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Event Article: 2008 ICAST Coverage

Falcon's new Expert series of rods make use of  proprietary next-gen CrossMatch graphite

Date: 7/17/08
Location: Las Vegas, NV
Manufacturer: Falcon
Reviewer: Team TackleTour





Introduction: Falcon Rods greeted us at the show with a completely revamped Expert Series for the coming season, and along with a new look the rods now make use of a hi-tech matrix of graphite that is designed to make these bass rods stronger, lighter and significantly more sensitive.


Falcon updates their Expert series of rods with a new proprietary weave formula called CrossMatch


At the time of the company was displaying two different variations of grips, one with premium cork and another with light weight EVA grips. They were obtaining feedback to see which grip was better received, and so far the EVA has a slight lead. The new Expert Series of trigger stick casting rods includes rods for all competitive techniques including flipping, pitching, lizard dragging, fishing heavy grass, worm 'n jigging, and retrieving topwater, swimming and vibration lures of various weights and characteristics. Expert spinning models are designed for a variety of fishing styles including shakey head, Carolina rig, and drifting tubes.


Which do you prefer? Cork or EVA? The company is making their final decision now


What makes the new Expert series so unique is the unique CrossMatch graphite weave that extends through the rod's entire construction. With the CrossMatch proprietary weave of carbon fibers, each rod in the Falcon Expert line,10 casting and 5 spinning rods, now weighs less than four ounces, approximately 20 percent less than earlier models.


Chris Beckwith, Vice president of Falcon shows us the new Expert rods


Originally developed for the U.S. aerospace industry, Falcon's CrossMatch graphite configuration for Expert Series rods maintains blank roundness, called hoop strength. This, in turn, helps prevent a common cause of rod breakage, fiber collapse, which results when too much pressure is applied to one spot. 


A closer look at the cork split grip


During the testing process, Falcon founder John Beckwith took prototypes of the new Expert Series to the lake that 20-years ago inspired the company name, Lake Falcon on the Mexico-Texas border. "I really leaned into these rods, really stressed them, and they performed wonderfully. My first fish weighed 6.6 and the second weighed 10.3 pound. I think that's a good sign," he said.


The EVA grip is not final, and Chris explained that the EVA grips will be sculpted more like the cork ones


Falcon adds in other features to the Expert Series including Fuji ACS exposed blank reel seats, Fuji Alconite guides and split-grip handles with high-density EVA for less weight and better casting control. When we handled the EVA versus the cork gripped rods we also came to the consensus that we preferred the EVA grips on this rod both from a aesthetic and ergonomic perspective.


Looking closely at the CrossMatch graphite you can actually see the weave


The CrossMatch material does improve overall ergonomics of the Expert rods, as they felt lighter than the previous generation rods. The graphics on the rod are more understated than other falcon rods, and the company explained this was done on purpose for a clean overall look. The rod itself doesn't need any dressing up at all as the unique matte graphite weave pattern is all the "bling" that this rod needs.


A look at the spinning version


Overall the new Falcon Expert rods were among the most exciting we have seen at the show, and exhibit traditional custom rod design blended with very modern materials. The rods will be available in a few months and will retail somewhere under 300 dollars each.


The weave extends all the way up the blank


Pro Angler and Pro Staffer Mike McClelland has a new rod too









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