I am sure you have all seen this rod appearing in my photographs and pictures throughout my blog – lets face it, it isn’t exactly subtle!
I have been fishing with the S 210 M now since the spring and ever since the first time I picked it up I was impressed with the build quality and fittings. The Fuji reel seat is comfortable, well shaped and just makes perfect sense when the reel is mounted. It feels natural.
Some people will be put off by the staggered tip …. yes, it can be a pain in the backside at times when transporting it or trying to get a courier to ship it within the U.K. (But that is a story for another day!)
I like the staggered tip though – it transfers the power quickly into the back end and the feel and sensitivity is superb.
My first fish on the rod was a Sea Trout. I spent the first few weeks chucking jigs, metal and plugs ranging from 3g to 18g on it and it really handles them all with ease. I was surprised actually at how light it can throw … of course it isn’t as sensitive as a purpose built LRF rod but when loaded up with light line it can still transmit feedback from smaller lures.
It wasn’t until my trip over to Wales that I managed to nail my first Bass on it. The first day we went out we were wading in the shallows, bright blue sky, roasting day – it was stunning. I was fishing a weed less, soft plastic among the suspended weed and bang – fish on! A great rod for fishing soft plastics and in fact if I had to categorize this rod I would say this is where it comes into its own.
A combination of a stiff-ish yet responsive tip mixed with a powerful back section allows you to detect bites then strike into and control relatively large fish. I have yet to tackle anything bigger than 5lbs on the rod but so far it has not worried me when playing a fish.
Like I said I think this rod comes into its own when using all manner of soft plastics from weightless lures, micro plastics on jig heads to larger shads and paddle tails – it really is a delight to fish with. Recently I have been using the Fiiish 90 mm Black Minnow on this rod and the two just work in perfect harmony. You can feel the tail vibrating through the rod as the lure falls and every little bump or hit gets picked up and transferred into the rod and your arm.
The one thing that does however annoy me a little is the shortness of the handle. I feel it is about 2 or 3 inches off being perfect. After long periods of time fishing your wrist does get a little sore because you can not properly brace the rod against your forearm. This does become noticeable when fighting bigger fish but it isn’t a major issue just a slight inconvenience.
Just a few thoughts on this rod – really wish I had have discovered Illex as a brand sooner ….. Great product and I am sure I will be using their rods again in the future.