GOOD quality spin sticks are hard to find. I’m talking about rods suited to throwing lures at mackerel and tuna, float-lining for snapper and even live baiting for billfish. I have some nice ones in my collection, but supply is inconsistent and it’s hard to track down shops that stock the blanks.
In Australia we have two blank manufacturers, both based in Brisbane – Pacific Composites and Snyder Glas. Snyder Glas is best known for its excellent range of estuary and surf blanks, while Pacific Composites also makes a range of these blanks and has branched out into a number of other blank areas.
Pacific Composites makes a small, select range of Fibreforce Fusion blanks. These blanks have a fibreglass tip and cross-woven carbon fibres in the butt. The result is a blank with the feel of fibreglass in the tip and power of carbon in the bottom.
In this range, I’ve found the 7-foot spin blank to be a good all-rounder. It can handle smaller mackerel, and has the strength for battling it out with tuna and small billfish while still being suitable for fishing the reefs. It’s nice to find a good versatile blank that you can build up to perform all of these functions successfully.
Depending on where you shop, the blank will cost $130 - $150. That may seem expensive, but in the scope of good graphite blanks it’s actually a good price. Because this rod it is going to be used for a variety of fish species, we’re going to build it up to take whatever we dish out to it - within reason of course!
A big spin reel or bait runner will be used for most of these applications, and for this an overall butt length of 14” is best. That’s a 12” rear grip and another 2” for butt cap or gimbal.
The reel seat will be a FUJI DPS H heavy duty. The reason we use this reel seat is that the big, strong hood encompasses the feet of the reel, holding them securely in place. If you’ve ever looked closely at lightweight reel seats being used under load with a big reel, you’ll know that the foot of the reel can twist and move. You don’t want this to happen.
The foregrip should be around 8–10” so you can keep a decent grip while the fish slogs it out below. It you are a big bloke you may even want to make it a bit longer.
Because the hoods on the reel seat are large, you can use a thicker game grip on the foregrip. This will butt up against the reel seat well and give you a bit more thickness to hang on.
The ‘fish of a lifetime’ may be the next one to grab on the end of this rod, so it’s nice to have the assurance of quality guides. That’s why I’ve gone for FUJI Silicon SVSG guides. A billfish can really tear that line off the reel at a great rate of knots, and the silky-smooth high polish of the Silicon guides quickly dissipates the friction heat of line over runners to maintain line strength.
A set of the ‘V’ framed SVSG guides finishes with a high frame HVSG guide, which has been designed for spin sticks like this one. At the tip, I’ve used a heavy-duty FUJI UST tip to handle the load and the knots. I’ve used a number 10 ring on the tip to allow larger knots on doubles and leaders to pass through.
The blank has a matt grey and black finish to it. It finishes off very smartly if bound with Gudebrod Charcoal 441 in regular A thread, which needs to be filled, and a double overbind in black A thread. Gold trims add another touch of class to a rod that will make you very happy.
Blank - Pacific Composite SPW 216-8
Butt - 12" x 5/8" Eva
Winch -FUJI DPSH 22
Foregrip - 10" x 1/2" Eva
Cap -FUJI BCBRC 22
Guides -FUJI SVSG: 10-110mm, 12-130mm, 16-150mm, 20-165mm, 25-230mm, HVSG 30-290mm
Tip -FUJI UST 10 3.0mmReads: 1125