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Rod Review


The Power in IKE, Abu Garcia & Mike Iaconelli's MIKEC76-6 (continued)

Recognizing the sobering fact that there are fewer and fewer neighborhood tackle stores around to visit and that the big box stores seldom carry some of our benchmark sticks, we've decided to delve into our archives, separate rods by common deflection characteristics, and pull out the average data for several of the power categories we more commonly review: The Search for One (medium heavy); Creature Fever (heavy powered); What the Finesse (finesse sticks); medium powered rods for which we have no current theme.

The rod's reel seat locking mechanism is disguised as a foregrip

This will allow us to give you a more general idea of whether or not a rod is heavier or lighter in power than average along with how it compares in weight and balance. We kind of sort of did this with our Search for One candidates listing the average numbers for the 26 rods in our original themed year, but now with the update, we are taking the average of over one hundred measured rods from the last several years. For our heavy powered sticks, this number is around forty, and for our finesse sticks, fifty.

Fig 1 : The chart above illustrates the deflection characteristics of our Abu Garcia IKE Power Casting MIKEC76-6 against the averages from forty (40) similarly rated rods

Back to our MIKEC76-6, crunching the data from our lab measurements, it was obvious a better comparison would be against our heavy powered average rather than medium heavy. If you reference the chart above, you can see how this is true. You will also notice in that chart, the inclusion of another rod. We're going to include these highlight sticks in our charts and tables to give you real world examples of rods that are close to the mean. As for the MIKEC76-6, this stick's power, is slightly above average even for this category, so if you're looking for a long, powerful stick for your vertical presentations, the MIKE76-6 fits that bill quite nicely.

Lab Results for Abu Garcia IKE Power Casting MIKEC76-6

Avg RoD (2-48 oz)
Measured Weight (oz)
Balance Point (inches)
Balancing Torque (ftlbs)
Abu Garcia IKE Power Casting MIKEC76-6
Creature Fever 40 Rod Avg
Legacy MBR844C GLX
Daiwa Tatula TAT721HFB

Design & Ergonomics: Having already touched upon the rod's components, finish, weight and balance, the only real discussion point remaining regarding design and ergonomics is the rod's grip. The MIKEC76-6's rear, split grip features a section of ergo molded EVA foam right behind the reel seat. The shape of this ergo-mold is intended to provide a more comfortable form factor to wrap your fingers.

The rod's grip features an ergo-molded EVA foam section right behind the reel seat

Personally, this ergo grip feature has little affect on me while fishing since I rarely hold my casting combo this far back. I'm usually palming my reel and only move my hand back to cast or pitch. Even then my hand is pretty far forward in the grip.

A look at the rod's closed loop hook hangar

The one ergo grip feature I do notice and do not care for is the power hump at the top of the grip. Fortunately, the MIKEC76-6 doesn't have this. Rather those finger contours on the grip are kind of a reflection of the rod's reel seat which is another polarizing component of recent discussion. There's a large portion of the bass fishing public that do not care for Fuji's ACS reel seat because of the forward placement of the trigger. If you're in this camp, be aware this stick does have that seat.

Epoxy work around the guides is not the cleanest

Price & Applications: Abu Garcia's IKE Power Series MIKEC76-6 carries with it an price tag of one cent under one hundred fifty dollars ($150). It is designed as a vertical bait presentation stick (hence Power series), but honestly, is quite suitable for any technique where your bait has a single, jig style hook. I had a lot of fun using it with a vibrating jig and would not hesitate to throw a buzzbait or big, heavy spinnerbait with it either. It has a lot of power to help you drive that hook home on a set.

Iaconelli's motto stamped on the rod for inspiration


Abu Garcia IKE Power Casting MIKEC76-6 Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality The rod's finish is different and fun, but epoxy work around the guides could be better 8
Performance Really solid performer all around 9
Price Very good value at $150 8
Features More value driven line of components 7
Design (Ergonomics) Features that you'll either love or hate in that handle and reel seat 7.5
Application Slightly more powerful than your average heavy power with complimentary length 7.5

Total Score


Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here


Pluses and Minuses:


+ Fun color scheme - Ergo Grip and Reel seat are polarizing
+ Powerful stick - "Medium Heavy" label is misleading
+ Good sensitivity  
+ Priced right  

Conclusion: I had a really fun time fishing this rod especially when paired with the matching reel. Abu Garcia and Mike Iaconelli have done a really nice job here. My only real bit of criticism is in the rod's stated power rating. This not a medium heavy stick in the traditional sense and anyone purchasing the rod based on that label, not looking at the lure and line rating, will find themselves with a 7'-6" stick that's a lot more powerful than they had anticipated.

If having fun on the water is your goal, the MIKEC76-6 matched with a Revo4 IKE is a tough combo to beat

On the plus side, that discovery on our end led to a refresh of our RoD comparison data. We write the majority of our reviews well in advance of their actual publication dates, and at the time of this writing, there are at least half a dozen other rods in the queue for publishing along with this article, but hopefully by year's end all our rod reviews will be up to date with the new comparison data. In the meantime, if you're looking for a stick with a little more personality than the competition at a price that won't break you and you value performance, what Abu Garcia and Mike Iaconelli have cooking in their MIKEC76-6 is worth sampling.


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