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Designing a Reel

Before Waterworks-Lamson began making its own fly reels in 1998, it surveyed the marketplace, both fly rods and fly reels, to determine design objectives.


“We needed to lighten reels in order to keep pace with the ever-lighter rods and to eliminate the negative impact that a reel has on a rod’s casting performance. Call this our first objective: reduce physical weight.


Another objective was to simplify the design of a reel. With any mechanical device, simplicity is a virtue. We saw reels with 80+ parts. It is easy to make something with too many parts; it's hard to make something with fewer parts. Simplicity means there is less that can go wrong.


A third objective was to optimize large arbor benefit. We believe in the virtues of large arbor: faster retrieve rate, constant drag tension and elimination of coil memory. So we set out to maximize the benefits.


We felt that we could bring a better reel to market by using superior materials and processes. We looked at fly reels and saw materials being used that were cutting edge at the time of Jesus. Much advancement has been made in the last 2000 years, even in the past 10 years, that were not being applied to fly reels to make them perform better.


Finally we set out to design the world’s best drag system. This meant zero start-up inertia. It meant silk-smooth through the entire torque range. It meant top-end torque suppression sufficient to stop what you catch. It meant that the drag would perform exactly the same under all conditions that one met in real life: water, sand, dirt. It meant that you shouldn't have to think about your drag, ever. No cleaning or lubrication required.


And so our objectives were clear:


·        Reduce physical weight

·        Achieve mechanical simplicity

·        Maximize large arbor benefit

·        Utilize superior materials

·        Create the better world's best drag system”


Now, in 2012, the company offers a series of reels that all conform to these objectives:


Model                            Price Range


Vanquish                      $550 - $900

ULA Force                   $409 - $639

Lightspeed                   $279 - $419

Velocity                        $229 - $339

Guru                             $179 - $249

Konic                            $119 - $149


Price ranges cover the various sizes of each model. Prices are $US, the same prices charged by retailers Cabelas and River Magic.


All models use the same drag system, but the drag surface is larger in the reels designed for very large saltwater fish, like the Vanquish. All are made in the USA and lifetime warranted. One difference is surface finish – the mid to high-end models use a “Hard Alox” finish for extra protection. The ULA Force models are the lightest reels made.


Very competitive pricing makes the Konic and Guru models very popular. Waterworks-Lamson fly reels are, after all, the best value in the marketplace today!                                          

Our fly of the week is by Sheet Harbour fly man Chris Williams. It’s a Green Highlander with a twist that makes it a Newfoundland favourite.


NL Green Highlander


Hook:              River Magic Salmon Hook,  sizes 6 – 10

Thread:           Black

Tag:                 Fine oval tinsel

Tail:                 Copper Krystal Flash

Ribbing:           Oval silver Tinsel

Body:               1/3 yellow floss, 2/3 green Diamond Braid

Throat:            Yellow over green hen hackle fibres

Wing:               White goat hair or black moose hair

                         over 2 stands pearl Krystal Flash              

Sides:              Jungle cock 

Head:              Black thread finished with 2 coats of

                         Angler’s Corner Wet Head Cement


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Please stay on the line …

Above - Lamson Konic
Above - Lamson Guru
Above - Lamson Velocity Hard Alox
Above - Waterworks Lightspeed
Above - Waterworks ULA Force
Above - Waterworks Vanquish - The Best!