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Enthusiast Tackle : Rod Review

Don't Get Stung by the Stinger Tip : The Megabass F4-69RSDti Orochi Evolution (continued)

Casting: Any potential effects, positive or negative, as a result of the stinger tip couldn't be felt during casts. The F4ST-69RSDti performed quite well in this category, loading as any normal spinning rod would, and delivering baits on target without a second thought. My primary offerings during our tests were split shot and jig-head type rigs. Tests on an actual range of weights the rod is able to cast comfortably were not performed by reasons to be explained later in the article. As with just about any spinning rod, though, casting performance was really a non-issue.

Here we see the transition of the titanium weave to the straight graphite blank

A closeup of the titanium framed SIC guides


Sensitivity: I had hoped the stinger tip might provide an added degree of sensitivity and while the blank itself is very good at transmitting information like bottom composition to your hands, actual strike detection was nothing extra-ordinary. Maybe I was expecting too much. The rod, in general, is well above average in sensitivity, but I was hoping to see more movement in the very tip akin to the way an ultra-light rod's tip moves when a fish picks up your bait. This just did not happen during our tests.

Very subtle and well executed highlight colors in the otherwise, black thread wrap of our F4ST-69RSDti

A closeup of the transition from the main blank (~0.082" dia) to the stinger tip (~0.084" dia)


Power: The F4ST-69RSDti does indeed, load very quickly from the tip to the backbone when setting hook, but in the end, it is still a light action spinning rod. Battles with spotted bass up to 2.5lbs were exhilarating, and, on several occasions, I thought I had a really good sized fish at the end of the line, only to be fooled by another feisty spot. Its 6'-9" length offers good leverage while fighting a fish and while I fished the rod in some heavy weed situations to test its limits, best success was had in more open water areas.


Some people use this special winding check at the top of the rod's foregrip as a hook keeper

The butt section of the rear split grip is a simple, yet elegant knob made of hypalon

Features: As mentioned earlier, the F4ST-69RSDti represents the culmination of practically all Megabass has to offer in rod technology. Not only does the rod feature the rather unique, Stinger Tip, but the blank itself benefits from Megabass's DNA titanium wrap in the first third of the blank. Guides are all Fuji titanium framed SIC products and the reel seat is a custom implementation featuring a stealth reel foot sleeve and a carbon fiber lockring that doubles as grip material. It is truly an astounding rod both in composition and features.

A closeup of the custom reel seat designed by Yuki Ito

The F4ST-69RSDti features a stealth housing for the reel foot

The tubular graphite lockring enables installation of just about any sized reel

On the backside of the reel seat's lockring is a reminder of its design origins


Warranty: But all good things must eventually come to an end. This review, of our F4-69RSDti Orochi Evolution rod by Megabass is actually incomplete. I was unable to complete my testing cycle with this rod because shortly after beginning my evaluation of this stick, tragedy struck. I had the rod stored in my rod locker along with half a dozen other sticks, all within their own velvet rod sheaths. The rods were all at once, placed gently in the locker, and a few days later, removed in the same manner. When I pulled the Orochi Evolution out its bag, I discovered it had snapped - right in the middle of the Stinger Tip. I was devastated.

The Stinger Tip is, indeed, as fragile as it looks. The tip of our F4ST-69RSDti broke before we could complete the rod's full evaluation


A quick email into Megabass USA revealed their new program to help anglers who've suffered an accidental break in one of their rods. Provided the rod is still under warranty, Megabass USA will offer a one time replacement of said rod for 40% off regular retail price. Like it or not, it is better than nothing, but as heartbroken as I was to be holding this rod, struck down in its prime and really, before it had a chance to prove itself to me, I was not willing to spend the extra cash to replace it. Given how careful I was with the stick all this time, I had zero confidence this same thing was not going to happen again.



Megabass F4ST-69RSDti Orochi Evolution Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Given its obvious fragile nature, we seriously question the true benefit and practicality of the Stinger Tip. This was heartbreaking, and honestly one of the first major issues we have had with Megabass construction 2
Performance Unable to fully assess the rod's capabilities, what we experienced while not terrible, was nothing extraordinary 8
Price An unbelievably expensive spinning rod especially for what you are getting in this case 5
Features A feature and technology laden fishing rod - perhaps too feature laden 8
Design (Ergonomics) There are few, if any rods, that can rival the attention to detail Megabass provides, but again question the design and implementation of the Stinger Tip 7
Application A seemingly nice stick for finesse applications 8

Total Score


Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J Beautifully Crafted L The Stinger Tip is simply too fragile : the risk of breakage outweighs the potential benefit
J Feature laden with Quality Components L Price is prohibitive
J Very Good Sensitivity

This bass was the highlight of our otherwise all too brief encounter with the Megabass F4ST-69RSDti Orochi Evolution


Conclusion: A rod that offers wonderful potential and a unique design, but in the end, the singularly most unique feature was its downfall. Given more time with the F4ST-69RSDti, perhaps I would have experienced the true benefit of the Stinger Tip, but even with that time, there is no denying the fragile nature of this rod's design. Even for someone as careful and mindful with their tackle as I am, this rod had me being extra cautious and extra careful and in the end, even that was not enough. In the case of the F4ST-69RSDti, a rod at this price point, with the reputation of a company like Megabass simply should not be so inherently fragile. We can appreciate the forward thinking of this company, the attention to detail, the incorporation of so many interesting features. Unfortunately, we cannot appreciate a product whose potential for failure outweighs its obscure and mysterious benefit. The F4ST-69RSDti Orochi Evolution is not a rod we can, in good conscience, recommend.











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