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Rod Review


Evergreen International Continues to Impress with the Affordable RCSS-71MH (continued)

Sensitivity: Sensitivity of this combo was enhanced for the fact I was using braided line, but even without a reel mounted on the RCSS-71MH, I could tell the stick has slightly above average sensitivity. Just a light tap of the rod's tip against a hard surface, and you can feel the vibration transmitting down through to the handle very easily. Matched with Phenix's new braided line and with the weighted wacky jighead bait combo, it was like fishing a perfect storm of combinations with very good sensitivity throughout.

Fig 1 : The chart above illustrates the deflection characteristics of our
Evergreen Intl BH Combat RCSS-71MH.

Power: Once an unsuspecting fish inhaled the bait, all it took was a lift of the rod tip to hook and engage that fish and the battle was on. This was due in part, again, to my use of braid, but once a fish was hooked, the RCSS-71MH affords me very good leverage in working my catch back to my position. Knowing I had braid instead of nylon mono or fluoro spooled on my reel, I even went so far on a couple of occasions to really button down my drag and pull the fish up, just to see what the stick would give me. Unsurprisingly, the RCSS-71MH responded very well in these situations too.

The rod features this cross weave carbon reinforcement through the first third of its length.

Design & Ergonomics: The RCSS-71MH weighs in at a somewhat respectable 4.8 ounces - for a medium heavy powered rod. Where it suffers is in balance brought about by that short handle I referred to earlier. However, matched with the Quantum Smoke Inshore spinning reel - and really, just about any spinning reel - balance of the entire combo was much better because the rod is really intended to be held above the reel while fishing (instead of right at the reel like with baitcasting combos). This forward position of your hand allows the reel to act as a counter balance making it much more comfortable to hold in practical terms.

It transitions to an unsanded, but finished blank at the first guide.

However, where the ergonomics of the short handle come back to bother me just a little is during the cast. I rarely make one handed casts any longer, so that really short, roughly nine inch rear handle makes it difficult to gain any real leverage with your second hand during a cast. It just becomes an exercise in security more than anything else having your second hand on the combo during a cast.

Lab Results for Evergreen Intl BH Combat RCSS-71MH

Avg RoD (2-32 oz)
Measured Weight (oz)
Balance Point (inches)
Balancing Torque (ftlbs)
Evergreen Intl BH Combat RCSS-71MH
MBR783C GLX2000
TSFO 26 Rod Avg

There's a nice, sculpted grip at the end, but the overall handle is a little short for my liking.

Price & Applications: Application wise, this stick really is the spinning version of a Search for One rod and not really something that fits cleanly within our What the Finesse theme. Spinning rods for bass fishing just automatically get lumped into this theme, but the RCSS-71MH is about so much more than that.

It's still astonishing to think you can own a stick from Evergreen International for $199.

Like the previously reviewed Jack Hammer from this same series, the RCSS-71MH carries with it a retail price tag of $199. It's still difficult to imagine an Evergreen International fishing rod being made available at that price point.


Evergreen Intl BH Combat RCSS-71MH Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Evergreen drops the price for entry, but not their standards for quality 9
Performance A really good, all purpose candidate in the form of a spinning rod 8.5
Price Still hard to imagine an Evergreen rod at this price point! 8
Features Fuji components throughout, a nice, nylon rod sleeve 8
Design (Ergonomics) Better ergonomics than the Jack Hammer but that handle is a little short for me 7
Application Need one spinning rod to handle it all? This one should be on your short list 8

Total Score

Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:


+ Evergreen for $199! - Handle is a little short
+ Good all purpose stick  
+ Quality, Fuji components throughout  

The RCSS-71MH isn't what I typically look for in a spinning rod, but if you want something all purpose, it belongs on your short list.

Conclusion: Evergreen continues to impress even at the $199 price point. The RCSS-71MH isn't what we traditionally look for in a spinning rod, but for those who prefer spinning over casting rods (and yes, there are those out there who do), this is a very good choice in a stick to handle a wide variety of applications similar your typical "medium-heavy" casting rod. Of course, this also happens to be the only spinning rod choice in the Brett Hite Combat Stick series. We'd love to see a version of the company's Cut n Shake or Black Regius in this series but for now the RCSS-71MH is it.


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