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Dedicated Fisherman
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I'd need to look to be sure but I still have a couple big perfects and a St. Aidan and I think I have one, the correct one for my left hand retrieve.
 

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266 Posts
On my old SA System/Marquis reel, I have both pawls engaged most of the time. Just the single pawl is a bit too light to prevent overrun on those fish that grab and turn down stream.
 

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973 Posts
Never experienced anything that's made me think I needed to engage the second pawl. I've caught 20# chinook with a 4.25" perfect with one pawl and never thought of the need for another. Most of dealing with a large or hot fish is done via palming the spool in some way or another, depending on the reel. If half your line is in the water while engaged with a fish you shouldn't worry about your reel creating slack line (over run), it won't.
 

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121 Posts
My main reel is a new-model Pflueger Medalist 7/8 and I like having both pawls engaged, just for the amount of resistance when I pull line off the reel or when I'm fighting a fish by palming the rim. Just feels better to me--your mileage may vary.
 

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What rod you have that New Medalist matched up to Uncle Stu?
It's on my Echo Classic 11' switch 6w... nice match. Holds plenty of backing along with an 8w Airflo Sniper line.
 

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238 Posts
I have both pawls engaged on my old Perfect. It sounds like a misfiring Harley-Davidson with an attitude problem, yet the drag still leaves a little more to be desired. I still love it though.
 

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3,570 Posts
They were never specifically intended to be both engaged, at least in most designs I have seen. You can do it, but the clicks from each pawl will not generally be in sync, and like a different beat in music may or may not sound less attractive to your ear. Also of course the difference between the incoming and outgoing feel will get wiped out. Still, at least the opposite pawls were designed to fit the ratchet in the original configurations. I wouldn’t try flipping one or more of the pawls over though, as has sometimes been suggested. While there may be some designs where this will be fine, and also some where it will not do too much damage, these things have a specific and precise designs and asymmetries and you may end up chewing the mechanisms up over the long haul doing that.

I prefer the sound of a lower frequency, more distinct clicking and usually try to jigger with the springs if there is an issue with not enough stiffness, but I have used both as a temporary expedient. There are instructions on past threads for jiggering with springs, as well as for re-annealing them in your oven. Last course before resorting to using both is to try to find a beefier spring and/or less worn pawl. As always Archuleta’s Reel Works is (just) one place to make inquiries about that.

The old Marquis reels (mentioned above) are notoriously inconsistent with respect to the strength of the mechanism. I’ve had the whole range from almost too stiff to use on the lightest setting, to too loose on the heaviest, and have jiggered, re-annealed and resorted to different springs on a pretty large fraction of the old beat up ones I have bought. I’ve had a lot more consistent results with the hardy lightweight models.
 
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