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Rod Review

The Search For One: Eclectic Versatility in the 2 Hole. The G.Loomis NRX 852C (continued)


Impressions: If you pay attention at all to the online discussion forums, you're already aware of the quality control issues that G.Loomis faced on their initial run of NRX sticks. There are at least three of which I'm aware. One had to do with the double duty foregrip, reel seat locking mechanism failing, the second had to do with loose reel seats, and the other had to do with the lack of attention to the thread wraps around each guide.


The biggest commotion concerning the NRX rods when they arrived was the lack of attention to detail in the wrap.

The first two issues presented themselves in only that very first run of NRX rods. G.Loomis issued a recall through their dealers and as far as we know, replaced any of the rods in this initial run (identifiable by a code designation somewhere on the rod) that were affected.

If you mail order a rod, you're basically stuck with what they send you.


We're not aware if the third issue surrounding the care and attention paid to the individual line wraps around each guide was directly addressed or not, but this is where having the benefit of a local tackle store comes in handy. If attention to this level of detail is important to you - as it is to me - the simple solution is to head to your local tackle store and pick and choose through their inventory until you find a rod that is acceptable. If there is not a lot of inventory from which to select, ask the employees of the store if they can order another one or two of the model that interests you so you can pick and choose. The answer may not always be yes, but it does not hurt to ask.


But if you're lucky enough to have a local shop that carries the sticks, you can do your best to pick and choose through the inventory and select the best of the bunch.

This may not be the ideal situation for everyone since in this day and age the neighborhood tackle store is a vanishing commodity, and the fact that when someone is spending well over four hundred dollars ($400) on a fishing rod, they expect a certain level of attention to detail, but for those who have the luxury, it is a reasonable way around the issue - still imperfect, but reasonable.

Despite careful inspection at the shop, it still came down to selecting the best available cosmetic. In the end, I decided to purchase a rod with a little extra goop on the guide thinking I could always cut or file it down at some later point in time.

End result for me? I still ended up with a stick with less than ideal cosmetics but it was better than most. It came down to a choice between gaps in the wrap or goo in guides. I chose goo in the guides thinking I could cut or file out the excess at some later point in time.

Lab Results for G.Loomis NRX 852C JWR

Avg RoD (2-32 oz)
Measured Weight (oz)
Balance Point (inches)
Balancing Torque (ftlbs)
G.Loomis NRX 852C JWR
3.7 oz
MBR783C GLX2000

Field Tests: It took a little time, but I was finally able to pick out a specimen that was acceptable. I chose the NRX 852C JWR because it was closest in feel to the classic MBR842C GLX that I adore only the 852C JWR has a slightly faster blank. I paired this stick with my Shimano Conquest 51DC, a reel made exclusively for the Japanese Domestic Market.

Matched up with a JDM Shimano Conquest 51DC and ready to go.

Casting: Whether it's the new taper of the blank, the reel with which I paired the rod, or the zen-like combination of the rod and reel together, you'd be hard pressed to find a combo that is more fun to cast both for distance and accuracy than this pairing right here.

Balance with this reel is pretty decent.

Taking into consideration this is a "2" power rod - translated in Loomis speak meaning a medium powered stick - I didn't push the rod's lure rating too far, but I did exceed the recommendations. In my mind a "medium" powered casting rod usually equates to a lure rating of up to five eighths of an ounce, not just three eighths. Why the 852C JWR is only rated up to three eighths of an ounce is a little bit of a mystery to me. The line rating for this rod is also a little light at ten to fourteen pounds (10-14lbs) as compared to the MBR842C GLX rated ten to seventeen (10-17).

The 852C JWR is only rated to 3/8 oz in lure weight but it can handle so much more.

Perhaps this is G.Loomis's way to hedge against warranty claims, but I was easily able to cast baits up to five eighths of an ounce on this rod - just about anything I'd throw on my MBR842C GLX was comfortable to cast on the NRX 852C JWR.

Intended for bottom contact baits, this stick can do so much more and is fantastic for topwater.

Power: Taking a look at our RoD Deflection chart, we can see the NRX 852C JWR and MBR842C GLX share a very similar curve hinting that their stopping power out on the water is similar. But remember, the NRX 852C JWR is rated with a faster taper than that of the MBR842C GLX. It's a difference you can feel when a fish is at the end of the line. As one might suspect, the 852C sets up just a little faster than the 842 giving you a little more control when trying to direct your catch from one side of the boat to the other.

Fig 1: This chart illustrates the deflection characteristics of our G.Loomis NRX852C JWR (red curve) as compared to one of our favorites, the MBR842C GLX from the same manufacturer. Their curves are nearly identical.

Next Section: Eclectic and Contemporary at the same time









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