That said carp tackle does get well used and can easily get damaged so it is worth doing everything possible to check the condition of the rod before purchase.
There are specific sites and retail out lets that specialize in used tackle and the buyer can go and inspect the available rods. They are inevitably more expensive than buying direct as they will have a margin to make and will have bought the rods themselves.
In general there has never been a better range of carp rods available on the market the currently. This range is extensive both in terms of quality and price but there will be a used rod to suit any budget and angling requirements.
When it comes to selecting a rod there are various useful questions to ask. Many people feel that the Test Curve is an important measurement. This refers to the amount of weight a rod requires to bend through 90 degrees from the tip to the butt of the rod. All this measurement actually explains is how stiff the rod is.
A more important measurement or description is the ‘action’ of the rod, which is often referred to in carp rods. This will give the angler an idea of how far the rod will cast. For example a ‘through action rod’ is probably best suited to short of medium range casts and a ‘fast taper’ is used for fishing at much greater distances.
So when buying a used rod it is good to know what the fishery is like and how it is going to be fished first. Knowing what weight of fish, are likely to be taken from the fishery is another important factor.
By combining the test curve and the action a better picture of rod performance and its relevance to the fish and fishery.
A generally accepted rule is to go for 2 ½ to 2 ¾ Test curve which will be able to case leads of up to 3.5oz and is good for most fisheries.
The brands that tend to the most popular across the board are Shimano, Daiwa, Shakespeare, Chub, Greys, Leeda, Nash and Wychwood. All offer a good range of different rods to suit all budgets. They all are of a good enough quality to buy used and providing they are not in anyway damaged should serve the buyer well.
Range of leads
- Flat Pear Bomb
- Distance Tear Drop
- Tournament Distance
- Back leads
- Square Barrel
- Stumpy Pear Inline
- Riser Leads
- Small Long Pears
These can be found on eBay.
Buying a used rod is a good way of getting into the sport. With the price of fishing anywhere good getting evermore expensive and with all the other tackle, baits, leads, bivvies and equipment needed it is worth looking at the used market for good deals.
Buying a whole carp set up for a beginner can be a daunting and risky business. There is no point spending £440 on a pair of new rods when £80 might get a pair of top quality rods used. That said kitting out with cheap gear, can be a false economy as substandard tackle tends not to last and will more than likely let an angler down at exactly the wrong moment. All the brands mentioned above are trustworthy and have good ‘entry level starter deals’. The best bet is to get a mid range used rod from a reliable scource and then, if the carp ‘bug’ strikes simply up grade from there.
Carp Anglers do like to renew their gear every couple of years and very often the tackle is of very high quality and is built to last. The fact that there might be a scratch on the rod will make little difference to its performance. The used market in carp rods is always worth looking at as there are always new products on the market and one of the really enjoyable aspects of the sport is finding a new gadget or trick to help improve performance.
Very small modifications to rods become absolute ‘must haves’ to the dedicated carp angler and so good deals on relatively new, high quality gear, are often available.
Be wary of rods that look as if they really have been worked hard. Check the rings and the whipping holding them on. If they have been damaged the line will not fly through the rings and will make the cast fall short or be inaccurate. The glass inners of the rings should be perfectly smooth. If these are chipped at all then it will be detrimental to the rods performance.
Reel seats are also a vital part of the rods build and if these have been damaged or are of poor quality the reel can fall off. When this happens whilst playing a 30lb Mirror the angler can get a little exasperated. Reel seat sizes do vary so make sure the reel fits the rod in the first place.
Check the quality of the rod case if this has been allowed to get damp or has been damaged in any way then there is a chance the rod may be damaged as well.
The final point to note when buying carp rods, is to check out the availability of a warranty or guarantee. Many manufacturers will offer lifetime guarantees so if the paperwork for the rod is available it can be very useful. With carp rods this isn’t always the case but it is definitely worth asking the question.
There are many different ways of fishing for carp. The buyer must be very clear on what type of angling approach is going to be taken. This will depend on the fishery and the rules it maintains, the weather conditions, the bait being used and the preferences of the angler. If possible consult with an expert. If the fishery is close to where the tackle is being purchased then it is likely that the seller will have a good knowledge of the fishery and be able to advise on what rod to buy.
As with all fishing getting good advice from local experts and working on gathering as much intelligence as possible before any purchase is made will always lead to the most satisfactory results.