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Rod Review


 

A Feature Packed Travel Stick from Monstar Fishing

 

Date: 4/29/21
Tackle Type: Rod
Manufacturer: Monstar Fishing
Reviewer: Cal






Total Score: 7.50 - GOOD

Introduction:
Whether you're planning your next exotic angling adventure or you just enjoy having a combo on standby in your trunk for those "just in case" scenarios, functional, multi-piece, travel rods that are truly compact are difficult to come by. I'm not talking about two or three piece sticks that still require their own spot in the overhead compartment but something you can literally fit into your carry on. Monstar Fishing out of Thailand and Singapore is an upstart tackle company that has a solution for your traveling needs. Introducing their Novelty MNARTC695MH 5-piece travel rod.

 

Monstar Novelty MNARTC695MH Specifications

Material Toray 24T & 30T Carbon Fiber Blend
Length 6'-9"
Line Wt. 10-20lb
Lure Wt. 8-48g (~1/4 - 1.7oz)
Pieces 5
Guides Fuji K-Series SS/SiC
Rear Handle Length 10.5
Power Rating Medium Heavy
Taper Mod-Fast
Rod Weight 6
Origin Made in China
MSRP $215


Introducing Monstar Fishing's Novelty travel stick

Impressions: The Novelty MNATC695MH by Monstar Fishing is a 5-piece stick that comes in a very convenient hard plastic carrying case (Meiho long case 500). Nestled within that case, underneath the rod's sections is a separate nylon carrying case giving you two options on how to stow this travel stick. Fully assembled, the rod measures six feet, nine inches (6'-9") and is outfitted with Fuji K-Series SiC guides with stainless steel frames. That's right, no aluminum oxide, Fazlite, Zirconium, or even Alconites, we're talking high end, ceramic silicone carbonite inserts by Fuji.

 


It comes packaged in this nice, see through hard plastic carrying case by Meiho

 

The rod's handle is a split rear grip of cork and a painted Fuji ACS reel seat. The same paint scheme is on the lower third of the stick and is a black crackle scheme with an underlying red. It's an aggressively styled fishing rod that speaks to a fun, enthusiastic personality. Together with its higher end components, this stick bucks the trend of more conservative, modestly adorned alternatives.

 


Assembled and ready to be paired with a reel

Real World Tests: The Novelty MNATC695MH's lure rating is just shy of two ounces and given its length, there's one place, I'd love to have been able to test it - that's the Amazon. This feels like it'd make the perfect stick to rip wood choppers in pursuit of peacock bass. in fact, it was designed to fish snakehead, but I guess a stint throwing some topwater wake baits will have to do. I matched the rod up with my 2019 Scorpion MGL by Shimano Japan. The pair match up as if made for each other.


My Shimano Scorpion 151 MGL received the honors

Casting: Well it's probably a good thing I did not take this stick to the Amazon afterall, because what I thought would be a nice, shorter length stick to launch heftier top water plugs with turns out to be something a bit softer. The MNATC695MH's mod-fast taper reveals itself during a cast when using baits at the upper end of its lure rating. I was hoping I'd be able to push this stick chucking baits up to two ounce but in reality, because of that softer taper and the way this stick loads through the blank, going down in weight is a better strategy than going up. One and a half ounces feels like this stick's upper limit with maybe three quarters of an ounce to one and one quarter ounce being the sweet spot.


This stick loads pretty far down the blank during a cast once you approach its upper end lure rating

Well it's probably a good thing I did not take this stick to the Amazon afterall, because what I thought would be a nice, shorter length stick to launch heftier top water plugs with turns out to be something a bit softer. The MNATC695MH's mod-fast taper reveals itself during a cast when using baits at the upper end of its lure rating. I was hoping I'd be able to push this stick chucking baits up to two ounce but in reality, because of that softer taper and the way this stick loads through the blank, going down in weight is a better strategy than going up. One and a half ounces feels like this stick's upper limit with maybe three quarters of an ounce to one and one quarter ounce being the sweet spot.


The Fuji ACS reel seat and first third of the blank are finished in this faux-crackle paint scheme

On the flip side, this stick handles small, difficult to cast cranks like Bagley's Balsa B1 and Rapala's ShadRap 05 - 07 quite well. I think my favorite bait with this rod was a half ounce swim jig like Megabass's Uoze Swimmer matched with a Reaction Innovations Spicy Beaver trailer. I could fish that bait combo all day on this stick even with it's softer taper.


Cork on the split rear grip is pretty clean


Each end of the split grip is finished off nicely

Next Section: Sensitivity and Power...

 

   

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