Shimano is known for creating affordable reels that are versatile and can last through epic fishing trips whether it be on the ocean or your local lake. With the Shimano Sienna, the company has built a reel that has several variations that can catch fish that is classified anywhere from the ultra-lightweight category to the larger saltwater dwellers.
The Sienna line is one of the smoothest entry-level reels on the market. Even with just one ball bearing and one roller bearing, the Sienna is incredibly level when reeling in the big catch. Max drag on the Sienna clocks in at 9 lbs.
The Sienna FE line are all front drag reels. Fisherman have grown to prefer the front drag reel due to its reliability. Another reason that front drag reels have increased in popularity is in part because the pressure during a catch is directly applied to the washers. This, in turn, relieves the shaft of the pole from the strain that would cause bending over time due to repeated use.
The Sienna FE 1000 version is perfect for lightweight fishing. With a 24-inch line retrieve with each crank, the FE 1000 also touts a gear ratio that measures at 5.0:1. Two lb. mono line gives the fisherman roughly 270 yards of line with the 10 lb. PowerPro line allowing 95 yards of line. Early returns on the FE 1000 line caution using more than 4 lb. line to prevent unraveling and catastrophe when reeling in a healthy catfish. As with any of these reels, you must find the line that works best for you.
The Sienna FE 2500 is a great all around reel for beginners or the angler who keeps their fishing to the summer months. Excellent for use in saltwater, the FE 2500 has a 5.0:1 gear ratio. Six lb. test on mono line reaped a maximum distance of 200 yards for the 2500. For a stronger line, the 30 lb. test gave the fisherman 100 yards to work with on the water. Line speed on a crank with the 2500 is 28 inches.
The 4000 version of the Sienna FE reel is a durable soldier for the angler who loves the taking the boat or a kayak to the ocean. With a 5.2:1 gear ratio, the 4000 is perfect for jigging on the bottom of the shallow floors of the water body. With 30 lb. PowerPro test, the 4000FE holds 170 yards of line. If mono line is your preference, 12 lb. will provide 160 yards of line. With every crank, the 4000 FE will bring in 32 inches of line.
Shimano touts a Propulsion Line Managment system that allows for long casts and minimal adverse reaction when reeling in the line. Depending on the type of line used with the Sienna, most anglers will have, at a minimum, over 100 yards of either mono or PowerPro at their disposal.
Power Roller helps keep the line on the spool when performing difficult casts. This feature is essential for preventing the spinning reel on the Sienna from twisting the line. The Power Roller essentially stops the twisting by keeping the line tight when being wound. By doing this, the Sienna reel makes it a virtual guarantee that it will prevent kinks or loops forming along your line.
When it comes time to reel in the big catch, all of the Sienna reels have a gear ratio that top 5:1. A gear ratio is a number that tells the angler how many revolutions of the reel will occur with a full handle crank. Sienna reels will make a minimum of five revolutions with each turn of the handle.
With a high gear ratio, it is vitally important to have a smooth reel that handles the revolutions involved with winding the line. All of the Sienna models are incredibly smooth and structurally sound when reeling in your exposed line on the water.
Super Stopper II is another Shimano feature that helps the Sienna by providing anti-reverse to the reel. Anti-reverse is essential on any reel an angler uses because it prevents backplay. The last thing a fisherman wants when reeling in a fish is for the reel to release causing the line to spin backward. When this occurs, the hook becomes loose, and the fish can escape or create a heck of a mess.
The M-Compact Body on the Sienna FE moves the center of gravity from previous Shimano models. The relocation moves the oscillation gear closer to the rod for smoother reeling.
In addition, the body of the Sienna FE is made of aluminum and graphite. By using these products, Shimano has made a reel that is not only lightweight and sturdy but also resists potential rusting. The Sienna FE is a reel that you can purchase in confidence without expecting to replace it with a more expensive model soon after purchase.
Another great feature of the Sienna FE is the Varispeed Oscillation. With the oscillation gear closer to the rod, Shimano provides consistent spool speed that provides an even outlay of the line for a quick and steady reel-in. The oscillation gear also helps with the line management for improved casting.
What stands out most about the Sienna FE from Shimano is how flexible the reels are regardless of the fishing environment. Whether it be salt or freshwater, the Sienna performs admirably for an entry level reel.
For saltwater, the Sienna 4000 FE can handle the demand with a high gear ratio, and the 32-inch line retrieve. Anglers hoping to maximize their time on lakes and rivers will find the smaller FE 1000 and 2500 to be capable for the job catching smaller fish. Both of these smaller reels also have gear ratios topping 5:1, as well as line retrieve lengths that stretch over two feet.
With only two ball bearings, the Sienna FE performs admirably with a sleekness and comfort that is typically associated with reels higher in price. The lack of additional ball bearings doesn’t seem to affect performance after repeated use on the water.
If there is a significant complaint among anglers for the Shimano Sienna FE, it is how the company greased the reel. Many fishermen have reported using a higher quality grease for better functionality from the reel.
Even though the Sienna is on the cheaper side of reels, it performs remarkably well in saltwater. The handle of the reel has a plastic bushing which makes it more resistant to the corrosive nature of saltwater. The Sienna is very easy to clean as 15-20 seconds of fresh water will flush out any salt and have the reel ready for the next trip to either the lake or ocean.
When in use, the Sienna shows no signs of vibration or noise. It is a quiet, well-constructed reel that surprises with its performance. With an affordable price point, the Sienna won’t break the bank and can easily become the dependable second or third reel in your collection.
Working well with mono or PowerPro lines, the Sienna is a versatile workhorse. If properly maintained with regular greasing, the Sienna should stay healthy for years to come. Regardless of which level you choose, the Sienna is very lightweight which helps on days with repeated casting. Perfect for kids and beginners, the Sienna FE reel will stay durable wherever you fish.