Shakespeare Ugly Stik GX2 Spinning Outfit Review

Shakespeare makes good products

Shakespeare makes good products

I recently received a Ugly Stick GX2 rod paired with a Shakespeare 5.2 to 1 ratio spinning reel to test. I spooled the reel with ten pound test Trilene line and tied on a Norman’s DD22N to see if it would work for deep cranking.

Ugly Sticks are tough rods and mostly used for fishing for catfish and stripers in freshwater. They are also great in saltwater. These rods are made to take the abuse big fish, and fishermen, can give them. Since I mostly fish for bass and am trying to get better at deep cranking, I wanted an alternative to a casting outfit. As I have gotten older it is harder for me to deep crank for hours and I thought being able to switch between a spinning out fit and a casting outfit would ease the pain I get in my hands and arms when fishing this way.

With this outfit I could cast the big crankbait a long way. Chris Jackson even commented on how far I could cast the lure while I tested it at Lay Lake fishing with him. I also used it in a club tournament at Lake Sinclair. The rod is a six foot six inch medium action two piece rod. I could cast even further with a longer rod.

The outfit worked well for this application. It allowed me to switch hands holding the rod since I hold a casting rod in my left hand and reel with my right, and hold the spinning rod in my right hand and reel with my left. It took a few casts to get used to the outfit and learn the right angle to hold it to get good depth on the lure and keep it at an angle to absorb the shock of a strike.

The ratio of the reel was fine for deep cranking and the rod action was just right for that type fishing. I will keep it rigged and ready when I want to deep crank for bass.

The outfit would be excellent for many kinds of fishing. It is fairly heavy so it tires you more than a very expensive rod and reel that is lighter, but at $49.99 for the outfit, the cost helps ease the pain. When fishing for hybrids, cats, stripers and other similar fish in freshwater the weight of the outfit would not be a problem since you often put the rod and reel in some kind of holder rather than holding it in your hands while fishing for them. the same is true in many saltwater applications.

The reel did make noise while reeling it and the drag system is not as smooth as I would like it to be.

Disclaimer – I was sent this outfit free to test.