Reels | Rods | Lures | SwimbaitsBFS Lines | Terminal Tackle | Tools | Storage | Apparel | Enthusiast | Watercraft | Interviews | Events | Autopsy




Rod Review

Swimbait Rod Wars Installment #9: Powell's Answer to the Paddle Tail Craze (continued)

Sensitivity: Sensitivity of the 765 CB/SBR was very good and about what I expected from a rod with its minimalist approach to detailing. While paddletail baits don't necessarily give off enough vibration for you to feel while swimming through the water - especially if connected via nylon monofilament - detection of bottom contours and other inanimate objects within the water column was good.

The minimalist butt end.

With other, faster moving baits such as shallow running cranks and spinnerbaits, the crazed action of these baits are indeed easily felt with the 765 CB/SBR. It is here where the true calling of this stick reveals itself. Rather than a swimbait stick, this rod really excels with cranks and spinnerbaits.

The familiar, clean detailing of Powell's Max Bass Rods.

Power: Unfortunately, I was unable to hook into anything of significance with this rod to really test out its power curve. So it goes when tossing "finesse" baits I suppose, and while the 765 CB/SBR might not be my first choice in sticks if you're consistently pulling in double digit fish, this rod is more than capable as a standard bass rod and should be able to handle just about anything you're going to hook into as long as you're not trying to horse them into the boat.

The 765 CB/SBR features the now familiar split rear grip, no foregrip handle assembly...

That is of course, assuming you can hook into them. One trouble with fishing paddletail baits is the hook up ratio. Driving that hook home through the plastic on some of these baits requires a rod with a good, quick tip. The 765 CB/SBR is adequate in this department but not as good as other sticks like our Fenwick ECSWB79H-F or really, just a standard flipping rod.

... a Fuji ECS Reel Seat...

Features: Powell continues its minimalist approach to rod offerings highlighted by a few, clean detailing elements like strategically placed winding checks. This is a very cleanly built stick. It features a standard, Fuji ECS reel seat, Fuji Alconite guides, and an open ended hook keeper placed on the top of the blank, just in front of the reel seat. Easy access from either side of the rod.

... and Fuji Alconite guides are held in place with straight black threadwrap.

The 765 CB/SBR is best with swimbaits that feature an exposed jig-style hook like this Optimum's Titan swimbait.

Application: Powell labels their 765 CB/SBR with suggestions of ripbaits, crankbaits, topwater baits, and swimbaits right on the blank. We'd concur with these recommendations and throw in six-inch Senkos and spinnerbaits into the mix. As previously mentioned this rod makes a fantastic stick for long range spinnerbaits and shallow running cranks.

The 765 CB/SBR's ratings and recommended techniques.

Our 765 CB/SBR matched up very well with this Daiwa Millionaire CVZ 103L

Warranty: All Powell Max Bass Rods are covered by a lifetime warranty applicable to the original owner of the rod. Typical of any manufacturer, all warranty claims are subject to inspection and cover defects in workmanship not accidental or intentional breakage or other non-fishing related damage. For further details on Powell's rod warranty, we suggest contacting the company directly or asking your local, authorized dealer. 



Powell 765 CB/SBR Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality Nice, clean detailing with a minimalist approach 7
Performance Very good as a long, general purpose stick though not a true "swimbait" stick 6.5
Price A fair price considering the rod's features 6.5
Features Solid components 7
Design (Ergonomics) Handle is a bit short 6.5
Application Better as a general purpose bass rod than a swimbait stick 6

Total Score

Ratings Key: Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
(For a detailed explanation of the ratings go here)

Pluses and Minuses:

                 Plus                                    Minus

J Suitable for a wide range of baits L Not suitable as a dedicated swimbait stick
J Clean detailing
J Solid line of components


Conclusion: The more I tried to find a role for the Powell 765 CB/SBR in the Swimbait Rod Wars, the more I wanted to fish it with other baits. The truth is, with the rod's moderate-fast taper, and relatively light power curve, I feel it really is better suited as a long range crankbait and spinnerbait stick. If it had a faster taper, and slightly better power curve, like a lighter powered Fenwick ECSWB79H-F, this rod would be fantastic for paddletail baits. As it stands, it can serve the role, but there are better tools out there for this application.


Not a huge bass, but still great fun on a capable stick.


If you fish baits that have an exposed jig hook like the Optimum Titan, Mattlures Trout and Baby Bass, or maybe even the Osprey Dink, then the 765 CB/SBR will suit you fine. Keep in mind though, that most of these baits are over the rod's recommended lure weight range. It's a delicate balancing act no doubt. If your goal is a dedicated rod for the finesse type swimbaits, I'm not sure this rod is the one for you. However, if you're looking for a rod that can fish the finesse swimbaits and other moving baits as well, then the 765 CB/SBR is definitely worth a look.









Copyright 2000-2022 TackleTour LLC All rights reserved.
Privacy Policy information