First Published in English

Feeder fishing has been revolutionised in the past few years by the widespread use of larger reels for this style of fishing. Not only has this given a big increase in the distances that can be comfortably fished, but the greater cranking power makes retrieving heavy feeders from these distances really easy. 

My reel of choice for much of my feeder fishing is the Black Viper Compact 855. Browning reels are synonymous with quality, and this model has proven its reliability time and time again when fishing the river Trent and other big rivers. 

I particularly like the excellent line-lay on these reels. I use braid almost exclusively for my feeder fishing. If the line isn’t coiled perfectly you will soon know about it, as any imperfection will lead to bedding in and snatching on the cast. Best case, this will cut down on distance, worse case it can lead to crack-offs. The Black Viper really excels, with line-lay that is hard to beat.

One thing that I often notice with other reels is that cranking in a big, often heavy feeder can put a lot of strain on reels and they soon develop a bit of slack where the gears begin to wear. Not so on the Black Viper, this has proven to be as tight today as it was straight from the box. The large handle and strong gears also mean that it is easy to retrieve a big feeder, and it is no longer a chore. 

These reels have large, but shallow spools, ideal for braid fishing, as they don’t need miles of backing. They are also light and compact, as the name suggests. I like to hold my rod most of the time when feeder fishing and using a heavy reel can be very tiring, but the lightweight of these reels balances with my 3.90m and 4,20m Sphere Feeder Rods perfectly. In fact, I would say they make the perfect set-up for big river fishing. 

This style of fishing is not for everyone, but if you want to be competitive in modern feeder fishing then you need to be using reels that are up to the job, so make sure to check out the Black Viper Compacts. 

Tom Noton

The line-lay on this reel is absolutely on point.

Cranking power is incredible with these reels.

Combined with the Cenex 0.10mm Feeder Braid and 8lb shock leader.

"The best long range feeder reel that I've used."