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Rod Review


 

iRod Leans into the Power of the Sea with the SWC794C-H Poe's Mag Stick

 

Date: 9/16/21
Tackle Type: Rod
Manufacturer: iRod
Reviewer: Cal






Total Score: 8.08 + GREAT

Introduction:
Matt Newman doesn't make baits, but he does own a fishing rod company. An avid big bait fisherman, when he caught wind of our 2021 Rat Rumble, he wanted in on the action and immediately sent us a new, somewhat under the radar stick dedicated iRod fans have been buying as they gear up for throwing big baits. Why is it under the radar? Because it's a stick saltwater angler Toai Garcia designed with Newman for the pursuit of spotted bay bass in Southern California. Presenting iRod's Kaimana Coastal Series SWC794C-H Poe's Mag Stick.

 

iRod Kaimana Coastal SWC794C-H Poe's Mag Stick Specifications

Material 30Ton Graphite
Length 7'-9"
Line Wt. 15-25lb
Lure Wt. 1/2-2oz
Pieces One
Guides 11+tip Fuji Alconite
Rear Handle Length 15"
Power Rating Heavy
Taper Fast
Rod Weight 6oz
Origin Made in Korea
MSRP $189


Introducing iRod's Kaimana Coastal Series SWC794C-H

Impressions: Fans of Matt Newman's fishing adventures are familiar with the angler's foray into saltwater angling. Naturally, catching these salty creatures presents its own unique challenges, but as with any angling pursuit, there are some cross-overs. The Kaimana Coastal series from iRod is a prime example of this consisting of four sticks that look like they were made for black bass. The SWC794C-H is a seven foot, nine inch (7'-9") stick built from a blank rolled with 30T graphite and finished with Fuji, Alconite guides. Its fit and finish is on the level of the company's AIR series, but with attractive red highlights.

 


This is a saltwater stick with a lot of freshwater appeal

 

The term, "Kaimana" has its origins in Hawaiian language and has two meanings, diamond and powerful sea, or power of the sea. It's a fitting name for a rod series designed for the pursuit of spotted bay bass, but the Hawaiian etymology gives the SWC794C-H a kind of spiritual backstory that makes fishing JDM rods so fun. The rod's clean build only adds to its allure. As if reading a surf report trying to predict that perfect wave, it's easy to understand how the groundswell in popularity for this stick broke. The only question is whether Poe's Mag Stick should stick to its own beach, or is it a tool worthy of traveling with you in pursuit of giants?


The lower third of the rod features an x-wrap reinforcement

Real World Tests: I could only think of one reel in my arsenal that would complement the SWC794C-H's clean detailing and red highlights. That was my retired Justice League inspired Flash reel painted by ZPI Japan back in 2008. The fact it took about ten years for that movie to go from rumor to an actual film seems fitting that my Shimano Core7 modified reel should see its own revival all these years later. A quick touch of oil in the bearings, and a fresh supply of 50lb Daiwa J-Braid Grand with a leader of 20lb Seaguar Gold Label FC and this reel was ready for duty on board the iRod Kaimana Poe's Mag Stick.


This reinforcement ends at the first guide

Casting: The SWC794C-H comes with a lure rating of up to two ounces. This stick is like a ringer in fight club, feigning inexperience and lack of skill only to unleash a level of ability to have the crowd cheering in excitement. For the rumble, I paired the SWC794C-H with LitLure's LitRat tipping the scales at three and a half ounces (3.5oz), a true middleweight rat, and the stick handled that bait like a pro beating up on his training partner. Overhead, roll, backhand casts, Poe's Mag Stick can handle all the presentation techniques with baits up to four ounces easily. My favorite is the side-arm, roll cast sling and the SWC794C-H handles that cast perfectly.


The guide train is made up of Fuji Alconites and are not quite micros, but they are pretty small

The only downside I found with this rod in casting is small - as in the size of the guides. My guess is, this rod was made to be fished with straight braid because the running guides are on the small side (~5.5). They're not micro-guide small, but if you use a connection knot, you're likely to hear it ticking through the guides as you make your cast. Just make sure you tie a good one and that it's as small as you can tie it. My connection knot game is decidedly average and while I could hear the knot hitting the guides during a cast, it never became an issue and didn't seem to affect distance or accuracy. For the record, I know use an FG Knot.


The Kaimana series detailing is right up our alley

Sensitivity: I've never fished for or caught a spotted bay bass, but I have caught many saltwater species including rock cod, striped bass, tuna, wahoo and more. I bring this up because the issue of sensitivity is not paramount in any of the saltwater fishing I've done because salty fish are not shy about eating. In fact, they are rather fierce, so it's my natural assumption any stick built to pursue them will not be super sensitive. If they are, it will be as a by product because durability and power take precedent.


Clean transition between reel seat and grip

I fished the SWC794C-H exclusively as a topwater wake bait rod, but even in that capacity, I could discern it has better than average sensitivity for a stick in its price range and makeup. The graphite used in the construction of its blank (30ton) is pretty middle of the road, but thanks to its minimal build and low profile guide train, the SWC794C-H gave me more feel than I expected, so that was a nice surprise.

Next Section: Plenty of power to swing...

 

   

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