For many carp anglers, carp fishing is the ultimate; landing a big fish is, after all, an exhilarating experience, and one that – once you have enjoyed the thrill – will have you coming back for more. Did you know that you can buy very good budget carp rods, from a top brand, for under £100? This is important to know as its likely that you will end up owning 2 or maybe even 3 carp rods.
We have put the time and effort into researching them for you, so believe us when we say that what follows is a review of the top carp rods under £100.
Best Carp Rods Under £100 (Some Choices)
1: Preston Monster 11ft
We thought it appropriate to open with a choice from one of the biggest names in carp gear – Preston. This established and renowned brand offers a great selection of rods and other equipment, and you are guaranteed a quality item when you buy from them. The Monster range features a variety of lengths of rod, we have chosen to feature the 11ft model, and each is superbly made, offers excellent performance, and comes at a sensible price.
This is a well-made, very strong and durable rod, yet has excellent give for fishing. It is a two-piece design that makes it easy to carry around – and very quick to put together – and is perfectly suited for use with a wide range of accessories from this and other brands. In short, this is a difficult item to fault, and at a shed under our upper limit, while it may be one of the more expensive it is also of guaranteed high quality, and we think excellent value for money for carp anglers.
Key Features – brand, 11ft (others available), strong, flexible, two-piece
2: Daiwa Windcast Stalker
We have tried to keep our reviews to the best brands, so that we are sure we are offering you’re the top quality rods, and there are few more highly-regarded brands in the fishing world than Daiwa. This long-established maker has a vast range of gear of all types, and the Windcast Stalker – is one of a collection that is very highly regarded by a lot of very satisfied users.
We are featuring the 10ft model here – by no means the longest in the range but among the most popular – and it is a very nice, top quality item that offers a great deal of innovation and attractive features. It’s a high-carbon product that weighs little more than 300g, which is astonishingly light, and breaks down into two sections for ease of transport. The test curve is just 2lb, which makes this one perfect for smaller fish, and it is priced similarly to those above, thus reflecting the quality of the product.
Key Features – Daiwa brand, 10ft model, 2lb test curve, high carbon, 305g weight
3: Shakespeare Unisex Cypry 3-Piece
Any product from the Shakespeare brand deserves looking at, and this one is of interest thanks to its very attractive price. It can be yours for under £40, which is at once interesting and perhaps off-putting. However, the three-piece design is convenient and easy to handle, it comes with a slim carbon blank, and it is equipped with decent line guides so is not one to write off too quickly.
This is a 12-foot model and comes with a 3lb test curve, so is not bad at all for decent-sized carp, plus the handle is decent quality with good grip. Customers who have bought this one like it, but the one complaint that resurfaces is that it comes without a bag of any kind – although at the price that should not be too much of a surprise. A decent item at a bargain price from a proven brand, it’s certainly one to consider if you’re on a serious budget.
Key Features – Shakespeare brand, 12-foot, 3-piece, 3lb test curve, price
4: Sonic Vader X 12-foot
This Sonic Vader X Carp fishing rod represents – we think – good value for money among the others on the list and comes with some impressive features. The Japanese shrink wrap handle is a favourite with many as it is designed that provides comfort and grip, while the 12’ length is also popular. The carbon fibre blank means this is very light indeed, but it still provides a 3.5lb test curve so is perfectly capable of landing good-sized carp.
Notably, this one comes with universally very good customer reviews, which is always a good sign, and it is fitted with high quality rings and a nice reel seat too. If you’re looking for a perfectly decent carbon fibre rod of this length – perhaps for use as a second rod or for a beginner to test the water – then we can’t see any reason why this should not be on your shortlist.
Key Features – 12’ rod, quality fittings, 3.5lb test curve, good price
5: FOX EOS 10’ Carp Rod
One for those who favour a shorter rod, this 10’ model from the well-known and regarded Fox brand is certainly sensibly priced – again it can be found for under £50 . The shorter length makes it manageable overall, and a 3lb test curve is what we would expect from a rod of this type, plus it comes with ‘Slik’ rings so you get a quality brand for your money there. It looks good in black, too, which seems to be the finish of choice.
There’s also a decent reel seat, and it is fitted with all that you need to add a reel and line and off you go. Customer comments give this one a very favourable set of reviews, too, with ‘good quality’ being a frequent comment and more praise heaped on it. Is it the one for you? If you want a 10-foot rod that is easy to handle and of a decent quality, and don’t want to spend more than £50, it’s certainly one to consider.
Key Features – good brand, 10-foot rod, carbon fibre blanks, 3lb test curve, Slik rings
6: Wychwood Riot Carp Rods
This popular range of rods from Wychwood – another major player in the carp fishing field – is designed to appeal across the board, and features rods in 9, 10 and 12ft lengths, so should cater for all types of carp anglers. With matt black carbon fibre blanks featuring on all lengths, plus quality rings and mountings, it is no surprise to find this is one of the most popular ranges of rods in this market sector, with prices between £40 and £75 representing good value for money.
Lightweight and presented as a 3-piece rod, this is a good choice for a second one or perhaps for a newcomer who wants to start carp fishing and have a rod that will not need to be replaced any time soon. Largely excellent customer reviews further boost confidence in the Wychwood range, so if you’re after a shorter rods, the 9f could be the one for you, while the others are also contenders among this company.
Key Features – brand, three sizes available, carbon fibre, great prices
That’s our selections for the best sub-£100 carp rods on the market right now, and we are confident we really have picked the best ones.
Our range of carp rods have pretty much given you the features you need to look for – length, weight, number of pieces, test curve and price – and as all are in the same cost-bracket, we think we can skip forward to our conclusion.
Here are the features you should be considering if you are going to get the best one for your money:
The Blank – this is the bit that does a lot of the hard work, for it needs to be able to handle a carp of decent size. You can find the blank in various forms of carbon, and in other materials too, so check carefully for one that suits you and that you like the feel of.
The Handle – not to be overlooked but often not given the status it deserves, the handle is very important as you and it will become very familiar! The three main types are the full cork handle, the shrink-wrap type and the abbreviated handle. The choice is yours, but we recommend you spend some time investigating all three as you will prefer one to the others. These will also help you when it comes to distance casting.
Rings – look for quality rings if you can, but in this price bracket you will likely find that the fitted rings are in-house from the maker, rather from the specialist makers.
Reel Seat – what to expect from a reel seat in the sub-£100 price bracket is one that performs as well as you would expect it to on a budget carp rods, so check the maker and see what you are offered.
remember, these are budget rods, but that does not mean they are no good. One costing close to £100 should be perfectly good for carping and be of a decent quality, but don’t expect top notch performance for £20! Go for the very best you can afford.
The higher the test curve, the firmer the rod is. Small feeder fishing rods have test curves of about 1.25lb whereas a carp rod is likely to be stiffer and have a test curve of around 3lb or more.
This simply translates to the part where the reel fits onto the rod. Its where the reel sits. A good fitting one can make all the difference to a good days fishing.
Now that we’ve shown you that you the full range of best carp rods, which one do we recommend you buy if you had £100 spare?
In all fairness, each one of the range of carp rods listed is worth considering, and as they are all pretty much the same price (all cheap carp rods), the cost is not a consideration. It comes down to personal choice, and what size you think you need.
If you are looking for 10ft carp rods, for example, we reckon the Daiwa Windcast is the ideal choice; it’s from a top brand, is great quality, and offers you the sort of performance you expect from such a rod.
For longer, we suggest you check out the Nash Tackle model, number three on the list. This is a very high-quality, amazingly light rod that offers everything you need for lengthy casting and enjoyable fishing, and it really can’t be faulted at the price.
We hope that we helped you find the best carp rod under £100.
Mike has over 30 years of fishing experience in carp fishing and general coarse fishing. He is always looking for the latest fishing kit to try out and talk about and needs a bigger shed due to all the fishing tackle he owns. You can read more about him here.