Follower: The Airrus Stargate ASG721HF-C
For even more robust strength, Buckypaper Nanotube Technology is used between
the reel seat and first guide. Made in the USA by Nano Tech Labs, this material
provides added strength and rigidity between the reel seat and stripper guide
for added power.
Yep, the Buckypaper gets a logo too!
Kigan is the guide manufacturer of choice for the Stargate. While their
double footed tangle free micro guides adorn much of it's length, the stripper
guide is really something that makes you look twice. At first glance, it's
angled downward appearance gave me the impression it had been squashed by
someone's foot on accident. To my surprise it is actually designed that
way on purpose. It features a triangular insert that when combined with
the downward angle is said to reduce friction and better control line during the
cast. The reel seat itself is also angled downward at a 3 degree angle,
giving your line a very straightforward path into the stripper guide and through
the entire guide assembly.
Kigan stripper guide angle is very pronounced.
Guides on the test rod feature zirconia II inserts with steel feet, however
production models have been upgraded to titanium frames. All guide wraps are
done in black, with the stripper guide featuring a bit of red trim work.
Double footed Kigan tangle free micro guides line the blank. This one shows
evidence of a battle scar.
While I find the looks of the Stargate to be striking, the finish is not without
minor flaws. Upon close visual inspection, there were a few tiny epoxy bubbles
seen on parts of the blank. Extremely small in size, they did not really bother
me but I'd rather not see them on a rod of this price. There were also a couple
of minor typos where the rod ratings were located, and epoxy use on a couple
guides was a bit heavy handed. Keep in mind that this is a prototype rod and
I'd expect the production model to be more polished.
close-up of some of the tiny imperfections in the blank.
No hook keeper is found on this rod. This is usually not a big deal for me, but
it actually does annoy me a bit in this case. Why? There is just not a real
easy spot to hook a lure onto quickly. The only guide large enough to accept a
hook is the first stripper guide, but with it's downward angle and odd
triangular insert, it's a bit awkward hooking and unhooking baits on it.
test rod proved to be quite a bit stiffer than our MBR844C Loomis. Once past
the tip, the added stoutness is easily visible on the chart as the Stargate has
an obvious separation in it's plot line from the Loomis.
Real World Test:
Testing with the Stargate ASG721HF-C was completed on a variety of southwest
Florida lakes and canals. 20lb Sufix braid was primarily used, although 15lb
mono was also fished a few times. I absolutely loved the Daiwa Steez 103HA on
this stick. It spent the vast majority of the time on board, balancing
beautifully and really looking at home on this techie rod. Then again, that reel
pretty much goes on anything!
dark afternoon of pond hopping provided plenty of bites.
The Stargate ASG721HF-C is a very competent caster. Rated for 1/2 to 1 1/4
ounce lures, I find this to be an accurate measure of the rod's capability.
While the rod is stiff, it's fast action loads a bit easier than an extra fast
action, providing a nice blend of power, crispness, and accuracy without being
taper is strong but remains user friendly.
This is a great rod for tossing those slightly heavier baits. As stated, the
rated range of 1/2-1 1/4 ounce lures seems totally accurate, however my personal
preference is to stay at about a 1 ounce maximum. Think jigs, heavier
rigs, soft swimbaits, and frogs here.
The unique guide setup on the Stargate is claimed to offer smoother casts and
increased distance. Increased casting distances can be hard to discern unless
the difference is extreme. In the case of this rod, I haven't experienced any
solid proof of farther casting distances. While it very well may cast longer,
any extra distance achieved is minimal and not noticeable to me. What I can say
with certainty is that casting is a very smooth process, and the whole guide
train combines to virtually eliminate line flutter as a cast is made. Wouldn't
this translate into increased distance? One would think so, but again, any
differences are too minimal for me to tell. As with the other micro guide rods
I've experienced, the braid to leader knots I use pass through the micros
view of the Kigan triangle stripper guide.
Section: Stellar Sensitivity