Sunday, 3 November 2013

Hardy Reel Checks.

A question often asked, but not always understood, is what is the difference between the various Hardy reel checks?

Hopefully the photos below will begin to answer the question.
Please note that the displayed checks are the Hardy Perfect version, other models were sometimes slightly different.
All comments and corrections welcomed btw.

Early Check ~ around 1890 t0 1896

 1896 Check ~ 1896 - 1904

1904 (some say 1905) check ~ 1904 - 1911

1912 Check ~ 1911 - 1917

Duplicated Mk1 check ~ 1917 - 1922

Duplicated Mk11 ~ 1922 to 1927 (non-engagable spare)

Duplicated Mk11 ~ 1927 to  . . post WW2

 Compensating Check Mechanism

A variation as used on the LRH etc.

Another variation - as used on the Golden Prince among others

And for fun, a few silent options

There are numerous other variations. As time permits, and I get the chance to photograph examples, I will add them here. 

All comments welcomed, and photos of variants too.

Sunday, 29 September 2013

Leaded reels & nonsense.

Leaded reels & nonsense.

Leaded aluminium fly-fishing reels first appeared near the end of the 19th century. The bronzing and leading methods were closely guarded by the different makers, but are all basically similar.

The “bronzing” consists of a number of noxious compounds and strong acids [I won’t reveal the formula because I’d hate to be responsible for the irresponsible] Suffice to say that some are highly toxic and others highly corrosive.
These were applied and removed in accordance with each maker’s procedures ~ this is what creates the lovely bronze/gold tint on some old aluminium reels.

The “leading” was simply the application of a layer of graphite over the bronzing. Some say they used pure carbon, some say they used a proprietary fire-grate paste  . . all I know is that they created the lovely dark grey colour named after darkly oxidised lead.
The leading wasn’t complete until they varnished/lacquered the carbon coating to give that lovely sheen of mint pre WW2 reels.

One of my biggest groans these days is seeing so-called experts, usually on the internet, advocating some wonderful petroleum based oil/wax magic brew for “saving” your old reel.
They have absolutely no idea what the reel lacquer is, or how it will react to petrol based concoctions. I’ve used petroleum spirits to remove varnish in the past . . . ???
As for how it will react with the compounds contained in the bronzing solution . . . .
[The same logic applies to soaking old leaded reels in an acetic acid solution . . . really?]

Just say “No” to exotic chemicals. Soap and water and a soft cloth, occasionally – save the tiny drop of oil for the pawl and the spindle only.

You have to wonder how many reels, which had survived for a century, have been ruined as a result of these clowns' ignorance.

The Lindso Collection ~ by Roar Lindso.

The Lindsø Collection ~ by Roar Lindsø


It takes a certain kind of man, with deep pockets, to create the collection of fishing tackle recorded here.
Roar Lindsø is such a man. This book is a record of his personal collection of vintage tackle.
In a very short period of time he has searched out and bought some fine quality reels, including many early vom Hofes and some desirable Hardy Perfects including Brass faced and classic wide drum models.
The book displays most reels in some detail. Here I should state that the quality of both the paper and the photos is excellent and will allow the viewer who is also a collector to study the minor differences which can mean so much in both collecting and monetary terms.

This book is more than just a few photos of vintage fishing tackle. In many cases Roar has tried to track the history of  the reels he has acquired and to give a brief history of the maker. This will help the beginner and refresh the memory of some of us older collectors.

Apart from the above mentioned vom Hofes and Hardys there are chapters on Zwarg, Saracione and Loop with some more fine photos. There’s also a section on early rods which include an Edward vom Hofe seven strip and my favourite, a 9’ 3/2 Gillum Salmon.

Edit, 11th October 2013 - the next edition is now at the printers. It contains additional items including Noel and Saracione sections and some corrections to previous chapters.
The copy has been edited for "English" by a very able young lady so we now have a more readable book.

I wish Roar every success.

[[There are a couple of minor errors which I am sure will be fixed in future editions. In my copy the index states “Bo Mohlin fly reel” on page 138, but it’s actually an early wooden reel. In the Hardy section, echoing Graham Turner’s description, he refers to “early check” for what most of my acquaintances now call the “1896” and save the term “early check” for the variation which preceded the 1896.

The English in the first edition, which I was fortunate to read, left a little to be desired, but still better than my Scandiwegian. I have some good inside information that the second edition will be greatly improved in this respect.]]

Now for the commercial break folks, there will be a new, expanded edition of Mr Lindso's book coming soon. Keep checking back for details.