Pilk Rod Review: 6 Sea Rods Under $100 Reviewed & Comparison


In our Pilgrim’s Rod Test we present you 6 sea rods under 100€ in comparison. A pilk rod is in most cases a special fishing rod that has been developed for pilk fishing.  Typical characteristics are often that they are a bit stronger and at the same time shorter. The size varies from rod to rod, but they are usually between 2.10 m and 2.80 m. This is why they are so short to make them easier to handle on a cutter or boat.

Pilgrim’s Rods are also very often used for particularly high casting weights.  Especially for heavy pilk fishing there are some rods with a casting weight of up to 200 g. Another characteristic of a typical pilk rod is also the tip action. This ensures a smooth cast even in very deep waters. However, the tip action should not be too soft. Otherwise there is a risk that the rod will not accelerate quickly enough or that a hard stop cannot be set when a bite is made.

Pilk fishing is usually done with a paternoster or, of course, a pilker which, depending on the target fish, is lowered to the bottom. Since often very large fish are caught, most pilk rods are equipped with a strong backbone. Especially when fishing from a boat, an additional gaff is needed to pull the hooked fish onto the boat.

Since there are a large number of pilgrim rods on the market, we have looked at and tested various models. So you can easily find the right pilk rod for you.

Note: From time to time it may happen that selected pilk rods are not available for a short time. If this is the case, you will find many sea fishing rods on this overview page.

This is how we tested the pilk rods

Every pilk rod we have held in our hands we have checked for the following criteria:

  • Action
  • Backbone
  • Weight
  • Workmanship and quality
  • Price / performance

For the first point, it was most important to us that the sea rod has a soft, but not too soft tip action. As already mentioned at the beginning, this allows the pilker to accelerate quickly or to set a hard stop when biting.

Of course we also looked at the backbone of the pilk rod. Especially from the boat this feature is very important so that the rod does not break at the first bite.

It was also important to us that the pilk rod is not too heavy. Pilk rods must be basically stable and have a strong backbone, due to the possibly very capital catches. Nevertheless, the weight should not be too high, because otherwise this is strongly at the expense of comfort. A very high rod weight also reduces the fun of casting the rod. Often you have to hold the rod for a longer period of time when you are drilling. Also here a high weight is not necessarily conducive. Therefore, we have of course also looked at the total weight of the respective pilk rod.

In addition the workmanship and quality was very important to us. Especially when sea fishing the rod is exposed to heavy loads. That means it must be resistant to salt water and salt water air. These properties are reflected in the quality and workmanship. The material used is also not insignificant here.

Finally we evaluated the pilk rod according to the price/performance ratio. If this was particularly good, we rewarded this also accordingly positively. Now we do not want to beat about the bush and start with the first test. Have fun with it.

Balzer Magna Gorilla MX-3 PILK in test

The Magna Gorilla MX-3 PILK from Balzer is a 2.80 m long pilk rod. We have been cod fishing with this model and have not regretted it 🙂 Equipped with the right equipment and the right cod mounting, we started. First of all we have to say that this is a light cod rod, which can be used perfectly at the North Sea or Baltic Sea.

Thanks to the soft tip action it is very sensitive and shows every, even the smallest plucker without any problems. Nevertheless, it has a strong backbone which is also useful for larger fish. We also liked the many small details. For example, the reel seat is made of high quality stainless steel.

Also the rod rings are made of SiC and therefore especially hard. Who does not know that really cheap rod rings can break off quickly or get calluses due to the friction of the fishing line. We have never had problems with SiC rings before. We also tried them with a braided line which worked very well

Unfortunately the handles are not completely made of cork but partly of Duplon – a foam-like material. Here we would have wished a little more cork. But apart from that it makes a very high quality end impression on us.

Picture of the pilk rod

On the following picture, you can see the model. If the picture is too small for you, click on it for an enlargement:

Pilkruten test summary

The following is a summary of all important points for you:

  • Brand: Balzer
  • Length: 2,80 m
  • Transport length: 1,45 m
  • Weight: 385 g
  • Casting weight: 40 – 185 g
  • parts: 2
  • hard backbone
  • Titanium SiC rings
  • also suitable for braided lines
  • Powertip tip
  • Including high quality fabric sheath

Conclusion on the pilgrim’s rod test

At the price of just under 40 Euros you can’t really complain much. It is solidly made and does exactly what it is supposed to do when fishing for cod. Last but not least the soft tip action and the rigid backbone of the pilk rod should be mentioned here. We used a classic pilker for it and were thus able to enjoy a relatively capital cod. Here still our graphic evaluation:

Penn Squadron Pilk 302 3,00m 2tlg 80-140g 1339596 Pilkrute

The AnzeigePenn Squadron 302 is a 3 m long pilk rod. The material of the blank consists of 24T+30T carbon which is considered to be very stable. During our test we found out that this pilk rod has a super strong backbone during the drill.

The rod is also supplied in a cloth case. This protects against weather conditions and the transport of the pilk rod to the water. We find this a nice extra in any case, as such a protective cover is not available on the cheaper models.

All in all it comes to a casting weight between 80 and 140 g. We think that the casting weight for piloting is ok, but we also present rods with a casting weight of up to 250 g in this test. But for light pilkers the Penn Squadron Pilk 302 is definitely suitable. Especially beginners will appreciate the light weight and the comfortable handling with this rod.

Official Illustration

Here is a picture of the pilk rod:

A short summary

The most important points for you in the summary:

  • Brand: Penn
  • Delivery: 1 rod
  • Length: 3,00 m
  • Casting weight: 80-140 g
  • Transport length: 155cm
  • Weight: 279 g


In the end the Penn Squadron Pilk 302 is a pilk rod for easy piloting. We are convinced that beginners and advanced pilots will have fun with this model. You will also notice that the complete rod including blank, rod holder and rod grip is designed for salt water. In this respect we have not seen any loss of quality over a period of 4 weeks. If you prefer a very good price/performance ratio, you will certainly have a lot of fun with this pilk rod. Here is our evaluation with the most important information for a better overview:

DAM Steelpower Red Shad & Pilk to the pilk rod test

Note: It is possible that the article is currently not available. The following display pilk rods are an alternative.

The DAM Steelpower Red Shad & Pilk indicator is a 2.70 m long spade rod for medium to heavy pilk fishing. We have tested this model in the fjords of Norway. It has a casting weight of 40 to 170 g. This of course makes it very flexible.

The DAM Steelpower Red Shad & Pilk has a strong backbone with quite yielding tip action. You will notice this at the latest during your first drill while fishing for cod. As bait we used a pilk with a total weight of 180 g and achieved good to very good results.

Even with a transport length of 1.40 m, it can be transported relatively easily. All in all it consists of two parts which are put into each other. With a weight of 305 g it is not the heaviest but also not the lightest rod.


Here is a picture of the pilk rod:

The most important things at a glance:

The most important points for you in the summary:

  • Brand: DAM
  • TC 24 L Carbon structure
  • Length: 2,70 m
  • Transport length: approx. 140 cm
  • Parts: 2
  • Weight: 305 g
  • Casting weight: 40-170 g


All in all, we can definitely recommend this pilk rod. It is very flexible in handling and casting weight. Also in terms of workmanship and quality, it makes a good impression. Furthermore it is not even expensive. Perfect if you don’t want to spend too much money and still want a relatively light and flexible rod for piloting. Here is our evaluation:

DAM Steelpower Lite Boat – Boat Rod

Note: It is possible that this item is currently not available. The following display pilots are an alternative.

The adDAM Steelpower Lite Boat is a boat rod that can also be used for pilk fishing. It is available in 5 different sizes. These are:

  • 1,8 m
  • 2,1 m
  • 2,4 m
  • 2,7 m
  • 3,0 m

We chose the longest version because we wanted to use it not only on the boat but mainly on the surf. And here it really paid off. However, we recommend all those who are looking for a rod mainly for boat fishing to use either the 1.80 m or the 2.10 m version. These are the easiest to use on the often very narrow boats.

The 3.00 m sea rod has a very high casting weight of 100 to 250 g and is therefore the perfect companion for heavy pilk fishing. However, it is not a lightweight either. All in all, it weighs 500 g. This makes the DAM Steelpower Lite Boat the heaviest rod among the pilk rods tested and presented here.

However, it also has an incredibly strong backbone which is especially useful for heavy cod fishing. But it is also suitable for smaller fish if you use less heavy baits. So we have successfully found several small mackerels with this pilk rod.

And concerning the action it cuts a good figure.

Picture of the boat rod

Below you will find a picture of the DAM Steelpower Lite Boat:

The most important things at a glance

All the important points about the pilk rod test you need to know:

  • Brand: DAM
  • Length 3 m / 10 ft
  • casting weight: 100 – 250g / 3,53 – 8,82oz
  • weight: 500 g / 17,64 oz
  • parts: 2
  • transport length: 155 cm / 5,17 ft


The DAM Steelpower Lite Boat is especially suitable for people for whom weight is not so important. Otherwise the sea rod can be very heavy during the fight. Especially when you have to hold it longer. But apart from that it makes a very good impression on us, regarding workmanship and material. Here are the most important results for you:

WFT Pilkrute Never Crack Senso Pilk

The WFT Pilkrute Never Crack Senso Pilk is a relatively light pilk rod with a weight of 360 g. In total it has a length of 2,40 m. As the rod consists of 2 parts of the same size, the transport length is only 1.20 m. In our opinion, this is a relatively handy transport size.

Many will probably know them from one or the other fishing magazine. We also liked the workmanship. The handles are extremely non-slip – even in really wet weather. Especially in Norway the weather can change quickly on the boat. And here, handles that don’t slip out of hand so quickly prove themselves enormously.

We also liked the backbone of the pilk rod very much. This is extremely stable – even with heavy bites like a capital cod or pollack. Even the manufacturer writes that it is considered almost indestructible. Perfect if you are looking for a relatively cheap pilk rod for heavy pilk fishing.

In total there are 6 rod rings. All of them are made of the very robust material SiC. Even if you take a closer look at the rings, you will simply feel the high quality workmanship, as you are used to from WFT.

Here is a picture

Here is the official picture of WFT:

All important data at a glance

Short and sweet, the most important at a glance

  • Brand: WFT
  • Length: 240 cm
  • Throwing weight: 50-160 g
  • Transport dimensions: 1.25 m
  • Weight: 360 g
  • Parts: 2


All in all this rod is a real bargain. If you want to buy a pilk rod which is considered to be particularly stable and robust and you do not want to pay so much, you should strike here. In terms of quality, it is a real bargain when measured by price. Therefore we give a clear recommendation to buy.

WFT Pro Salt Speed Pilk Traveller

Note: It is possible that the item is currently not available. Alternatively, the following display pilk rods are available.

Admittedly, the WFT Pro Salt Speed Pilk Traveller display is a few euros over 100 euros. But we had to take it with us, because you normally can’t get past it. Well we liked it also immediately when unpacking that it is very small of the transport dimensions with only 58 cm. Therefore the box in which it was delivered was relatively manageable. We even asked ourselves if she should really be in there 😉

In this test it is the pilk rod with the smallest transport length. This is mainly because it has a total of 6 parts that can all be put into each other. Thus ideally also as a travel rod usable.

In total it has a solid basic length of 2,60 m for a pilk rod. The casting weight from 50 to 200 g, gives you the necessary flexibility.  However, the rod holder sits a bit far forward. Here we would have liked to have a better balance. Therefore the casting behaviour is not so ideal.

The official picture

Here is another picture. Click on the picture to enlarge it:

Short & concise

Everything important, in the following an overview of the pilk rod test:

  • Brand: WFT
  • Model: Pro Salt Sea Jigger Traveller
  • Weight: 310 g
  • Length: 2,60m
  • Transport length: 58cm
  • Parts: 5
  • Casting weight: 50-200 g
  • Put rod
  • ringed


All in all this pilk rod is ok, but expensive. Also the balance leaves a bit to be desired. But if you prefer a short transport length you will also land some cod with this rod.

Closing words to the pilk rod test

If you have not yet found the right pilk rod for you, then just take a look at the ad fishing spot. Here there are different, boat, sea and pilk rods in direct comparison. We hope that you enjoyed the pilkruten test.

Best regards,

your hand fishing team

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