Products at the 2010 International Sportsmen’s Expo
San Mateo and
Jan 14-24, 2010
Introduction: We head to both the San
Mateo and Sacramento International Sportsmen’s Expos and were excited to
discover a few manufacturers that didn’t want to wait for ICAST 2010 to make
their new product introductions.
The annual ISE shows are
always a great place to take advantage of show specials and load up on new
tackle and are also full of guides ready to take you on the fishing adventure of
the bass come out to greet attendees at the ISE show
Many regional fishing shows including the ISE were hit hard last
year by the slow economy. We hoped that 2010 would start off stronger than the
previous season and we were pleasantly surprised by the strong turnout at the
Sacramento show in particular from both manufacturers and attendees.
Brown, Pro Angler and host of the radio show Ultimate Bass, introduces BASS
Angler Ish Monroe to attendees
things out on the manufacturer side was the team at Phenix which had just
completed a complete revamp of their entire line. The new rods are quite a
drastic departure from the company’s more understated rods of the past. The new
rods make use of exotic burl wood, composite cork and even some eva all blended
seamlessly together to create an exclusive looking and feeling lineup of custom
up for the new rods is a completely redesigned Ultra MBX line from Phenix (note
the fish logo denotes the first run and will not be on mass production rods)
The new rods replace the
previous lineup and each rod bears a unique character that makes them instantly
recognizable in the series. Burl wood actually deformed matter on trees and is
usually an outgrowth on a tree. Burls are highly prized by artists for the
unique shape, color and ring patterns, and I think we would all agree a premium
rod is absolutely considered a work of art.
The new rods
make use of exotic burl wood
The burl wood looks
extremely exotic on these new rods but also serves a functional purpose as well.
With inserts of different sizes Phenix is better able to balance out the new
rods to make them feel less tip heavy. The triggers on Phenix’s proprietary reel
seats are now rubberized as well for better grip.
A look at the
new Ultra MBX grip which makes use of cork, cork composite and burl
The Ultra MBX sticks were among the most popular in the company’s previous
lineup and the new rods feel much more balanced in hand. The rods continue to
make use of Fuji premium SiC guides and will only retail for about 20 dollars
more than the previous version due to the increased material cost of the custom
The burl not
only gives the rod a unique look it also helps balance out the rod
Phenix will be introducing
two new swimbait sticks, one 7’11 and one 8’ in length. These rods are actually
made out of woven carbon fiber all the way from the butt to the tip. In fact if
you look closely at the tip you can actually still distinguish the weave. Many
rod manufacturers make use of carbon fiber in portions of the rod but will
transition to traditional graphite up the tip. Phenix wanted to make a stick
completely out of woven graphite to improve both durability and power.
rods feature an ergonomic knob sculpted from burl at the base of the rod
Like the Ultra MBX rods
the new swimbait sticks feature a unique handle grip with burl highlights, in
the case of these big bait sticks the entire knob at the end of the rod is
ergonomically sculpted from the material. The 7’11” swimbait rod retails for
$269 dollars while the 8’ version costs 20 dollars more.