New MAP Pellet Combo rod offers the best of both worlds

Over the last 12 months MAP has really excelled itself with some excellent new products, including its highly sought-after meat cutter, their ACS 4000 reel and the range of TKS fishing poles

All have received rave reviews and flown out of the tackle shop door, but one particular launch that seems to have escaped the limelight is the addition of two new rods to its Carptek range purpose-designed specially for commercial fisheries.

With this in mind I felt a live test was well overdue, so the Carptek 11ft Pellet Combo was hastily taken out on to the bank.

As its name suggests, you get two tops with this two-piece rod. One is a standard float top for use when fishing with the pellet waggler and the other is a quiver top, perfectly suited to small Method feeders or fishing the straight lead and rattling pellets over the top with a catapult.

Rods of this style tend to prove better with one top than the other, so in order to get a true feel for its ability I intended to test both.

First the feeder rod. It comes with just one built-in quivertip but there is no danger of it breaking, so I don’t see this as a major problem - after all, it is designed for carp on commercials where there is no need for delicate tips.

This rod casts like a dream for such a short tool. After a couple of practice casts I was clipped-up and ready to go. A 28g Method feeder was loaded with pellets and launched to the reed-lined end of the lake some 40m away. It got there easily, hitting the line clip quite hard. This superb casting power is generated from a blank that blends seamlessly into a springy top.

The tip pulled round with the first fish of the day, and as I bent into it I realised just how much power this rod has. There was no hint of a flat spot and the tip cushioned the savage take well, but I couldn’t generate any bend towards the butt of the rod.

It’s more of a progressive than a through action, and this seemed to elp beat the fish quickly at the net, giving a degree of control more akin to that of longer rods.

Three hours and 50lb of fish later I was satisfied that the rod performed as a good feederfishing tool. It had casting power to launch decent-sized Method feeders and the backbone to land anything that swims on commercials.

Now for the waggler top… A pellet waggler set-up was rigged up in a matter of seconds with the rod’s other top fitted. Straight away it felt a lot pokier and really full of power throughout its entire length - this was not a lightweight instrument for use with light lines and small hooks!

In fact, I would recommend that you always use a mainline of at least 6lb with this rod, as it really is packed with power.

Even with a mainline of 8lb, a 6g pellet waggler could still be chucked to 25m with ease.

Casting was effortless thanks to the light weight of the rod, and its short handle enabled me to repeatedly chuck the float out and manoeuvre the 11ft length of carbon around my body.

As with all rods in the Carptek range, this model is finished with a screw-down EVA reel grip and a full cork handle. It comes supplied in a padded rod sleeve as well, which makes transporting the rod ready assembled a very simple task.

Its price? Well, MAP has given  the 11ft Pellet Combo an RRP of £69.99 but a quick scan of the internet reveals it to be readily available for £59.99. Now that’s a real bargain!