Drennan Acolyte Compact Ultra and Compact Plus

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I'm interested in opinions and experiences on these two. What your preferred uses for them are and how they perform and I'm especially interested in how the Plus feels with silvers. My understanding is that the ultra is only really for silvers on rivers and canals etc and the Plus would be more of an all-rounder type capable of taming the larger fish like tench, carp, chub and the odd barbel.

I started back up a year ago and have been using a 12ft Daiwa Yank 'N' Bank Pellet waggler as an all-rounder type whilst I built up the rest of my gear and although it 'does the job' I'm seeing the problems with it more and more and it's nearly time for me to broaden my rod repertoire, so to speak. It's fine when punching out larger floats at the bigger fish and striking with a lot of line out but it's just too punchy when doing delicate float work closer in or on the canal and I just know the action on the rod is bumping small fish off on the strike. This all makes sense with it being a pellet waggler, and honestly, I knew this would be the case when I bought it. It's manageable but unsatisfying and reeling in the little ones grants no pleasure at all so I need something with a little more finesse.

At the moment I'm leaning toward the 13ft Compact Plus as my new all-round float rod and hope that although strong enough for bonus fish it makes catching the little ones a little more fun but these rods are quite dear which is why I'm asking for your experiences with them. Honestly, it's likely that I would get the 13ft Compact Ultra as well at some point for using on my local canal as it's mainly rudd, roach and bream up there and it really seems like a specialist tool for such a job. Providing I like the Plus, that is.

It's the compact versions I'm particularly interested in but information on any of these ultras and pluses is welcome.

Anyway, I would appreciate your input on these rods and thanks in advance.
 

Neskin

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Weird! I've recently been thinking the exact same thing!

Currently im using an 11 foot Daiwa yank and bank P/Wag for float and was looking at getting the 13 compact plus for river chub.

ill be following this with great interest.... :cool:
 

Trailblazer

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I'm curious why a compact version?
It buggs me how they say the compact is two peice and easier to assemble when made up. They aren't two peice they're still three peices! Also the're longer when broken down and left set up than a normal three peice rod and more alkward to transport. Imo, the compact is also more of a ball ache to put together than an ordinary three peice rod, at least the ordinary three peice just pushes together, unlike the compact which needs half the handle screwing on....what a daft gimmic that is!

Because of my rant on the daft compact idea I forgot to mention that I have a few acolyte rods and imo I would go for the plus as it will be a far more versatile rod for you...fantastic rods by the way :).
 
D

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I'm curious why a compact version?
It buggs me how they say the compact is two peice and easier to assemble when made up. They aren't two peice they're still three peices! Also the're longer when broken down and left set up than a normal three peice rod and more alkward to transport. Imo, the compact is also more of a ball ache to put together than an ordinary three peice rod, at least the ordinary three peice just pushes together, unlike the compact which needs half the handle screwing on....what a daft gimmic that is!

Because of my rant on the daft compact idea I forgot to mention that I have a few acolyte rods and imo I would go for the plus as it will be a far more versatile rod for you...fantastic rods by the way :).

I see what you're saying but when you think it through the compact idea is not remotely daft. I like to be mobile and it allows me to move a rod about that is already rigged to go. It's far easier to put down and assemble when one is moving about throughout the day. So, for all intents and purposes, they are 2 pieces and the screw in handle is no gimmick because it allows you to fit a 13' rod into a 6' 5" rod bag when you need to. If it were just 2 pieces when taken down it would be 6' 6" and it really wouldn't work. With the screw in handle, it means it's only 6'. The compact is absolutely perfect for what people like me want it for and a traditional 3 piece isn't right for the job. Unless I were prepared to lug a 13' rod up and down the canal or river for miles which is impractical and a pain in the arse and frankly, the tip wouldn't last a week. If I were simply driving to a commercial water and not moving off the spot all day it wouldn't matter, I wouldn't need the compact but for it's intended use it's actually a simple design that is utterly effective.

Someone actually thought about how people would want to use it, and I appreciate that.
 

Silverfisher

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I have the standard 13ft ultra rather than the compact but it is a brilliant rod, best coarse rod I’ve ever used personally. Really light, picks up line for striking and mending brilliantly, casts well and is a pleasure to play fish up to a few pounds on. It’s obviously designed for silvers so it gets a bit nervy when you get something above 4-5lbs on it but nothing really to worry about until they get to doubles. Most by fishing is for silvers on rivers or a local lake where you don’t fluke many carp so it suits me perfectly. Would like to get the plus as well at some point though for those places where you run into more big fish.
 

Trailblazer

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99% of my fishing is roving wild rivers, miles of unkept bankings and lots of places were I drop into the river have high and very steep banks. When I get to the river, I assemble my three peice rod (unless i'm using a genuine two piece rod :rolleyes:) and once assembled, whichever rod i'm using stays assembled for however many miles I walk...the only time it is broken down fully is if i go back to the car and drive to another stretch of river, and then it takes me literally seconds to break the rod down and strap it together.
I've been doing this for a long time and have tried all the options available in a quest to make things easier for myself.
The so called "compact rod"....lol at that name....I mean how the hell is a rod of 6ft 6inches, when in it's compact guise, and combined with a bloody big made up rod bag a compact rod :unsure: ....doesn't make sense to me o_O.
At the end of the day it's your choice what you go for, but you did ask for input, so i've given you mine (y).
 

david white

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To be honest I’d have thought ( logically thinking, not experience unless comparing a 2 piece 11 foot against a 3 piece 11 foot rod counts ) that the playing action and feel of a 2 piece rod would be totally different than a 3 piece rod ( my definition of pieces being those in front of the reel !! )
 
D

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99% of my fishing is roving wild rivers, miles of unkept bankings and lots of places were I drop into the river have high and very steep banks. When I get to the river, I assemble my three peice rod (unless i'm using a genuine two piece rod :rolleyes:) and once assembled, whichever rod i'm using stays assembled for however many miles I walk...the only time it is broken down fully is if i go back to the car and drive to another stretch of river, and then it takes me literally seconds to break the rod down and strap it together.
I've been doing this for a long time and have tried all the options available in a quest to make things easier for myself.
The so called "compact rod"....lol at that name....I mean how the hell is a rod of 6ft 6inches, when in it's compact guise, and combined with a bloody big made up rod bag a compact rod :unsure: ....doesn't make sense to me o_O.
At the end of the day it's your choice what you go for, but you did ask for input, so i've given you mine (y).


It's 6' when collapsed and that means it fits in my rod bag which it wouldn't if it didn't have the 'gimmick' handle as you put it. Hence the 'compact' name. This is useful when I want to transport it with others in my rod bag to places in the car etc. However, when taking it up the canal or river on a roaving trip it wouldn't be in my rod bag. It would be in a padded sleeve, ready and made up to go. Easy to carry up and down the canal and river and it won't get broken by Tommy to**er flying down the canal on his battery-powered mountain bike at 30 mph or run into by clumsy Clara and her inconsiderate offspring. When I get to the next fishing spot, out it comes and it's simply put together. No rigging up and no hassles. It's instant fishing again. Hence the '2 piece'. It may actually be 3 pieces but for the purposes of ready-made-up it functions no differently to a 'genuine' two piece. It's how I use my current 2 piece 12 footer but I miss the extra foot of a 13 footer. This rod solves this problem.

Just because it doesn't make sense to you, doesn't mean it doesn't make sense. For my purposes, the compact design is well thought out and a tremendous time saver. It's actually as perfect as the design can be with the possible exception of changing the screw in handle to something more like a quick fitting bayonet for people who suffer 'ball ache' when turning something a few times :) Simply put, it's a 13' 3 piece that has the benefits of a 12' 2 piece. That may be of no use to some but it's perfect for me and you're right. I did ask for input but maybe I wasn't clear enough. I was more after the sort of feedback on the action, feel and reliability of them. Perhaps you could offer something in that area? Anyway, thank you for your thoughts
 

Trailblazer

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You asked for opinions, I gave you mine but you seem to have been offended in some wierd way, spat out yer dummy, thrown yer toys out yer pram, etc etc, have you got a hormonal problem, or maybe your a remoaner?
By the way, drennan do a made up bag for three piece 13 to 15ft rods :rolleyes:.
 
D

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You asked for opinions, I gave you mine but you seem to have been offended in some wierd way, spat out yer dummy, thrown yer toys out yer pram, etc etc,

:confused: I wasn't offended at all and as you deemed it necessary to share why you think the Compact is 'daft' and didn't seem to understand the merits of the design to some of us I felt an obligation to explain why it isn't 'daft' and is useful to me. I felt I owed you that. I'm sorry you thought it 'spitting my dummy out' or 'throwing my toys out of the pram' but it wasn't. You merely imagined it. I thought it a discussion, albeit, not one I expected to be having when I posted the thread. Perhaps it demonstrates the limitations of the forum format. The written word without intonation can easily be misinterpreted.

have you got a hormonal problem, or maybe your a remoaner?

:ROFLMAO: Jesus! I'm not sure what your problem is, fella but no, I'm not a remoaner and my posts regarding the subject of brexit have made that very clear. Although, what the hell that would have to do with my request for user experiences with Drennan rods and my attempt to explain my reasoning to you is beyond me.

By the way, drennan do a made up bag for three piece 13 to 15ft rods :rolleyes:.

I know. But as I have tried to explain. I don't want the traditional 3 piece rods. They are not the right tool for MY purposes.
 
D

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I have the standard 13ft ultra rather than the compact but it is a brilliant rod, best coarse rod I’ve ever used personally. Really light, picks up line for striking and mending brilliantly, casts well and is a pleasure to play fish up to a few pounds on. It’s obviously designed for silvers so it gets a bit nervy when you get something above 4-5lbs on it but nothing really to worry about until they get to doubles. Most by fishing is for silvers on rivers or a local lake where you don’t fluke many carp so it suits me perfectly. Would like to get the plus as well at some point though for those places where you run into more big fish.

Thank you, very helpful and confirms my thinking on the ultra. Trouble is, you're really making me want both of them.
 
D

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To be honest I’d have thought ( logically thinking, not experience unless comparing a 2 piece 11 foot against a 3 piece 11 foot rod counts ) that the playing action and feel of a 2 piece rod would be totally different than a 3 piece rod ( my definition of pieces being those in front of the reel !! )

I would certainly expect there to be differences. There are clear differences from an engineering standpoint. I suspect that from a strength and consistency standpoint the ideal would be to have a one-piece rod but this is obviously prohibitively impractical for most, almost all circumstances and they simply must be broken. the fewer the breaks the more consistent the rod in various aspects. This is merely speculation on my part as I know nothing of rod making but it seems likely that with modern material science and understanding the differences would be smaller now than they used to be.
 

Silverfisher

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Oll jazz IIO - If you can afford both then I’d say go for it haha! My understanding is that the plus is barely more powerful than your average float rod (the acolyte being slightly less powerful than average) rather than being like the power float rods out there, the plus name just meaning more power than the ultra rather than necessarily more than your average float rod. As I say I don’t worry about getting the odd big fish on the ultra but it’s not a thing I have to worry about often on the venues I currently fish so having a plus as well would give me the option to fish more commercial type places if they took my fancy. I think an ultra feeder rod will be my next purchase though!
 
D

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Oll jazz IIO - If you can afford both then I’d say go for it haha! My understanding is that the plus is barely more powerful than your average float rod (the acolyte being slightly less powerful than average) rather than being like the power float rods out there, the plus name just meaning more power than the ultra rather than necessarily more than your average float rod. As I say I don’t worry about getting the odd big fish on the ultra but it’s not a thing I have to worry about often on the venues I currently fish so having a plus as well would give me the option to fish more commercial type places if they took my fancy. I think an ultra feeder rod will be my next purchase though!

Enabler! :D
 

Trailblazer

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:confused: I wasn't offended at all and as you deemed it necessary to share why you think the Compact is 'daft' and didn't seem to understand the merits of the design to some of us I felt an obligation to explain why it isn't 'daft' and is useful to me. I felt I owed you that. I'm sorry you thought it 'spitting my dummy out' or 'throwing my toys out of the pram' but it wasn't. You merely imagined it. I thought it a discussion, albeit, not one I expected to be having when I posted the thread. Perhaps it demonstrates the limitations of the forum format. The written word without intonation can easily be misinterpreted.



:ROFLMAO: Jesus! I'm not sure what your problem is, fella but no, I'm not a remoaner and my posts regarding the subject of brexit have made that very clear. Although, what the hell that would have to do with my request for user experiences with Drennan rods and my attempt to explain my reasoning to you is beyond me.



I know. But as I have tried to explain. I don't want the traditional 3 piece rods. They are not the right tool for MY purposes.


Ok, fair enough, I must have got the wrong end of the stick, it happèns :rolleyes:.

Regarding the action of the plus rod, I would say it is a fast action and striking speed is enhanced even further by the slimness and lightness of the blanks, as they cut through the air very easily. Once the tip goes round the rest of the blank will follow as the pressure is increased, so the rod has a lovely ark when under load.
Because catching small fish on the plus rod feels so good, I would describe it as a "wolf in sheeps clothing", as it can also tame quite large fish with style!
I often use mine for catching barbel and I have more than my fair share of them using the acolyte rods...amazing rods!
 

richox12

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I don't have the Compact Acolytes but do have the Compact IM9 rods - both Ultra and Classic. For Ultra think Acolyte Ultra and for Classic think Acolyte Plus.

In terms of Action (where the blanks bend and how far) & Power they are the same - as near as damn it - as the Acolyte equivalents. The only differences are that the Acolytes are slimmer/lighter and they are faster on strike/recovery.

I use the Ultras for almost everything from roach, dace & skimmers and even chub. But chub where the water is not fast, is open and snag free etc so I can play them how I like. However, if I have to deliberately fish anywhere for Chub (and numbers of chub) where it's fast flowing, or there are snags etc to be avoided or if I want to catch tench then I use the Classic (Plus) as it has more power all the way down. It's progressive.

If I had to have just one model I would choose the Ultras as they suit 95% of what I do and I can cope with the other 5%. But I would say the slightly more powerful Classics (Acolyte Plus) are a better all-round rod for most.

And, like you, I really like the design & construction. I take mine made-up.
 
D

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Ok, fair enough, I must have got the wrong end of the stick, it happèns :rolleyes:.

Regarding the action of the plus rod, I would say it is a fast action and striking speed is enhanced even further by the slimness and lightness of the blanks, as they cut through the air very easily. Once the tip goes round the rest of the blank will follow as the pressure is increased, so the rod has a lovely ark when under load.
Because catching small fish on the plus rod feels so good, I would describe it as a "wolf in sheeps clothing", as it can also tame quite large fish with style!
I often use mine for catching barbel and I have more than my fair share of them using the acolyte rods...amazing rods!

No harm, no foul and thank you, that was helpful.
 

Millers Thumb

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I purchased a Drennan IM9 Compact 13ft float rod from Bobco 12 mth ago i find it excellent, ive never been a connoisseur on rods of any type but at the time i wanted a rod for waggler fishing for silvers looked on Bobco website and they had this rod at 50% off but dont know were it fits in to the Acolyte/Ultra bracket, could be an option for you. (y)
 

solwood

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I had a 13ft ultra and really didn't like it, too soft for my fishing, sold it replaced with a plus, non compact, and subsequently bought a plus compact

Love both rods, 3 piece useful to hide in a boot, but usually use the compact

Happy to use 2.7lb main and .10 bottom with a 22 or 6lb straight through with a lump of meat
 
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