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Charkbait Travel Rods
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Pinhead
posted
I'm looking to get one of the Charkbait Surf Explorer conventional travel rods, but I'm not sure which rod is better fit for the fishing I intend to do.

I'm trying to decide between the 15-20lb and the 25-30lb conventional travel rods.

The rod will be paired with either a Saltist 30 or an Akios 656 with 20lb test mono. I'll be throwing 3-5oz lead plus bait most of the time. Most of the fishing will be in the New York City area, going after stripers and blues in the East River, but I also make trips to Florida for jacks, cobia and snook.

The travel rod page of the website indicates that the surf explorers are good for throwing 20-100 grams. Is this across the full surf explorer range, or are there different lure weight ratings on the heavier travel rods? What other differences are there between the two rods?

Thanks in advance for any advice you may have.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Kyle,
 
Posts: 4 | Registered: 03 December 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
CharkBait Staff
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I would opt for the heavier rod given your application. You are really going a bit beyond the intended weight class for the rod should you move up beyond about 3 ounces. At 5 oz, and trying to really load up on a cast, that's going to put too much stress on what is really more of a lure tossing stick, divers and surface lures in the 3 oz and under range are the more comfortable range. I took 2 of the rods with me to costa rica recently, the did well, one 20 and one 30.


Great Stuff!
Mark
 
Posts: 1292 | Registered: 18 September 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Pinhead
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Thanks Mark! That helps a ton.
 
Posts: 4 | Registered: 03 December 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
CharkBait Staff
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For what it's worth, based upon some requests and my own experience in CR, we are in the process of developing a heavier travel surf rod for tossing poppers of 2 oz to say 4.5 oz. We may shorten the length a bit to achieve this one, may go to 8'. Probably 3 mos from production.


Great Stuff!
Mark
 
Posts: 1292 | Registered: 18 September 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Crew
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Any word on the heavier travel surf rod you mentioned in your last post Mark? I was hoping to purchase one of your Surf Explorers and usually throw up to two oz. I'm a bit confused because I called yesterday and was told that all three of the current rods pretty much top out at 1.5 and that's slightly under what I need for my uses. But that's a little different from your post on this thread, suggesting the heavier rod may be okay up to 3 oz I'm looking for a rod with a sweet spot between 1.5 and 2. Do any of the current rods fit this description?
 
Posts: 6 | Registered: 11 June 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Pinhead
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I purchased the 25-30lb Surf Explorer conventional travel rod based on Mark's input in this thread. I've used it up and down the East coast from New York City to Palm Beach. From my experience, it casts 2oz beautifully and seems to be right in the sweet spot. The rod will handle 3oz lures, but that's at the top of its range.

I'm interested in what Mark has to add about the new heavier travel rod as well. It's difficult to find a travel rod suited for fast current chunking.
 
Posts: 4 | Registered: 03 December 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Crew
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That's extremely helpful! I think a 25-30 may be in my future! Kyle, what do you think of the adjustable reel seat? I've never heard of that but often thought it would be a good idea. I'm considering the casting version as well.
 
Posts: 6 | Registered: 11 June 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
CharkBait Staff
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We'll be showing off the new Surf Explorer travel rod at ICAST in July. They will not be on the market until probably early August unfortunately. We've done testing on the new rods for the past two months. They will carry a 30-50 or 40-50 test rating. Same basic design, just a bit heavier build. They are still a finesse type rod, light in weight, with the same features and cosmetics as the rest of the rods in the series.

As a manufacturer, I learned long ago it's best to be conservative with claims. In the hands of someone with some feel, who knows when a rod is being overloaded, you can get by tossing heavier weight lures 2 to 3 ounces on the 25-30# Surf rod can be fine. However, in the hands of someone who doesn't have much intuitive capability in that respect, they'll bust a tip or load up too much on a cast and break a rod. Frankly, I can break every rod at our shop from every manufacturer if I want to misuse it. And, as a manufacturer, if I'm covering bone-head breaks the only alternative I have is to bump up prices to cover the minority who don't use their gear properly. Look at what Leon from Calstar had to do with the 800XL. There's a reason that model is more expensive than the L or XLH, and it's not because of production costs, its handling misuse and warranty claims. Interestingly, in the Japanese market there's no such thing as a rod warranty, because it's RARE that a rod is broken due to defect in production, it's because of mis-use.

So, as to which rod for what weight lure, it's going to be up to you as to which rod will be the better selection for your intended use. Line test is one component, your own fishing style, how you load up a rod and the lure weight. The new heavier model will be more capable of dealing with a heavier jig...but in my mind I'd still say 2-3 oz max on the heavier rod.


Great Stuff!
Mark
 
Posts: 1292 | Registered: 18 September 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Pinhead
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Brian, the adjustable reel seat is non-existent on the conventional model. It was actually pretty big disappointment, but the only one I've had with the rod. I don't have a spinning version to verify that it at least exists on that one.
 
Posts: 4 | Registered: 03 December 2012Reply With QuoteReport This Post
CharkBait Staff
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The surf explorer travel 4 piece rod offers that feature - Spinning versions only, wish we could do the same on the Conventional versions but the trigger wouldn't line up if we went that route.

This message has been edited. Last edited by: Chark,


Great Stuff!
Mark
 
Posts: 1292 | Registered: 18 September 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Crew
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Thanks much Mark, sounds great! I'm only interested in throwing 2 oz or less so (1 - 1.5 is ideal in the waters I fish) so I think I'll be good to go for the 15 - 20. I'm looking to place my order next week.
 
Posts: 6 | Registered: 11 June 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
CharkBait Staff
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The rods are very nice, and they've worked well for folks. Given the traveling nature and the reinforced joints they've performed well. They really are a finesse type piece, not for brute strength style horsing a fish. Play the fish, keep an angle on it and allow the reel's drag and rods action to accomplish tiring out the fish. The rod will do well for you for a lot of years.

Actually, I'm doing some re-vamping of all the other travel rods in the heavier boat type models (Offshore Explorer Series) this summer. We'll improve actions on the 30-40# rod. And, I'd like to offer more casting type rods to complement the 50-80# troller. Project is taking a bit more time than I had hoped, really wanted to have everything ready by end of June, but some things will be slower in coming.


Great Stuff!
Mark
 
Posts: 1292 | Registered: 18 September 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Crew
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I recieved my travel rod yesterday! I ended up getting the 15 - 20 pound version. I immediately mounted my Calcutta te 100 gt reel with 15 pound mainline, tied on a 12 pound rub leader (I use that to hand-line the fish when I'm on a pier) and went to test it out on the Susquehanna flats shorline and holy crap! I started with a 3/4 oz sinker and threw it way farther than I expected. Casted 1 oz even furhter! With this rod, I don't even need to go to the 1.5 - 2oz that I used to need to get the distance I needed to reach the channel from my Saturday and Sunday morning happy place! The rod is incredible! And the 9oz Calcutta baitcaster compliments the light weight of the stick perfectly. I could... and will cast all day long. (to the wife... "sorry honey, it's Charkbait's fault!") I had planned to purchase a Penn Squall 12 for it but that won't be necessary. The rod is like a cross between a surf rod and an inshore rod with the trigger and all. PERFECT!!! I plan to use it for small panfish like croaker, spot and flounder at the beach and perch and small channel cats closer to home (where 1-4 pound cats are the norm). Thanks Charkbait!!!
 
Posts: 6 | Registered: 11 June 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
Crew
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Hey Mark! I noticed that you guys updated the product description on the Surf Explorer rods to show recommended lure weights, THANKS! They're spot on compared to how I've been using mine (I have purchased 3 of the 4 conventional models) so that makes me feel much more confident in the equipment. They really are exceptional rods... like a best kept secret... and I'm surprised they're not discussed more on the internet forums.
 
Posts: 6 | Registered: 11 June 2013Reply With QuoteReport This Post
CharkBait Staff
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I was listening...and noticed that omission on my part....

Also, we will be introducing a new 7' bait rod, conventional guides, quite suitable for fishing anything from 30-60# line (very solid at 40-50# optimum range). Quite a range of performance, due to the construction of the rod's blank. This is a 5 piece design, so VERY compact for travel, coming in at about 20 inches in the case! The new rod uses new Nano technology, new resins applied to the graphite which dramatically add to the strength of the rod while keeping weight down. This model will be available in May/June.


Great Stuff!
Mark
 
Posts: 1292 | Registered: 18 September 2006Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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