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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Broke a Seeker Hercules 70L factory rod (I know I am as surprised as you are) while fishing and called and sent it back to Seeker. They "inspected" the blank and determined it is not covered under its Lifetime Warranty due to the fact the blank was "Overstressed". I guess where I am having an issue is that I understand the whole "if you slam it in your car door its on you thing", but if it happens while fishing, well, I would think/assume/hope it would be on them, and there would be a better customer service response.

This is me just giving my opinion as a consumer and letting others know the experience I had. I own way too many rods, many of which are seekers, and have had only good experiences, and never claimed anything under their warranty until now. I would have hoped that when I had a legitimate problem they would have been more reasonable, if for no other reason than for good PR.

If nothing else consider this example the next time you think about buying a rod. It may not be the deciding factor, as most of the time Seeker's as well as other high end rods are extremely well built and reliable. IMHO a company should be much more consumer friendly in dealing with a broken product, especially when it is a $300+ factory fishing rod.

Lee
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
How did the rod break?
The rod broke swinging a blackfish in the boat. It didn't break completely, just split the blank vertically on the underside. This was not a "high stick" or anything close to that, just a regular swing. The seeker pro staffers have posted plenty of pictures on social media showing them swinging fish in, which would lead me to believe that it is not a no-no.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Sorry to read about your problem.

What was the weight of the blackfish and how much lead were you using?

Neil
Neil,

It was not a huge fish maybe 6-7lbs? Using 8 oz. of lead. Didn't think I would have an issue as I have lifted larger fish than that, albeit using a different rod. Like I said, it was surprising to say the least.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I wish i had taken a picture before i sent it back so i could post. The rod didn't "snap" it made a popping sound and then there was a vertical crack through the blank. Not sure whether that means de-laminating or not.
 

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Hi,

Did this crack happen in the area where the tip goes from flex to stiff? I ask as I have not fished an Inshore Lite.

Many years ago The LI Fisherman had a great article about stress on blanks. Their testing proved that when holding the rod between 3 and 5 o'clock the most stress was placed on the fish and not on the blank. Raising the tip above 3 o'clock heading towards 12 o'clock produced less stress on the fish and more stress on the blank. Swinging a fish over the side is basically high sticking. Many times you see an angler on a pb waiting for a mate with the rod tip up and a fish handing below the tip. I have seen them with the butt resting on the deck and the fish hanging off the tip. And then, a rifle shot! The weakest ares of a blank are where there are changes in design, flexible tip area to mid section of blank and even the mid section to the butt area. Graphite is very strong but it's achilles heel is it's stiffness.

Neil
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hi,

Did this crack happen in the area where the tip goes from flex to stiff? I ask as I have not fished an Inshore Lite.

Many years ago The LI Fisherman had a great article about stress on blanks. Their testing proved that when holding the rod between 3 and 5 o'clock the most stress was placed on the fish and not on the blank. Raising the tip above 3 o'clock heading towards 12 o'clock produced less stress on the fish and more stress on the blank. Swinging a fish over the side is basically high sticking. Many times you see an angler on a pb waiting for a mate with the rod tip up and a fish handing below the tip. I have seen them with the butt resting on the deck and the fish hanging off the tip. And then, a rifle shot! The weakest ares of a blank are where there are changes in design, flexible tip area to mid section of blank and even the mid section to the butt area. Graphite is very strong but it's achilles heel is it's stiffness.

Neil
The crack was on the underside in the bend of the blank it was probably 4 to 5 guides down the blank so certainly close to the point I believe you are explaining. I can accept that things like this happen if you fish enough. What I can not accept is a company that refuses to honor a warranty that it puts in big letters on the tag when it sells the rod. Hopefully they will reconsider their decision, but time will tell.
 

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How many times have I seen this? Too many!

Customer has fish on and having trouble getting fish over the rail. Mate grabs the rod half way up and swings fish. He just reduced the length of the blank in half and is putting all the stress on the top of the rod. This is fine if the mates does in on the boat rods as it becomes their problem if rod breaks. But then most pb rods are beasts or very flexible. DO NOT do that to any rod that I am using.

If a nice fish is coming up ask for the net OR wind up, get the fish on the surface, lean over the rail and lift the fish in holding the leader.

Yes, I agree swinging fish is a ton of fun, especially big blues. But you need a lot pof room to swing them properly. You need room behind you so that the lift is in one easy motion. Once you have the fish flying it's momentum will do the rest so the tip is not doing the work. Then let the tip follow the direction of the fish. As it hits the deck, release line so the tip is free.

Think about this. Every blank is rated for a casting range, say 1-3 ounces. That is the range of lures that the tip can handle when casting. Now when that same blank is used to swing big fish the top area of the rod is over loaded.

I suspect you swung that fish pretty fast. If you had been slower I think the blank would be in 2 or 3 pieces as the graphite material would have been twisted and shredded due to the stress.

Folks these blanks we are using today can not take the abuse the blanks of 30 years ago could. It is a new ball game. Most of the blanks I build on I tell my customers that they are finesse sticks and treat them as such. We have 30# class blanks with #7 tips. Years ago that would be a #12 or better. We are fishing with blanks that weight less than 2 ounces instead of 6 or 7 ounces. Yes, graphite is more sensitive and stronger but that comes with a price. They have to be treated kindly!

If a blank fails during the first couple of usages a good guess is that it was a manufacturing defect. I have had a blank break the first time I checked the spine before building it. That is mo where near the pressure a fish would put on it.

I do find that the blank manufacturers are very good when replacing blanks/rods. I would call them again. Maybe some one had a bad day or the person before your call/inspection gave the employee a hard time. Good fortune.

I hope this helps.

Neil
 

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Bad Service

Its just bad service --- I agree with you --- a company as large as Seeker --- selling high end factory rods --- its bad business --- and I'm glad you have posted. I believe its a question of luck (in your case bad luck) the rod goes to Seeker / the guy or woman who looks at it --- the night before their significant other had headache which resulted in a case of built up tension. They come to work the next day / in comes your rod / the seeker employee looks up on the wall and sees the memo that was sent down from the Seeker front office bean counter which states: " please reject at least one in 10 warranty requests" / he looks back down at your rod / he thinks about the night before / he looks back up on the wall to the memo / then he makes the subjective decision: Dear Sir, you have used the rod in a manner which has voided the warranty, have a nice day / Sincerely Yours Seeker Rods USA!
 

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I broke a Calstar 700M. There was a replacement cost of 75.00 for the blank.

Seeker has the same warranty policy. Its limited lifetime against defects. If you lift any fish over the rail on any brand graphite blank its going to break. Lifting a fish is a high stick. You at some point have to go vertical with the rod.

Seeker didnt offer to replace the blank at some replacement cost?

If a blank is defective they usually break in the first few times you use them.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I broke a Calstar 700M. There was a replacement cost of 75.00 for the blank.

Seeker has the same warranty policy. Its limited lifetime against defects. If you lift any fish over the rail on any brand graphite blank its going to break. Lifting a fish is a high stick. You at some point have to go vertical with the rod.

Seeker didnt offer to replace the blank at some replacement cost?

If a blank is defective they usually break in the first few times you use them.
The did offer a to replace it at a cost, and it may unfortunately end up being my only resolution. However, I do not believe it should have to come to that. I understand that if companies continually honor a blanket warranty they claim to lose a lot of money, however if a factory rod costs $300+ and comes with a warranty, it is silly to think some degree of cushion is not built into the purchase price to deal with warranty replacements.
 

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The only company that is giving free replacement is Shimano.

Seeker and Calstar are not big companies. They are losing money for sure on a completed rod with a $70-75.00 replacement. Titanium guides, S glass go price it out.

Lamiglas, St. Croix, G Loomis all have gone to limited lifetime warranty.

I believe the day that Shimano drops its no questions ask lifetime warranty all the other companies will go to a straight 2-5 yr warranty.

If you think about it nothing really has a lifetime warranty. A fishing rod with so many variables going into what keeps it together a lifetime warranty is bad business IMO.

Good Luck.
 

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I am very sorry i have to even respond to this comment but i have decided to state the facts! First thing is....we have a limited Lifetime warranty not a blanket warranty policy. we cover
our rods for material and workmanship which means in the event you get a rod that breaks pre maturely do to over sanding air pocket lose tack or one of a few other instances that can get past us in inspection we will cover the rod 100% furthermore our warranty policy is the same as any of the other reputable fishing rod manafactures wich include Cal star loomis St croix lamiglass ect!!!!!! our warranty policy is a very reasonable $75 which doesnt even cover the cost of the titanium guides that are on your hercules rod plus we have offered to take care of the return shipping charges. Now lets get to the facts about your specific hercules 70L rod........upon initial inspection it is my opinion that you have had this rod no less than 2 years and have used it successfully for at least that period of time, if a rod has a warrantable defect it will always fail the first or second time you use it........a blank is either bad or good it is not a grey area where its kinda bad or kinda good. now in further inspection of your specific rod the blank did not de-laminate as the graphite pattern on that blank goes 3 inches farther up the rod than the point in which you broke this rod. also the most noticable thing about the break in your rod is the fact that the stress fracture is on the bottom side of the rod not the top. Blanks do not stretch on the bottom they compress which means that this rod was over-stressed with the guides pointed down..........my summary is this! i personally believe this rod was held near the tip to lift the 6lb fish and 8 oz sinker out of the water with the reel and guides pointed down and that this rod was completely over-stressed beyond its physical capabilities..........and this being said i'm am very disappointed in your responses on this site and others regarding the warranty of a rod that you are very aware was operator error. Signed Randy Penny Seeker fishing rods production manager
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 · (Edited)
Randy,

Thanks for your input. That being said I do not believe user error caused the rod to break as you suggest. I did swing the fish, no question. And in a message I sent to Darin yesterday I explained how, and that there was a picture on a popular social media site of a pro staffer also swinging a yellowtail over the rail. If swinging a fish is user error in the opinion of Seeker there isn't much more to discuss. Sorry to have wasted your time, but I believe the situation should be as public as possible so that the consumer understands the ground rules for your warranty and how your company handles issues such as this. If this is the final word, please have someone contact me for payment information on a replacement.
 

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The only company that is giving free replacement is Shimano.

Seeker and Calstar are not big companies. They are losing money for sure on a completed rod with a $70-75.00 replacement. Titanium guides, S glass go price it out.

Lamiglas, St. Croix, G Loomis all have gone to limited lifetime warranty.

I believe the day that Shimano drops its no questions ask lifetime warranty all the other companies will go to a straight 2-5 yr warranty.

If you think about it nothing really has a lifetime warranty. A fishing rod with so many variables going into what keeps it together a lifetime warranty is bad business IMO.

Good Luck.
well said
 
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