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Rod Review


Go Light or Go Home: The Okuma Helios HS-CM-701M (continued)

Features: The Helios delivers a solid and functional set of added features. EVA foam handles allow for a secure grip under all conditions. The adjacent exposed-blank PacBay Minima reel seat sports a large blank exposure, full-sized trigger, and Fuji hood.



The reel seat is definitely a minimalist design!

ALPS guides with zirconium inserts offer robust performance and showed no signs of any durability problems. To secure your baits a removable/adjustable Fuji hook keeper comes standard with each stick. I found it interesting (in a good way) that Okuma offers these as standard equipment. Not only does the keeper work flawlessly, but I like the fact you can move it anywhere on the rod.

Features Ratings for Okuma Helios HS-CM-701M

Grip (1-5)
Guides (1-5)
Reel Seat (1-5)
Hook Keeper (1-5)
Rod Sleeve (1-5)
Total
Possible
Rating (= Tot/Pos * 10)
3
3
4
4
1
15
25
6.0

Design/Ergonomics: Not only do I appreciate a well-built fishing rod, but I also like it to be built simply. Thankfully, this rod delivers exactly that. The blank is extremely clean in appearance and will compliment any reel that I can think of.


The handle length is ideal whether you're working a jig or topwater.


No exposed reel seat threads—ALWAYS a welcome design feature!

Okuma designed a high level of comfort into the Helios 701M. Although the balancing point in the lab was shown to be eight inches above the reel seat, the rod feels extremely balanced and lightweight. On top of this, the reel seat feels great and has smooth, rounded contours that melt into your hand. One thing to note here is that I love the fact a full-sized trigger is used. I am not a big fan of the shortened, stubby triggers popping up on some rods these days.

Design & Ergonomics Ratings for Okuma Helios HS-CM-701M

Grip (1-5)
Colors / Graphics (1-5)
Balance (1-5)
Weight (1-5)
Total
Possible
Rating (= Tot/Pos * 10)
5
5
5
5
20
20
10.0

Application: The Helios HS-CM-701M is up to the task of handling a bevy of baits. While it may not be optimal for some offerings, it will certainly work fine in many different situations. Just a few baits this blank can handle well are jigs, lip-less cranks, larger topwaters, spinnerbaits, buzzbaits, and hollow-body swimbaits.

Bass Rod Application Ratings for Okuma Helios HS-CM-701M

Rip/Jerk (1-5)
Steady
(1-5)
Lift/Drop
(1-5)

Drag (1-5)

Twitch (1-5)
Total
Possible
Rating (= Tot/Pos * 10)
5
5
5

5

3
21
25
8.40


The Fuji hook keeper swings outwards to easily accommodate any bait.

Ratings:

Okuma Helios HS-CM-701M Ratings (?/10)

Construction/Quality The Helios 701M is put together well and uses a quality 40-Ton blank 9.47
Performance This rod was a pleasure to fish with due to the sweet action, sensitivity, and of course, the light overall weight 8.0
Price An attainable price for a well-rounded stick 7.0
Features Good quality micro guides are obviously used on this rod to shed weight, but standard guides are far more versatile 6.0
Design (Ergonomics) Attractive, super light in hand, and the grip is comfortable and sized right. No complaints, 10.0
Application The blanks is up to the task of fishing many different baits 8.40

Total Score

8.14
Ratings Key: 1 = terrible : 2 = poor : 3 = lacking : 4 = sub par : 5 = mediocre : 6 = fair : 7 = good : 8 = great : 9 = excellent : 10 = unbelievable!
For More Details of the updated rating system visit our explanation here

 

Pluses and Minuses:

Plus

Minus
+ Extremely lightweight - Mini guides are not for everyone
+ Feels very balanced and sensitive  
+ Clean build quality  
+ Versatile blank  
+ Comfortable handle configuration  


A great spotted bass landed on the Helios!

Conclusion: The Helios HS-CM-701M should be a top contender if you seek a lightweight, versatile, sensitive stick. Okuma did a thoughtful job designing this rod and it was very enjoyable to fish. If mini guides aren't a total deal breaker then I'm willing to bet that you'll share in my enthusiasm....and that's no marketing hype!

Looking for the Okuma Helios HS-CM-701M rod?
Try Tackle Warehouse

 

 

 

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