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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 09 Jul 2011, 13:42 • # 1 
Master Guide
Joined: 12/27/08
Posts: 797
Location: US-MO
I think that I have seen some reels referred to as tuna cans (martin reels come to mind)---can someone give me some examples of these and why they are called that. Are they a good reel? Is there one that is better than the others?


Last edited by midmofly on 09 Jul 2011, 15:00, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 09 Jul 2011, 14:33 • # 2 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 09/29/06
Posts: 4426
Location: Willamette Valley, Oregon
Models 60-65. Backsides look like bottom of a tuna can and I reckon the size is similar. Bulldog's the fellow who thought of it. Sold by the thousands upon thousands. If you like them they are good. Don't cost much so pick up one or two and see what you think.


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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 09 Jul 2011, 15:29 • # 3 
Guide
Joined: 12/30/08
Posts: 212
Location: US-WV
The major drawback in my mind is the fixed, rather rough drag. If you're of the school that the drag is only to prevent spool over run, look for one of the skirt spool (ss) models. That being said, I bet the 60-62 would be a good match for a blue gill rod. Or look for the adjustable drag mg-3 (along with everybody else on ebay). Image


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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 09 Jul 2011, 15:37 • # 4 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 02/19/08
Posts: 2355
Location: Seattle, WA
I'm a big fan of the "Tuna Can". They are collectively light reels (3.5-3.75 oz) of simple, no frill construction. The base frame with the spool out looks like an open tuna can. They're pretty tough and hard to break. If you're looking for a simple, light line holder reel, these are possibly your guys. The premium tuna cans are the MG-3/MG-3SS's. They're very light ( 2 3/4 oz) and are a couple notches above the 60-63(63SS) reels in design with pretty decent drag system. But they cost a few times more than the lesser tuna cans. The first generation tuna cans are rarer to encounter but the old Martin 7, 11 reels are tuna cans as well. I wouldn't consider the 64, 65 reels mentioned above tuna cans though. Lastly, Wards offered Tuna Can reels that I assume were made for Wards by Martin. They looked like the Martin 60 reel (but I saw another that looked like a Martin 11) but the frames were of a goldish/brown color.
Image ... here's a pic of most of my tuna cans

Image. ..the Martin #7 reel


Last edited by Featherlight on 04 Feb 2012, 23:38, edited 1 time in total.

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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 09 Jul 2011, 15:41 • # 5 
Guide
Joined: 12/30/08
Posts: 264
Location: US-WV
They seem a little loud to me. I think its something about the "tuna can" shape that amplifies the click.


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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 09 Jul 2011, 18:36 • # 6 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 02/19/08
Posts: 2355
Location: Seattle, WA
Yeah they're not particularly quiet but I don't think I've scared any fish with the noise though. Image


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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 09 Jul 2011, 18:44 • # 7 
Master Guide
Joined: 02/23/10
Posts: 559
Location: SF Bay Area
[b wrote:
[b]thousandstar[/b][/b]]They seem a little loud to me. I think its something about the "tuna can" shape that amplifies the click.
I have an MG-3 and it is a bit loud. I like to use mine when swinging flies; the scream from the grab and subsequent run could jump-start a heart.



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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 10 Jul 2011, 00:33 • # 8 
Master Guide
Joined: 02/19/08
Posts: 741
Location: Branson, Missouri
I think it might be middlemac who has a picture of what looks like a real tuna can converted into a reel ... using Martin parts.
Although I could be completely wrong.
Brian


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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 10 Jul 2011, 00:57 • # 9 
Piscator
Joined: 08/10/05
Posts: 11999
Location: downtown Bulverde, Texas
Martin 62
Image Image

Martin MG-3
Image Image


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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 10 Jul 2011, 01:03 • # 10 
Master Guide
Joined: 12/27/08
Posts: 797
Location: US-MO
Now that I see them, I think I might have had one on my first fly rod. I notice that some seem to be setup for left or right ---which ones have that feature?


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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 10 Jul 2011, 04:10 • # 11 
Piscator
Joined: 08/10/05
Posts: 11999
Location: downtown Bulverde, Texas
I believe all except the 60 are reversible.
The one(s) not reversible is only because they don't have cutouts in the can to reverse it.


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 Post subject: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 10 Jul 2011, 17:17 • # 12 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 02/19/08
Posts: 2355
Location: Seattle, WA
Brian Shaffer wrote:
I think it might be middlemac who has a picture of what looks like a real tuna can converted into a reel ... using Martin parts.
Although I could be completely wrong.
Brian
Speaking of Middlemac, I haven't heard his voice on here for sometime now.




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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 22 Dec 2011, 20:43 • # 13 
Sport
Joined: 08/17/07
Posts: 88
Location: US-VA
Was there ever a lighter reel manufactured? Maybe the Shakespeare 1890 EB (all plastic). The "tuna can" Martins (I've had a 61 for 35 years) will balance the lightest rods. Develop a rub? Just bang it back out. Utter simplicity.


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 22 Dec 2011, 21:03 • # 14 
Sport
Joined: 08/17/07
Posts: 88
Location: US-VA
Out of curiosity, I put a Martin 61 on a scale: 3.6 oz. The Shakespeare 1890 weighted in at 2.7 oz, making it the lightest reel in my possession. Not much to it, though--plastic spool, plastic handle, plastic full-cage body. No drag, no clicker mechanism. It is just a storage unit for line at the end of the rod. (These are both heavier than White River's Classic Ultralight reel at 2.2 oz.)


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 22 Dec 2011, 21:42 • # 15 
Piscator
Joined: 08/10/05
Posts: 11999
Location: downtown Bulverde, Texas
yeah, and you see that big steel backplate inside a Martin 61? plus a steel foot.
knock your lights out.

On the other hand, Martin MG-3 is the poor man's Hardy.


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 22 Dec 2011, 23:08 • # 16 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 02/19/08
Posts: 2355
Location: Seattle, WA
bulldog1935 wrote:
On the other hand, Martin MG-3 is the poor man's Hardy.

It's manufactured weight is 2.75 oz. These guys have also been getting a little pricier lately. $50 used to get one but it takes $60-65 now if not more. The last couple MG-3SS's I saw were starting to creep up near the $100 mark. You might not be able to call them Blue Collar reels much longer.


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 23 Dec 2011, 01:35 • # 17 
Administrator
Joined: 01/10/06
Posts: 6270
Location: Holly Springs, NC
pondpiscator wrote:
Was there ever a lighter reel manufactured? Maybe the Shakespeare 1890 EB (all plastic).

The Cortland C-G Graphite reels were all plastic and very light. I don't imagine they can take a beating like a Martin. They weren't very pretty either ... But they sure are light!

Tom

A Cortland C-G Graphite
Image

The MG3 is much prettier and sturdier too!
Image


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 23 Dec 2011, 02:39 • # 18 
Master Guide
Joined: 11/30/11
Posts: 890
Location: Fresno, CA
I like the way the check work on the MG-3 is. How effective is it going from soft to hard?


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 23 Dec 2011, 07:01 • # 19 
Piscator
Joined: 08/10/05
Posts: 11999
Location: downtown Bulverde, Texas
Image

The detentes or steps on the Martin check are very positive, and effective. There are 6 steps on the cam, progressively loading the helical spring. They work quite well. The Martin Helical spring check is one of the best click-pawl designs of all time. It's easily reversible.
Martin always fought a battle of image, trying to be the economy choice but keep their styling looking up to date. When they went offshore (1st big mistake) they switched to a copy of the BFR check (2nd big mistake) built by people who don't fish (3rd big mistake).

MG-3, MG-7, LM-4/5, MG-10, MM-11, and the venerable M-67a and all its derivatives will always be desirable to own and fish. (This includes the Made-in-USA Classics, not to be confused with the offshore reels using the same name - the USA Classics are the reels you can still buy really cheap - $5 on a good day.) Made in the USA as the best (arguably) of a 100-year American tradition of stamped from sheet mass production. A great design that works without fuss, because a fisherman knew how it was supposed to work.
I predict prices will continue to rise on these because they do meet all the definitions of a classic.

Image
if you find a mint boxed MG-3 for $65, do not pass Go - grab that sucker.


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 23 Dec 2011, 08:35 • # 20 
Global Moderator
Joined: 04/20/07
Posts: 6069
Location: US-ME
The tuna can prototype fooled an inveterate collector of the best, but did inspire many designs. viewtopic.php?f=4&t=12580&hilit=tuna+can&start=20

Thank goodness we have an engineer who is also a reel collector to inform us of the technical terminolgy. Although a Martin fan for years before I found this site, I learned the correct nomenclature, "tuna can," from Ron. As Ron knows, I will usually climb on an excuse to put up some MG 3 photos. Even the model is fun to say if you imagine Edward G. Robinson rigging up a fly rod, smoking a cigar, and speaking out of the corner of his mouth, "Yeah. That's right. An MG 3, see." That sounds almost as good as the reel does when a big fish rips downriver. It's a good, regular American sound, not dainty like those English reels.
Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

Image

You don't even have to be an engineer to recognize that large arbor reels, for all their high tech look, are just so derivative:

Image


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 23 Dec 2011, 08:50 • # 21 
Piscator
Joined: 08/10/05
Posts: 11999
Location: downtown Bulverde, Texas
whrlpool wrote:
You don't even have to be an engineer to recognize that large arbor reels, for all their high tech look, are just so derivative:
Image

chicken-of-the-sea-can reel?


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 23 Dec 2011, 10:23 • # 22 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 02/19/08
Posts: 2355
Location: Seattle, WA
jgestar wrote:
[
The Cortland C-G Graphite reels were all plastic and very light. I don't imagine they can take a beating like a Martin. They weren't very pretty either ... But they sure are light!

I have a older Danielson (Auburn, WA) reel that has a lot of plastic including the pawl and spring mount which I'm sure will limit it's longevity. But it's really light too ... somewhere between the weight of a MG-3 and Martin 62. A year or so ago, I picked up an Martin 63SS and after a Summer of light use, I've become rather fond of it. I like it's all back color w/white trim.

Image


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 24 Dec 2011, 19:43 • # 23 
Master Guide
Joined: 10/07/11
Posts: 569
Location: SE MA
The Cortland C-G Graphite reels were all plastic and very light. I don't imagine they can take a beating like a Martin. They weren't very pretty either ... But they sure are light!

As a youngster, I purchased my Cortland C-G Graphite due to its looks. Now, I don't know why it appealed to me. However, as mentioned, it is very light. My model #2 reel goes 2.5 oz. I had trouble finding a rod to balance with it until I tried it with an Eagle Claw Trailmaster 7' fly rod. The rod I have runs 6 oz and is extremely butt heavy. The C-G reel balanced it perfectly ... for me.


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 24 Dec 2011, 22:25 • # 24 
Sport
Joined: 08/07/08
Posts: 90
Location: America's Dairyland
The spool wobble got intolerable when the plastic spindle of my Cortland C-G Graphite II reel wore down after a few seasons of heavy use. I had to retire the Cortland, but my Martin 63 will last forever.


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 Post subject: Re: tuna can reels???
PostPosted: 25 Dec 2011, 10:24 • # 25 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 05/30/07
Posts: 2170
Location: Arlington, TX
standman wrote:
My model #2 reel goes 2.5 oz. I had trouble finding a rod to balance with it until I tried it with an Eagle Claw Trailmaster 7' fly rod. The rod I have runs 6 oz and is extremely butt heavy. The C-G reel balanced it perfectly ... for me.

Sounds like a terrific reel for UL fly rods

Les


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