9/12/2011

Heritage & Hardware Evolved


Above: Mad River Rod Co.“Little Mecoche” 6'9" 4wt.

Many of my flared reels seats echo some of the late great Fred Divine reel seats of yesteryear. My seats are one of a kind and are turned from larger stabilized blocks of spalted maple, burled Koa, and Circassian walnut. 

Above: this particular seat that dates back to around 1917 is from Fred Divines “Special Dry Fly” model

My reel seats have varied profiles that complement the geometry of the cap and ring sets. Typically I use these seats on 7’3” models or smaller and are proportioned accordingly. These seats are a little more involved than what meets the eye. In order to get a reel foot secured properly with these seats I spent a lot of time over the years working with the interior design of the ring set. The correct chamfering and orientation of the ring set as well as the mortise depth and contour are important considerations to make the reel secure. I make the nickel caps either with a three tiered detail or a smooth dome profile either blued or chrome nickel finish. I typically ask a customer what kind of reel they intend on using prior to making the hardware to make sure it will accommodate the foot. Generally all my hardware accommodates Peerless, Hardy, Saracione, Orvis CFO, and Ted Godfrey Reels. If somebody has a reel make that has a heavier or lower profile foot I can easily accommodate their matching reel. I have gotten frequent inquiries about selling my seats and hardware separately to other dealers and rod makers but I no longer do this as of late 2008 with the exception of a few commissioned orders.