ICAST 2012 — New Products Showcase

A look at some of the new tackle and gear debuted this year at ICAST, the world's largest tackle trade show.

Browsing the 2012 ICAST New Products Showcase
Browsing the 2012 ICAST New Products Showcase
The eve of the 55th International Convention of Allied Sportfishing Trades — or ICAST — drew a nice crowd of fishing journalists and industry insiders to the annual New Product Showcase. SF's editors are live-tweeting to @SportFishingMag Twitter followers, and the tweets post to the _Sport Fishing_ magazine Facebook Fan Page. Also, look for blogs and photos on the ICAST section of our website throughout ICAST 2012.
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Talk about a sharp-looking reel. Okuma's** Makaira Special Edition** reels feature a gorgeous gun smoke and black anodizing and are offered in sizes 8, 10, 15, 20 and 30 (pictured here). With aims of maximizing angler comfort, Okuma (okumafishing.com) beefed up the handle arms and knobs on all the reels (for example, the 30 model pictured here features the handle arm and knob of a traditional MK-50 model). All non-spool bearings feature full grease pack for maximum longevity; the SE reels showcase a yellowfin tuna etched into the forged sideplates. MSRP $479.99 to $579.99. — Mike Mazur
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The new 3D Reel Eel Slug from** Savage Gear USA** (savage-gear.com) was created using 3-D imaging technology. The slow-sinking soft plastic 10-inch body and life-like 2-ounce lead head have an erratic swimming action when twitched and pulled. MSRP not available. — Jim Hendricks
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Using GPS and Ethernet, Minn Kota's** iPilot Link** (minnkotamotors.com) lets you control your trolling motor from your Humminbird fish-finder display. Link also adds new features such as Go To and Follow the Contour to provide even more control functions. MSRP $799.99. — Chris Woodward
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Okay, so maybe the Hobie **(hobie.com) Mirage Pro Angler 16, introduced last year is a bit big to call it a kayak. But its little brother, the new **Mirage Pro Angler 12, seems to incorporate all the very cool features of the 16 into a "kayak-sized" package — amazing seating and storage, and stability that allows standup fishing. It may just be the ultimate fishing kayak. — Doug Olander
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It's not all about kayaks anymore — stand-up paddleboards (SUPs) have made serious inroads with inshore anglers in recent years, especially those who like to stalk the flats. Freedom Hawk (freedomhawkkayaks.com) released its first SUP, the Predator, during the New Product Showcase. Checking in at only 30 pounds, it is built from foam and composite material. Paddle effortlessly and see the fish with ease! MSRP $1,895. — Mike Mazur
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Some of the Sport Fishing magazine crew hard at work (left to right: Stephanie Pancratz, Jim Hendricks, Doug Olander).
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Raymarine's (raymarine.com) latest — the a-Series Touchscreen Multifunction Display — is sold as a plotter or plotter/sounder. Networkable, the a-Series can connect up to five displays plus radar, CHIRP sonar, satellite weather and more. MSRP not available. — Chris Woodward
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The new Tranx 500 HG reel from Shimano (shimano.com) is a monster baitcaster with a 6.6:1 gear ratio, big star drag, and a beefy handle. It is designed with a low profile for casting for tuna, tarpon, stripers and other powerful saltwater fish. MSRP $499.99. — Jim Hendricks
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The new Chum Bucket Sabiki from Owner (ownerhooks.com) has a molded plastic mini-bucket at the bottom of the rig that holds finely cut baitfish to help chum in fish. It also has a built in 1-ounce weight in the bucket, and each hook is gold and adorned with pink shrimp skin. MSRP $6. — Jim Hendricks
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Accurate's tiny new SR6 is the company's latest addition to the TwinSpin line. Its description in the New Product Showcase doesn't give many specs away, but the SR6 was built to fish braid and offers patented Accurate's twinDrag system (accuratefishing.com). MSRP $599. — Chris Woodward
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The Drift Paddle is an accessory for Power-Pole's shallow-water anchors and works like a drift sock to slow your boat. It also lets you quickly change the bow angle and drift direction (power-pole.com). MSRP $195. — Chris Woodward
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I've been fishing a little Smoke reel for the past year or so, and I confess that I love the damned thing. So I'm really excited to see that Quantum (quantumfishing.com) now offers this super-light aluminum Inshore reel with sealed drag and seven bearings for saltwater use. For $150, it should be a great light-tackle tool! — Doug Olander
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How about an on-demand leader — there when you need it but otherwise invisible? That's the concept behind the new SpoolTek Swimbait from Justice Tackle & Co., with a steel leader that winds up to stay hidden inside the head of the Swimbait until a fish is hooked. — Doug Olander
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How do you make a classic lure even better? Start with a proven model, such as the Yo-Zuri (yo-zuri.com) Bonita, a high-speed, big-game trolling lure that's excellent for wahoo, tuna and other species. Add Yo-Zuri's patented Sashimi color change technology and wave motion technology, and you've got a lure that not only swims great, but looks terrific. Built with wire construction and two flat forged stainless steel hooks with ball bearing swivels, the new Sashimi Bonita is a hot-looking lure. MSRP $49.99 to $59.99. — Mike Mazur