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hey phil,

i've got two jarvis walekr reels, BG5500's. for the price i think they are generally well made, and i have had no problems, the drag is the only thing i don't care much for.

the drag is smooth enough for the price of the reel but it does not have much range of adjustment. you go from just about right for 15 lb line to locked down in a very short time, not much more adjustment available. it may be possible to improve on that i have not taken one apart to play with yet, but it might be tough to land a large fish with one of these reels.

i have them on diawa sealine-x surf rods of 8 and 9 feet and i can cast either 350 feet, they will throw further when i get some more practice.

all in all for the $34 i paid including shipping i think they are a good buy. i don't live near the ocean and so i can only surf fish once a year on vacation and i am confident these will do the job fine for me. i would also think they would be a good back-up to keep in the tackle box. If you are looking for a lifetime reel, look at something else.

you might also compare the price at www.jamestackle.com which is where i got mine, james is not fast but he is a good guy and has fair pricing.

hope that helps
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