Preston Innovations’ latest ‘little monster’ of a rod is the delightfully named Wandzee – just the thing to pub chuck a bomb or feeder beyond the pole line.
This joint-free 5ft 9ins commercial cutie can be fitted with 1oz, 1.5oz or 2oz Monster push-in carbon quivertips which take it to a tad over 7ft in total.
Still quite a rarity on the bank, single sectioned rods have plenty of positives. Remove the quivertip and the Wandzee can be transported inside virtually any fully-zipped rod or pole holdall. Match it to a smaller 2500/3000 sized reel with a flat-fold handle and it can be slipped unobtrusively between your top kits in their plastic tubes.
Fair do’s, this rod isn’t going to cast much beyond 30m, but its seamless and flat spot-free parabolic action suits it to everything from small F1s through to fatso fish with attitude. Those of you not normally able to hit a bottle-top area every chuck will be be surprised how accurate you can get with the Wandzee.
This week’s live test took place at Decoy’s fish-heavy Horsehoe Lake which, at around 20m wide, is ideal for this type of short-range lead rod.
Straight off the bat, I’d say that the Wandzee would be more likely to find its way into my holdall for winter leagues, rather than midsummer matches. But this newest member of the Monster clan did turn in a jaw-dropping performance, and undeniably has year-round talents.
The rod feels reasonably crisp and very light. Some may find its through action a tad bouncy on the cast, but unless you’re clattering out a feeder to the horizon does that really matter?
It will comfortably handle most anything that swims, yet it can be used with light lines and small hooks with no fear of premature evacuation if something hefty tugs your line.
Preston tags the Wandzee with a 35g maximum casting weight, which is there or thereabouts for a fully loaded 30g flatbed feeder, and the rod is indeed on its limits with that.
Bite registration has to be seen to be believed. I’d kitted up with a fast-sinking pre-stretched 6lb mono reel line, and bites were nothing short of savage.
Watching them develop was interesting. With the tip very much in view, I could see all those little plucks and twitches as fish moved in to feed close to the bait… an early warning system before the tip hooped round.
For winter F1 tactics with a maggot feeder and matching hookbait, timing of the strike on those niggly little knocks you tend to get could be helped greatly by this rod’s shorter length.
The playing action is sweeter than a Wagon Wheel dipped into a jar of syrup and dusted in icing sugar, and will leave you drooling for more. In the wonderful world of non-locking parabolic actions, the Wandzee re-writes the book, handling anything from a newly-stocked F1 to a grumpy war vet of a carp with equal aplomb.
Verdict: I can foresee Preston’s new Monster Wandzee becoming a must-have rod.
It will find a place in my winter pole holdall, for times when the pole line is made unfishable by the wind.
It would be as much at home casting a straight bomb with bread discs for bigger fish in open water as it would be pinging a maggot feeder up the far bank of a snake lake for F1s. I suspect a certain Mr Des Shipp had a hand in its development, and the boy done good!