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Shimano Trevala S Jigging Rod Review
In this review of the Shimano Trevala S Jigging rod, we will look at both the spinning and casting models of this rod.
If you’re all about fishing structure and spotting fish, you’ll love this rod that’s made specifically for butterfly or vertical jigging. The rod features a proprietary C4S construction that allows the rod to have a smaller diameter which has a few major benefits.
The tiny diameter lowers the overall weight of the rod, and it also maintains incredible hoop strength. You also get excellent sensitivity, so you never miss a small bite or nibble.
Along with the C4S design on the Shimano Trevala S, there are the Fuji Alconite guides which lessen the line resistance and smooth out the performance. The Fuji reel seat locks keep the reel securely planted right where you want it.
Lastly, anglers get a customized EVA split-grip handle to maximize comfort and strength at the end of the rod.
With the Shimano Trevala S Jigging rod, you have the choice of choosing a spinning or casting rod depending on your reel preference. The spinning rods come in sizes ranging from 6’3” to 6’6”. The casting rods only come in a 6’3” size, but they have four different models each with a power and line weight variations.
The main issue we noticed about this rod and many other anglers have expressed this concern as well; is the reel seat. With a rod that can handle 80-pound line, you would expect it to handle reels in the 6000+ range, but it simply isn’t big enough. Most reel sizes around 3000 to 4000 work best with the Shimano Trevala S.
The Bottom Line
- A very good quality jigging rod in the mnedium price point.
- Excellent sensitivity due to the C4S construction.
- High level manufacturing and componemts such as Fuji Alconite guides and Fuji reel seats.
- Specifically designed for jigging applications.
The Shimano Trevala S Jigging rod is a solid rod and is available HERE.
C4S Blank Construction – This design helps lower the weight of the rod so you can focus more on battling the fish instead of your tackle. It also allows for a smaller diameter, which improves sensitivity so you can feel every nibble.
Fuji Alconite Guides – Alconite is a special type of ceramic that is inserted in the guides to lessen the resistance of your line to offer a smoother level of performance, this is especially important when fishing braid which has a tendance to be more abrasive.
Fuji Reel Seat – This reel seat is functional, and it secures your reel in place. The seat is the primary issue we have with this rod, though. It’s not large enough for 5000 size reels or more and many customers express their concerns over this.
Custom Shaped Handles with Split Grip – The split-grip offers you comfort and functionality so you can hang onto the rod when you need it most. We really liked the feel of the handle and found it to be comfortable for jigging for long periods of time.
EVA handles for comfort – The handles offer maximum comfort and prevent fatigue during long fishing excursions. The EVA also offers a secure grip when the handle gets slimed by bait and your awesome catch.
Features at a Glance
- C4S Blank Construction
- Fuji Alconite Guides
- Fuji Reel Seat
- Custom Shaped Handles with Split Grip
- EVA handles for comfort
The Shimano Trevala S is designed specifically for jigging and in particular it is most popular for using butterfly flat-fall jigs. This concept is powerful, and it involves the angler dropping the jig into the water column and letting the jig free fall typically to the bottom and then jigging it up 30-50 feet from the bottom and then repeating.
In deeper water scenarios, you might be marking fish somewhere in the middle water coluimn which is where you would want to stop just below and then jig up through the fish and repeat. We often run into this scenario while targeting yellowtail off the coast of southern California.
You can also cast it and let it fall while free spooling, sit back for the bite, jerk, and repeat that process. These center balanced jigs fall with a wobble action horizontally which provides a larger strike zone.
Vertical jigging is one of my favorite fishing styles, and it works like a charm with the Shimano Trevala S. It works exceptionally well in shallow water of 100 feet or less. The key is to have a sensitive rod like this one because you’ll need to pick up on every small nibble as you bob the lure up and down.
For the best jigging, I would pair the Shimano Trevala S with a 65-pound braid. I prefer braided because you lose a lot of the stretch you would get with monofilament line.
Another advantage of braid is the action on the lure. Your jig will fall faster and offer the fish the proper action in the water. If you want, you could use a short mono leader, but some anglers say that even impacts the action of the jig.
Personally, I would always recommend using a leader because you’ll get the necessary abrasion resistance on the end and fishing the bottom will cut your braided line up in no time.
For your reel pairing, go for something like the Shimano Tranx or an Accurate Valiant BV-300 for your casting rods. Both of these reels have incredible reputations as great saltwater jigging reels due to narrow spools and strength. It is also easy to manage the line lay on the reels, and the combinations are both lightweight and high performing.
For those of you who want all the details, I have provided the chart below.
|Models||Length (ft)||Action||Power||Line Wt. (lb)||Lure Wt. (oz)||Pieces|
|TVSS66XL||6'6"||M - F||XL||20 - 30lbs||2.65||1|
|TVSS63L||6'3"||M - F||L||30 - 40lbs||3.17||1|
|TVSS63ML||6'3"||M - F||ML||40 - 50lbs||3.88||1|
|TVSS63M||6'6"||M - F||M||40 - 60lbs||4.76||1|
|TVSS63MH||6'6"||M - F||MH||50 - 80lbs||5.93||1|
Field Testing the Shimano Trevala S Jigging Rod
Recently on a trip out of Southern Califiornia I took to the water with the Shimano Trevala S paired with an Accurate Valiant BV-400 loaded with 50 lb Power Pro Depth Hunter Metered Line. I like this line especially for jigging as it allows me to know almost exactly what depth I am at so I can really target the fish we are marking.
It took us a little while to find the fish but we did. Once we were at the right spot we dropped our butterfly jigs and we were off to the races. I actually never hit bottom on the first few passes as we were getting yellowtail in the mid water column at about 200 feet.
The thing to remember is that if you don’t get a bite as you’re dropping down, let the jig hit the bottom, jig it back up 30-40 feet and try again. You can experiment with the process and take a couple of extra pumps and repeat if you like. As you get more experience with this, you’ll notice how each fish species likes to take the jig. Bottom feeders, like grouper prefer a slow retrieve and some, like tuna simply don’t seem to care in most cases.
The vertical “walk-the-dog” action is irresistible to most fish, and I’ve never had a problem with it. It works incredibly well along wrecks and rock piles, and along the east coast, I fished for grouper and snapper with great enjoyment.
Back to our trip – I was using a variety of flat irons such as the 100 gram Shimano Butterfly in a Blue Sardine and was getting hookups on mostly yellowfin, but on the occasions I actually made it to the bottom, I was also getting into some rockfish.
Overall, the lightweight feel of this rod paired with the strength and durability makes it an ideal choice for experienced and beginner jiggers alike. You should have no problem picking up this rod and jumping right in even if you’ve never jigged before.
- Designed specifically for jigging
- Comfortable in your hands
- Reel seat could be better
Since the Shimano Trevala S Jigging rods are retailing for around $170, you might be looking for something a little cheaper. A great alternative is the Penn Rampage Jigging rod. This rod is lightweight and durable enough to manage larger species like grouper and amberjack.
This rod is versatile and capable of handling many different fishing conditions for a rod of this value. You get the one-piece graphite composite blank with the Fuji aluminum oxide guides. The rod comes in both a spinning or casting model, and they are both designed specifically for vertical jigging.
For the price of this rod, you really can’t go wrong. Where you lose a bit of performance is in the stiffness of this one. When the rod is too stiff, it takes away from some of the sensitivity, which is a critical component of a jigging rod.
That said, for some of you, it would be a nearly unnoticeable difference. For you serious jigging anglers out there, you’ll notice it almost instantaneously.
For the complete Penn Rampage Jigging rod review, CLICK HERE.
Overall, you can’t argue with the performance of the Shimano Trevala S Jigging rod. Although this rod is a little pricey, it holds up great in saltwater, you have a lightweight and highly sensitive rod, and you have one of the best jigging rods on the market.