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Rod Review


The Search for One... Carrots with Flavor Enhancing Micros?

 

Date: 10/8/10
Tackle type: Rod
Manufacturer: Element 21 (e21)
Reviewer: Cal






Total Score: 7.83 - GOOD

Introduction:
In the ever evolving drama that is Element 21 (e21), back in January when we last looked into this company's product, we learned they were one of less than a handful of companies diving into the soon to be micro-guide craze. We were shown a sampling of product that would eventually lead to three separate lines each with anywhere from eight to fourteen individual models and costs ranging from $99 for the Carrot Stix Wild series to $149 for the Professional Grade to $199 for the Carrot-Stix Micros all officially debuted at ICAST 2010.

 

e21 goes Micro with the CMG691MH-F-C.

 

Naturally, we were familiar with their plans prior to ICAST and in fact, had been fishing the top-end Carrot-Stix Micro series since Spring. So, what's up e21? Is there a stick within their arsenal worthy of our Search for One campaign? Of course the answer is yes. Presenting our third look into the Carrot Stix crop and our review of the CMG691MH-F-C Carrot-Stix Micro.

 

e21 CMG691MH-F-C Specifications

Material   Proprietary
Length 6'9"
Line Wt. 12 - 25lb
Lure Wt. 3/8 - 1oz.
Pieces 1
Guides 11 Guides + Tip Top Fuji Black Fame Micro (K-Series)
Power Rating Medium Heavy
Taper Fast
Rod Weight 3.4 oz
Origin Made in China
MSRP $199.99

 

Impressions: So what happens when you put a set of micros on an otherwise familiar blank? We've fished a few rods from e21's previous product offerings and have written a total of two reviews. In the final analysis, there was room for improvement for both the 21CRG781H-F-SBC and the 21CRG701M-M-C. Right off the bat we could tell the CMG691MH-F-C was from a different bunch of carrots.

 

What a difference a guide makes ...

 

The new Carrot-Stix Micro series feature what they refer to as Helical bias blanks for increased hoop strength with thinner walls, cork trips, their traditional split reel seat and a poly-prism holographic finish. The current production models also feature the new K-series micro guides from Fuji with what we are assuming are Alconite inserts. The rod we fished was an early production model with the standard Fuji micro-guides, not the tangle-free K-series.

 

Lab Results for e21 CMG691MH-F-C

Model
Avg RoD (2-32 oz)
Taper
Measured Weight (oz)
Balance Point (inches)
Balancing Torque (ftlbs)
e21 CMG691MH-F-C
1.55
Fast
3.6
10
0.14
MBR783C GLX2000
1.72
Fast
4.8
5
0.11
TSFO 26 Rod Avg
1.69
--
4.92
7.65
0.19

The Lab: We charted two of the Carrot-Stix Micro series "medium heavy" powered rods including of course, our test subject and found both the CMG691MH-F-C and the CMG731MH-F-C to be slightly more stout than our TSFO baseline rod at load ranges up to about sixteen to twenty ounces. Beyond that, the CMG731MH-F-C lines up nicely with our GLX2000 while the CMG691MH-F-C demonstrates slightly less backbone.

The deflection chart for the e21 CMG691MH-F-C as compared to our baseline TSFO rod as well as the CMG731MH-F-C.

As one might expect, the CMG691MH-F-C runs away with weight comparisons coming in at 3.3 ounces versus the GLX2000's 4.8 but the GLX2000 is much better balanced at five inches above the midline of its reel seat and only 0.11 ft lbs of balancing torque while the CMG691MH-F-C balances at eight and a half inches and has a balancing torque of 0.14 ft lbs.

The CMG691MH-F-C matches up nicely with a Shimano Scorpion 1001XT.

Field Tests: A natural companion to the CMG691MH-F-C we found to be the new Shimano Japan Scorpion 1001XT. I spooled this reel up with the new Suffix 832 braided line and fished the combo over the Summer up at Clear Lake primarily as a topwater rig.

Decorative winding checks adorn either end of the CMG691MH-F-C's reel seat locking mechanism.

Casting: The CMG691MH-F-C loads incredibly well and coupled with the Scorpion 1001XT, the combo casts as if the two were made for each other. On one trip, without fear of losing the combo because Zander does not like left hand retrieve reels, I handed the combo over to him to see get his thoughts and he marveled at how well it loaded and fired with a three eighths ounce spinnerbait.

In micro-speak, more and more "MH" rods are characterized by lure ratings up to 1 oz instead of 3/4.

Next up was a Paycheck Baits Repo Man (the reincarnated Reaction Innovations Vixen designed by Hideki Maeda). Weighing in at three quarters of an ounce, this bait would likely be at the CMG691MH-F-C's upper limit were it not for the micro-guides. Needless to say, it handled this bait with ease nearly spooling the Scorpion 1001XT on several occasions!

The CMG691MH-F-C comes with very nice cork.

Next Section: Power and Sensitivity Carrot Style


 

 

 

 

 

 
 





 

 



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