Written on: 19/12/2012 by Tecy30 (3 reviews written)
This was my first purchased sea rod, as before this I had some given to me. I read the recommendations on forums, so decided to purchase one, I went for the 12ft Shakespeare Salk Beach MX.
The rod comes with a bag, and a reducer, which is not meant to be used to cast with, but for casters who like to have the reel right at the bottom of the rod when on the stand. I personally didn't bother to use it.
The reducer fits into a pocket of the rod bag, but for some reason the pocket was upside down, I found this odd. The rod does not come with any form or reel seat, or coasters, so your need to get this right away, I choose to get a reel seat.
The casting weight is rated 4-8 oz, and the two half's fit together in a rather unusual way, by which the bottom half covers the joint for extra strength. I found it near impossible to pull the two half's apart, and upon closer inspection the joint was not finished too well, I had to lightly sand it down, it was fine after that.
After putting a multiplier on, a Abu Mag elite seated high, I found the rod to cast without issues, but soon found that truly it wasn't up to casting even a 6oz, let alone a 8oz. I'm sure it could cast a 8oz, but at the cost of a lost of performance. Really a 3-5oz is where this really find balance, a 6oz with a off the ground cast really does over compress
the rod, and I can feel it has nothing to give back. I found in the end it was better with the reel seated lower and stick to no higher than a 6oz, better with a 5oz.
Within the first 2 weeks, the clear coating started to crack around the rings, I knew this rod was not going to last me long. Into a month it was falling off, and within the same time period I had 1 ring go missing, I didn't even know how it came off, guess it may have been one of them times the rod stand fell over in the wind, not the rods fault if that was the case. Its at the end of the first year, and last week the top tip came off during cast, there was no crack off, or casting issues, I only noticed this as I started reeling in the line.
With these things said, you get what you pay for, I paid £62, what more did I expect, for me it didn't live up to the high rates others had given it. Its a good beginner rod, and its cheap enough to find out if you like shore fishing before shedding out hundreds on a higher end rod.
I would recommend this to someone on a budget just starting out, but if you have more money to spend, get a better rod like a Daiwa Supercast, or quality second hand rod around the £160 mark. If you can find them the Fox shoremaster rods are realy nice, and sell second hand at good prices around that of the cost of this rod, but far more powerfull, and built better.