Sections: 2 + 3 Tips
Casting weight: 2 – 4 lbs
Travel length: 1.27m
£59.99 both models
If you feeder fish snake lakes that don’t require massive casts then this wicked little rod should have your name on it. And here’s why…
Browning has further improved and refined its Commercial King Rod range to include these two gossamer 8ft Carp and F1 Wands, both of which eradicate hook-pulls while having the capability to land any big bonus fish.
The pencil-slim, through-actioned blanks bend all the way from their tips through to their cork handles. The F1 model, on live test duty, has the more forgiving action and is rated at around 20 per cent softer than the slightly beefier Carp Wand.
I favour short rods with actions like this because they can transmit every flick and flutter from fighting fish of all sizes, yet effortlessly cushion the most fragile hooklengths and tiny hooks.
They allow an angler to present really light rigs to finesse bites from shy-biting winter F1s and skimmers that have seen it all before, and they more than justify the asking price for use on hard winter commercials, where you might be fishing for just half-a-dozen bites in a match. Their reduced length allows you to easily tuck them out of harm’s way down the side of a platform, well out of the wind.
The F1 Wand is built to fish with reel lines of 2lb-5lb, while the Carp model can handle slightly heavier mono from 3lb-8lb, with appropriate hooklengths, but I wouldn’t go much below 0.10mm even with the F1 version.
I paired my test rod with a 4lb mainline that blended sweetly with the two-piece, 8ft blank. Three fine glass quivertips of 0.5oz, 1oz and 1.5oz come with each rod. These will register delicate bites while still managing to accurately throw feeders and bombs of up to 2oz. Reduced length rods are reckoned to give much greater accuracy over long ones when making the short-range casts required on many commercials these days. They’re also definitely easier to use in tight swims hemmed in by vegetation.
I took the test rod to the prolific Greensands snake lakes fishery near Sandy, in Bedfordshire, to fish a small 15g flatbed feeder loaded with dampened 2mm pellets and fine fishmeal goundbait with a 6mm hair-rigged banded pellet and size 16 hook.
The first thing you notice is how light the Browning Commercial King F1 Wand feels. The next is how easy it is to cast overhead, plopping the feeder accurately hard up against the far bank, or features such as islands or aerators, at distances from just beyond pole range to around 30 yards. On many day-ticket venuesbeing as little as 12ins off target makes all the difference between a good day and an average one.
No worries – it’s my bet that with this pint-sized belter sitting on your rod rest, you’ll be bang on the money every chuck.
This super pair of 8ft Wands from the Browning stable are ideal for commercial snake lakes and small pools. The F1 model, in particular, would be hard to better for this kind of fishing. It would make an exceptional winter maggot, feeder and small-hook F1 tool.