Look at the offerings by Leland. Really nice designs at a great price and pretty bomber construction for the money. I have a Sea Run that takes lot of abuse and just keeps on going. Plus their finish is tough as nails and not bad to look at.
Honestly if price is the ONLY criterion, and since small trout do not require anything mechanically sophisticated ANY large arbor reel rated for a single hand 5/6 should be perfect on that rod, and you don’t NEED to pay more than $50 new. On here most of the time you say “budget” and you get 10 people suggesting high end things you didn’t ask about. Have a gander at the inexpensive offerings on amazon to get a reality check. I’m not necessarily saying buy it there, but on a 3wt you just need a mechanically sound line holder with about the right weight and volume as a bottom line. Save your money for when there is at least SOME chance it will make a difference. As an owner of too many vintage and semi-expensive reels myself I feel I’ve got enough cred to say it is mostly how it makes you feel rather than fundamental to the endeavor, and for smallish freshwater fish that goes double.
Otherwise possibly come up with a few other things you may be looking for in a reel. If you know what makes YOU feel good go for something like that. Otherwise it is just people telling you what makes THEM feel good.
That said, the Sage Click that bigwilly is selling right now would probably be sweet on that rod - in other words would make any sane person “feel good”.
i put a lamson guru 3 on my 11 foot echo 2 weight trout spey, and found it balanced nicely. i like the reel a lot, but i tell you this only so you can if you wish back track to the weight for a lamson 3 reel and then perhaps narrow your reel choices to one about the same weight
I would agree with Botsari. Take a look at the Okuma's, I have a 5/6 and a 7/8 and they've been going for years, they've even been used in saltwater. I think they're under $60, large arbor, nice drag. I also have a handful of expensive reels that were purchased only for their looks and because I could. Never really needed any of the fancy drags and mechanics they tout....after all I've never put a trout on the reel anyway, salmon yes, small mouth bass yes. And these reels have handled all of that.
Personally I prefer a large arbor reel, every time.
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