I recently purchased two Shimano Cardiff 401 (left-hand) reels. I only fish smaller waters and opted for 6'7" Fenwick extra heavy rods. I have yet to catch a large fish but as far as general operation, these reels are working great. After figuring out that the brakes were turned to the off position and setting three of the six ON, I found them to cast rather well with the short rods. Operation is very smooth with the four ball bearings and one roller bearing. They also have a clicker, which I like since losing one rod awhile back. I loaded these reels with 25# Seaguar Fluorocarbon line and they held all but 200 yards. For added comfort (and because I thought they were cool) I added a set of "Reel Grips" over the factory handle knobs and covered the rear grips of the rods with Rod Wrap to protect the cork surfaces. The clicker could have been better located for ease of operation and that's about all I have negative to say at this point. Originally, I had planned on rods around 8 to 10 foot in length but after looking at them, I thought they would be too long to be able to cast at the vast majority of places I have to fish. Overall, I'm happy with these rigs, now need to hook into a "Bigg'un".