Recently I was asked to test an Ocean’s Legacy Dream Cast DCL-S882L Light Shore Game spinning rod to see whether it was suitable for estuary fishing in NZ. I’ve used it now for over a month and to be honest it is a truly remarkable rod.
Before testing any spinning rod it is critically important to select a spinning reel that best matches the way the manufacturer has placed the guides on the rod. I checked out all of my reels and the Daiwa Luvias 3000 matched it perfectly. If you want to learn more about how to match spinning rods and reels then click on: – MATCHING SPINNING REELS TO RODS
The Dream Cast DCL-S882L rod is an 8’8” (264 cm) two-piece spinning rod rated for PE braid between 1.0 and 2.0 and lures 12-30 grams. At first glance, these specifications seemed a little bit heavy for the finesse soft bait and light lure fishing that I do on the saltwater flats but in reality, the rod handled them very well, as I’ll explain later.
The rod is made from Japanese quality 40T Toray Carbon high modulus fibres and a cross carbon woven structure. The tip section is sanded and epoxied smooth whereas the butt section is just epoxied, and you can still feel the striations in the blank. There is a ~ 45 cm section of dark grey cross weave just up from the handle which looks like snakeskin. It sets off the butt section very nicely by adding contrast to the blank. Understated elegance.
The high modulus graphite blank is largely unpainted and the blank on the test rod was flawless. The bottom guide is double foot whereas the remainder are single foot. Thread work is black with silver and royal blue accents on the bottom two guides whereas the single foot guides are attached with black thread with silver accents only. The epoxy has been applied with meticulous precision. There is a single band of metallic blue thread to indicate the guide centre. The threadwork is top drawer. The Dream cast is a lovely appointed and finished rod.
The Dream Cast is supplied in a heavy-duty nylon rod bag. The top of the bag has Velcro tabs and when this is folded down these secure the folded portion onto the body of the bag. This ensures the two sections are kept in place. There is a tie at the bottom of the bag to keep everything together. Simply clever.
The joint is tip over butt and is an excellent fit. I applied a small amount of rod wax when I first got the rod and the joint has not loosened off at all while fishing. In the hand the rod feels light and tip responsive.
The rod is made with high quality Fuji componentry. The guides are stainless framed KW Alconite and the reel seat fitting is a modified up-locking VSS17 model with a Duplon cover over the locking nut and is manufactured from a composite material. There is one large guide on the butt section and 7 in the tip section to spread the load and smooth the curve when the rod is bent under pressure. The reel seat holds the reel firmly and does not loosen off during use.
The handle is around 56 cm long and has a split rear grip. The fore and rear grips are aggressively tapered to the front. The fore grip almost feels like a reversed half-Wells grip because of the slight swell in the winch fitting. The aggressive taper on the fore grip allows you to align your forefinger along the grip to improve sensitivity.
Despite the Duplon handles, blank sensitivity is remarkably good especially when retrieving lures and I cannot find fault with it in that regard. Sensitivity when “wet lining” soft plastics is also very good.
To “wet line” soft plastics successfully you need a long rod to reposition the braid as the lure travels downstream and ideally the rod should not weigh much more than a fly rod else it puts excessive strain on the forearms and shoulder. At 264 cm the Dream Cast is perfect for this style of fishing. The rod weight is ~ 177 grams which is fine when balanced with a light spinning reel such as the Luvias. For more information on “wet lining” soft plastics click on: – “WETLINING” SOFT PLASTICS
The casting distance achieved with lures in the rated range using #1.0 PE braid was around 75 metres, depending on wind strength and direction. The effort required to generate casts of this distance is minimal. Distance was comparable to that achieved with a slightly longer Yamaga Blanks rod. Impressive.
However, what was truly remarkable is how well this rod cast lighter lures when I switched spools on the Luvias and stepped down to #0.8 PE braid. With 10-gram Toby lures I was still casting 75 metres and with 7-gram soft plastics, 50 metres into a cross wind. This means if you carry a spare spool for your spinning reel you can fish light if the situation requires it and change spools and step up in line weight if there are larger fish around. It is a versatile piece of kit.
I’ve had no issue landing kahawai up to 5lb on the rod and I have no doubt it could easily handle anything I’m likely to encounter on the flats.
The performance of this rod is very similar to my favourite Yamaga Blanks Evo Ballistick 94/16 so I measured the blank taper to see how close the two rods were. The blank taper is virtually identical. Coincidence or a deliberate ploy? Fascinating.
In summary, the rod is an absolute joy to use, a seamless extension of your arm. The accuracy you can achieve when casting soft plastics near moored boats is phenomenal. You know you’ve reached a state of “casting zen” with a rod when you can cast purely by instinct and the lures go exactly where you wanted. It truly is a dream to cast.
Despite its impressive build quality and performance, there are a couple of things that could be improved. Firstly, there is no hook ring to attach lures to when in transit to a fishing spot which means that the lure inevitably ends up being attached to the frame of the bottom guide which is less than ideal. If the lure is attached closer to the reel then the hooks inevitably ends up damaging the Duplon which is disappointing. Secondly, the section alignment dots are marginally out of sync. Close enough but not precisely accurate.
Overall I would thoroughly recommend this rod to anyone looking for a spinning rod for shore based saltwater fishing with light lures and would give it 9.5 out of 10 for performance.
If you are interested in investigating this rod further then it is available in NZ from Option Tackle. Send an e-mail to:- firstname.lastname@example.org
NOTE: Active Angling NZ is asked to independently test and review many items of fishing tackle throughout the year. If the product is exceptional then a review will be written and published. If the product is not fit-for-purpose then it will be returned to the supplier with constructive criticism. This feedback is confidential and will not be shared publicly.