The latest Japanese high modulus graphite construction means they recover their shape faster after casting - and for bite detection, lure movement and hook setting they are superior to some of the custom-built rods I own, worth double the price.
Newly-launched for this angling season is Composite Developments’ latest range of Extrasense Nano 2-piece spin rods - rods which have taken them over a year in research, design and field testing before their release onto the Kiwi market.
Alistair Arkell, the CD Sales and Marketing Manager, walked into the store with the 5 rods from this range last month to show us ... and walked out with 2 less as I immediately seized on the two 7-foot models, designed for casting and working lures: one for weights from 3 – 14g and line weights of 4 – 12lbs, and the other for 6 – 24g and line weights 8 – 17lbs.
The other 3 offerings were 7’9” in length and intended for working lure weights of 5 – 19g, 7 – 25g and 8 – 35g. Like Goldilocks with her “Too soft, too hard, and just right” choices there is a rod from within this range that will meet the requirements of most artificial lure anglers – whether they operate from shore, kayak, dinghy or powerboat.
The two 7-foot rods I chose are longer compared to the other distributors’ offerings for the micro-jigging market this season, and have a faster action that translates into better casting of tiny (7g) micro jigs ahead of the drift so that they can be worked like a softbait through and along the seabed, particularly in the shallows and for depths to 40 metres. Micro jigging uses lures that range from tiny up to 25g in weight. Anything heavier and they are no longer micro but just another metal lure.
What immediately attracted my acquisitive magpie eyes to these new Extrasense Nano rods were not only the smart new green graphics and beautiful finish but the new technical features that the CD design team have incorporated into them.
The first standout features are the rod grips that are fully graphite-bodied for reduced weight, casting control and sensitivity to bite detection. No more EVA or cork grips, here!
Fuji reel seats are also a feature.
The bottom 3 guides are the latest K series Fuji tangle-free type, with sloped frames and rings to prevent line tangles. The frames are designed for stability and strength but are lightweight at the same time.
However the remaining 6 guides, including the top one, are all micro-sized; the design reasoning behind this is to do with minimising the loss of forward momentum during the cast or flick of the lure, so as to maximise distance and decrease casting effort at the same time. Long casts are easily accomplished either backhanded or over the shoulder within the lure weight ranges specified.
The latest Japanese high modulus graphite construction has resulted in the lightest and most powerful rods for this style of angling available on today’s market. These are ultra fast-actioned rods with incredible damping built into the first third section of the rod down from the rod tip. This means they recover their shape faster after casting - and for bite detection, lure movement and hook setting they are superior to some of the custom-built rods I own, worth double the price.
When under load these rods transition smoothly from a J shape into a parabolic curve that bends right through the reel seat to a butt section that is smartly finished off with a rubber cap that can be used against the hip as leverage when fighting fish - instead of using the under-the-forearm technique.
These rods are best kept out of the rocket launchers and rod holders when underway unless additional cushioning is installed around the rod holders; their minimalist design gives increased bite detection and a more direct feel to the lure, but it comes at the cost of increased care and maintenance between actual fishing sessions.
2 piece dedicated lure rods in lengths of 7’ – 7’9” are now commonplace in the light tackle angler’s arsenal. But they are difficult to store and transport, particularly in boats and cars, so the 2-piece feature is not only convenient but also good insurance: most rods are damaged or broken during transit, not in the heat of a fish-fighting moment.
To those who would cynically point out that fish don’t know how high specc’ed-up your rod or gear is my answer is simply: “But the angler does” - and it’s a personal choice to use gear that enhances one’s experiences and enjoyment while out fishing. These rods are new precision tools I personally look forward to using and reporting on over this coming season, as they can also be used for softbaiting and other formats of lure fishing.