The Precision Noodle (PN) and Bullwhip (BW) are rods with much in common, but also with important differences. In this blog, we hope to help you feel confident in the best uses of each rod and be able to make the best choice for you.
The Precision Noodle and the Bullwhip are both “Noodle” type rods. They have a very light tip, that is very sensitive to any fish activity. Both tips are painted (Hi-Viz Green for the PN and Hi-Viz Yellow for the BW) to help you see every bite. Both rods are built on solid fiberglass blanks and feature Recoil Guides. Both rods fit into the “Visual Bite” category. Meaning, you will see the bite happen before you feel the bite. Both rods are designed to fish small panfish jigs. Finally, both rods are built with a powerful backbone to help control the fight and help land any surprise larger fish.
While both the PN and the BW look similar, there are important differences to be aware of. The biggest difference is in the lightness of the tip.
The Precision Noodle is the lightest and most sensitive rod we build. It has a tip that is designed for the smallest lead jigs (1/64 ounce) up to small (3-4mm) tungsten jigs. With these weights, the tip of the PN is reactive and balanced. When you fish larger baits, the tip tends to become overloaded and less precise when you jig.
The Bullwhip has a slightly heavier tip and a stouter backbone compared to the PN. The BW is designed to be used with small (1/32 ounce) lead jigs up to all tungsten jigs, and the smallest spoons and Rippin’ Raps (up to 1/8 ounce). This makes the BW a far more versatile rod than the PN and the better first choice for many buyers. Many people also use the BW as a walleye dead stick, since it has a great backbone, able to handle fish that are quite large.
Picking the Right Panfish Rod
The Precision Noodle and the Bullwhip offer a similar fishing experience. Both are excellent at detecting the lightest bites, including up-bites. Both have strong backbones and a quick hyperbolic bend. Choose the PN if you plan on fishing the smallest and lightest baits available for ice fishing, or when the bite is very negative or neutral. Choose the BW if you are looking for versatility or if you are planning on mostly using tungsten jigs.
Bonus-How to Fish Them
The PN and BW are both “Noodle” style rods and they require a certain way of fishing. When I first starting using my BW, I would see the bite but miss the hookset. It was frustrating. It took me a while to learn that the hookset is different from other rods that rely on feel.
When you see the bite on the PN or BW lift the whole rod along the same plane you are jigging on (horizontally). Don’t jerk the rod tip up quickly. You just need to lift the rod in a fluid motion. This will help you hook more fish and keep them pinned during the fight.