Stylishly slim with a sting in its tail
John Kneebone puts Daiwa's much-talked about Longbow DF rods through their paces...
We were lucky enough to receive a tour of the Daiwa Sports in Scotland earlier this year and the first thing the Longbow DF rods did was remind us of that trip. They simply looked a quality piece of kit, and it was this high level of quality and craftsmanship that was displayed throughout our factory tour.
The slim carbon blank and low-glare matt finish provided a stylish look, only increased by the other features. At the lower end of the rod a full shrink tube handle, slim yet profiled runs up to the placement of the Fuji DPS reel seat. Combined with a small duplon collar, to give a comfortable feel and grip. Having watched rod builders with over 25-years experience guide rods at Daiwa, it was no surprise the eye placements and whippings were also superb.
All we needed to do now was start using the rods and see if the performance could match the impressive cosmetics of the rod. Visiting a prolific venue we hooked a good number of fish, which due to the split island feature we fished really gave the rods a good test.
To prevent fish from running through the island gap, we needed to exert some early pressure, the likes of which can often lead
to the hook pulling. Happily this was not a fate we suffered and any strong lunges by the carp at this change or when close to the waiting net were easily absorbed by the action of the blank.
Our weapon of choice had been the 2.75 test-curve version, so this pleasantly smooth and progressive action was really what we were expecting from a blank of this rating – not the performance we experienced during our most recent session!
For the first time on our travels with these rods we were met with a feature a little over 100yds. Our initial feeling was this distance would be out of reach to a supposedly ‘soft’ test curve rod, especially as the reel was loaded with heavy 15lb FloorIt Fluorocarbon line, but we were very wrong in our assumption.
With no option but to just give it a go, we actually found this distance quite easy to hit – not what we expected at all! And a confidence to ‘smash it’ on the cast was soon established. This hidden backbone has really added a surprise twist to our review of a rod, which we’d happily recommend to carp anglers of all levels.