I’ve been getting to fish big swimbaits more which means I get to play with more swimbait rods. This past summer and fall I threw crankdown swimbaits like the Bull Shad 4×4 on the iROD Genesis II Bailey Swimbait rod. I have fished the other swimbait rods in the iROD Genesis II line but Matt Newman sent me this rod to play with because they tried some new stuff with it and it has turned out to be one of my favorite swimbait rods, largely due to its versatility.
The iROD Genesis II Bailey Swim features an 8-foot heavy power 30-ton blank. The 804 rod is a 4 power for those that will ask, and it features a tip that is soft enough to lob a smaller bait into tight corners but also strong enough to launch a Deps 250 or a Huddleston equally well.
The rod was designed by big swimbait bass fishing pro and guide Paul Bailey as a rod that can handle a wide range of big swimbaits and scenarios. He wanted a rod where he could have 6-8 rods on his deck and they all be the same rod but have 8 different swimbaits on them for 8 different scenarios he might encounter in a day of fishing. With a rod line like this, he could cover the water column from 0 to 40 feet and feel like he was using the same setup the whole time.
Heavy Duty Components
While the iROD Bailey Swim rod was reduced in weight by about 30 percent, the components were beefed up to feature solid guides with alconite inserts for smooth line management with heavier lines. The grips were streamlined with smaller triggers to reduce grip fatigue while the foam was made denser to increase sensitivity by giving the angler a lighter more dense big swimbait rod.
Some big swimbait rods are so thick and large, it can wear you out just gripping them all day much less heaving 3-10 ounce lures all day. I like that the iROD Bailey Swim is heavy duty without feeling terribly oversized.
The big new feature is the two-piece design that serves a couple of functions. The first being that you can store the iROD Bailey Swim swimbait rod in space like a rod locker that isn’t 8-feet in length. Bailey sometimes fishes out of a smaller boat and needed a rod he could keep in his locker but not compromise how he fishes.
I was impressed with how rigid and solid the rod is, even though you can separate the handle from the rod. It’s a double stamped tube that meshes the two pieces together snugly without worry of twisting or slipping. Not the sketchy old two pieces of yesteryear that’s for sure.
Handles big swimbaits
I’ve been throwing 1- and 2-ounce soft swimbaits out to 30 feet on this rod as well as fishing 2 and 3-ounce crankdown and large wake baits in 1 foot of water. I’ve also thrown some bigger glides like the Deps 250 (6 ounces) and the Arashi Glide (3.5 ounces).
It’s fairly impressive that the rod is light enough to fish a small 1-ounce bait but beefy enough to handle a 6-ounce bait. That gives an angler that might only want one good swimbait rod the versatility to do a lot with it.
Easier Storage for 8-foot Rod
I’ve taken the iROD Bailey Swim swimbait rod in my wife’s car on long trips so I can huck big baits on nearby waters wherever we happen to be. If I couldn’t break it down to under 7 feet, I would never be able to do that. So I love the versatility in the design. I love the versatility in what it can fish. And I love the versatility in how it fishes.
At $149, it’s a heck of a deal for a high quality big swimbait rod that will give you a ton of memorable catches. The rod showed a little scarring where I’ve hung big swimbaits on the hook hanger, but it has had no impact on the performance of the rod. It’s been thrown in the back of trucks, carried on golf carts and side by sides, fished out of little scamps, and of course been all over the country in my boat. It’s a good rod, good design and money well spent for an avid swimbaiter.