Henry Gilbey
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Henry Gilbey blog

APIA Foojin’R Best Bower 95M 9’5’’ 7-35g lure rod review

I feel somewhat reluctant to call a lure fishing rod perfect, but if after using it for a while I can’t find a single thing that I don’t like about it, does that then make the rod perfect? I don’t know really, but this APIA Foojin’R Best Bower 95M 9’5’’ 7-35g lure rod is along the same lines as the outstanding and more expensive Major Craft Truzer 9’6’’ 10-30g (review here) - different enough rods to make it interesting, but both rods are about as “perfect” as I have ever come across. Please note that I mean perfect for me of course, and as per always what works for me might not work so well for you - but I genuinely would struggle to understand how the majority of shore based UK and Irish anglers who fish for bass with lures could not get something meaningful out of this amazing APIA rod.

Please bear in mind that my meaningful fishing with this rod was done before my operation, but then recently I have managed to turn a few dog walks into “lure testing” trips down to my local estuary, with this APIA rod in tow of course. I like it more and more. This is the third APIA rod that I have used from their entry-level Foojin’R “Best Bower” range, and I am finding them so impressive that I feel they deserve to be put into the same sort of category as the Major Craft Skyroad range (see here) - different kinds of lure rods mind you, which I really like - but all about as much lure rod as one could dream of for the money. Serious lure fishing rods that have somewhat changed my opinion on what a lure rod should be doing for the money.

I had a feeling that I was going to like this APIA Foojin’R Best Bower 95M 9’5’’ 7-35g lure rod from the moment I picked it up and gave it a waggle. I really like the understated look to the Foojin’R range, and you can immediately feel the mix of power and sensitivity when you pick this 95M up. Nice and light, a handle length that suits me down to the ground (35cms), and also a handle design that’s comfortable to fish with. APIA do put good handles on their rods. The longer 10’3’’ Best Bower 103MLX (review here) is a serious bit of kit, but it’s too long for me to want to own it as an “everyday’ sort of lure rod, and the shorter 9’3’’ Best Bower 93ML (mini review here) is just all out class. This APIA Foojin’R Best Bower 95M 9’5’’ 7-35g sits right in the middle of those two rods, and if I was going to buy an APIA rod from their entry level Foojin’R range, for me it would be this 95M. Wow this is one hell of a lure rod.

There is loads of power in the butt and midsection, but as with so many decent modern lure rods, it’s incredibly easy to get at that power and wind the rod up. There’s a proper tip on this 95M, as in it’s not remotely a poker that refuses to yield to anything but the perfect cast - nope, this is a very easy rod to fish with, whilst at the same time being a serious lure fishing rod that I reckon would work incredibly well for most anglers. The Foojin’R range may be APIA’s lowest priced range of lure rods, but as with the Major Craft Skyroads and indeed their new N-One rods, you can see the thought that’s gone into them, and whilst you can spend some far more serious dosh on a lure rod, never once have any of these rods given me the feeling that I have in any way made any kind of compromise by fishing with them. The more I fish with lure rods like these APIA Best Bower and Major Craft Skyroad/N-One rods, the more I am left wondering what a lot more money actually gives us in terms of performance. Or fish of course.

I won’t ignore the fact that a lot of you fish with the larger Xorus Patchinko surface lure, indeed I was reminded before Xmas/operation with some of my local fishing that sometimes this is the one surface lure I own that will cope properly with certain conditions. And yes, it absolutely frigging flies on this APIA Best Bower 95M. OK, so it should with a rating of 7-35g, but all rods are different, and I love how with a full blooded cast when you catch that Patchinko just right you start giggling with how far it gets out there, yet the rod’s not really trying. There’s a lot more power there if required, put it that way. Easy to get at as I said earlier - a kind of fast action but with that ease of use that many of these quality Japanese lure rods seem to possess. Nice and steely, and yes, I like a steely lure rod, and I also like the word steely as you might have guessed. Steely. Damn fine word if you ask me.

I think it’s fantastic that we can get our hands on Major Craft rods in the UK, but I do wish that anglers could also get to see how good these APIA rods are. Choice is surely a good thing, and whilst I am not in the business of selling lure rods, I am seeing that a lot of you who look at my website are checking out my fishing tackle reviews, and I get a number of emails and Facebook related stuff on lure rods, and from all around Europe as well. Do I expect any of you to go and buy this APIA Foojin’R Best Bower 95M 9’5’’ 7-35g lure rod “blind” after reading my review? (because you can do so here, for around £250 delivered from Portugal, and of course you could get one in from Japan). Well that’s just it - it makes absolutely no difference to me if you do or do not, although I know that plenty of lure anglers would love this rod. I really like messing around with fishing gear and these reviews are no more than my opinions - I hope they help. Have a good weekend and may England continue upon their winning ways over in Italy.