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Enthusiast Tackle : Rod Review

 

Uncovering the Weapon of a Bass Pro: Megabass's 2005 F3-610DGS Aaron Martens Limited (continued)

Sensitivity: The medium light power rating of this rod is deceiving as it fishes more like a cross between ultra light and light. As one would expect, sensitivity of a rod with these characteristic is supreme. The use of hypalon on the handle, while comfortable, often detracts from the sensation of feeling those light pickups. Such is not the case with the F3-610DGS. In fact, through two months of testing we've yet to experience that subtle pressure at the end of the line - the type of bite that so often characterizes drop shot fishing. All of our drop shot fish on this rod were no doubt hits that resulted in exhilarating battles to the boat. Bottom structure and composition is easily detected while fishing bottom contact techniques such as split shot and jighead fishing even when using lines other than braid.

 

The F3-610DGS may possess a medium fast taper but when under load, bends smoothly throughout the length of the rod more inline with a moderate action rod

 

Power: In response to Aaron Marten's finesse techniques, Megabass employed the use of their lower modulus Hi8X graphite rather than their traditional, super high modulus, Hi10X when building this rod. With this lower modulus graphite, Megabass was able to achieve a softer action overall that, together with the medium fast taper, really makes an incredible finesse fishing tool. As such, the actual power of this rod is light and forgiving rather than stiff and overpowering. This is just the type of action that best suits light line, finesse presentations where you want a forgiving blank so as not to pull your offerings out of the bass's mouth prematurely, or run the risk of breaking your line during hookset or the actual battle because of a blank that is too stiff and unresponsive. Despite these finesse styling we were able to boat largemouth bass to three and half pounds with little difficulty using this rod, and even managed a nice, six pound channel cat that struck our grub fished on a 1/16 oz Critterbait Company Shaker Head. Light line, finesse fishing while at times, very tedious, is truly a joy no matter what size fish you have a the end of your line. While the outcome with larger fish are always an uncertainty when using a true finesse setup, the battles inspired during our tests with the F3-610DGS were unbelievable even when battling undersized fish.

 

The subtle, but very well executed thread wrap above the foregrip on the F3-610DGS

 

Design: When we opened the velvet sleeve that surrounded our F3-610DGS upon arrival, the first thing first thing that struck us was the rod's butt cap. No stamped metal counterweight on this rod, but a rather modest, sculpted foam cap accented by brass and silver colored winding checks. We found this uncharacteristically conservative, but just above this section is the exposed graphite portion of the split grip and the portion of the rod where things really get interesting. The F3-610DGS sits within Megabass's Orochi lineup which use what Megabass refers to as D.N.A Graphite - a blank with the graphite fibers wound in a double helix DNA pattern. This design, in theory, gives the blank more lateral stability while increasing sensitivity and responsiveness. The actual pattern itself is not really visible anywhere in the blank of this rod except in the portion of the graphite that sits between the split rear grip. Here you can see, in a subtle, deep violet, tone on tone pattern, the crossing wrap of this DNA construction. Granted, this feature between the split grips could be and probably is purely cosmetic, but the effect is incredible nonetheless. The fact this pattern exists no where else in the rod, however, leaves us to wonder whether or not this rod really benefits from the DNA graphite technology or not.

 

You can just barely make out the crossing pattern of the graphite in this detail shot, however, the snake pattern is easily recognizable

 

To further astound, Megabass has inlayed within the graphite between the split rear grip, the pattern of a snake, the trademark of the Orochi line, coiling around the blank giving you with the impression this serpent will present itself to wrap around your wrist as you grasp the rod to in your hand. Moving up from this sleeve we come to the top portion of the rear grip that actually serves as the lockring for the reel seat. The reel seat itself is an engraved aluminum surface bordered at the top by a very comfortable, sculpted, foam foregrip with a beautifully styled winding check to cap off the entire handle assembly. This is a rod that one has to see in person to truly appreciate as words and pictures alone simply do not do justice to the artistry.

 

The engraved aluminum reel seat of our F3-610DGS

 

Warranty: The standard warranty for any Megabass fishing rod covers manufacturer defects for the first year only and only rods sold within Japan. Thanks to their United States distribution office, Megabass USA, rods purchased outside of Japan and through this distribution hub, carry the same warranty as those sticks sold within the mother country. Please verify any warranty related claims and coverage questions with Megabass USA directly.

 

The F3-610DGS is not only a masterful work of art, but a more than capable light action spinning rod

 

Ratings:

Megabass F3-610DGS Aaron Martens Limited Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality

Megabass seems to take great care that each product leaving the factory is flawless

10
Performance

We were left wanting for nothing

10
Price

~$405 for a finesse spinning rod is a lot of money, but this is no more than the cost of some custom sticks with high end components

7
Features

We question the actual effectiveness of the eccentric first guide and lack of a hook keeper

8.5
Design (Ergonomics)

Unquestionably the most beautiful rod we've ever handled

10
Application

For finesse bassing applications or a light action panfish or stream fishing stick, the F3-610DGS stick can do it all

10

Total Score

9.25


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J Extremely Sensitive L Price is beyond premium
J Breathtaking Composition L Warranty is very limited
J Nice, consistent power L Lack of hook keeper
J Excellent casting performance  


Conclusion: Driven by the requirements of one of the most successful Bass Pro's in recent years, the 2005 Aaron Martens Limited rod by Megabass is, perhaps more so than any rod we've handled to date, truly breathtaking. For those bass anglers looking for just one and only one spinning rod to add to their arsenal, this could very well be THE rod for you. For those anglers who extoll the virtues of battle even more so than hoisting their prey out of the water, and are equally devoted to light, easy to use spinning gear for this very reason, consider the F3-610DGS a panacea. Megabass continues to amaze and inspire with their devotion to beautifully crafted and exquisitely detailed products that perform beyond the call of duty. The F3-610DGS is a prime example of this practice and takes no prisoners in its pursuit to become the favorite rod in your lineup. Because of this devotion to undeniable uniqueness and the actual manifestation of this accomplishment in the F3-610DGS, we are once again proud to award Megabass with the Ultimate Enthusiast Award for their 2005 Aaron Martens Limited masterpiece.

   

                                        


 

 

 

 

 

 
 





 

 



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