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The long rods


Sybron Way

Millbrook Industrial Estate

Crowborough, East Sussex, TN6 3DZ.

Email: [email protected]

web: http://conoflex.co.uk

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The long rod revolution marches on with the introduction of a new British-built, two-piece quiver-tip rod from Cono-flex.

Paul Fenech reports...

It's no secret that I'm a big fan of long beach rods with delicate tips. I enjoy using them with fixed-spool reels loaded with braid when I'm targeting flatfish and whiting, especially when I'm match fishing. For match fishing and when bites are difficult to spot, this set-up is just what I need for presenting tiny, soft baits on longer rigs. Many of these rods I use have multi-tip, push-in sections, but wouldn't it be much better if there was a two-piece, equal section outfit with a quiver-tip already added? The team at Cono-flex went back to the drawing board and got to work on designing such a rod. After months of hard work and testing, the designers finally had their rod in fact they had two.

The Cono-flex Flattie Beach Quiver is available in lengths of 13ft and 15ft and manufactured from a high modulus carbon. Both have neon glass-fibre quiver-tips but not push-in versions. These tips are spliced into the top section and I can confirm I'm already a big fan. They even have handy 8mm Fuji BLVG guides on the quiver to allow a Gemini Genie link to pass through them. Changing a reel during a match will be quick and save you vital seconds. I used the 15ft version simply because the England Home International team sang the praises of the 13-footer after using it with superb success. I prefer to use light, extra-long rigs when fishing for flatfish and whiting so the longer outfit suits me better. Japanese shrink-wrap encloses the 22mm butt section, on which a Fuji DPS screw winch fitting is supplied loose, so all you have to do is secure it in your favoured position. The finish is outstanding; the Fuji BSVI.G guides sit neatly in position along the blank with bright-red whipping. Cono-flex has included a keeper-ring to save you unclipping your rig when on the move. Fishing with it was a joy. Even in a decent tide run, the quiver bends nicely and flounder takes were exciting. The idea is that when a fish picks up the bait and the tip reacts, it won't feel any resistance at all. It works a treat, and every bite resulted in a hook-up.

Rated at l-3oz, it casts very well and I found a 2oz plain sinker allowed my rig to cover a lot of ground slowly, meaning it will be fantastic for estuary fishing. Even a 3oz breakout lead holds and anchors efficiently too and certainly matches the rod extremely well.

My concern was whether the quiver-tip would cope with doubles and trebles of fish. That worry was soon put to bed as it handled everything I caught with ease. I would definitely use this rod to target other species like garfish, bream, eels and plaice. Even float-fishing from the beach would be another option. One thing is for certain, this rod will be a part of my armoury for my new match season. SA

WANT ONE? For your nearest dealer, contact Cono-flex, Sybron Way, Millbrook Industrial Estate, Crowborough, East Sussex, TN6 3DZ. Tel:08712711180. Web: www.conoflex.co.uk

East Sussex rod manufacturer Cono-flex knows a bit about making Fishing rods. Having been in the business since 1972, it has developed the knack of tailoring its products to suit every possible application...and that includes its new Chesil Beach Match model. I haven't fished with an up-to- date Cono-flex rod for years, and the first things that caught my eye were its Fuji BNLG line guides. Due to varying supply issues of the popular BNHG pattern, which featured on Cono-flex rods until 2010, the decision was made to build all general-purpose rods with this new, easily obtainable pattern. These guides certainly seemed robust enough as I gave the CBM a poke and a wiggle. Cosmetically, the factory finish was flawless; simple black whippings complemented by silver tips and an eye-catching but subtle graphic. Putting it together and talcing the 14ft length of the CBM into account, it felt noticeably light for a rod of this length and power. Easing it apart again to inspect the blank wall, 1 was surprised to see it was of substantial thickness. This was to be a clue as to how the rod would perform later on.

The tip uses a special blend of carbon fibre and Cono-flex's own material, S Glass, which gives it all the strength of carbon but the flexibility of glass, ensuring that it remains sensitive across a wide band of bites. As standard, the butt is blank, enabling the angler to select their preferred reel fitting and position. To accommodate the larger reels

that suit the majority of my fishing, I glued a Fuji reel seat to the 26mm butt in the low position 10 inches or so from the cap and headed for the beach ready to test the 14ft model. Blanks are available in 13ft and 15ft too.

Apply the power

Modem rods can be deceptive when you first handle them in the confines of a tackle shop, but after a few gentle swings on the beach it was dear that I would have to wind up the CBM to get the best from it usinga 5oz sinker. This task proved easy enough though because of the lightweight, slim blank, which ensured that I could get this rod moving at speed before propelling the lead weight out to sea. A few casts later, I had concluded that a long drop seemed the most effective way to load the rod. Applying the power as late as possible was putting the lead a considerable distance - often key to finding the fish on Dorset's Chesil Beach during daylight. The more casts I made, the more I enjoyed it, but it was only when I clipped on a typical three-hook trace and let rip that the rod really started to make sense. With three moderate sized baits clipped down and fired into a slight onshore wind, the whole thing became truly effortless. This was after all a fishing rod for anglers, not tournament casters. Despite the optimum casting weight of 5oz, this is a gutsy tool that will take on all the species likely to be caught from Chesil. Think match rod, but with hauling power in reserve, and you won't go far wrong. SA