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Post 05 Jan 2019, 16:57 • #1 
Sport
Joined: 09/26/18
Posts: 47
Location: US-MA
Just wondering if you prefer old or new reels?


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Post 05 Jan 2019, 17:25 • #2 
Master Guide
Joined: 04/07/18
Posts: 379
Location: Reston VA
IMO most modern large arbor reels are too light to balance vintage glass rods which run towards the heavy side of the scale. They are designed for use on modern ltwt graphite rods.

Then there are the 'look' and nostalgia factors. Vintage reels just go with the old rods.

Heddonist


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Post 05 Jan 2019, 18:11 • #3 
Guide
Joined: 09/22/14
Posts: 203
Location: Charlottesville-VA
Aside from imparting less line memory I don't see a big benefeit to modern reels vs a medalist for 99% of my fishing. If I were out in the deep salt I might be able to see a difference. So couple the 'look' along with buying used is better for the world and add a dash of nostalgia.

Bob


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Post 05 Jan 2019, 18:36 • #4 
Guide
Joined: 02/05/15
Posts: 217
Location: Hawkes Bay, New Zealand
Have five older Medalist 1494s loaded with 4 and 5 wt. lines that I use with eight Fenwicks primarily for stream trout fishing. Also have three Ross CLA 2s that will use with the Fenwicks. The Ross drag is smoother but in actual fishing not much difference, keep the drag set light and play trout accordingly.


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Post 05 Jan 2019, 19:11 • #5 
Guide
Joined: 12/14/16
Posts: 116
Location: Poland
vintage for posing and instagram :-)
modern LA for fishing, esp. in situations where you win or lose the fight because of the reel.


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Post 05 Jan 2019, 20:45 • #6 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 06/09/05
Posts: 2259
Location: US-CO
I enjoy some classic Pfluegers and Martins but I normally fish with a Teton or Orvis Battenkilll Barstock reel. I like the finer sound of the modern clickers on those reels...especially the Barstock. But my modern reels are not large arbors.

If I am really feeling retro, I fish an old Fenwick Grizzly 315 rod, with a Martin MG-3 reel, using an old nylon line.


Last edited by paveglass on 06 Jan 2019, 09:09, edited 1 time in total.

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Post 05 Jan 2019, 21:13 • #7 
Global Moderator
Joined: 04/20/07
Posts: 8172
Location: US-ME
Old rod/new rod--it doesn't matter to me as far as "modern" large arbor reels go. I have several but rarely use them. I use them for the sake of variety, but it doesn't matter to me if the rod itself is relatively new or old. There isn't one I have that I would miss if I didn't have it. If I want "fast" retrieve, much overtouted in LA reels, I use a multiplier, which will out retrieve any LA reel. So I guess you could say I prefer conventional reels, new or old. If "modern" means "disc drag," just remember that friction/ "brake" drags have also been around a long, long time. Graphite rods, which lack the fish-playing finesse of glass rods, put more premium on a "low-start up inertia," smooth and subtle drag, whereas 'glass rods absorb the initial shock of a burst and transmit that more gradually to start a Pflueger, a Martin 70 disc drag, or any number of good click reels, new or old.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 00:06 • #8 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 04/06/15
Posts: 1249
Location: Central Oregon
For the fish I catch the reel is not very important. It holds the line. There are some very nice, super smooth Chinese reels out there these days at good prices. I use some of them, but by far, most of my lines are on Pflueger Medalists I picked up cheap. They always work, and just look right on the old rods.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 02:12 • #9 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 11/06/17
Posts: 1943
Location: South of Joplin
I've fished primarily 149x on every rod I've ever had, none of the rods complained nor did the fish. The first many years I fly fished in a state that required a single action reel and every one I knew thought that a Medalist was pretty good, I still think so.
But I'd use whatever was handy with a line on it. I caught several fish using a couple different autos. Reels in fresh water are far down on the important list, for me. I think it takes big water to allow long runs, necessitating large reels. Most stream fishing the fish will run out of water before reaching the half way to the backing. That is providing it doesn't go under a rock or around a log.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 05:53 • #10 
Piscator
Joined: 08/10/05
Posts: 17338
Location: downtown Bulverde, Texas
one stated vintage reels are posing, and a larger arbor can make the difference in landing a fish or not.
hokej na koniu


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 06:47 • #11 
Guide
Joined: 07/14/15
Posts: 102
Location: CA-QC
Only once, I hooked a large trout on a size 16 caddis, the fish took off downstream and bent the hook straight. Maybe if I had an adjustable drag reel I might have had it set light enough to prevent that. But I doubt it.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 09:23 • #12 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 06/09/05
Posts: 2259
Location: US-CO
Since I frequently hike some distance to fish small streams, I wish I could find a “line holder” that was very light.

A plastic, one sided, line holder with no winding mechanism would be fine. I’d use maybe a half a DT line with no backing and manually adjust turns for the distance I wanted. It would be adequate for most small streams and would be light enough to carry on long, or through hikes.

I tried tenkara as a minimalist solution but missed the ability to lengthen or shorten the casting line. Think about a wide-enough plastic line spool with a reel foot allowing it to be mounted on a rod yet wide enough to wind line on and off by hand. Max line needed would be 30’ and a reasonably large 4-5” spool would compensate for the inherent line twist of the setup.

I have seen something similar concept but it was executed poorly and used a specially modified rod for too much money.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 09:51 • #13 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 05/19/14
Posts: 3552
Location: USA - Illinois
I guess I'll pose with my old reels that have been catching fish for a very long time.
I use a few larger arbor cork drag reels on the rare occasion I fish salt water, but standard arbor cork drag reels like the Abel big game and Orvis SSS work great also.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 10:26 • #14 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 09/18/09
Posts: 5056
Location: Washington DC Region
paveglass,
Haven't you been able to find a Ryobi MG255 or JAF magnesium reel. I really liked the MG255 that Aurelio fishes :)
I know you've put a lot more thought into this than I have, but I have some thoughts.

If you want lighter, you could go with something like what the Tenkara guys use (the fuji ez keeper) but a bit longer so it can hold some fly line. You can wind on and off by hand but it would only serve as a line holder.

I also think you might be better off with a modern reel like the Reddington Zero. Modern materials and machining can get things light. While plastic is rather heavy. There are also some graphite ice fishing reels that might work, but it's hard to find a weight on them since they are not designed to be light weight, Whatever you choose you want it to survive well on a hike so it has to be durable.

2.8 oz is easily available at the fly shop, so how low weight are you trying to go? If you're fishing a vintage glass rod with a metal reel seat, you've got quite a bit of weight tied up in the rod, so there is a point of diminishing returns.

Just my rambling thoughts.

Carl


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 11:30 • #15 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 11/06/17
Posts: 1943
Location: South of Joplin
Quote:
I wish I could find a “line holder” that was very light.
B&M and Mr Crappie both sell reels that weigh under 2 ounces for ~$11 at Academy or Amazon -
search "ultralight crappie reel" or "light crappie reel" should turn these up. I think ~1,6oz empty is listed weight.
You could cut a winding bobbin from the side of a plastic jug like motor oil or laundry soap come in- 2"wide x 10" long with a notch on both ends and carry it in your pocket while fishing.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 11:32 • #16 
Sport
Joined: 11/16/13
Posts: 29
Location: US-GA
I use both.

When I’m fishing water that requires short casts (most of my trout fishing) and there’s not a whole lot of room for fish to run, I use old school click and pawl reels.

On bigger water where I’m going to make longer casts I prefer a larger diameter arbor so line memory doesn’t interfere as much with line management. The difference in retrieval definitely comes into play in with bigger, faster critters in salt waters. But I rarely use glass there anyway.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 11:39 • #17 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 10/18/12
Posts: 1489
Location: Bozeman, MT
Vintage!


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 12:21 • #18 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 03/30/09
Posts: 1407
Location: Hamilton,Ontario,Canada
Most of my fishing is with a 1494 Medalist with Onepfoot parts added.Otherwise I use my new Battenkill 1 for my 3 WT.I really don't like large arbour reels which seem to be what most stores are selling nowadays.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 12:32 • #19 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 04/06/15
Posts: 1249
Location: Central Oregon
redmenace wrote:
I use both.
On bigger water where I’m going to make longer casts I prefer a larger diameter arbor so line memory doesn’t interfere as much with line management. .


Good point. I've gone large arbor for all my sinking lines where memory is a nasty issue. I fish from a pontoon with mostly cheaper vintage rods, but the large arbor reels with fast pick-up spinnable spools really help line management in the boat.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 12:54 • #20 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 03/16/08
Posts: 3434
Location: Upstate-NY
all of my reels are click/pawl or medalist style.
a few are “modern” (manufactured post-2000),
but they are “traditional” as well:
JA Forbes Avon, Sandstone
Tiemco Oracle
Valentine Single Action

oh, I own one reel that is more “modern”:
Cortland (Right Angle) AR-8 anti-reverse


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 13:40 • #21 
Guide
Joined: 01/21/13
Posts: 111
Location: US-OR
I have and love my Bauer reels, and the M3 balances my Unity 7wt perfectly. However, the Medalist 1495s (two) also work perfectly and just look right. No doubt in part because they match the aluminum reel seat better, but also I just like the “retro” feel on this rod. One of the 1495s is the only FF gear I have that was Dad’s, so I think of him when I use it.
Just 2 scents.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 14:58 • #22 
Guide
Joined: 10/19/17
Posts: 102
Location: West of the east and east of the west
I only own one large arbor reel, a 9wt that I got from River Traditions to match a 9wt graphite rod he was closing out. And I only bought that because I didn't have a 9wt and picked this one up cheap (for the record it's a pretty nice outfit). Can't see putting one of those big ol' things on a nice vintage rod, glass or grass. Just doesn't fit IMHO.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 17:37 • #23 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 05/19/14
Posts: 3552
Location: USA - Illinois
"I have and love my Bauer reels, and the M3 balances my Unity 7wt perfectly"

Bauer reels are top notch in my opinion. For salt use I have a couple 4 sizes and a 3, which goes on my Scott Heli-Ply 7 weight.


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Post 06 Jan 2019, 18:57 • #24 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 02/19/08
Posts: 2449
Location: Seattle, WA
Pretty much only vintage reels (Tuna Cans of many varieties, Medalists and others) but I do have a modern Forbes Magnesium that gets into the rotation every now and then.


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Post 07 Jan 2019, 07:27 • #25 
Piscator
Joined: 08/10/05
Posts: 17338
Location: downtown Bulverde, Texas
Featherlight wrote:
Pretty much only vintage reels (Tuna Cans of many varieties, Medalists and others) but I do have a modern Forbes Magnesium that gets into the rotation every now and then.

I like this attitude - the JAF is also hairspring spring click -pawl - I guess that's modern compared to the caliper clicker on the tuna cans.

Here's my large arbor reel
Image
But the stripers in high river flows beat the crap out of it - the large arbor was anything but a plus for the torsion on the clutch pawl, and sent the reel into freespool a couple of times.
The Revolution is a beauty reel, certainly styled after the prewar Aerial, and works great for taking my inshore rod to stillwater after big bass
Image

The task of stopping stripers on their initial downriver run was not such a problem for same the clutch design on the small arbor Sea Venture
Image
and my salty Lamson was overqualified for the task
Image
stripers in fast river is manly sport - the first day I discovered how to strike them was purely by accident, swinging tiny streamers to check on summer rainbows during a drop in the monsoon tailwater discharge - since they have found as many as 5 or 6 rainbows in striper gullet, we like to harvest them when we can
Image
yes, this was a ride and a testament to the toughness of 5-wt glass


Last edited by bulldog1935 on 07 Jan 2019, 07:43, edited 2 times in total.

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