An ultra-light finesse rod featuring that sweet versatile rating of 1-3kg has become a ‘must have’ for anglers. With just so many salt and freshwater species willing to attack small soft plastics, surface lures and small crank baits a 1-3kg rod will most definitely rate as one of your most used of rods.
The quest for perfection can be a challenge and quite commonly rods will come down to many factors and will generally be a decision based on personal preference. The more common considerations are reel seat positioning, the rods overall length and most importantly the rods overall action and feel. This will take into account tip sensitivity, taper and how much power is offered down below.
Aesthetics & Features
The Zing Xtreme range grew quickly in popularity due to great design, modern aesthetics, great componentry and a great price point. The new V2 range takes it up another level with a range of 26 rods that are designed to catch everything from whiting through to big pelagics. Built on Toray carbon fibre blanks and fitted with Fuji VSS reel seats and adorned with Fuji K Alconite guides, you’re getting great componentry in a very well designed series of rods built for Australian species. Modern appointments such as super hard EVA with an urban camo design are a nice aesthetic and feel good in the hand. This is all offered at the great price of around $250 depending on the model.
The model I was recently sent by Hooked Up for review was Samaki Zing Xtreme V2 762. The 762 is a two-piece rod rated 1-3kg with a cast rating of 1/32oz to 1/4oz. The 762 Extra Light was purposley designed for working light surface offerings on the flats for species such as whiting, a popular summer fishery that I do often partake in and thoroughly enjoy. The Samaki was something slightly different for myself as I had not previously owned a 1-3kg rod with a length of 7’6. While marginally longer than what I had been used to, the Xtreme immediately won me over with its incredibly fast action and phenomenal tip sensitivity. It shaped up as a dream for light surface lure casting.
On The Water
It was immediately noticeable that this rod would dominate across the flats for species such as whiting and bream and the additional length would also achieve superior casting distance. In the boat, or wading the flats or this was an enormous benefit.
Inspired by the XtremeI had surface lure casting for whiting on the brain and although I battled through a combination of wild weather and heavy rainfall, whiting were simply not an option at the time of testing. Smaller bream with their entertaining surface kisses and some hard fighting estuary trevally were the first fish to put a nice bend through the Samaki.
What can be said is that the rod has an amazingly ability to work surface walking lures and smaller poppers. The tip sensitivity just brings a lure to life and seriously makes a lure ‘dance’. Casting distance was another stand out and anglers wading the flats are really going to appreciate the 7’6 length. As you find yourself on the receiving end of those whiting ‘pack attacks’ it is always a huge bonus to have that added distance on your side.
The final tick of the box for the Samaki came while casting ultra light soft plastics on almost featherweight jig heads. These were a joy to cast also and as with the surface luring the tip sensitivity was the outstanding feature. Those small ‘ticks’ transmitted through your line and rod really hit home with this rod in hand.