The Best Margin Fishing Poles

The best margin poles

by Mark Sawyer |
Updated on

Modern margin poles were created to cope with the strain that increasingly heavy commercial carp can exert. Although modern fishing poles are stronger than they’ve ever been, they do have their limitations, so when it comes to extracting the biggest of fish from the snaggiest of margin homes, many pole anglers will reach for their dedicated margin pole.

With thicker and stronger sections coupled with bigger bore top kits, they are much better suited to this brutal kind of fishing and reduce the risk of costly breakages. As an added bonus, many manufacturers’ margin poles are interchangeable with their range of long poles, meaning you can share a cupping kit or even top kits between them.

The best margin poles at a glance...

Best Handling Margin Pole: Matrix MTX V2 Margin 2 11m - View offer on Total Fishing Tackle

Best In Class Margin Pole: Daiwa Tournament Pro X Margin - View offer on Total Fishing Tackle

Best Value Margin Pole: Preston Innovations Edge Monster Margin - View offeron Go Outdoors

Best Margin Pole Package: Drennan Acolyte Pro 9.5 Margin - View offer on Ebay

Being stronger and often cheaper than a standard pole, margin poles are also an ideal first-time pole. So, whether you are an experienced pole angler looking to upgrade your summer margin gear or a novice to the pole market, here’s our guide to the best margin poles out there!

Best margin pole (National Angling Awards 2023 winner)

The Maver MV-RXX Margin 9m is a beast of a pole boasting incredible wall strength and the brute power to tame the biggest of margin-dwelling creatures. Created with high-grade carbon fibre to produce a responsive and lightweight feel, it incorporates all the exclusive resins and patented finishes available to Maver.

At 9m in length, it is fully compatible with all X-Series top-kits, making it a perfect companion to owners of RXX and RXS models, as well as any other pole that utilises 18mm bore top-kits. As margin poles go, the package is stunning, including three top kits and a cupping kit, making it a fully functioning and usable pole in its own right.

Pros

  • Strength in abundance for tackling snaggy margins.
  • Compatible with the RXX and RXS models.

Cons

  • Really only designed for big fish on commercials.

Best beginner margin pole

To complement the new range of Superium Poles, Preston has released this superb short-range Superium Margin 8.5m pole taking the same top kits. Light and slim, you’d be fooled into thinking it’s a standard pole, but it has a lot of hidden strength and a 20+ elastic rating. 

It comes with two Superium Carp Kits (2.4m), both fully bushed up with Roller Pulla kits and PTFEs, plus a holdall. There’s an extension section that takes the pole to 10m available.

Superb Superium performance and balance. A great place to start your pole fishing journey or back up an existing pole.

Pros

  • Great commercial pole for beginners.
  • Rated to 20 elastic.

Cons

  • Due to the improved fishing performance, the pole isn't quite as strong as some others.

Best handling margin pole

Built on the same mandrel and using the same advanced carbon technologies as its illustrious MTX V2 stablemates, Matrix’s seven-sectioned powerhouse MTX2 V2 Margin 2 11m pole is strong enough for any commercial fishery.

With MST layering technology, Glide anti-friction taped sections which lock reassuringly together, reinforced 1k carbon weave joints and protective nose cones in the No3 and No4 sections, it also comes with a mini extension. The three top kits are pre-fitted with PTFE bushes and Revolve Side Pullers. Carry sleeve included. 

At 11m, this is not just a margin tool but a complete power pole and a perfect partner to complement any other MTX packages.

Pros

  • Great finish, aids shipping back quick to draw fish out of snags.
  • All sections reinforced for added strength.

Cons

  • Does lose a bit of rigidity at its full length.

Best budget margin pole

The Guru A Class 5.5m margin pole is a fantastic pole for those who just want an out-and-out bagging pole and don't tend to fish far out. It will cope with the biggest of fish on commercials thanks to its 400 tensile carbon sections, it has been designed for durability, strength and performance.

The butt sections feature a super glide paint finish and a friction free matt tape Finish on the thinner sections, both combined significantly improves speed and efficiency, even during those tricky conditions when wet sticky hands can slow you down. 

The pole only weighs 335g and performs really well, it is also available in an 8m version fro those who like to fish a little further out.

Pros

  • Very strong.
  • Ideal for beginners.

Cons

  • Not the most extensive package.

Best overall margin pole for performance

Tri-Cast thought outside the box with this Excellence Power Margin 10m pole, looking for something capable of extracting huge fish from long corner margins – the sort of areas that standard margin poles can’t reach. Being so strong means that the balance isn’t great at full length, but it’s fishable. But a section less at 11.7m, you get the sort of feel rivalled only by the best margin poles. 

The top kits are a little different, being very short and powerful. Supplied with two top kits, cupping kit and a bag, and available at 10m, 11.7m and 13.4m.

Fish the margins that no one else can reach! A serious carp extraction tool.

Pros

  • Superb performance for a margin pole of its length.
  • Being a Tri-Cast, it has immense strength.

Cons

  • Can be tricky to get hold of.

Best value margin pole

The Preston Innovations Edge Monster Margin 8.5m pole is strong enough to knock the stuffing out of the largest of carp while retaining sufficient balance and rigidity to be comfortably fished at its full length. The all-carbon Edge comes with a spare Power top-2 kit in addition to the one included, both of which are pre-fitted with Roller Pulla side bushes and large-diameter PTFE tip bushes. Also available at 10m.

It’s one of the best-selling margin poles for a reason! Superbly strong and balanced, it comes pre-fitted with a puller system.

"The Edge Monster oozed strength, and I could pile on the pressure knowing that the fish would give up long before the pole did".

Read our full Preston Innovations Edge Monster Margin 10m pole review

Pros

  • Ridiculously strong pole.
  • Perfect for any situation where big fish are involved.

Cons

  • Package could be slightly bigger.

Best all-rounder margin pole

Anglers looking to gain an edge down the edge need look no further than the ultra-powerful MAP TKS Competition Power Margin 8.7m pole. With added reinforcement on every slim section, it’s built to take plenty of stick.

Features include depth markers on the top kits and a section alignment system. To that, you can add pre-bushed tips and pre-fitted side pullers, a smooth anti-friction finish throughout, and a spare Power kit.

TKS stands for ‘Top Kit System’, so you don’t just get a margin pole but more top kits for your main pole! Everything about this pole feels right.

Pros

  • Lovely finish on the pole, very slim profile.
  • Very responsive at full length.

Cons

  • Not as long as some other margin poles.

Best in class margin pole

Daiwa’s Tournament Pro X Margin 9m was designed as a compatible section ‘power partner’ for all of the company’s UK-built poles. With a high wall strength in its lower sections to ensure the no-nonsense treatment of big carp, it comes with two spare 5.8m Interlastic Cloud Kits that can be used with elastics as heavy as Red Hydro. One of the longer margin models on the market, it can reach along to the next platform with ease.

If you already own a UK-built Daiwa pole, then this is this is the choice for you! Not only can you share top kits and a cupping with your main pole, but also the bigger sections should you suffer a breakage.

Pros

  • An exceptional margin pole.
  • A perfect option to back up top-end Daiwa poles.

Cons

  • Comes at a hefty price and is the most expensive margin pole on offer.

Best quality margin pole

Fans of the iconic French brand should make this super strong Garbolino UK Margin Pro 8m pole, compatible with the full UK series of poles, their first port of call. Billed as its best ever margin pole, made with state-of-the-art IM/HM carbon, it’s capable of easily handling the biggest of carp and strongest of elastics. 

Considering the superb rigidity and balance, the price is exceptionally good, the payoff being that you do only get one top kit supplied.

If quality rather than top kits is your aim, pound for performance, you’ll struggle to find better.

Pros

  • Great rigidity.
  • Performs really well and has the strength in reserve.

Cons

  • Would have been nice to see a longer version.

Best margin pole package

Built on the same mandrel as the Acolyte Pro Carp, the Drennan Acolyte Pro Margin carp 9.5m is even stronger. At 9.5m long, it comes with a reversible mini extension, two Margin Kits and even a Ghost Margin kit – a white-coloured top kit designed not to spook fish. You also get a range of bushes, puller beads and roller cones, along with skid bungs, EVA nose cones, a pole pot and a bag.

With three top kits and a load of extras, all you need is a rig and some elastic, and it’s ready to fish.

Pros

  • Very reliable pole.
  • Lots of spares in the package.

Cons

  • Not as strong as others at this length.

Best newcomer margin pole

Specially designed to hook, hold and extract the biggest of margin fish from the fiercest of edge pegs, the Maver Signature Pro Power 1000 10m is not a pole for the faint-hearted! Boasting incredible wall strength, the Maver team managed to land some huge fish to over 20lb in testing.

Ideally suited to 18 -20 Dual core or Tri Core elastics, you get two pre-bushed and slotted Power kits, a cupping kit with cups and a bag with this 10m model. As an added bonus, Definition, MV-R performance, MV-R Competition, Oculus XS and Signature 821/921 top kits are all compatible.

Longer than most, with an included cupping kit, it’s the perfect stand-alone margin pole for those without a match pole.

Pros

  • Great balance.
  • Lightweight.

Cons

  • Isn't quite as strong as some others available, but the performance makes up for that.

Best for overall strength

Looking for a turbo-charged margin pole? Middy’s latest White-Knuckle Thriller V3 has power to burn.

The fully take-apart composite 8.5m pole weighs in at a modest 799g, but don’t be fooled – its solid build still merits a powerful 24 elastic rating.

Other key features include a reversible mini-extension, and it comes with a pre-elasticated top-2 inside the pole and an elasticated spare top-2 kit.

A great margin pole in its own right, but the clincher is that we have spotted a number of retailers selling these at bargain prices! What about 8.5m and ready to fish for under £100? How could we say no?

Pros

  • Incredibly strong pole.
  • Capable of taming the largest fish with ease.

Cons

  • Not the easiest to use at 8.5m

What to look for in a margin pole

Margin poles all offer increased strength, compared to normal poles, in order to tame large fish that can often put severe strain on more expensive tackle. Depending on how far out you want to fish, how big the fish are and what other features you require from a margin pole will dictate which is the best option to choose.

If you have a pole already, most of the manufacturers have built their margin poles on a similar mandrel, so the top kits and generally no4 and no5 sections will fit (do check first) so you have spares. If you just want the strongest available to build a big weight, aim for the poles with the strongest rating.

If you're a beginner or want a pole that will perform well, we recommend going for somewhere in between a pole that is fairly long (8-11m) but sacrifices some strength for rigidity and response, making it easier to hold and use, as it will be far more enjoyable to handle and more efficient all round.

Glossary

Top kit: The last 1 or 2 sections that you place on the end of your pole that contains the elastic that you attach your rig to. Most poles will come with a variety of top kits, allowing you to choose which elastic to fish with and enable you to set up multiple rigs.

Cupping kit: A separate top kit specially designed to attach a pole cup, allowing you to deposit a large amount of bait right where you are fishing.

Side puller: A small hole in the side of your top kit with a bush or roller fitted inside, used instead of a bung to anchor your elastic. The bottom end of the elastic is threaded through the puller and anchored by a bead on the outside of your pole. This allows you to grab the bead and pull some elastic out of the pole, changing its tension when playing a fish. This is useful when a larger fish has pulled a lot of elastic out of your pole, making it difficult to net.

Mini extension: A half-size or smaller, extra-strong piece of pole that goes into the back of a section. This helps protect the bottom end of your pole from damage whilst also allowing you to fish slightly further out when a full-length section would be too much.

Elastic rating: The elastic rating gives you the manufacturer's recommendation of the largest elastic you can safely put in a pole before you risk breakages from over-exertion.

Margin pole: A generally shorter pole of around 8-10m in length that is designed with stronger carbon, reinforced joints and improved wall strength to create a very strong pole to tame even the largest fish.

Frequently asked questions about margin poles

What is the difference between a margin pole, a power/carp pole and a match pole?

A margin pole is a shorter, often 9m or less, super strong pole designed for fishing for very big fish that live close to near bank features. A power or carp pole is almost as strong but designed to be used at longer lengths of up to 16m. A match pole is a lighter, more rigid and easier-to-handle pole that can also be used for big fish and carp, but with care due to their decreased strength.

What do the numbers mean on elastic ratings?

The bigger the number, the more powerful the elastic. As a rough guide, elastics from 2 to 10 are best used in match kits for smaller fish. More powerful elastics, up to a 20, are best used in power kits. Elastics over a 20 are normally only used in margin poles. Always check the rating on your top kits and pole first though.

Why would I use a margin pole instead of a rod?

With no casting required, a far lighter float can be placed with pinpoint accuracy exactly where you want it. With shorter lengths of line in use, you get more control over your float, allowing you to manipulate your bait to appear more natural, induce bites, better combat wind and tow whilst making bites easier to hit. All these factors mean that in the right hands, a pole will normally outscore a rod and line approach fished within pole range.

Author Mark Sawyer holds the position of Tackle Editor at Angling Times, boasting more than thirty years of experience working within different fields of the angling industry.

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