In his search for a stronger casting multiplier reel, veteran shore angler Tony Burman turned to Akios
Akios Nitron F-15 multiplier
Early in 2020, Akios released a larger multiplier, the Nitron F-15, with the idea being to provide a reel that would cast as well as the company’s smaller and popular Shuttle models. A big task indeed and I was keen to discover how it would turn out.
Those smaller Shuttle reels are well built and cast unbelievably well. I had used them in their various guises and they became my favourite straight out of the box reels. At times, though, if there was a lot of weed in the water, I craved a stronger, bigger model. I had other brands in my tackle box but they were temperamental and I could never get a reel that ran the same – one would be quick and hard to control, the other may have been on the slow side.
DISCOVER THE AKIOS NITRON F-15
When the Nitron F-15 was released, Akios classed it as a powerhouse long-distance casting reel. “Combining the superior casting abilities of the Akios Shuttle with a powerful high-retrieve gearbox, the Nitron F-15 is fuelled for power and performance,” said the marketing information. The company boasted of its superior casting distances, as well the powerful, superfast 6.2:1 retrieve gearbox driven by a new counter-balanced power handle. It sported the Akios Quadro magnetic braking system, operated by a wider knobby controller, to offer precise braking forces. It was claimed that when the magnets were wound fully on they ensured overrun-free casting in any weather conditions. The free-running, lightweight, lateral anti-distortion tournament spool was, apparently, made for achieving insane casting distances. Enough of that, I’d make up my own mind.
The Akios brand has been with us since 2010 and was set up by Simon Bradbury. Having worked on product development for Abu Garcia for 17 years, he knew the game. He started with a range of five S-Line reels (the 656CS, 656CSM, 656CTM and the 757CS and 757CTM), which were revealed in a review written by my old mate Alan Yates in Sea Angler. Alan was impressed.
POWER IN RESERVE
Ten years later the Nitron F-15 came out. It didn’t take long for some negativity to appear on social media, all based on a prototype where the line got behind the spool, yet hardly anyone actually had the reel. The problem was solved and the production models were spot on. I decided to buy one.
My reel arrived and really looked the part in its grey carbon-looking one-piece frame. It had a nice-sized red handle too. The spool was, of course, bigger than the Shuttle’s but very manageable. Casting control was with magnets and the side adjustor. I cast with my reel at the top of the rod butt and could get my thumb well over the spool to keep hold without it slipping while casting.
I could not fault them, and Sea Angler’s highly respected contributor, John Holden gave the Nitron a comprehensive, well-received review in this magazine (issue 579). My Nitron performed without problems. It cast very well and had plenty of power in reserve to combat anything thrown at it. With the reel set up correctly, I avoided over-runs. If it started to run faster it was usually time for a clean. It ran very well with yellow Rocket Fuel. Soon I wanted another to make a pair.
Having met Simon Bradbury at the European Open Beach Championship on the Holderness Coast last year, I pressed him about the issue raised on social media and he reassured me that the problem had been resolved. That was good enough for me and I bought another one. Eventually, the handle came loose on my first one, even after tightening the main nut. It wasn’t a major thing but I mentioned it to Akios and was asked to return it. The reel came back to me serviced and as good as new. Since then there have been no problems and my second Fathom has been fine.
After more than a year’s use, what do I think? I love the Nitron. Mine have performed fantastically well. The casting potential is very good and, when tuned up, they behave themselves very well. I like the ultra-smooth drag, which performs well when used to play a fish. I have loaded mostly 0.32mm line without any line going behind the spool.
The resistance to wear and tear is also very good. Yes, a bit of paint has come off the edges of the spool, which is understandable bearing in mind the speed the spool rotates and the elements it has to battle against. There are no chips on the spools and they still run as smooth today as they did when I first got them. If the going gets tough and you have a lot of weed about, the Nitron deals with it comfortably. With its very good spool capacity, this is a reel for all types of sea fishing. Anglers who tried mine were impressed and some have got their own. They have not been disappointed.
AKIOS NITRON F-15
Spool material: Machined aluminium
Spool: Free floating on 5mm spindle
Handle: Counterbalanced anodized power handle
Bearings: Stainless steel, 4BB+1ARB
Gears: Brass main gear and pinion
Braking: Micro-adjustable, magnetic
Retrieve ratio: 6.2:1 gear ratio
Retrieve rate: 86cm/34.4in per handle turn
Line-out alarm: Yes, ratchet
Drag system: Micro adjustable, multi-disc carbon
Maximum drag: 12kg
Line capacity (mono): 330m/0.35mm, 260m/0.40mm
Line capacity (braid): 550m/20lb(9kg), 480m/30lb(13.6kg)
* Available from Akios stockists