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Rod Review


 

The Search for One : Ark Fishing's BB73MMHFC Old Faithful

 

Date: 1/29/22
Tackle Type: Rod
Manufacturer: ARK Fishing
Reviewer: Cal






Total Score: 7.83 - GOOD

Introduction:
Earlier this year, we took a look at ARK Fishing International's BB73MLXS Fair Wand, one of fourteen sticks in the manufacturer's latest value driven series of bass rods. With other nick names like Kinda' Shaky, Kitchen Sink, Do-All, The Walking Stick, and Good Vibes, within the series, how could we not be drawn back to sample another? Question is which one shall it be? How about a seven foot, three inch (7'-3") stick with an intriguing taper? Here's our look into Ark's BB73MMHFC, also known as Old Faithful.

 

ARK Fishing Brandon Cobb Series BB73MMHFC Specifications

Material Toray 40T Carbon Fiber
Length 7'-3"
Line Wt. 12-20lb
Lure Wt. 1/4-1oz
Pieces One
Guides 8+tip Micro w/ Aluminum Oxide inserts, Zirconium Tip Top
Rear Handle Length 10
Power Rating Mag Medium Heavy
Taper Fast
Rod Weight 4.6oz
Origin Made in China
MSRP $99.89


Time for another look at Ark's Cobb Series, this time with a stick nicknamed, "Old Faithful"

Impressions: ARK's BB73MMHFC measures 7'-3" in length, and is built on a blank with the same 40T carbon foundation as the afore mentioned BB73MLXS. The guides are micro sized and feature stainless steel frames with Aluminum Oxide inserts, but the tip top guide is upgraded to Zirconium. What I found interesting about this stick is its rated taper of Mag Medium Heavy. In my mind that meant a medium heavy powered stick with an extra-fast taper, but turns out, Old Faithful is rated with a fast taper. I suppose that means it is built to be somewhere between a traditional medium heavy and heavy powered stick.

 


Matched with one of my old faithful reels, the Shimano Chronarch MGL

Real World Tests: The first stop for this stick was a trip on the RoD WRACK, to see what this mag medium heavy rating was all about, but more on that later. For the BB73MMHFC's real world tests, I paired it with an old faithful of my own, my Chronarch MGL. I spooled the reel up with a fresh supply of Seaguar 50 pound Threadlock Hollow Braid and installed a top shot of 10 pound Seaguar AbrazX.


This camo patterned EVA grip is featured on every rod in this series

Casting: The first thing I did with my Old Faithful combo was to tie a snap at the end of my line so I could test the BB73MMHFC's casting range. Baits I used include a three eighths ounce Jack Hammer Stealth (without trailer), a Megabass Vision OneTen+1 (rated at half an ounce), a three quarter ounce Rapala BX Brat, and a three quarter ounce Megabass Uoze Swimmer plus a trailer of Reaction Innovation's Spicy Beaver for a total lure weight of around one ounce. Note, I didn't actually fish these baits, I was simply using them to get a feel for the stick's casting abilities in place of generic casting plugs.


Old school reel seat

As I suspected, there were no issues with the BB73MMHFC through this range. I've found through past experience, ARK usually does a good job with their lure ratings and this stick was no different. Back at the lab, I did tie on a quarter ounce casting plug just to verify the low end for this stick and it performed fine. Sweet spot for this stick is quite wide. It feels right at home handling everything from three eighths of an ounce up to one ounce in both casting and pitching presentations. In fact, I really like this stick's pitching abilities.


Sensitivity is better than expected at this price point

Sensitivity: To actually fish the stick, I tied on a half ounce Phenix Baits Pro Series Flipping Jig tipped with another Spicy Beaver to target some off shore ledges at the same time Zander was ned rigging over the same area. I about had enough with the finesse bite and wanted to see if the fish would take something more substantial. The BB73MMHFC affords you a lot more feel than I expect from a $99.89 rod. That 40T graphite blank is a difference maker at this price point. I have to wonder if the blank weren't painted, how much more sensitive this stick might actually be. Nevertheless, I was more than satisfied with its performance here.

Next Section: Power to spare...

 

   

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