What is Torsion Control Armor?

With Torsion Control Armor (TCA) being implemented into many new Okuma reels, supporters of the brand are curious to know what exactly Torsion Control Armor is and what its benefits are.

Torsion Control Armor was designed with a purpose in mind – to significantly reduce body twisting, to keep your internals in perfect alignment, and dramatically improve your fishing experience – especially when fishing braided line.

While traditional spinning body designs utilize single-side support, Torsion Control Armor uses a durable double-arm design to help decrease pressure from weak areas and body twisting points.

TCA is constructed to optimize your fishing experience. With its innovative technology, Torsion Armor Control’s unique frame significantly improves casting, cranking, and gripping by dispersing pressure to other parts of the reel.

TCA is constructed with Okuma’s C40X long-strand carbon fiber technology. C-40X Carbon Technology utilizes a special blended graphite polymer. The carbon fibers in this material are elongated and reinforced, creating substantially stronger composite than standard graphite material. At 25% lighter, 1.5x stronger, and 100% anti-corrosive, C-40X translates into an extremely lightweight and durable construction.

At Okuma our goal is to enhance every encounter. By integrating the newest advancements in materials and construction we can eliminate the troubles of fishing and keep the focus where it matters most – CATCHING FISH!

Available Now: Ceymar Baitfeeder Reels


Okuma Ceymar Baitfeeder

The Okuma Ceymar spinning reels have been a popular reel around the country and now Baitfeeder reels have joined the Ceymar family. The Ceymar Baitfeeder reels feature an easy to use On/Off auto trip bait feeding system. Once engaged, the secondary drag system puts out very little pressure for your live bait to run nearly freely. In a non live bait situation, when a fish picks up your bait, they feel very little to no pressure from your line allowing them to fully commit to your bait. The Ceymar features a ported machined aluminum anodized spool with LCS lip to reduce line twist and cast and retrieve, as well as an aluminum handle for strength and durability. Its graphite rotor was designed with Okuma’s Cyclonic Flow Rotor to whisk away water as it gathers on the reel to keep it dry and functional. With eight total stainless steel ball bearings, the Ceymar Baitfeeder runs smooth. The Ceymar Baitfeeder is available in three sizes, CBF-40, CBF-55, and CBF-65 and has an MSRP of $74.99- $89.99. The Ceymar Baitfeeder is back by Okuma’s 1-year limited warranty.


        – On/Off auto trip bait feeding system
– Multi-disc, Japanese oiled felt drag washers
– 7BB+1RB stainless steel bearings
– Quick-Set ant-reverse bearing
– Precision machine cut brass pinion gear
– Corrosion resistant graphite body and rotor
– CFR: Cyclonic Flow Rotor technology
– Precision Elliptical Gearing System
– Rigid metal handle design for strength
– Machined aluminum, 2-tone anodized spool with LCS lip
– Heavy duty solid aluminum bail wire
– RESII: Computer balanced Rotor Equalizing System
– Ceymar reels are backed by a 1-year limited warranty


Introducing the NEW Epixor XT

The Okuma Epixor XT spinning reels are the next generation of a long standing family of spinning reels within the Okuma lineup. Today’s anglers want lightweight reels that they can cast all day and strength and durability to turn and stop even the feistiest of fish. The Epixor XT reels utilize advanced technologies to create both exceptional feel and rock solid durability.


The NEW Epixor XT    
   – TCA: Torsion Control Armor reduces twisting
– 7BB+1RB stainless steel bearings
– Quick-Set ant-reverse bearing
– Slow oscillation system for improved line lay
– Corrosion resistant graphite body and rotor
– CFR: Cyclonic Flow Rotor technology
– Machined aluminum, 2-tone anodized spool with LCS lip
– RESII: Computer balanced Rotor Equalizing System

C40X Carbon Technology
NEW C40X Carbon Technology allows for lighter and strong construction than standard graphite. It provide for a rigidity, less weight, and eliminates the chance of reel corrosion.

Centrifugal Disc Bail
Weighted and balanced – the Centrifugal Disc Bail delivers a smooth bail experience

Cyclonic Flow Rotor
The reel also features our Okumas’ new Cyclonic Flow Rotor. This new technological advancement in reel construction increases air flow through the ported rotor to promoting faster drying time.

Progressive Drag
Drag System incorporates more precise and accurate drag settings. The three sizes all contain eight total stainless steel ball bearings and between 11-19lbs of drag out of its multi-disc, Japanese oiled felt drag washers.

Torsion Control Armor
Features Torsion Control Armor which eliminates reel stem twisting and torque while keeping your gears completely aligned. TCA will help get rid of unwanted body twisting by applying pressure on the reel in multiple directions from cranking. It is especially useful for those who enjoy using braided line.




Introducing the NEW Coronado CDX Baitfeeder Reel

Okuma’s baitfeeding system allows anglers to disengage their spinning reel spool and allow their bait to run freely. The baitfeeding system incorporates a secondary micro-adjustable drag system at the rear of the reel that allows for precise adjustment of the spool for bait control. In order to disengage this system simply turn the handle. The
On/Off lever on the rear of the reel will automatically disengage the baitfeeding system so you can fight your fish with the main drag system.

The new CDX is the third generation of Coronado reels. The Coronado CDX reels feature Okuma’s new slow oscillation system for improved line lay optimization of braided line, and reduced line twist.

The Dual Force Drag system is stabilized by a heavy duty, brass spool shaft stabilizer to keep the drag system aligned and strong, as well as the Hydro Block water tight drag seal to keep water out in the harshest of conditions, and a maximum drag output of over 37lbs of pressure.

CLICK HERE TO SEE VIDEO:Coronado CDX Baitfeeder Reels

Fishing with Captain Joe Testa

Capt. Joe Testa, owner of No Fish Left Behind Fishing Guide Service has been fishing since he was a little kid. “Fishing for me is more than a business, it’s a passion and a pursuit. I love to catch fish, and I love to help other people learn how to catch fish. One of the keys to helping people catch fish is having the right equipment. That’s where Okuma comes into the picture. We started using Okuma rods and reels and fell in love with them right away. A rod and reel combo in the Helios series weighs around 10 ounces. These lightweight combos are super sensitive and yet have the ability to land big fish.”

Capt. Joe has two locations where he likes to guide. Inland lakes in Michigan for walleyes using super aggressive techniques, and The majestic Lake George in upstate New York where he focuses his efforts on beautiful smallmouth bass and monstrous lake trout.

“This past summer we expanded our repertoire on Lake George when we started jigging for lake trout in deep water. We used spoons and plastics and found the Helios 7’ MH spinning rod paired with a Helios HSX-30 spinning reel to be the perfect tool for the job. We caught a lot of nice fish, including some fish that had to push the ten to twelve pound mark.”

“The baits we used were pretty basic. Our most successful plastic was a 4-5” minnow style bait on a 1 oz. Old Fart Lure jighead. With lake trout, your two best colors for plastics are white and white! We used Garmin’s LakeVu HD ultra maps to find key areas to fish – mostly looking for humps coming out of deep water.  We scouted for humps that topped out at 80-90 FOW often with 100-130’ of water around them. Often the key was to scoot around the humps looking for fish and drop down right on top of them. If that didn’t work, we would work the edges of the hump where active lake trout were trapping bait up against the rocky bottom.”


When it comes to catching big fish Capt. Joe loves using the Okuma Helios rod and Helios spinning reel.

The Helios 7’ MH gave me a super lightweight rod with a lot of backbone to set the hook in 100 feet of water and the Helios HSX-30 reel’s super smooth drag performed flawlessly when a big trout would peel off a pile of line as it dove for the bottom. We love to expose clients to Okuma rods and reels because we believe in their products.”

“We would love to expose you to these products if you are ever in the Lake George area and want to tangle with a big Laker!”

Joe Testa

No Fish Left Behind Fishing Guide Service



instagram – @nofishleftbehind

facebook – No Fish Left Behind

Q&A With Okuma Pro Jeremy Starks

Five Questions answered by Okuma Pro Jeremy Starks on Bass Fishing in the Fall

426C9D0E-3870-4416-8E82-D0CA1002652FOkuma: What is your favorite technique for targeting Fall bass?

Starks: My favorite technique for fall is crankbaiting. The baitfish are grouping up and bass are not far behind. There are few things better that will help you on your next trip out.

Okuma: What type of cover/location do you look for first thing in the morning in the Fall?

Starks: If I’m on a river I look for two things to start the day. Current and creek mouths. This is a great time to fish below locks or damns on a river. Bass are relating to the bait and not necessarily to cover. So I can just fish open water with a crankbait and find bass schooled up on the bait. I use this same technique on creek mouths.

Okuma: What type of tackle setup or setups do you have on the deck in the Fall?

Starks: My tackle setup is pretty simple this time of year. I have three or four rods set up for cranking. I throw a squarebill and a small shallow running crankbait on an Okuma Helios 7′ med action and a Helios reel. For my medium and deeper diving baits, I use an Okuma C3-40x 7’6″ medium casting rod paired with a Komodo 5.4:1 reel.

Okuma:  How much, if at all, does your strategy change in the afternoon vs. the morning when fishing in the Fall?

Starks:  One of the great things about Fall fishing is the time of day doesn’t change the fish much. I tend to fish the same types of areas both morning,afternoon and evening.

Okuma:  Any specific tips you can give for targeting Fall bass?

Starks:  There are a few things that have helped me be more successful in the Fall. I try to match my bait to the size of the baitfish. On dark days or early morning I will use a brighter bait or even chartreuse. Fishing open water, the further you can cast the longer your bait stays in the strike zone. That’s where my Okuma reels come into play. I can get more distance than with any products I’ve used in the past.

Locating and Catching Monster Blue Catfish

by Capt. Scott Manning

Each Spring, I get tons of calls, emails and messages from social media from people wanting to catch a monster blue catfish. It seems to be on everyone’s “bucket list” of big fish. Blue catfish fishing continues to increase in nationwide popularity because of high numbers of fish to be caught and the opprotunity to catch a true monster.

Each year; catfish tournaments like the Cabela’s King Kat and the Monsters on the Ohio attract thousands of anglers all across the US. Blue catfish in the 100-lb. range are popping up all over the US; especially in the Tennessee, James and Mississippi River basins.

Capt. Scott Manning hoists up a giant blue cat

Blue catfish favor water temperatures between 68 and 82 degrees, but they can also thrive in cooler waters. Most waterways in the US hold large numbers of blue catfish with the James, Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas and Missouri Rivers holding the true giants.

Finding and catching blue catfish is as simple as locating the food source such as gizzard shad and skip jack herring. Once you do this, you’re able to narrow down specific areas to look for like structure, river bends, drop-offs, ledges and current seams. Big catfish eat and eat a lot; so if your not locating massive schools of bait fish move on. My motto is “Find the Birds – Find the Bait – Find the Fish.”

A team effort help land this big blue

Big blue catfish like current and will be located in and around structure, curves in the river, deeper holes, scour holes and eddies close to shore out of the main current. Blue catfish are extremely opportunistic and will use these river features as ambush spots. They’ll feed on live bait and/or cut bait. There are anglers that swear by the effective use of store baits such as chicken livers, Ivory soap or beef hearts that might tempt you, but nothing works consistently better than freshly caught bait. I use gizzard shad and skip jack herring, and on ocassion live bluegill. Gizzard shad can usually be located in warm water coves out of the main waterway and skip jack are often caught below dams on crappie tackle. Make sure whatever bait you use is legal in your state or region. Blue catfish will investigate anything with a strong odor and fresher bait is always better.

Blue catfish can be caught almost anytime of the year. As water temperatures start to increase into the high 50’s and 60’s the bite will increase. Springtime is an excellent time to target big blue catfish all the way up to the spawn in mid-to-late June when the water temperature reaches 70 to 75 degrees. The the post spawn in mid-August all the way through the fall is an excellent time as well.

Stout tackle is a must for these big fish. I use Okuma Battle Cat rods and Okuma Solterra reels spooled with 40-lb. or 50-lb. monofilament line. I use a simple carolina rig with a 6- to 8-oz. bank sinker and an 80-lb. mono leader. My hook of choice is usually an 8/0 circle hook or a 10/0 Octopus hook. I change hooks and leader line often to ensure a realible rig when that big fish strikes. It’s the little things from your bait to the knots on your terminal tackle that add up to big results with big blue catfish. Be ready because you never know when your going to hook that fish of a lifetime.

The most important thing is just get out there, fish and be safe on the water. Always wear your PFD when or around heavy current and let someone know where your going to be on the water.

Check out this video of a big blue being landed on the Tennessee: Tennessee River Monsters


Preparing for Battle: A Captain’s Formula for Tackle and Rigging for Shark Fishing

By Capt. Rich Antonino

I love shark fishing. I’ve gotten very efficient at it over the course of about 500 sharks. Most of those are released to get even bigger. I’ve learned a lot over the years, from preparation, finding them, chumming for them, catching them, releasing them and staying safe.

Let’s talk today about getting ready, with regard to the gear that you’ll need. We’ll get into the other topics at another time.

I fish on the East Coast, north of Cape Cod, and the sharks we see are typically 200-lb-plus blue sharks. We have seen them pushing 500 lbs. however, and we usually see at least one more than 300 lbs. on every trip. The  Makos we see are typically 85 to 90 inches long and 220 to 300 lbs. They can reach more than  1,000 lbs. in the Northeast. Threshers are usually 200 to 400 lbs. Porbeagle sharks are commonly 300-plus lbs. Yes, we have good sized sharks regularly. Since we often catch 10-20 sharks in an outing, having backup gear and extras is very important.

That being said, I wouldn’t recommend fishing 80-sized reels here as most sharks would be outmatched by them. We have fished Okuma Makaira 50’s and 50-wide 2-speed reels since they were created. They are the perfect reel for this task as they are small enough to give proper battle to the average shark, but they have the guts for any monsters that come our way. We match them up to the Makaira XH Trolling rods. I feel that once again it’s not too much, but enough. I think that attitude fits sharking well – I have enough “just in case.”

What happens if you hook that monster? It’s going to take a ton of line, so be ready. We spool our reels with 600 yards of 100-lb. test Tuf-Line Guide’s Choice hollow core as backing on the reel. Then we splice 200 yards of 100-lb. test mono into it. Like I said – “just in case”. Most sharks won’t get you into backing. On several occasions, however, we’ve needed every bit of backing because a giant tuna took a bait or because that monster mako came into the slick. Extra line equals extra time to get ready (to chase it if you have to or to tire it out if you can’t chase it).

Holding onto a rod with a big shark on the line is tough, so we use a variety of harnesses to make the battle easier. For big fish, we use a Black Magic Fishing Harness. You get to use your whole body to fight the fish. We also use a general gimble belt for smaller sharks and quicker battles. We also use the Cush-It rod butt cushion for more active battles.

For leader, safety is an issue. I like to use wind-on leaders (400-lb.mono). We can reel in the entire leader, getting us within “release distance” to the shark safely. We crimp on a 4/0 snap swivel to the end of the leader. Then we connect our 9-ft.  single-strand 174-lb. or 240-lb. wire leader to this snap swivel. Our hook of choice is a 16/0 circle hook underneath a 13-in. octopus skirt.

Why do we set it up this way? We catch and release a lot of sharks, so quickness and ease is important. Circle hooks do their job by hooking the shark in the corner of the mouth..We cut the wire and leave the hook—it falls out within weeks as they are cheap hooks (never had one break). We cut the wire off as close to the shark as possible and just tie another hook on using a haywire twist. This way, we can catch 5-6 sharks on one leader without having to re-rig. Once it’s “too short”, we start with another 9-ft. leader.

Wearing sunglasses is very important at this stage – when the wire is cut, sometimes it will snap back towards the boat. Spitting blood one day, my mate wondered where it was coming from. It came from his cheek! The wire had pierced his cheek completely. It could have been his eye. Always wear glasses!

Now that you have the rig set up how do we keep the bait at the right depth? We use cheap water balloons and we keep extras in our pockets. Blow them up and tie them onto the line at the right depth. If you are using 8-oz. of lead or less, you can get by with only one balloon. We use these balloons because they tear off of the line easily and because they are so cheap. Speaking of sinkers – we use electrical tape to tape weights onto the wind-on leader just above the snap swivel. It doesn’t bother the line and they are easily removed if you ever want to switch them off.

Our chum is frozen into 4-gallon buckets. We take the cover off of the bucket and invert the bucket into a milk crate box. This way the chum flows out nicely as it thaws and is easily reused if there is any left at the end of the day.

If we are going to keep a shark for the table, I prefer to harpoon them, but a flying gaff is also good. You need a straight gaff to secure the tail as you tail rope it. This is one of the most dangerous parts of the battle that I’ll go over in another article.

If you do keep a shark, we find that the best knife to use is a serrated knife. Serrated knives cut through the skin the best and they maintain their edge very well. They are the best at removing fins, jaws, and head.

In addition to the chum, we have a multitude of different baits that we use. It is nice to have a variety on ice, but an old standby is the rack of a locally caught fish. Sharks are used to scavenging around fishing boats, so having local selection often works. We hook the rack in the tail and hang it that way under the balloon or along the side of the boat.

Hopefully this will give you an idea of how we prepare to target sharks.

Best of luck out there!

Capt. Rich Antonino owns and operates Black Rose Fishing Charters. For more information or to book a trip, visit his website at www.blackrosefishing.com.