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Rod Review

Flipping Week : Orochi Double X Aaron Martens Special! (continued)

Features: The F8-79XX comes with a traditional handle design with a full rear grip and foregrip made of cork. The foregrip on this rod is integrated into the reel seat locking mechanism in a design Megabass refers to as the Ito Headlock system. The guides on this stick are Fuji Alconites but K-Series semi-micros. The rods come stock with an open ended hook keeper, but the light wire design of this keeper is not very durable. Lastly, the rod does come with a rod sleeve that is useful in both long term storage and storage in a crowded rod locker.

Only medium grade cork here with a lot of filler.

Features Ratings for Megabass F8-79XX Aaron Martens Flipping Special

Grip (1-5)
Guides (1-5)
Reel Seat (1-5)
Hook Keeper (1-5)
Rod Sleeve (1-5)
Rating (= Tot/Pos * 10)

Aaron Martens is not a fan of the decorative butt caps on Megabass rods - he cuts them off. That's probably the reasoning behind this compressed cork cap instead.

Design/Ergonomics: I mentioned it before but it bears repeating, the F8-79XX is a beefy stick and it accomplishes the task of being a beefy stick without feeling overly heavy, unbalanced and cumbersome - something the afore mentioned G.Loomis FSR sticks had an issue with. The weight, balance, and balancing torque of this rod compares very favorably with the average values we gathered from our historical data on flipping rods we've reviewed in the past and this all the while measuring out at one to two powers heavier than the average. That's quite an accomplishment.

The Ito Headlocking system is simply a foregrip that's integrated into the reel seat locking mechanism.

Lab Results for Megabass F8-79XX Aaron Martens Flipping Special

Avg RoD (2-32 oz)
Measured Weight (oz)
Balance Point (inches)
Balancing Torque (ftlbs)
Megabass F8-79XX Aaron Martens Flipping Special
Flipping Rod Average

The Orochi XX rods feature Fuji K-Series semi-micro guides with Alconite inserts.

In hand and out on the water, the F8-79XX fishes well with a handle length that doesn't get in the way while pitching and flipping and while the cork handle does have a lot of filler, it is comfortable to hold and grasp while fishing. The colors and graphics of this stick are very subdued for Megabass and this stick has a very neutral, unassuming aesthetic.

Design & Ergonomics Ratings for Megabass F8-79XX Aaron Martens Flipping Special

Grip (1-5)
Colors / Graphics (1-5)
Balance (1-5)
Weight (1-5)
Rating (= Tot/Pos * 10)

Alignment at material transitions are very clean.

Application: The F8-79XX is a very technique specific stick designed around the application of flipping. While it handles this application and other similar applications like Carolina Rigging, Texas Rigging, fishing jigs and other vertical presentations techniques very well, where it is lacking is in versatility. So if you're looking for a big, beefy stick to do a variety of things and do them well, the F8-79XX is probably not a good choice. However, if you're looking for a dedicated soft plastics and jigs rod for fishing in and around heavy cover, the Aaron Martens Flipping Special is worth serious consideration.

Bass Rod Application Ratings for Megabass F8-79XX Aaron Martens Flipping Special

Rip/Jerk (1-5)
Steady (1-5)
Lift & Drop (1-5)
Drag (1-5)
Twitch (1-5)
Rating (= Tot/Pos * 10)

Though not as ornately detailed as other rods in their lineup, Megabass manages to sneak in small queues here and there reminiscent of their usual flare.

Warranty: Megabass of America has re-worked the company's warranty plan to accommodate a broader audience. All Orochi XX rods are covered by a 3 year warranty to the original owner that includes one, no questions asked replacement. After that first replacement, future claims on the same rod will be subject to a replacement cost equaling forty percent (40%) off of the current retail price. As always, we recommend discussing your warranty questions and claims directly with the manufacturer for a clearer picture as it applies to your situation.



Megabass F8-79XX Aaron Martens Flipping Special Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality The Double X line shows that Made in China can mean clean construction 9.47
Performance Sensitive and powerful 8.8
Price Pricey, but for performance this good and in a Megabass rod? A very good price. 7.5
Features Pretty standard fare when it comes down to it. The hook keeper is a surprise and the rod sleeve is a nice bonus 6.8
Design (Ergonomics) Weight and balance point are right there with our historical average for these types of sticks even though this one is a bit more powerful than average 7.0
Application This stick is made for plastics and jigs in vertical type presentations 6.4

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:


+ Really good sensitivity - If you're a fan of Megabass, this stick is a little ho-hum in aesthetic
+ This is a beefy stick - Grade of cork in the grip is not super high
+ Affordability in a Megabass  


Conclusion: Megabass continues to impress with their Orochi XX lineup. The F8-79XX was built for a specific purpose in mind - flipping - and it's built very well for that purpose. It's difficult for me to look at an F8 powered Megabass rod and not think back to the discontinued F8-78DG Super Destruction. Quietly, I was hoping this stick would remind me of that beast of a rod and while it probably matches that rod in power, the tapers are completely different. Add to the mix, the F8-78DG had a slant bridge, spiral wrap, and a purple colored blank and well, it was obviously just wishful thinking on my part.


The F8-79XX is tailor made for fishing soft plastics and jigs in deep water or in close quarters.


On its own, the Orochi F8-79XX is a powerful stick that serves well in close quarter, stealthy presentation techniques and has better than average sensitivity so you can sense what's going on at the other end of the line. In fact, at ICAST 2013, Aaron Martens pulled me aside to ask me what I thought about the power of this stick. He was quite proud remarking as he flexed the rod's tip against the carpeted floor- almost as it was named after him. Oh wait...


Looking for a Megabass F8-79XX Aaron Martens Flipping Special? Try one of these reputable sources:


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