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Posted 22th February 2023

Product Review: 21 TD Tierra 661LFS

Product Review: 21 TD Tierra 661LFS
Product Review: 21 TD Tierra 661LFS

By Simon Goldsmith

We are spoilt for choice when it comes to light tackle spin rods in the Daiwa range. Whatever your budget, target species, or the technique that you’re using there’s a host of options to choose from.

The evolution in design and the trickle down of technologies to lower tear ranges means the days of having to spend big money to get big performance are long gone. While the 21 TD Tierra range is far from an entry level series it’s a mid-price range that delivers exceptional performance and technologies that are well above its price point. Let’s look at a model in the range that I’ve been putting through its paces during the latter part of 2022 and the start of 2023, the 661LFS.

Tech Talk

Any rod, good or bad, begins with the blank and the 21 Tierra features a HVF Nanoplus blank enhanced by two additional technologies, X45 and Braiding X. HVF Nanoplus (High Volume Fibre) is Daiwa’s mid-range, light weight, high sensitivity and strength carbon that features in many of our rod ranges, including light tackle, offshore, and surf. 

X45 (a 45-degree carbon weave within the blank) and Braiding X (a high-density carbon weave) are two technologies that help enhance blank strength, minimise blank distortion to maximise rod performance and while doing so keeping rod weight to a minimum.

Beyond the blank the 661LFS features Daiwa’s exclusive Daiwa reel seat, split EVA grips, and stainless-steel framed Fuji Fazlite guides. Slotted in the Fuji guide range between Concept O and Alconite guides, Fazlite is an aluminium oxide material that is incredibly hard, is highly thermally conductive, and very robust.

Designed to be braid proof, rod locker and knock proof, and with great performance, Fazlite guides are the great allrounder. A small hook keeper is located above the foregrip and provides anglers with a simple, catch free, spot to keep their lure safe and secure when not in use. 

Looks wise the 21 Tierra is classic in style with a black and blue colourway hard to pass up and styled to please most anglers. A black blank, grips, and bindings, with hints of cobalt blue in the bindings above and below the reel suit provides an eye-catching combination, while a Braiding X, Tierra and D-Vec logo is located on the blank above the foregrip, a X45 and HVF Nanoplus logo on the split grip, and an embossed Team Daiwa logo on the upper section of the EVA foregrip.

The Model

While the 21 Tierra range features 12 models in the range, both spin (10) and baitcaster (2), from ultra-light (702ULFS) finesse models through to heavy (601HFB) power models it was the 661LFS that jumped out at me. 

Sub seven-foot light and medium/light rods aren’t as common as 7’ and longer rods, but as an angler who more often than not reaches for a sub 7’ rod when fishing rivers and streams for bass the 661LFS is a rod that had my name written all over it. 

Due to the regular presence of overhanging bankside vegetation, and the need for tight, close quarters/underhand casting, I find a shorter rod easier to work with and the better tool to get your lure where you often need it to be, namely tight to structure and in the shade pockets.

Feel free to check out my Beginners’ Guide to River Bass blog from last year if you want a further breakdown on my outfit preferences when chasing river bass. 

Time to Fish, Time to Perform

With the 661LFS piquing my interest as a river bass rod it was logical that Queensland’s Noosa’s River over spring and summer is where the Tierra would get road tested. My favourite river-bass fishery, the Noosa is consistent in the bass fishing it has to offer yet it also provides challenges to test angler skill and tackle.

While it’s a river that’s easily fishable by beginners it’s also a waterway that enables you to reap better rewards the better the angler you are. If you’re razor sharp in casting accuracy, adept a host of different techniques and can read the nuisances of a bite that’s evolving or challenging than the Noosa River is a great system to test and hone your bass skills on.

Slotting into my rod line-up as a jighead rigged soft plastic rod, the 661LFS is a comfortable and easy rod to use. The reel seat and grips fit and sit comfortably in the hand with the raised lateral midline on the top of the reel seat and the tapered mid-section of the reel seat allowing to get a comfortable and purposeful grip of the rod. 

While the rod is comfortable and tapered to fit effortlessly in the hand the grip isn’t ultra slimline compared to those found in some other ranges. If a round super slimline grip is your thing, then the Tierra may not be the rod for you.

Casting with the 661LFS is effortless and trouble free. I found the sweet spot for lure weight was a 1/8 or 1/4 oz jighead, and when casting 2.5” Bait Junkie Minnows under overhanging trees the blank was light, nibble and balanced when making gentle subtle casts. Equally when I needed to make a longer or more powerful cast and put a bit more effort in, the blank would load effortless allowing you to get the lure where you needed it without having to work excessively hard.

Being able to hit your mark whether your casting short or long isn’t something that every sub-7’ rod can do, certainly not in my experience anyway, and certainly not in the past with mid to low range rods.

Post cast and when working your lure, in my case a jighead rigged soft plastic, the Tierra’s sensitive and refinement is there to see and feel, with the plenty of feedback provided to the angler through the blank, guides, and grip. Touches, bites, and the fouling of the lure by weed or other similar action killing add-ons could easily be felt (I was fishing 10lb J-Braid Grand).

The rod’s performance when fighting a fish equally matches its casting performance with the 661LFS subtle and giving in the tip and upper section of the rod to keep lightly pinned fish pinned, yet had plenty of backboned in the middle and lower section of the rod to allow you to apply maximum pressure and control.

The 661LFS is a highly comfortable rod to fight fish and to be honest doesn’t really lack anything when it comes to fighting fish. Sure, it doesn’t have the refinement and panache of a higher rod such as a TD Battler, Commander or Infeet EX, but it’s a rod that punches well above its price point and has plenty of performance to go with its mid-range price.

Looking Ahead

While a rod can be used for a variety of different jobs (e.g. throwing jerkbaits, topwaters, crankbaits, bait fishing, etc), in most cases they’ve been designed with a task in mind. If you look at the Infeet range of rods and what each model is designed for you’ll see what I mean. While the Tierra range isn’t as technique specific in their design as the Infeet range each model has its best use application. 

The 661LFS slots into my rod line-up as a soft plastic/allrounder rod. While I primarily used it throwing jighead rigged soft plastics (1/8-1/4oz jigheads) for river Aussie bass when I needed a shorter rod (See earlier ‘The Model’ section on the why, when and where of using shorter rods), the rod is equally at home throwing similar sized baits (soft and hard) on smaller bass lakes. Bass lakes such as Maroon and Clarrie Hall where short casting topwaters and jerkbaits to structure is a go-to technique are the type of fisheries where the 661LFS shines. 

For saltwater loving anglers the 661LFS is a great soft plastic rod for flathead, bream when throwing heavier baits and lures, salmon, and squire sized snapper. The length also makes the 661LFS an ideal length for kayak and canoe anglers who want a shorter length rod. In a nutshell the Tierra 661LFS is a rod that ticks many boxes and is a rod that will suit a variety of different angling styles, needs and anglers. If you’re in the market for a new light tackle rod that combines value with performance, then the 661LFS is a rod that you want to check out.


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