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Enthusiast Tackle : Rod Review

Don't Get Stung by the Stinger Tip : The Megabass F4-69RSDti Orochi Evolution

Date: 6/22/06
Tackle type: Rod
Manufacturer: Megabass
Reviewer: Cal

Total Score: 6.33

Introduction: In our continuing quest to uncover all the mystery and intrigue that is Megabass, we bring to you, today, a review on one of their most exotic offerings, the F4ST-69RSDti Orochi Evolution. This rod represents the culmination of practically all the rod technologies Megabass has to offer but perhaps the most intriguing feature of this rod is what they refer to as their stinger tip. Found only on their exclusive HedgeHog series of rods, the stinger tip is an approximate eight to nine inch section of tubular graphite. This tubular graphite is softer in action than what would otherwise be the standard tip of the rod. The intent is to provide a true extra-fast tip section that transfers into a stronger than normal backbone to deliver instant hooksetting power without sacrificing sensitivity. Confused? Imagine taking the tip action of say, an ultra light spinning rod and fusing that with the backbone of a medium action blank. This is what the F4ST-69RSDti represents. The question is, does the stinger tip actually deliver as promised or is it all marketing hyperbole?

Megabass F4ST-69RSDti Orochi Evolution Specifications

Material Proprietary graphite blank with titanium fiber reinforcement
Length 6' - 9"
Length from Back of Reel Seat to Base 8.5"
Line Wt. 4 - 12 lbs
Lure Wt. 1/16 - 3/8 oz
Pieces One
Guides Titanium Framed SIC Guides ( 8 + tip)
Power Rating Medium Light
Taper Extra-Fast
Rod Weight 4.4 oz
MSRP ~$545


Impressions: Just a week after completing our test on the Daiwa Cielo rod it was interesting to turn our attention to the completion of this article. Both rods feature a unique take on the tip to deliver a exclusive action. Now let's get into it...

Introducing the Megabass F4ST-69RSDti Orochi Evolution


Though not as visually striking as the F3-69DGS we reviewed in November of 2005, the F4ST-69RSDti is an artful composition to say the least. Perhaps the most notable feature of this rod and certainly one that makes it very unique is the Hedgehog Stinger Tip distinguishable by the change in blank color between the last three guides. This tip is supposedly a different material than the primary blank and hollow. It is designed to deliver more rapid strike detection by being softer than the rod's natural tip and instant hooksetting power by giving way to the rod's backbone proportionately quicker than even a traditional extra-fast taper rod.

A close-up of the Orochi Evolution 's Stinger Tip


Whether or not the design intent actually materializes on the water remains to be seen, but warranted or not, this change in material color at the tip played mind games with us. From the very moment I pulled it out of its velvet sheath, paranoia set in as to the fragile nature of this rod's tip. You cannot help but take great care when handling this rod for fear of snapping the tip.

The tubular graphite Stinger Tip is what gives this rod it's "Ultra-Extra-Fast" tip action


Lab Tests: Diving right in, the first thing we did with this rod was to mount it on our RoD WRACK to see whether or not the Stinger Tip made any difference to the rod's behavior in our deflection measurements. Lacking a good cross-section of spinning rods, we once again rely on data gathered about our G.Loomis DSR820C Drop Shot Casting rod. And though rated differently in power than our Orochi Evolution, we've also included the data from our Powell 701L as a point of further reference.


Lab Results

Avg RoD (1-16 oz)
Rated Action
Measured Weight
Balance Point
Megabass F4ST-69RSDti
4.4 oz
+ 8"
Powell 701L
3.1 oz
+ 10.25"
Loomis DSR820C
Extra Fast
Left & Right
4 oz
+ 6.25"

Rate of Deflection (RoD): Because of it's unique composition, the Orochi Evolution 's difficult to classify by power rating. Possessing a pretty powerful backbone, we decided to take measurements across a slightly broader range than that shown in our Powell 701L review earlier this year. In that late March article, we tested our Powell with a load range from two to twelve (2-12) ounces. Our range for this review was one to sixteen (1-16) ounces. As such, the average RoD numbers from this review will not match that of our earlier article. However, as you can see in our calculations in the table above, the G.Loomis DSR820C and our Orochi Evolution tested out, on average, quite similarly, and as expected, the Powell 701L is just a little lighter in action than our test rod.

This chart illustrates that while the Orochi Evolution starts out with the same deflection characteristics as our two comparison rods, as the weight increases, our Orochi Evolution responds by deflecting less than the other two rods


Unfortunately, the Average RoD values do not tell the entire story. As you can see in the chart above, the curve for our Orochi Evolution is quite different than that of our two test rods. As the weight is increased, a separation in the three curves occurs right around the four to six ounces load range. From that point on, the Orochi Evolution deflects at a lesser rate than the other two rods showing how quickly the rod sets up to its backbone. Our first validation of the stinger tip's benefit.


The Orochi Evolution features 8 titanium framed SIC guides + the tip top

Action, Spine, Weight, and Balance Point: Megabass doesn't give a true rating of their rods in terms of light, medium light, medium, etc., and as mentioned earlier, the Orochi Evolution is a difficult rod to classify. However, judging by the rod's behavior in our deflection tests, we'd hazard to say it lies somewhere in the light to medium light power rating. Our test rod's spine tested out to be on top, a common alignment for spinning rods, and though it measured at 4.4 ounces, the balance point was about 8" towards the tip from the center line of the reel seat. Very respectable measurements.

As one would expect, handsome detailing abounds on this rod from Megabass

The lockring for the F4ST-69RSDti's reel seat is integrated with a section of tubular graphite


Real World Test: The moment of truth. Let's get this stick on the water and see what it can do! We chose, during our tests, two different reels spooled with two different kinds of line to see how the rod responded to each situation. Our first match was with a Daiwa TD-Ito 2506C spooled with 14lb Berkley Fireline. The second combination was with a Shimano Stella SR 2000s. Both reels felt right at home on this rod with, perhaps, the TD-Ito balancing out a bit better though I still prefer the slightly smaller size of the Stella SR 2000s.

The specifications of our Orochi Evolution

Complete Field Test Set-Up

Rod Megabass F4ST-69RSDti Megabass F4ST-69RSDti
Reel(s) Daiwa TD-Ito 2506C Shimano Stella SR 2000s
Line 14lb Berkley Fireline 6lb Original P-Line

All of Megabass's Orochi sticks feature the image of a snake embedded within the surface of the split rear grip's exposed graphite


Next Section: Enough already lets get to fishing...









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