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Rod Review


 

The Omega Swimbait 8' Heavy by Leviathan Rods

 

Date: 10/7/20
Tackle Type: Rod
Manufacturer: Leviathan Rods
Reviewer: Cal






Total Score: 7.67 - GOOD

Introduction:
The Leviathan is a mythical, serpent like creature with Biblical origins that is said to inhabit Earth's waterways. Leviathan Rods is an up and coming company out of Dripping Springs, Texas, a town about half an hour due west of Austin. CEO, Eric Gomez's hope is that in time, his rods will be found on all those mythical waterways with countless anglers' hands coiled around their handles. He chose to name his company after this creature to inspire goals of building high performing sticks that look, feel, and fish better than anything on the market, and has been pursuing that goal since 2016. Building fishing rods is a passion of Gomez's, but so is giving back. A former foster child growing up, 10% percent profits off every rod sold is donated to a company called Foster Village in support of local foster kids and their families. I learned about Leviathan through their sponsored ad on social media, reached out, and today bring you our review of their Omega Swimbait 8' Heavy fishing rod.

 

Leviathan Omega Swimbait 8' Heavy Specifications

Material North Fork Composites LMX-PSI Blank
Length 8'-0"
Line Wt. 12-30lb
Lure Wt. 2-6oz
Pieces One
Guides 8+tip double footed XQG by SeaGuide with Zirconium inserts. Stripper and tip top feature titanium frames, all other guides have 316 SS frames.
Rear Handle Length 16.5"
Power Rating Heavy
Taper Moderate-Fast
Rod Weight 7.7oz
Origin Made in USA
MSRP $299.99

 

Impressions: To be honest, it didn't really take much to convince me to reach out to Leviathan rods once I found out they're relying on Gary Loomis's company, North Fork Composites (NFC), to supply their blanks. Their Omega Swimbait 8' Heavy is built on an NFC, custom specified LMX-PSI blank that, as far as I can tell, is simply an updated treatment to what NFC used to refer to as their IM blank (second from the top behind HM, now LMX-LAMBDA, and similar in my mind to old G.Loomis IMX). The base material is a Toray carbon-fiber of undisclosed modulus.

 


Leviathan Rods's CEO, Eric Gomez wants to build rods that look, feel, and fish better than anything on the market

 

The rod is wrapped with double footed XQG guides by SeaGuide featuring stainless steel frames and Zirconium inserts. The stripper and tip top, we are told, have titanium frames. The reel seat is an Alps TX16 TexTouch with double lock rings. The Omega Swimbait 8' Heavy is finished with a full rear grip of EVA foam that is shielded in X-Flock shrink tubing for enhanced grip, comfort, and durability. Lastly, it's obvious right from the get go where Leviathan sits in the balance versus weight rod building debate. This stick is perfectly balanced at the very top of the reel seat, but at the expense of a rear handle that feels very weighted down.


Introducing the Leviathan Omega Swimbait 8' Heavy casting rod matched with an Abu Garcia Beast.

Real World Tests: From paddletails to glidebaits to good old fashioned three piece baits and more, swimbaits have suddenly taken over the majority of our mindset here at TackleTour, and finding the perfect stick to throw them on has become our new Search for One criteria. Leviathan enters the fray in the midst of this transformation and what better reel to pair with a mythical sea serpent than another beast, Abu Garcia's Revo4 Beast to be exact. The magical twine enchanting this combo was 50lb PowerPro Super8Slick, with a leader enhanced by Super Natural powers, 30lbs of power to be exact, by Sunline.


Baitsanity's Explorer 2 in Shad was the perfect, stealthy bait for this greyed out combo

Casting: Baits on the docket to test this mythical, beastly combo's casting range were a Megabass iSlide 262T (6.2oz), a Baitsanity Explorer 2 (5.4oz), GanCraft Jointed Claw 230 SS (3.8oz) and a Jackall Lures Gantarel (2.5oz). Starting from the low end and working my way up through each bait, what stood out to me about this rod was the ease by which the blank loaded all the way up to the full 6.2 oz burden of the iSlide. In fact, the rod flexed so much at rest with the iSlide hanging from the end of the line, I thought there was no way this 8' Heavy could handle it in a cast.


The Omega Swimbait 8' Heavy loads deep into the blank during a cast

Thing is, this stick has the uncanny ability to flex at the tip but also shut off just in time and in a manner that allows it to absorb the energy of that load just before feeling overburdened, then turn that energy around in a release that catapults your bait with minimal effort. Do so in a roll cast and it's almost as though you're holding a snake by it's tail as it coils up then fires off like a whip in the direction of your cast. However, if you try to muscle a cast with this rod, it will reverberate and send your bait spiraling out in a manner than often ends up with a fouled cast. Especially if you're using straight braid. A smooth and easy casting motion is the key.


The EVA rear grip is covered in heat shrink tubing for better grip and added durability

But wait, wasn't I using a leader you ask? I was indeed, but on my very first cast with one of my GanCraft Jointed Claw 230s, after two cranks of the reel and a pause, I felt a fish slurp the bait in. When I swung to set, my connection knot broke. Yes, another pricey bait lost during a critical test. This job is not for the faint of budget. Anyway, I forgot to bring my backup spool of leader material, so from that moment forward, on that particular trip, I was using straight braid. I experienced quite a few more baits that were fouled on the cast because of this. Stick to a smooth and easy casting motion with this rod and everything is fine. Casting distance is actually about the same either way, so a hard cast with this stick is just wasted effort. If you're used to heaving baits with a lot of force, it just takes a while to adjust the brain.


The super long, 16.5" handle is capped off nicely with a subtle, EVA cap

I will say that while this stick is rated up to six ounces in lure weight, and it handled the iSlide 262T and Baitsanity Explorer 2 competently, it felt more at home to me when I was fishing the lighter Jointed Claw and Gantarel baits. I really feel this stick's sweet spot is with baits in the two to four ounce range.


The rod's blank is left unfinished for best performance

Next Section: Sensitivity and Power...

 

   

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