Victor TYA5R Light Jigging Reel Tested Impressive


TESTED Tica Victor TYA5R

Light Jigging Reel

BY MATHEW HEWETSON (editor “Fishing in Godzone” magazine)

Tica reels are distributed in New Zealand by Kilwell Sports and they have traditionally sat in the mid-range of reels available on the market.  They are typically solid reels, well priced and covered by Kilwell’s Lifetime Warranty, so they are quite a good buy for any angler to consider.

I would liken Tica to Korean car maker Kia Motors, several years ago Kia weren’t competitive against the likes of the major Japanese car makers but, they have invested in their technology and design, now making big gains locally with a few models such as their top selling 4x4 Sportage.

Tica is now in the same boat as they too are developing their products to better compete against the top selling Japanese reels that also dominate the Kiwi sales.  One such model that is sure to help lift their profile, is the new Victor TYA5R overhead jigging or casting reel.

This small, versatile reel is built exceptionally well with 8 stainless steel ball bearings, sealed in both sides and with rust resistant coatings.  With a forged and machined aluminium frame to provide strength and durability.  The high heat resistant carbon washers give a smooth and powerful drag, surprisingly producing up to 15kg of drag!  Impressive for such a compact sized reel.

The Victor has a quick 6.1:1 retrieve, so it really is a good, light jigging option able to retrieve 93cm of line with each turn of the handle.  This means you can quickly crank jigs back up from the bottom to help entice a strike.  Our test reel was matched with the Kilwell Jig King 5’ 6ft, 2-piece rod that is suited for jigs up to 250g.  It was a good combo to fish with and although we didn’t hook-up to any kingfish on our weekend fishing with it, we did jig a few large 3kg+ kahawai that put up some good resistance.  The drag was nice and smooth when battling these stroppy fish, while the EVA covered, aluminium handle was great to grip when working the jigs or fighting a fish. 

With excellent castability, we also switched over to a ledger rig to fish baits for snapper and it was easily flicked out the back catching plenty of double hooked-up snapper.  The little reel offers good versatility for the angler and would be a lot of fun on kingies, although it wouldn’t be the reel to take to the Three Kings. 

Overall, Tica are starting to impress with their new reels and raise the bar with their design and technology.  This means we should see an improved range from the company over the next few years and the Victor TYA5R could be just the start.

Other key features; a forged spool, anodised to protect from corrosion, magnetic cast control, micro click adjustable star drag, adjustable handle length, loud line out alarm, waterproof drag knob, high strength brass alloy main gear and carbon hi-lights designed to protect the frame.

(BOX) Tica Victor TYA5R Specs:

  • Weight:420g
  • Ratio: 6.1:1
  • Capacity: PE3 / 370m
  • Max Drag: 15kg


Go to Victor - TYA5 page :Slow Jigging Reel - Victor - TYA