The Time is Now for a
Fully Custom Rod in California!
RainShadow Rod Blanks
ALPS / ForeCast Components
Batson Enterprises is proud to announce an exciting new program that will be launching in four select retail stores in California. Each of these stores will host 32 select RainShadow Rod Blanks as well as built examples utilizing ALPS and ForeCast Components. Everything from saltwater to freshwater rod blanks, complete with information on different actions and features on over 500 models.
Never before has there been an opportunity to feel so many different RainShadow Rod Blanks outfitted with ALPS and ForeCast Components in one place.
New to Custom Rods?
Looking for more than an off the shelf option? This is the perfect opportunity to get a custom rod built to your exact specifications! Come into any of the California locations to see the rod blanks up close and personal, plus get ideas from our custom built examples. Come speak with experienced staff to get any question answered, taking the guesswork out.
Every location is a Batson approved rod builder, with assistance from the store sales team you can pick everything for your very own custom rod. Or order the rod blank and components and build it yourself. Get the best for less!
Custom Rod Builder ALERT!
Come in and try out the new series of RainShadow rod blanks! Get that feeling in your hand rather than just information on a page in a catalog.
Take the guess work out and have a true understanding of some of RainShadows most popular rod blanks and the quality that comes with the RainShadow name attached.
Meet Bill Batson
You'll also get a chance to meet the CEO of Batson Enterprises, Inc, Bill Batson. This is a great opportunity to meet and ask questions about rod building and custom rods. The wealth of knowledge about rod building industry/art/craft will help aid you in finding your direction. Plus get a Team RainShadow hat and a copy of our massive catalog for coming out.
Meet and Greet with Bill Batson Schedule:
CharkBait! Sport Fishing Supplies - Monday 12/15/14 at 12pm
16561 Bolsa Chica St., #105, Huntington Beach, CA 92649
This is a continuation of our desire to promote custom rod building, easy access for the novice rod builder and increased awareness about this great craft.
Batson Enterprises Team
Their surf and boat blanks are well received on the East Coast. It'll be interesting to see if Chark winds up carrying them, which would seem, from this announcement, to be the case.
SoCal surf fishing differs greatly from that in the NE, I'll be interested to see what surf blanks - if any - Chark decides to carry.
BIG differences between surf fishing here and back East. We just don't have the stripers here which are so great a resource for you guys on the right coast. Here, it's Corbs, Perch and mud marlin if you want to pull on something of size. We're not pulling the big bull and hammerhead sharks like the guys on the Gulf, either. Thanks for providing some feedback regarding the Rainshadow blanks. We used their blanks for some custom rods we had built a few years ago to match up with some colored Newells. They were nice, no knocks, though our preference had been focused on Calstar and Seeker. The quality and price of the RS blanks made them attractive options, kept the price point down to a reasonable level. Good value product, not a UC or Calstar blank certainly, but a very good blank nonetheless and excellent value.
We will be having certain rods custom built and available here at our shops and on-line, with others available for custom build similarly as what we do with United Composites. Bill Batson will probably also prove successful at twisting my arm to some level of stocking/offering blanks, too. Thus far we've really only maintained rod components at our San Diego shop, despite a lack of room here in Huntington Beach, we'll end up pulling the trigger and bringing in the same range of components to our HB shop. That's the plan for now.
Enjoy the ski trip.
We're a clumsy lot here on the East Coast. Surfcasters trip over rocks, use rods as walking sticks in boulder fields, and do everything possible to damage the blank. Idiotproof durability therefore counts for a lot. The Batson rods have a good reputation. Lamiglas dominates the market on Long Island for those who go above the K-mart price level, but none of the custom builders I know have a bad word about Batson. I think the consensus is much as you've described, excellent value.
As far as Seeker and Calstar go, I wish them both well in their various recent changes in ownership, and so on.
Baston and Charkbait who would of thought? Not me with you bringing in your own blanks, but I guess there is room for everyone. Torotamer giving market share to a east coast manufacture? I would of never guessed that, cant wait for the 13' shark rods.
Edit: I just reread my responce and it sounded a bit harsh and that was not my meaning. If it makes good business then sell a bunch.This message has been edited. Last edited by: SoCalAngler,
The Toro Tamer pieces are all finished rods, we're not interested in bringing in the blanks as much as the finished rods - very good factory we are in partnership with. With Batson, we work with Bill on the components at our SD shop, will add same selection to HB soon. We wanted to build some of the blanks into finished pieces, as we did a few years ago with the Rain Shaddow rods we had built to match up with the Blue and Pink Newell reels. Those were nice rods, but not too expensive in finished form. Bill Batson was looking to work with a very select group of retailers, offering the blanks in shop and no doubt providing a location where folks could come and give 'em a bend. He's not looking to produce finished rods, that runs in conflict with his primary business. But, we will have our builder make some specific models for us. On our side, given the problems faced over the summer with both Seeker and Calstar in terms of their production, knowing now that Seeker will keep running (thankfully) but will not make all of their rod blanks themselves, it seems prudent to have options available. Adding a bit to our mix made sense, and as always competition ultimately is a very good thing both for the consumer and as a driver of improving quality. So, take United Composites with their Dual Helix graphite and graphite & 'glass CP series, ToroTamer's Ahi Assassin series of Nano Helix rods, add in some Rain Shaddow rods and we have some products that offer some newer technology to compliment Seeker and Calstar's products - they cover different ground by my thinking - and we have a very nice mix of both old and newer rods in our selection. I'm just trying to stay ahead of the curve with products that have something to offer. By having some control over what's built we feel we can provide some pieces guys will appreciate, and meet a product need in the market. We're not crowded in terms of rod selection, we did need something to compete with some of the mass produced shimano stuff as well as Chinese Phenix rods (priced like high end USA product, but built at a fairly low end Chinese factory). As well, some of the niche application pieces were really not things that came from Seeker and Calstar, popping and jigging rods for instance. We're rounding things out hopefully in ways and areas where we have a bit more control over our supply.
This summer was a killer in terms of rod supply, the folks we've historically relied on dropped the ball. We're still facing back orders on basic stuff from both Calstar and Seeker. We needed alternatives, alternatives which offer something of technological and qualitative benefit, companies seeking opportunities for long term growth. We've worked with United Composites since the firm was re-invented by the Australian owner Peter Williams and now with Randy Penny there we're even more excited with this partnership. We expanded offerings from our Kiwi friends factory, and now with Batson as a third line complimenting our basic mix we will have a very good range of rods available to folks. Those moves reduce our reliance on the two firms that have been the basis of our rod selection - they ain't going away and we wish for their continued success and partnership, but we also need to cover our bases and have appropriate alternatives for folks. After experiencing our two prime suppliers fall apart in terms of reliable supply, it pushed us to move more swiftly. Toro was easier since we had control, but still took 120 days to move from plan to product. The Batson project took about 60 since their blanks were already avaialble, UC is only a custom alternative for now, but they will become a producer of factory rods in the future. With these three additions to our product mix I think we will have a very nice range of rods covering all the bases necessary for all types of saltwater fishing, and this will put us in far better position for 2015 and beyond.This message has been edited. Last edited by: Chark,
Seeker will no longer make all their own blanks? .... damn. That sounds like they're going to become brand name for Pacific Rim product, like Fenwick did years ago. I am happy to agree that China can make anything and make it well, but my experience is that quality control is impossible to assess at the retail buyer's end, and probably very difficult at the wholesaler's end. If Seeker's blanks are being outsourced, I won't assume that they're good, as they were in the past. Pity, I regret any drift to oblivion that may follow, as happened to Newell.
As far as Batson goes, they now only make a couple of blanks that are usable for surf rods, so what I thought I knew is out of date.
There are many questions, a few answers and some things left for the future to spell out clearly. My understanding is that fiberglass blanks will be produced but those making use of graphite will be out-sourced by Seeker. No current plans for increased use of offshore blanks. Outsourcing blanks is indeed a step backwards, but may be all that can be done given current staffing expertise and capability. Not sure the future, but in the past both Seeker and Calstar were excellent products from quality manufacturers. UC needed a local owner/operator, they now have that in place. Could well end up with three great companies producing world class rods from the West Coast. Time will tell. Personally, I've long been a fan of UC, with Randy now heading that up the owner/operator part of the equation has been solved, designs are excellent, QC improved, production increased/improved. So, over time there will be added competition and that's great. Cousins is also new to the game, some positives and negatives on that one based upon past. Time will tell the tale for all four firms.
Batson has some excellent blanks in their line, in my mind some niche blanks that do indeed fit specific applications quite well. They are not a rod maker, they are a full line component and blank producer for the custom rod market. That may expand over time, but if their blanks have gained traction on the custom side of things, then there's reason to be open minded - that's our thought and motivation in working more closely with Bill Batson who is the USA supplier of ALPS, Rain Shadow and other key custom rod building components. With proper guidance the offshore produced blanks and rods can be excellent, but it's the design team and QC that makes that reliable long term. Batson has that together, as does the Kiwi firm making the Toro Tamer popping, jigging and bait rods we offer.
The big problem with offshore sourced products is indeed quality; too often distributors push for a price point first, quality is secondary to low cost. That's when things go south in terms of quality. It's a matter of orientation, that is what can push a supplier to no-holds-barred quality verses low price. Offshore = low price, then long term you get what's paid for. Take price out of the primary focus and push for quality and added value, then you gain some cost advantage in terms of labor for what's offered... as long as one stays on top of QC and materials. That's the trick with offshore products whether it's fishing gear, electronics, major appliances or automobiles. There is also a wide range of companies internationally to partner with, some only seek a cost advantage, others may be more dedicated to quality...but even then you have to stay on top of QC with an investment in time and inspections. If the labor cost advantage allows for improved materials and production methodology at a given price, then there's an improvement for consumers (fishermen). When a firm markets their products under their own name, there is a long term incentive to do things right. When that name is less relevant, the urge towards low cost dominates - and that carries risk. The problems arise when a company simply tries to improve their profit margins by going offshore, simply trying to reduce costs. Ultimately that's where you get burned.This message has been edited. Last edited by: Chark,
Chark, it's always a pleasure to pick your brain. I get nice, uninhibited, well-reasoned opinions from you. Enjoy the holidays.
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