Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
ww2farmer

"Real world" rod reveiws

Recommended Posts

As some one who has fished dozens of rods, from multiple price points over the last 5 years, I thought I would take some time to offer my real, unbiased opinions on each rod. I am only going to talk about rods I have fished, maybe this will help some one out there decide whats the best rod for them in there price range.

St Croix: Legend Tournament, I currently own 3 LT's, all casting, the 7' MF "teaser", 6'6" MF "jerkbait", and the 7'6" MHMF "pitching". Each rod excels at what it's labled for, and as a plus they are versitile beyond there ratings. Light, strong, durable, and super sensitive. I can't think of any thing wrong with any of these rods, and can't wait to add more to my line up, in short the best rods I have ever used......yet.

Avids: I own 6 Avids, and in all honesty, I cant not detect much difference in performance and sensitivity between the Avid and LT, I will buy more, IMHO they are they best bang for the buck in MY rod collection.

Premiers: I at one time owned a few Premiers, not impressed totaly, and actualy a bit dissapointed. One thing IMHO that would make the Premiers a better value would be better guides. I felt they were a well made rod, put carried a bit of a high price for there performance. I probably will not buy another.

Triumph: I also owned several Triumphs, and frankly liked them better than the Premiers, but not enough to keep them around, senstivity is just OK, they felt a bit heavy, and they also could use better guides, and at $70 they are probably a bit of a reach $50 would be more like it. I will not buy another.

Next up, Fenwick:

Techna AV, I own 1, as sensitive as my St Croix LT's, well made, light, and priced about right. I would buy another, in fact I might add one of these before another St Croix LT, as I do not care for the split grips on the 08' LT's, and the Techna AV's are in the same price range and use a more tradtional grip.

HMG, I own 3, very very close to the St Croix Avid for a little less $$, I will buy more, but only in casting, I do not like the spinning reel seat/grip arrangment they use.

HMX, I own 6 better than the the St Croix Premier, for less $$, in fact, as with the HMG I feel they are very close to the Avid, and can't feel a world of difference between the Avid, HMG,and HMX. Some people may be turned off by the reel seats, and stainless steel rod guides, but I have grown to be very VERY fond of the reel seats, and the SS304 guides have treated me very well. They are a fantastic buy at there price point, and if all I could ever afforn was HMX's I would be happy with them. I will buy more, just cause I like them, I had a few for sale a few weeks ago when I had the chance to pick up a few new St Croix Legend Elites, but the deal for the LE's fell through so I kept the HMX's and am not unhappy about it.

Eagle GT: owned 2, this is probably the only Fenwick I did not like. Price was fair for what they were, and the rods didn't lake for quality, but they just seemed heavy, and poorly balanced. I did not like the spinning reel seat at all, and the casting rods all felt tip heavy and took a big reel to balance them............not the way I wanted to go. They were pretty senstive for a $50 rod, about on par with the St Croix Triumph, but actually I liked the Triumph better. I wouldn't buy another.

Venture, I liked these better than the Eagle, and owned quite few of them, they are no longer made, but IMHO Fenwick made a mistake by dropping them, and at $50 seemed like a good value.

Now for Shimano: Crucial, fell in love with this line of rods, so far I own 1, very light, very sensitive, and very well made. As good as the Avids, planning to buy more.

Compre: Also love this line of of rods, and next to the Fenwick HMX, are the best sub $100 rods made, I own 2 and plan on adding more.

Next......Bass Pro Shops: Extreme, owned several, When this was my "best rod" I thought the world of them. In fact, they are a good rod, but thats it , just a good rod. Not worth the $99 full price, and probably not much of a deal at there "sale price" of $65. The are not light, but they are actually pretty senstive for a heavier rod, and very tough and well made. I still have 1, but don't plan on getting any more.I place them below the Fenwick HMX, and St Croix Triumph, but better then the Fenwick Eagle GT.

Bionic Blade, I owned several of these as well. I don't think they were sensitive at all, well made and heavy, but lacked for sensitivity. Over priced at $80, much better rods in that price range, like the Fenwick HMX and Shimano Compre. I would not buy another.

Cranking Stick: I owned 2, and am kinda missing the 7' M I had, for $50 it was a great rod, not light, nor very sensitive, but it's really the only "entry" level cranking rod that is a good value, and performs well. IF i needed a cranking rod in a pinch I would buy one, but now that I use higher end rods, I don't think I could go back to one on a full time basis.

Tournament Special: Hated this rod from the first cast, waste of $$, no sensitvity, heavy, and reel seat seemed cheap.

Kistler: Magnisum TS, rods felt great in the store, bought 2, after breifly fishing with them they are gone, real seats SUCKED with a capital "S", for $180 I expect a rod with a reel seat that holds my reel firm, not that sloppy POS. Weight was not and issue, but sensitivty was not what I expected, seemed over priced, and used lower grade componants than other rods in there price range. Will not buy another.

Graphite series, again reel seat issues, and at $130 the senstivity left alot to be desired, no where near the Fewncik HMX which is the same price.Will not buy another.

Lastly Lowly Berkley: Lightning Rod, I can not find one thing wrong with this rod . Senstivity OK, a tad heavy, but well made, and versitle. What more could you ask for in a $35 rod. I would buy one if I had to, in fact I still have plenty of them that I use for bank/pond fishing, and they don't ever dissapoint, no they are not Avids, or Crucials, but heck find me a better "cheap" rod.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Excellent !

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great reviews! Fenwicks seem to be very well liked. I may order a couple to try out.

I use mostly extreme rods after trying and buying many higher end rods. They were certainly lighter and a few a little more sensitive BUT to me, they did not increase my chances of catching fish or enhance my experience...so I have stayed with the extremes.

The Fenwicks may be another option for me. Thanks again for the info.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great stuff! Straight-forward, honest and a lot of brand depth.  

Discovered Crucial/Compre last year, end of my hunt right there.  They seem to offer everything I want/need in those 2 lines and prices are good.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you for the great review :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good review and informative, ww2farmer.  We need more people on the forum to review the rods they've actually used.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Outstanding!

8-)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great Job, best rod review I have read. I really liked the last about the Lightning rods. Although I love my G.Loomis sticks, I still the find time for my old Lightning rods. They stood by me in the thin.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ww2farmer

Great post! Thanks so much for your insight and guidance. This one (along with several others including Roadwarrior's) will be saved permanently for future reference. Never ceases to amaze me at my lowly skill level, how subtle differences can be detected by master anglers.

Hurry up with your views on reels as well!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Very nice! Thanks ww2farmer.

(I too love my Crucials and Avid. Actually, can't complain about my Compre either. )

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow!!!  Now that's what I call a great review.  I have to agree with you on your opinions of the legend tourneys and the avids but i'm not as happy with my HMX as you are.  but to each his own.  :)  Thanks so much for taking the time to puts these thoughts down.  I've been wondering about the techna av's - looks like i'll have to give them a try.  

BTW - I sent you a pm

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

THANK YOU FOR THAT INDEPTH ROD REVIEW. I CAN AGREE WITH YOU ON THE RODS THAT I HAVE USED. I HAVE TWO HMX,ONE HMG, TWO PREMIERS,& ONE AVID. I LOVE MY HMX'S THE MOST BECAUSE I HAVEN'T HAD ALOT OF ON WATER TIME WITH THE AVID OR HMG.

I SECOND THE FENWICKS

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great review, thanks!  

Fenwicks seem to be very well liked

There was a time when Fenwicks were THE bass rod.  Still are great rods but they just don't seem to be on top like they used to be.  I have an old Techna AV that I wouldn't trade for anything.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

  • fishing

    bass fishing

    fishing forum

    fishing rods

    fishing rods

    fishing rods


    fishing rods

    fishing reels
    fishing gear

    Truck Caps

    fishing reels
    fishing reels

    fishing

    bass fish

    fish for bass
    fish

×