The Shimano Curado Spinning Rods offer professional-grade performance and signaled an
advancement for fishing rods. With Shimano’s proprietary Hi-Power X technology and exceptional sensitivity, the Curado is easily one of the fishing rod heavyweights with more than enough capability for everyday fishing.
That said, this is not a budget-friendly option and requires a serious fishing gear investment for its soft touch and high-end carbon blank.
That’s why this review breaks down the Curado to see if you need a pole with professional-grade quality or if a budget-friendly, reliable spinning rod will work for your spinning setup.
- Hi-Power X technology
- Has impressive sensitivity
- Excellent Guide System
- More expensive models
- Uneven spec configs
- Confusing version transition
Construction (craftsmanship, make quality)
Shimano Curado Spinning Rods have two different versions available, but thankfully, both of them employ Shimano’s Hi-Power X technology that sees diagonally-wrapped carbon tape on the outermost layer.
In terms of the blank construction, this approach increases the spin casting rod’s flex strength, compression strength, and internal shear strength.
Though this technology obviously increases the versatile spinning rod’s durability, it also increases both casting distance and casting accuracy by reducing blank ovalization.
While the Shimano is a reasonably well-balanced spinning rod, it can feel a touch tip heavy, though this has virtually no impact on its solid all-round performance.
At the base of the spin casting pole, we find a choice, depending on the version you get, between a standard cork split grip handle or an EVA foam split grip option.
Regardless of the material you choose, the handle is a big part of what makes this a sensitive spinning rod, providing plenty of access to the raw blank and the vibrations from even light nibbles.
Along the blank’s body, you find a Fuji K series of single-footed guides which significantly reduce the impact on the rod’s taper when compared to double-foot guides.
That said, even with the single-footed guide system, all of the advances of this versatile spinning rod can leave it feeling a bit heavy weight-wise– especially apparent at the tip.
Finally, this series of rods also provides a choice of reel seats between a Fuji model and the CI4+, both of which come with a rubber grip to help keep your spinning reel locked firmly in place without any wiggle or slop.
On top of that, both reel seats include graphite carbon fiber to give you just a little bit more touch and feel.
The Curado Spinning Rod is made of hybrid high-modulus UD carbon that’s then sheathed in diagonally-wrapped carbon tape.
While the high-modulus UD graphite carbon fibers would normally be somewhat brittle, the carbon tape and Hi-Power X technology combine to ensure that you don’t have to worry about blank failure.
The HM-Blend Carbon then utilizes nano resin to secure the carbon fibers in place, allowing for a much tighter weave than options using a standard resin.
Not only does this increase the strength, durability, and sensitivity of the rod blank, but it also helps reduce the spinning casting pole’s overall weight, making it more comfortable to use over a longer period.
This series of spin casting rods also see an excellent choice with regards to the guide system’s materials, favoring either Alconite or Shimano’s FazeLite exclusive technology.
That said, this choice is not nearly as impactful as you might expect given that both materials are ceramic with Alconite just barely edging out FazeLite in performance– though you’d probably be hard-pressed to guess which was which.
Even better, you don’t have to worry about the frames slowing you down as the aluminum oxide material further ensures a smooth casting action, increasing your casting distance and casting accuracy.
For the handles, you have the option of high-grade AAA cork grips or EVA foam grips, both of which are solid choices for the freshwater fishing situations this pole sees its intended use.
However, the AAA premium-grade cork will provide a firmer grip to help generate a bit more leverage while the EVA foam avoids the pitting issue cork suffers over time.
The Curado series of rods come with different versatile actions depending on the version you get, though, unlike the bait casting models, the spin casters don’t come with a moderate action model.
Instead, the Shimano Curado lineup presents either an extra-fast or a fast-action spinning rod— depending on the version.
On the plus side, both of these actions help increase the rod’s overall sensitivity and increase your casting accuracy– perfect for casting into shallow waters with a rock bed.
However, the spin poles with an extra-fast action will suffer a bit more concerning casting distance, even if the difference may not necessarily come up for your particular circumstances.
While many bass fishermen look for extreme power rods, most of the time, a medium power rating will do the trick with the addition of a solid technique.
And that’s a good thing because the overwhelming majority of the Curado series of rods hovers somewhere in the medium power range with only two models in the new version outside of that.
However, you shouldn’t necessarily consider the rod power ratings of the Curado in the same boat as some of its competitors due to the exclusive technologies used for the blank’s construction.
While the Hi-Power X technology won’t increase the rod power rating, it ensures you get plenty of backbone regardless of which rod power rating you need.
The Shimano Curado Spinning Rod pushes all of its chips into the pot with its Fuji tangle-free K guides that can handle braided fishing lines in even some of the dirtiest, grittiest water.
While the frames may feature aluminum oxide, the inserts feature one of two different types of ceramic to help resist the groove-cutting effect a braided fishing line can have.
Even better, both the Alconite and FazeLite inserts more than match aluminum oxide’s slick finish, helping limit how much the line slaps the blank during the cast.
On top of that, the Fuji K-frames feature both a sloped frame as well as a sloped insert, making this one of the most tangle-free options on the market.
Handle (material, shape, etc)
Depending on the version you get, the Shimano Curado spinning rod comes with either a standard cork split grip or an EVA foam split grip handle.
Thankfully, the material choice can be left up to your own personal preferences without sacrificing any sensitivity with a split grip profile used for both of the models.
However, there are still some differences between the two with the EVA foam option generally coming in with a handle that is about 1-inch shorter than the standard cork split grip.
On top of that, the cork handle provides a firmer base to generate more leverage but will eventually suffer from pitting– despite being made of AAA premium-grade cork.
Uses (Who is this good for)
Shimano Curado Spinning Rods place an emphasis on tournament performance but are also noted for their versatility, able to toss glide baits and then turn around to serve as a bait over grass rod.
With a variety of different componentry options to choose from, the Curado serves as an excellent all-around fishing pole– even if it was made with a particular purpose in mind.
Though the spinning pole started as a deep water smallmouth action rod, its classic finesse components allow it to adapt to virtually any bass fishing situation.
That said, some may struggle a bit after a full day of fishing as the rod can be a touch tip heavy weight-wise. However, this spinning pole still produces like few others in its class.
While beginners don’t necessarily require a budget-friendly option, it would be better to opt for a more affordable option.
On the other hand, one thing that can help beginners develop a taste for the sport is an angler-friendly spinning rod, and while this may not be a truly affordable spinning rod, it’s more than capable of meeting, if not exceeding, all of your fishing goals.
Reel and Real Seat Compatibility
Regardless of which reel seat you choose, you can rest assured that you don’t have to worry about your spin casting reel moving around and throwing off your touch thanks to a rubber grip applied to both models.
However, the different versions of the rod come with either a standard Fuji reel seat or Shimano’s proprietary technology with the CI4+.
The former is nothing necessarily special, though it still utilizes graphite carbon fiber to give this versatile spinning rod a little bit more sensitivity than it already affords.
On the other hand, Shimano’s CI4+ reel seat incorporates nylon, making it two materials– including the rubber grip– that help reduce the reel seat’s load weight-wise.
Conclusion (Wrap Up)
The Shimano Curado Spinning Rods provide impressive all-round performance as an angler-friendly spinning rod, but it’s not an affordable option.
However, this versatile spinning rod has great flex strength thanks to its hybrid high-modulus UD carbon fibers composition and is perfect for fresh water situations due to its classic finesse components.
Whether it’s the cork grips for comfortable fishing, the comfortable reel seat with rubber grip, or the exceptional guide system, this sensitive spinning rod can entice bites even in cold water.
Better than a solid all-round performance, the Curado spin casting rods are one of the finest options the fishing industry has to offer for bass fishing.
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