The Shimano Clarus Spinning Rod appeals to discerning anglers with a blend of strength and high-quality components in a competitive price range.
That said, the demands of tournament anglers require plenty of backbone with an emphasis on sensitivity while still allowing mobile anglers a travel-friendly package regardless of their fishing techniques.
While this spin casting rod may not employ the range of signature technologies found on top-tier models, the high-end materials still allow for impressive all-round performance.
Still, without true tournament-grade performance, is this fishing rod a good choice for hardcore bass anglers, or does it fail to reach the level of performance that would make it one of the finest options?
- Titanium oxide guides
- Numerous power ratings
- D-Class is very sensitive
- Particular custom reel seats
- Only a fast action
- Not a great warranty
Construction (craftsmanship, make quality)
The Shimano Clarus Spinning Freshwater Rod features a premium carbon blank that provides a strong backbone for catching a wide array of species whether using the one-piece or 2-piece blank construction.
The lightweight carbon blanks of the E series, however, tend to be a bit more durable than the D series, though the latter afford better sensitivity.
That said, multi-piece blank or otherwise, none of them come with a range of versatile actions, so you’re not going to be able to squeeze anything else out of that aspect.
Thankfully, regardless of which model you go with, the Clarus provides premium components at an outstanding price for a multi-species angler.
Of course, the difference between the E and D models shows up in other places too, most notably with the handle and guides.
While you’re not going to find Shimano’s coveted Carbon Monocoque handle butt, the
Shimano Fishing Clarus rod keeps the angler in mind with grip-reinforced foam or comfortable cork.
However, one main difference in the level of performance between the two comes down to the guides, with D’s titanium-oxide providing a bit more durability than the E’s aluminum oxide.
The Shimano Clarus Spinning Freshwater Rod comes in numerous lengths, though these still tend to span the common range of expectations.
That said, mobile anglers may find it a bit odd that none of the longest models use a 2-piece blank construction.
Regardless, you can choose from 5’6″, 6′, 6’6″, 7′ and 7’6″ models– all with solid all-round performance, quality components, and top-notch materials at a reasonable price range.
Shimano continues its trend of using industry-leading materials at virtually all parts of the rod, but the blank is where this aspect really comes to bear.
The Clarus E uses a high-modulus graphite blank that likely utilizes 24-ton carbon fiber.
However, the Clarus D still comes with a premium carbon blank that opts for 30-ton graphite.
Both Shimano Clarus Spinning Freshwater Rod models use lightweight carbon blanks, but their differing tonnage affords slightly different qualities to each for versatile actions.
This approach to performance allows versatile anglers to choose an affordable option that enables the use of the hottest techniques– though, be careful which techniques you use with which rod.
A multi-piece blank normally won’t differ that much from a one-piece fishing rod, but the 30T graphite blank is more brittle than the 24T model.
This difference allows the 30T option a decent backbone but average durability. Conversely, the 24T graphite blank is a bit more flexible, and thus durable, but not as strong.
The use of aluminum-oxide or titanium-oxide, for the D and E models respectively, provides a similarly smooth cast and can help you achieve an incredible casting distance.
Aluminum-oxide may be one of the classic finesse components, but there’s no getting around the fact that titanium-oxide can offer a true tournament-grade performance.
This might be a bit disappointing considering how many popular actions exist and the sheer range of models, but the Shimano Clarus Spinning Freshwater Rod only offers a fast action.
Granted, this is one of the most common and popular actions, but it’s still a bit disappointing– especially when you consider all of the other specs with numerous choices.
Still, a fast action for the E class of this spinning casting rod works better as it increases the overall sensitivity of the 24-ton graphite blank.
However, the D class Shimano Clarus Spinning Freshwater Rod utilizes 30-ton graphite for its blank and doesn’t need the extra sensitivity– though it’s always welcome regardless.
On the plus side, a fast action ensures that this spin casting rod is more accurate than slower actions which enables cast fishing in smaller waters.
While it may not provide a range of popular actions, the Shimano Clarus Spinning Freshwater Rod makes up for it with a broad spectrum of different power ratings.
This isn’t exactly “unusual,” but the fact that this spin casting rod goes beyond the medium and medium-adjacent power specs is nice. Even better, this applies to both E and D class options.
Granted, the majority of the models hover somewhere between medium-light and medium-heavy.
On top of that, none of the models in either class come in a heavy or extra-heavy power rating.
However, if you’re fishing for something that won’t put up quite as much of a fight, this spin casting rod also comes in light and ultra-light power ratings.
The Shimano Clarus Spinning Rod upgraded from merely dependable components to advanced components, though how it’s upgraded depends on the specific model.
Some of the models use high-quality Fuji guides while others use unbranded titanium-oxide guides.
That said, whether the rod uses titanium or aluminum oxide guides, they provide an angler unparalleled smoothness.
The use of these materials affords you a frictionless cast that not only improves casting distance but also significantly reduces the incidence of your line tangling.
On top of that, the Clarus E models with titanium-oxide guides can use braided fishing lines without issue.
This is opposed to the aluminum-oxide rings that will eventually fail if you use braided lines.
That said, discussions of rod guides favor the Clarus E models since the top-notch materials are just a flat-out improvement over the Clarus D models.
Handle (material, shape, etc)
This is another area where the material used depends on the specific model you choose with the Clarus E and Clarus D models using different materials.
The Clarus E rod comes equipped with a foam handle while the Clarus D comes with high-quality AA cork handles.
That said, only the EVA foam grips come with different grip handle designs.
The grip cork handles fit more into the dependable components category and use high-quality materials that provide generous durability but little more.
While the EVA foam handles may have some durability limitations, it also comes with G-Alpha handle grips.
This equalizes the grip advantage that cork would normally have over EVA foam.
However, the foam handles are still a bit more comfortable than the cork while the trigger design enables a handful of technique choices that might otherwise be unavailable.
Uses (Who is this good for)
Respected coast to coast by anglers, Shimano’s classic finesse components and solid all-round performance allow you to use the hottest techniques for a feature-rich experience.
Despite the inclusion of top-notch components, the Shimano Clarus Spinning Freshwater Rod is more of a mid-tier option but still offers impressive performance.
Versatile anglers who use a wide range of styles will appreciate that the Clarus allows you to fine-tune your selection to best suit your fishing waters and preferred quarry.
That said, while the Shimano Clarus Spinning Freshwater Rod is an affordable option, it’s far from a “cheap” one– both in terms of quality but also price.
This means that it could be a bit more expensive of an investment than someone just picking up the hobby might want to make.
However, the high-end performance of the Shimano Fishing Clarus rod works well as a secondary rod for competitive anglers.
On the other hand, the premium components and use of a spinning reel make this rod easier to learn with than others.
Ultimately, if a beginner is serious about picking up the hobby, this is probably a better value than a rod at an even more affordable price.
Reel and Real Seat Compatibility
The Custom Shimano seats for performance aren’t actually the best option you can find, but they’re still significantly better than many of the choices provided by another budget-friendly option.
However, that doesn’t change the fact that the custom reel seat works best when using a Shimano brand reel.
Thankfully, the Custom Shimano seats for performance don’t actually exclude other reel makers, but you may need to do a bit of taping to ensure the snuggest fit without any play.
Of course, this will depend on the actual reel you use which can significantly increase your feature-rich experience, but that’s not technically part of the rod.
For those expecting an excellent lifetime warranty from the Shimano Clarus Spinning Freshwater Rod, you need to travel back in time six years.
These days, the Shimano Fishing Clarus rod comes with a 1-year limited manufacturer’s warranty. Shimano reasons that one year is more than enough time to discover “manufacturing defects,” which is all that the warranty covers.
Conclusion (Wrap Up)
The Shimano Clarus Spinning Freshwater Rod is a mid-tier option at an affordable price that offers nearly tournament-caliber performance thanks to advanced technologies and premium components.
However, keeping the multi-species angler in mind, this spin casting rod provides a combo of strength and impressive sensitivity with a decent backbone for fighting tougher fish.
Granted, as a budget-friendly option, the Clarus doesn’t offer the full range of signature technologies from Shimano, but the industry-leading materials and top-notch components make for a competitive price either way.
Even better, this blend of price and impressive all-around performance suit the fishing experience of competitive anglers.