TackleTour's Best of ICAST
2020 Award Winners (continued)
of ICAST - Casting Rod : Okuma Psycho Stick: We are not sure what is
happening at Okuma but over the last few seasons the company has ventured
further into the extreme, creating one off limited editions like the Okuma
Chroma reel, and now with the Psycho Sticks rods that are not afraid to defy the
conventional styling and make use of a blend of different components in the
pursuit of building a better bass rods.
It all starts with a blank constructed with light and responsive
46-ton, low resin carbon rod blanks each displaying a unique pattern design from
butt to tip. They are then built with Okuma’s UMR: Ultimate Matrix Reinforcement
technology which strengthens the outer walls of the blank giving the rod the
reinforcement where it is needed most, giving the rods a more lifting power
while remaining light and flexible.
Okuma drew from multiple vendors, starting with Fuji KW-concept
angled guide frames that help reduce line twist and tangles outfitted with
proven Fuji Sic guide inserts with deep pressed frames to securely hold
everything in place, and SeaGuide injected carbon reel seats. As with so many
other Okuma offerings great bang for the buck is critical and the Psycho Stick
Bass Rods will retail for only $219.99 to $239.99, and come backed by a limited
lifetime warranty. Now that is a psycho-good value.
of ICAST - Spinning Rod : Arundel Tackle Legit Design Wild Side: Our pick
for most exciting spinning rod is probably one that you have never heard of...
Founded sometime around 2015, Legit Design, is the brain child of Iitaka
Hirofumi and Onikata Takeshi and
their goal is to create professional quality rods for the everyday, recreational
angler. During their time at Pure Fishing Japan, the duo crafted some of the
more memorable rod series for Fenwick and Tiemco, and now, out on their own,
they are leveraging that expertise and letting loose their Wild Side. Hirofumi
and Takesshi's goal was to establish a balance between high end design features
and reasonable cost. There's little purpose in designing the penultimate, super
light weight fishing rod if few are going to be able to afford the experience.
To that end, the blank for each specific model in their Wild Side series
features its own custom blend of several grades of graphite most commonly 30T
and 40T, but at times they will also use 24T for durability and 46T for
sensitivity - especially with rods intended for vertical bait presentations.
Each Wild Side blank is carefully reinforced with an Aramid fiber, the base
material in products such as Kevlar and Nomex, to, in their words, enhance
performance and tenacity. The guide train for each rod is spaced and sized with
intended applications in mind, but primarily consists of Fuji K Series, tangle
free guides with stainless steel frames and SiC inserts. The spinning rods all
feature unique actions and features for their intended applications, for example
some break down into five pieces for easy transport while a finesse stick has a
solid tip that is colored for added sensitivity and visual confirmation of
strikes. These rods will soon be here stateside and retail from $295 to $330
dollars, depending on the model.
of ICAST - Saltwater Rod: Cashion ICON Series:
Cashion is best
known for their unique
woven carbon fiber handles and as the signature rod for Pro
Angler John Crews. This ICAST the company introduced the world to their newest
line, the ICON Series, which has been in development for the last two years. The
ICON's blanks make use a new CF prepreg sourced in America and feature a raw
finish that's more durable and is the perfect platform in which to exhibit the
company's handmade craftsmanship. The grip has a softer feel with a lighter and
more durable Kevlar material and they finish the rods with American Tackle micro
guides and direct to blank reel seat with the threads cut down to reduce weight
and increase sensitivity. While the new lineup encompasses both freshwater and
saltwater applications they made sure to build rods that are specifically
designed for Inshore fishing in the salt. These rods are designed to be a
lighter, stronger, more durable rod, and come backed by a lifetime warranty. The
ICON rods will retail for $219.99 dollars and become available in mid August.