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Enthusiast Review


Crank It Up! : Is Megabass's F4.5-711GTA Worthy of its Name?

 

Date: 5/4/14
Tackle Type: Enthusiast
Manufacturer: Megabass
Reviewer: Cal






Total Score: 7.73 - GOOD

Introduction:
If there's one category of bass rods that are a tough sell within the Enthusiast subset, it's cranking sticks. Bass anglers have a tough time cranking up their enthusiasm for a stick that's built for reaction baits because the general consensus is you don't need a high performing stick to throw cranks - just about any decently built rod on a good fiberglass blank will do. Most of you already know that our enthusiasm for quality gear knows no bounds, so when one of the big time enthusiast tackle manufacturers like Megabass puts out a product with the word "Ultimate" in its name, we're pretty much obligated to check it out. Here now is our look at Megabass's F4.5-711GTA Ultimate Cranking Rod!

 

Megabass F4.5-711GTA Ultimate Cranking Rod Specifications

Material Graphite & Fiberglass Composite
Length 7'-11"
Line Wt. 8-20 lb
Lure Wt. 1/4 - 3/4 oz
Pieces 2
Guides 9 + tip (Fuji Ti/SiC)
Rear Handle Length 11"
Power Rating Medium Heavy
Taper Moderate-Fast
Rod Weight 6.4
Origin Mixed Origins both China and Japan
MSRP $450

 

Quality/Construction: Megabass's F4.5-711GTA Ultimate Cranking Stick is a two piece rod separating at the handle. This is a common design feature in JDM rods more than seven feet six inches in length. It's built on a composite blank with titanium framed, SiC guides conventionally wrapped on top of the blank. The stick is typical of our other Megabass rods in that it is a very clean build.

 

Quality Ratings for Megabass F4.5-711GTA Ultimate Cranking Rod

Finish (1-5)
Grip (1-5)
Epoxy (1-5)
Blank (1-2)
Guides (1-2)
Total
Possible
Rating (= Tot/Pos * 10)
5
4
5
2
2
18
19
9.47

 

The handle of this stick features a split rear grip made of cork, a Fuji ACS reel seat with a customized locking mechanism wrapped in carbon fiber and capped with aluminum accent rings. The very top of the rear grip is capped with a decorative foregrip about one inch in length and made of foam.

 

The F4.5-711GTA from Megabass is a two piece stick separating at the handle.

 

Everything on this stick was perfectly aligned from the guides to the very straight blank. I of course, would prefer spiral wrapped guides on this cranking stick, but oh well. The only bit of criticism here is the cork grip. It's very clean and a good grade of cork, but there are still some visible gaps in the material though much better than we've seen with the Orochi Double X series.


This assembly makes it easy to stick in the rod lockers of smaller boats.

Performance: It seems that every time we turn around, there's a new Megabass stick on our list of rods to review. I've been fishing the Ultimate Cranking Stick on and off since we first learned of this rod back in 2012 and have put it through a variety of situations mostly with either my 2012 Calcutta 101 (JDM model) or my JDream 5.3 Zillion (also a JDM Model).


But once assembled and aligned it feels like a one piece stick because there's no joint in the middle of the rod.

Casting: The F4.5-711GTA is rated down to one quarter of an ounce in lure weight and up to three quarters of an ounce. Paired with the right reel, the low end is possible with this stick though not a weight I would throw often. Three quarters of an ounce is a very conservative upper end rating. This stick can really handle a lot more and I think its sweet spot lies somewhere between half an ounce on up to two ounces (1/2 - 2 oz). In fact, I love this stick for throwing big cranks like Megabass's own Deep Six and Lucky Craft's SKT Magnum series of cranks listed at just over three ounces!


Checking alignment of guides, blank, and reel seat out in the field.

This stick loads true on the backswing and is very efficient at unloading that pent up energy in the cast. It only takes a couple of swings to grow accustomed to how this stick loads and dial in your accuracy. For distance, the rod's seven foot eleven inch length really aid in launching lures far and away so you can maximize running depth.


I fished this rod with the JDream 5.3 Zillion along with a 2013 JDM Calcutta 101 and Abu's Gen3 Revo Winch.

Sensitivity: There are always exceptions, but as a general rule of thumb, cranking rods are not the most sensitive sticks out there. The Ultimate Cranking Stick by Megabass is not one of these exceptions. It's actually pretty good for a cranking stick, but it's not a rod that will pull double duty for you as a soft plastics or jig rod.


Testing the rod's taper before a cast.

Because this stick is a composite (fiberglass top section paired with a graphite bottom section), it has better sensitivity than a full glass rod, but not as good as most full graphite cranking sticks. I say most, because I have fished graphite cranking sticks that were absolutely terrible in the sensitivity department.


The F4.5-711GTA loads smoothly during a cast.

Next Section: Power, lots of raw power


 

 

 

 

 

 
 





 

 



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