Why Are Stella Reels Expensive? | 3 Minute Answer

Stella reels are expensive because they are smooth, durable, strong, and waterproof. To be precise, Stella is an engineering marvel. The design and engineering that went into creating this reel are spectacular and increase the overall value of the product tremendously. Because each component of each model was designed and refined specifically for that model, the end product is much more reliable and efficient in catching fish.

While the material of the components of other reels may vary drastically depending on what is available or cheapest at the time of production, Stella uses parts machined from steel to create its reels. This allows for stronger components with fewer issues arising later on down the road. The way that the parts are machined allows for enhanced efficiency in the reel, meaning more fish caught for less effort.

In addition to that, many of Stella’s models were specifically designed with anglers in mind. Even the entry-level reels perform above expectations compared to their competitors, catching smaller species with ease and lending themselves well to kayak anglers. The company has remained dedicated to its environmentally-conscious model throughout its history and maintains a large degree of social responsibility towards its employees and country. Stella helps small-time anglers by keeping their overhead as low as possible and passing on those savings to the consumer.

The engineering and design that goes into Stella reels make them one of the most reliable and efficient reels on the market, making them a great choice for anglers of all skill levels.

Where are the Shimano Stella reels manufactured?

The Shimano Stella SW range of reels is manufactured in Japan, whereas the SH20C and SH25C models are made in Mexico. However, all other Shimano Stella spools are still assembled in the famous Tajimi plant in Gifu, where over 95% of Shimano’s total reel production is also put together.

You might be able to identify whether a reel has been made in Japan or Mexico by checking the model number. The three-digit suffix at the end of the model name will tell you where it was manufactured, so an SW20C is Japanese while an SH25C is Mexican.

However, if you have a newer Stella spool with an ‘S’ at the end, it is manufactured in China.

Features that make them stand out from others:

  • Variable Pitch: The performance of the Shimano Stella is improved by its variable pitch that increases and reduces the resistance depending on the fish’s running depth.
  • · Powerful Drag: All Stella models have a powerful drag system used to hook and land the fish.
  • · Star Drag System: This feature allows the line to flow more smoothly without increasing the resistance.
  • · Sealed Drag: This is a special feature in these reels that prevents water and sand from accumulating within the reel, keeping it free of debris.
  • · Air Rotor System: This reduces the weight of the rotor by 30%. It also keeps lube oil in place to prevent the tube inside the reel from sticking.
  • · QuickFire II: The reels come with quickfire II for instant brake and anti-reverse release.
  • · One-way clutch bearing: This feature makes the performance of your Shimano Stella more reliable by eliminating back play, allowing greater line control and longer casts.
  • · Variable Brake System: This feature enables the angler to choose between 8 positions to control the amount of brake depending on how windy or stormy it is.

A brief history of the Stella reels

The first Stella model was exhibited at the Tokyo International Fishing Show in 1965, and the next year at the Osaka Fishing Show. As of 1967 sales began, and by 1968 had sold 10 000 units in Japan alone.

Stella reels became widely available to US anglers once Shimano USA started importing them (with permission of Harnischfeger Corp., who owned the rights to make and sell the reels in the US).

The name ‘Stella’ derives from Latin and means ‘star’. This reflects on how beautiful the reels are when they are held up towards the light.

High-quality materials were used to create perfect casting capabilities, allowing for more accurate casts with less effort. The appeal of the brand expanded beyond anglers when it started appearing in popular media, most notably ‘The Old Man and the Sea’.

The Design of the Stella reels

The Stella reels are designed to be the most durable fishing reels on the market.

Their bearings are stainless steel so they won’t rust, and have an adjustable drag ensuring they can stand up to most fish you will find in fresh or saltwater.

On top of all that they’re great-looking too! They come with a one-year warranty.

Some Specifications of the Stella Reels are:

  • · Stainless steel bearings so they won’t corrode, rust, or freeze up if dropped in saltwater.
  • · Adjustable drag to suit different kinds of fishing. This is essential for catching bigger fish that will put more stress on the line and require a stronger drag.
  • · Designed for both fresh and saltwater fishing. This reel will work equally well in either environment. If dropped in salt water, no need to worry about it rusting or seizing up – simply rinse out with fresh water (or even tap water if you’ve caught a lot of fish on it) and leave it to dry.
  • · A beautiful design that looks great on the wall. If you’re looking to impress your friends with a nice bit of fishing equipment, this is it.

The durability of the Stella reels

Stella reels are perhaps the most well-known and best reels money can buy. They will last you a lifetime if you take care of them, and they will provide you with years of fun. Very rarely does anyone have any problems with these reels breaking or corroding .

On top of their durability, Stella reels are also known as very high-quality reels for their smooth performance and ability to catch tons of fish. Although they may seem a bit pricey, you’ll never have to buy another reel again.

Is the Shimano Stella sealed?

The Shimano Stella, like most fishing reels, is inherently sealed. This means that water will not enter the reel while using it normally.

This does depend on the rusted exterior of the Shimano Stella being intact though as water will also wet the sealing surface and cause it to fail.

Other factors that can affect the Shimano Stella’s ability to be sealed are:

· The amount of use, as a reel has a finite number of times it can be used before varnish breaks down and fails. This is usually around 5 years for a reel that is used frequently and 2 years for a reel that is used much less frequently.
· The amount of dirt or mud on the exterior will cause the surface to be uneven and stop it from sealing properly.
· Saltwater use as salt corrodes metal parts and if it gets inside the reel may also prevent the sealed surface from working properly.

Introduction to the Infinity drive

The infinity drive boosts the winding of the reels. It does that by using of the shaft structure to get rid of friction that is within the pinion gear. That enables the reels to have a light and smooth rotation when fighting big strong fish.

Introduction to the Heat sink drag in Shimano steel reels

When you are fighting some big and strong fish anglers are quickly appreciating the benefits of the new HeatSink drag feature offered on the Stella SW1000 PG and the 14000XG. This new technology handles the heat build-up when hooked into a big fish. It also keeps the heat off your lines and therefore there is less line breakage.

What makes the Stella SW expensive

The latest Stella SW has been upgraded and released in 8000,10000 and 14000 sizes. It comes with an IPX8 waterproof rating. The aluminum Hagane body makes the outer shell much superior and lighter as well. Infinity drive has been introduced in this model as well.

The SW series supports the pinion gear on both ends with the S-ARB bearings making it super lightweight.HAGANE gear constitutes the soul of the reel and creates a high enduring reel. It has 12 gaskets placed at strategic positions to make it a waterproof reel for the harshest of weather conditions.
You can imagine such a piece of design and engineering comes at a price.No, wonder the Stella SW comes with a price tag.


Stella reels are incredible, and every angler would like to own one. They have all the features one needs to catch lots of fish and have fun in the waters. Its durability, strength, and being waterproof makes it a worthy investment.