, this reel is quite durable in design. The diecast frame, graphite sideplates, and various components like the A-RB all add to its longevity.
Taking apart and doing maintenance on the Shimano Tyrnos is something everyone can do themselves
When it comes to maintenance the Tyrnos is quite simple to take apart and clean. The reel comes with a tool that is needed to remove the handle and then it’s all screws. We recommend removing the components and cleaning thoroughly at least once a season or more, depending on usage.
Shimano Tyrnos (TYR30) Ratings (?/10)
Though the reel uses graphite sideplates and diecast aluminum frame it’s solid and built to handle some big game fish. The use of A-RB is a big plus
Exceptional performance on the deep blue ocean trolling and fishing on the slide. The reel is powerful with a smooth drag system along with features to enhance its overall performance
With a quality construction and good performance along with Shimano’s reliability, the price is decent, but there are reels out there with full aluminum construction that’s priced less
This reel features 4 A-RB, oversized gears, oversized handle shank and knob, a loud clicker, alternating twin pawl anti-reverse system, and a ratcheted drag lever to produce a high performer
Lighter than even some full graphite reels. The oversized handle and handle knob makes gripping comfortable while battling big fish
At a high gear ratio of 5.0:1 this reel is good for smaller sized big game such as school-sized tuna, Dorado, and Wahoo
Pluses and Minuses:
|J Lightweight||L High price|
|J Durable||L High speed not suitable for all big game|
|J Easy to maintain|
|J Excellent drag pressure|
|J Anti-Rust Bearings|
Conclusion: When going on those long offshore adventures hunting for big game fish such as tuna, one name we can trust on gear that won’t fail on us is Shimano. They produce some of the best fishing reels on the market and once again they did right with the new Tyrnos conventional reel. Because it has a relatively high rate of retrieve at 5.0:1, this reel isn’t for all applications, but it’s great for school-sized fish. Off the coastal waters of California, we found it to be excellent for Albacore tuna. The Tyrnos is built with a diecast aluminum frame and graphite sideplates to reduce weight yet houses many quality and high performing components such as Shimano’s A-RB, oversized handle and knob, and a non-slip ratcheted drag lever system. If you aren’t out for huge fish and are in need for a high gear ratio conventional reel for trolling, the Tyrnos will be right at home on one of your big game rods.