What are 3 rods you would choose?


=== QUESTION ===
If you were to have three rods to cover all fishing situations which three would you choose?

=== MY REPLY ===
What would be the 3 rod selection for the most versatility?
A very interesting question!
It really depends on your field and the tactics you want to play.
Let me tell you what I have experienced.
I fish at 100m mainly. Range is from 70m to 200m.
I started with 603-3 and 603-6. It seemed to me that they cover all the conditions and slow pitch tactics around 100m. Then I got High Pitch Jerker 600. It was a great addition for tougher conditions (more currents or more depth). Slow pitch with 300g or heavier jigs. It also applies high pitch jigging with 260g or lighter jigs, mostly under 120m.
Note that I am on boats with spanker sails with which the captain controls the drift to keep me vertical. If you are not on this kind of boat, it’s harder to stay vertical and the water resistance is bigger, and 600 will help you a lot with heavy jigs around 100m.
Then I started exploring 150m to 200m, and I felt the need for a high pitch rod and purchased High Pitch Jerker 504. High pithing 300g and 350g jigs around that depths.
Next I added 603-4. Right away I realized that I had missed this rod all this time. It really expanded my slow pitch tactics. It feels right the most when I want to slow pitch around 100m with 180g to 240g jigs. Now my general rod usage for slow pitch is like this, 40% 603-4, 30% 603-6, 15% 603-3, 15% 600.
Then I installed long fall techniques into my recipe with Beat Longfall Expert 702-2. I wanted a longfall rod to target demersal fish in shallow waters, around 70m.
Please note that the depths I mentioned above are just the reference points of water resistance. Water resistance varies by the currents, the depth, your line, and how vertical you are. You need to build up your senses and judgement to know, when you drop the jig in the water, what action tones (soft / medium / strong) your rod has to that jig weight under that circumstances.
So, it really depends on your field conditions and the tactics you want to play.
Tell me your main depth range and how your boat is operated while fishing, and I’ll make my suggestions.

  1. Khairul

    Hi Totos,

    Firstly many thanks for the lovely informative site which really make me interested to start slow jigging. I mostly fish around Straits of Malacca, less than 100m (40-60m on average which already considered deep in this area). Current is strong, even with kilos of sinker during bottom fishing the line is not straight down, We normally anchor our boats here and we don’t have spankered boat like in Japan. Can you recommend the right 603-X for me please? I’m in my 40’s and not that young hence can you suggest something that is not that physically demanding or requiring a fast action/pace etc? I am not targeting for monster fishes, just aiming for more contact for table size fishes with delicious taste like red / golden snapper and grouper. I’m not in the high budget either hence wishes to start this ‘one’ rod and keep continuing using it later even I added with new rod in the future.

    Your site definitely keep me going too.

    Thanks and best regards,

    • Totos

      Hi Khairul.
      Slow pitch jigging isn’t possible from a bottom-anchored boat unfortunately. Even conventional high speed jigging should be hard in the most friendliest conditions. Like you said, you don’t want to do jigging with a kilogram jig.
      You should look for a jigging boat first, I think.

      • Khairul

        Hi Totos,

        Thanks for your reply. They are many boat operators here who offer slow pitch jigging. Perhaps the boats are using drifting technique and not bottom anchored. Can you help recommend me the right rod to begin with?

        Many thanks.

        • Kin

          Hi Khairul,

          Many boat operators in M’sia do offer slow pitch jigging option trips, but i doubt they really take u out and provide you with ideal conditions for slow pitch jigging. Most of the times i see is they’re free drifting and they’ll claim its ok to slow pitch in those conditions. These are all i’ll put up as marketing gimmick. Malaysia Boleh.

          How many fishing charter boats in M’sia you encounter does have a spanker? or at least a sea anchor? bear in mind, sea anchor does not guarantee you a good slow jigging condition.

          In my opinion, you and including me, we have to opt for a free drifting jigging setup and techniques. Toto San did an article about this.

          Use heavier jig.
          Pitch differently, sideways.
          Try different spots on the boat that gives you the ideal conditions.
          Last but not least, pray and wait for a low wind, low current time of the day. 🙂

          For me, I would go for at least 603-4. Fast setting if on 100-150g range and could go up to 250g with a soft setting. Best option for your situation, 603-5, (which is very hard for me to get here). It can handle 300+g jigs and about 180g on Fast. Very versatile numbers to me for M’sian waters. If u need something heavier, there’s always a 603-6.

          I’m putting my money on the 603-4 and hoping it’ll be a good choice for me this weekend fishing off M’sia waters.

  2. Khairul

    Hi Kin,

    Many thanks for your reply. Luckily I dropped by Anglers Central here in SS4 Petaling Jaya and Mr. TK recommended me to start with 603-5.

    Had my first day trip off Klang last Saturday and the weather turned out to be bad and we had practically like an hour or so which we could get nearly vertical.

    Anyway managed to catch 3.6kg GT using Cranky 230g as my first catch and later a baby Golden Snapper using Gawky 220g. Will try to send you pictures and the setup after this.

    The current was strong and the sea was choppy and to make things worse, the wind was also madness but thanks to God who provide me with a captain called ‘A Ka Shen’ who was very friendly and helpful with beginner like me and showed me the lift and drop technique (no reeling) parallel to the line which got drifted 30 degrees from vertical.

    Perhaps this is the same sideways technique you mentioned as lifting vertically would not really lift as much as sideways. Basically it was series of lift to create line slack which you can see on the top of the water and repeating the process again once the line tensioned. No reeling was done during the process just to ensure the action done within 10 metres above the bottom.

    But once the wind got stronger, my heaviest 300g jig with 300 metres line could not touch the bottom in 50m water depth. The Captain did ask me whether I got a thinner & longer jig but the one that I got was only 180g.

    Is there any jig out there which can help in our Malaysia Boleh waters, if not vertical but at least can touch the bottom?

    By the way, may I know who is Kin?

    Thanks and best regards,

    • Totos

      Hi Khairul.

      I’m glad you had your first catch with slow pitch jigging.

      Kin, thank you for your input.
      Kin meant this article.

      Wind is a major factor to put you out of the vertical alignment on a free-drifting boat. When it’s too windy, drop your slow pitch tackle and grab a spinning rod. But until then, the article shows several things you can do with slow pitch setup.
      Ebing can be very effective with the spinning in non-vertical situations.

      Slow pitch jigs are generally slower to fall than conventional jigs. That is why it’s effective when you are vertical and why it’s not when you are not vertical. But Spunky, Arrow, and Arc are fast to fall and pretty effective in non-vertical situations.

      Good luck!

  3. Pwillow

    Hi Toto San,

    I do slow jig free drift fishing at 30-50m for mainly grouper and coral trout. Currently, I am using 603-4 with jigs mainly range between 170 – 290g arc, 230-290g cranky, and 170-290g abyss. I am planning to get another rod for slow jig, and is considering deepliner logical 60 or 70 series. Appreciate if you could help to advise which is better and what power (was thinking of 6).

    Thanks in advance,

    • Totos

      Hi Pwillow.
      Well, everyone has different fishing fields, conditions, tackles and technique. It’s hard to say. It depends on what you feel you are missing with current 603-4. You think you need heavier model? Why?
      Send me a message and let me help you with the decision.

  4. vitalik

    hi, which spinning model should I choose 603-1 or 603-1, 5? the coil is better to choose. fishing conditions, depth from 12 m to 20 m sometimes up to 30 meters. drift to a floating anchor. sometimes we just stand at anchor and catch

    • Totos

      Yes, you are right. In such shallow waters, spinning works better. It’s better to play in diagonal alignment.
      SPJ is a vertical game.
      What I’m trying to say is, you are looking at the wrong rod. It doesn’t have to be SPJ rods. It shouldn’t be.

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