A Class above the rest! Tom Scholey takes to the bank with the new Daiwa ZR4, a model that he believes has raised the bar for sub-£1000 poles.
Those who read my pole reviews regularly will know that I generally shy away from making profound statements. The fact of the matter is, there are loads of good poles out there and, particularly at the top end of the market, there is very little to choose between the competition.
Every now and then you come across a pole that really does set a benchmark in terms of quality at a particular price point, though. One such pole is the Daiwa ZR4. This has an SSP of just £899 - but if you were to tell me that the price was twice that figure, I would still have said it offered good value for money.
Don't get me wrong, at lengths of 13 and 14.5 metres, there are several other models at it's price point that are comparable because the budget-pole market really has proved a competitive battleground over recent years. However, when the 16m section is added, the pole really is in a class of its own.
It's balanced and stiff at this full length as many poles that command twice the price. The finish is silky smooth from the No.5 section down and treated with a slide-easy paint.
Package-wise, it also compares favourably with others in its price bracket, supplied with six kits, plus an additional cupping kit.
Another feature that I love is the fact that from 10 metres down, all sections are fully interchangeable with the Daiwa TDZR Margin Pole. This 10m tool is available for just £270.
So if you were to buy the two poles together, for £1169 you can get a full pole with a very comprehensive package and a spare margin pole (down to 10 metres). Daiwa really has raised the bar with this one.
Tech Spec - Daiwa ZR4 16m
Daiwa TDZR4 16m pole containing match top-three kit, two spare match top-three kits, three power top-two kits, cupping kit with cups, reversible mini extension for No.8 to butt, holdall and tubes.
RRP - £1,199
SSP - £899
Spares - Match top-three kit £59.99; Power top-two kit £54.99.
Features - Easy-slide fishing, pre-bore (reinforced) power kits, alignment arrows
Stated Length - 16m
Actual Length - (With mini extension) 16.86m; without 15.98m
Match-Kit Length - 3.1m
Power-Kit Length - 2.71m
Top-4 Length - 4.53m
Top-5 Length - 6.055m
Puller Kits Fitted - No, but reinforced area to accommodate drilling on Power kits.
Pre-Bushed - No.
Cupping Kit Supplied - Yes
Holdall Supplied - Yes
Butt Section Length - 1.76m
13m Butt Diameter (widest) - 4.75cm
16m Butt Diameter (widest) - 4.75cm