Article: Inside the Manufacturer
An Inside Update from Team Daiwa…and the first look at the new “A” model
It isn’t everyday
you have the opportunity to take a look behind the scenes at a Tier 1 reel
manufacturer like Daiwa, and while a lot of projects are still under lock and
key in preparation for the upcoming ICAST show, the team at Daiwa did share a
lot of exciting new products with us. Some of these products are designed
specifically for the US market, others are being tested and considered, and
still others were created specifically for applications outside the US….but we
found all of them exciting!
Is that a broken Steez rod?
Daiwa has always been known
for innovation, and here in the US most anglers know them for their ultra
refined reels. Daiwa has been expanding their brand equity with premium lure
offerings, and recently they went from having a mainstream rod offering to a
full blown enthusiast lineup with their popular Steez rods.
No...that is the new 2 piece Steez
What many anglers don’t
realize is that Daiwa has been doing this all along in their home market. In
Japan anglers can find premium products in every category. That’s why we were so
happy to hear that they were creating two Steez rods just for the American
market when we first interviewed Ish Monroe, who is involved in the testing of
the prototypes. We just had to go to the source and find out more.
The base of the prototype
That source was none other
than Daiwa’s rod Product Manager, Bobby Saraya, the man that US anglers can
thank for bringing the Steez lineup to the US in the first place. Not only did
he confirm that there were two new “A” models, (“A” for American) being
introduced but he showed them to us.
The stick features the same Steez
The first rod we checked
out was a very robust yet very lightweight new flipping stick making use of the
higher end Compile-X graphite. The STZ802HFBA is an 8 foot two piece stick. The
design allows anglers to shorten the stick during transport, a big plus for
anglers running smaller boats with shorter rod lockers. The two piece design is
similar to the one found on the Cielo rods, but is even more refined. When the
two sections are put together it is hard to tell this is a two piece rod at all.
The prototype Steez worming rod
The second “A” model rod
is the STZ701MHFBA which is an extremely sensitive stick designed specifically
for worming and jigging. This will be a very popular rod among enthusiasts
looking for an ultimate balance of light overall weight, sensitivity, and
A close up of the unfinished reel
Retail prices on the rods are
yet to be decided but they will be priced inline with the existing Steez
lineup…better start saving now. The next burning question, when will they be
available? Unfortunately anglers still have to wait a bit longer as the formal
introduction for these rods will be at ICAST this July.
Bobby shows us the new Steez rods,
designed specifically for the US market
Next Section: Next up...the RPM Crank