Well, here it is – the much-awaited live test on the new 13m Invincible pole that Maver claims to be arguably the ‘strongest in the world.’
The first thing that strikes you when assembling it is the astonishing wall strength. From the butt all the way up to the fourth section the joint ends are virtually impossible to oval-out, and the general wall potency is unyielding and uncompromising throughout.
Traditional section weak spots have all been further strengthened to give the Invincible a rock-solid feel that exudes reliability and, without a shadow of a doubt, the first eight sections are as substantial and robust as I have seen on any pole. In any normal fishing circumstances they are virtually unbreakable and uncrushable.
To give you just one example, during field-testing the Maver team landed salmon to 15lb on it and you would certainly have to hang on to hold on to a big, wild, fresh-running creature like that.
All this inherent power and strength comes at a price. Normally the power/strength ratio is compromised by a significant weight increase that is further marred by an unstable balance and a reduction of forward rigidity.
As any pole’s weight increases, the down forces are amplified and you start to lose much of the overall stiffness and tip speed, especially when using a power tool at longer lengths.
However, the clever use by Maver of Nanolith resins and state-of-the-art carbon cloths have helped to produce a super turbo-charged power pole that has the handling properties and sense of balance of a good upper mid-range model that would cost more than double the asking price of the Invincible.
During the live test both Jonathan Taylor and I subjected this pole to a lot of terrible abuse way beyond any situation that you are ever likely to come across under normal fishing circumstances.
Loading the top two sections with 16/19 Dual core elastic, we bottomed it out and then just kept on pulling and pulling. The top sections might have arced over alarmingly but the rest of the Invincible remained utterly unmoved.
I pulled until I could pull no more, and even when I cupped my hands around the 13m butt section and leaned fully back, exerting enough pressure to give myself another hernia, the pole remained solid – and it was I that gave way first.
Dead lifting weights straight off the ground proved pointless – the Invincible seemed to laugh in the face of anything we tied it up to. Swinging leads to hand on heavy elastic provided an interesting – even slightly dangerous – experiment, as at any given length between 5m and 13m the Invincible will pick-up 10oz-14oz with ease and propel it towards you at an unnerving speed. In my book that makes it a superb long pole to hand weapon for bag-up or Irish venues.
So, is really the strongest pole in the world? Well, it is undeniably the most powerful tool Maver has ever produced. But just how strong it really is will ultimately depend on the individual strength of the angler. For me though, it really was ‘invincible’.