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Event Article


Shimano debuts new ultralight Cumulus rods at the Big Rock West show in Las Vegas

 

Date: 1/11/10
Location: Big Rock Show, Las Vegas
Event Date: Jan 4-7, 2010
Reviewer: Team TackleTour








Introduction:
We stop by the Big Rock West Dealer Show in Las Vegas to see if any of the manufacturers will launch any mid season new products and learn about Shimano’s new ultralight rod series which is appropriately named “Cumulus.”

 


The Mirage in Las Vegas is the location of the Big Rock West Show

 

Have you heard of the Big Rock Show? Unless you’re a tackle manufacturer the answer is probably not. This dealer only show comes to both the West and East coasts and is designed to hook up vendors, products and dealers together. It is the first time we attended this event and honestly we were not sure what to expect.

 


Inside we see a number of familiar faces

 

The Big Rock West Show was held at Las Vegas from Jan 4th-7th at the Mirage Hotel Conference Center. The Big Rock East Dealer Show is held at the Raleigh Convention Center from the 7th until yesterday evening on the 11th. The show focuses on outdoor manufacturers which include fishing as well as hunting.

 


Most manufacturers didn't have anything new, but Shimano did... meet the Cumulus

 

In the past most manufacturers will refine their lineup with minor adjustments, some will make no changes and wait for ICAST and use the show as an opportunity to get together with dealers to collect their feedback and help create strategies to help sell more product.

 


The Cumulus will be Shimano's highest end freshwater rod when it debuts

 

Daiwa for example did not showcase any new offerings, instead their focus was promoting last year's products. Shimano on the other hand is starting to make mid-year introductions a bit of a habit. In fact they probably had the most exciting new introduction at the show. Meet the ultralight Cumulus series…

 

Shimano Cumulus Rods

Model

Finished Weight

Length

Power

Action

Line Rating

Lure Rating (oz)

Pieces

CMLC65M

78g

6'5"

Medium

Fast

8

1/4-1/2oz

1

CMLC610MH

86g

6'10"

Medium Heavy

Fast

12

1/4-3/4oz

1

CMLCX71MH

100g

7'1"

Medium Heavy

X-Fast

15

1/4-3/4oz

1

CMLSX65M

90g

6'5'"

Medium

X-Fast

6

1/8-3/8oz

1

CMLSX610ML

96g

6'10'"

Medium Light

X-Fast

5

1/16-3/8oz

1

CMLSX610M

104g

6'10'"

Medium

Fast

6

1/8-3/8oz

1

 


Designed to be ultralightweight the Cumulus rod are true to the theme with laser engraved clouds on the reel clamps

 

The Cumulus picks up where the Cumara leaves off, this rod series is designed to further push the envelope in sensitivity and ultra light weight. So light are these new rods that the company makes it a point to publish the “finished weight” of each rod. The Cumulus rods feature a familiar design, and from a quick glance even look somewhat like a Cumara, except for the red highlights in both the gloss and base of the rod.

 


The rods feature a small foam foregrip connected to the clamp so that the clamp threads do not show

 

The Cumulus blanks are designed with HM1 ultra high modulus graphite and are designed for applications that put a premium on sensitivity. The sensitivity of these rods is only magnified with the light overall weight. Without a reel mounted they are among the lightest rods I’ve ever felt in hand, and even with a magnesium based reel mounted on they feel incredibly light.

 


Cumulus rods will feature Fuji titanium SiC guides

 

Justin Poe, Rod Product Manager at Shimano explained that every element of the Cumulus rods was designed with “low weight” in mind. An example of just how far the company went to reduce weight is apparent the minute you look at the branding on the rod. Rather than add labels or badges to the rod Shimano actually utilizes a laser to remove material to create the branding. There are cumulus cloud outlines lasered out of the reel clamp, and the EVA grip has the name of the rod removed from the grip.

 


Each rod is hand painted with a red fade above the butt

 

The rear grip of the rod is nothing more than an ergonomic “tear drop” EVA bulb, there is no aluminum badge like that found on the Cumara rods, even this was considered excess weight. The red fade above the tear drop butt is hand painted, so each rod should be unique. Like the Cumara the Cumulus rods feature a custom reel seat with just about all of the material removed providing complete access to the blank.

 


No insert at the end? The Cumulus is all about light weight and even the insert was considered unnecessary, instead the rod is finished with a ergonomic tear drop butt cap

When it comes to hardware the blank is loaded up with Fuji Titanium SIC guides, and a custom hook keeper is placed above the blank which can handle both treble hooks and drop shot weights with ease. Cosmetically it is easy to see that Shimano designed the Cumulus Series with the Core and Stradic CI4 with the rods contrasting dark grey and red highlights.


A custom hook hanger (spinning rod shown)

 

There will be a total of six rods available at time of launch, three casting and three spinning, all with a fast or x-fast action. All rods come backed with Shimano's over the counter lifetime warranty and the spinning rods are priced at $349.99 while the casting models will cost 50 dollars more, the reason for the difference in price is that the casting models utilize more guides. In terms of availability the rods will start showing up on e-tail and retail store shelves in the first two weeks of March.

 


Ken Iida from Shimano's Customer Service team shows us the new Cumulus rods

 

The Cumulus rods are the lightest non-custom rods we will have encountered according to our database. They have gone in a different direction than many premium rods, want bling? This may not be the rod for you, they are built with function in mind and while not too flashy they have a unique “less is more” look to them. Cosmetics will come down to personal preference, but we look forward to seeing what these new rods will do in the field. Will they be able to touch the ultra-premium Daiwa Steez series, only time will tell, but Core and Stradic CI4 owners may have just found a perfect new rod pairing.

 

Bonus! Check out the new Tescata Lucanus Jigging Rod


 

 

 

 

 

 
 





 

 



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