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Complete list of all current ICAST 2014 coverage
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Glide Week : Riding the S-Wave!
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Abu Garcia Raises the Speed Bar with their Rocket!
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Daiwa’s Steez EX 100XS offers a Deadly Combination of Both Speed and Precision
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First look inside the new Curado I baitcaster
 


 

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Rod Review


The Samurai Sword of Frog Rods, the Daiwa Steez XBD (continued)

The Steez XBD rod features the same clean construction of other Steez rods just not as flashy. The Air-beam reel seat colors have been toned down to a more conservative looking grey and the machined aluminum fore nut is a gunmetal grey while the winding checks also match nicely. The guides are all Fuji titanium framed SIC to resist damage from braided line and are positioned closer to the blank with the intention of reducing pressure and twist under load.


The rod features a split grip design

The rod’s overall understated look makes this particular rod look the most utilitarian of all the Steez rods, yet there is something undeniably clean about the rod’s overall design, it looks “pure.” The rod matches up well with a number of reels including the Steez reels themselves but actually seemed to balance out slightly better with the Zillion reels or the JDM Alphas Ito (which looked sweet on this rod).

STZ741XHFBA XBD : 11" Rear Handle : 8+tip (Fuji Ti/SiC All Double Footed) : Fast Tapered : XHvy Power : 1/2-2 oz : 55-80lb Braid

 

Lab Tests: Before the rod ever saw a drop of water it spent time in our lab and faced our RoD WRACK for measurement. The Steez XBD rod has a balance point at 8.5" and a very respectable balancing torque of only 0.24 foot pounds which is one of the reasons why this particular rod does not feel tip heavy like so many other frog rods.

 

BIG Sticks Lab Results

Model

Avg RoD (2-32oz)
Taper
Measured Weight (oz)
Balance Point (inches)
Balancing Torque (ftlbs)
St. Croix MOJO MBC79HF
0.88
Fast
6.2
12.5
0.44
Power Tackle PG104-76
1.32
Mod-Fast
5.4
10.75
0.28
Zombie 7'3" Heavy Pitch
1.25
X-Fast
7.5
3.25
0.12
e21 CMG701XH-F-C
1.25
Fast
3.8
10
0.19
e21 CMG761H-F-C
1.39
Fast
4.1
11
0.24
STZ741XHFBA XBD
1.50
Fast
5.3
8.5
0.24

 


A close up of the blank displays the bias graphite fiber construction

 

All of the "Big" sticks we compared the XBD rod to are characterized by their ability to handle deflection weights of up to 48 ounces versus the 32 ounces we go to with normal sticks. Typically, sticks we've seen in this space have been swimbait sticks, but really, this can include flipping sticks, punching sticks, and frog sticks like the Steez XBD. While some of these sticks can be used for multiple applications and in some ways qualify for our "Search for One" rods they really are a different animal as they are more application specific and geared towards true heavy applications like slinging big baits and fishing the slop.

 


Machined winding checks match the fore-nut

Real World Tests: I paired the XBD rod with a variety of reels including Daiwa Steez reels, the new Zillion Type R and the JDM Alphas Ito. I also used a variety of line including Izorline hollowbraid with a Seaguar fluorocarbon leader, Powerpro and Daiwa’s own Samurai braid. I fished this rod for over two seasons taking it everywhere from my home water on the California Delta and Clear Lake to Lake Falcon, Texas.


The split grip portion features a completely different weaved carbon look


Next Section: What happens when you get overconfident?


 

 

 

 

 

 
 





 

 



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