Broken old reel

Talk about Lure/Tackle ID's; Reminisce over bygone times and old fishing tackle
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John Milford
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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Tue May 29 2018 12:21

Just under £300 at the end. Perhaps not too surprising, given the cost of restoration required to bring it back into good order.

Still, I wouldn't mind finding one at a car boot sale!
"He's some sort of lure savant. Or just has an unhealthy addiction to old lures. We are not quite sure . . . . . "

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Vole » Wed May 30 2018 09:21

That farthing-face reel is intriguing. Does that little groove under the hub lead to a drum-release mechanism? (And did one's man have to carry a straightened-out paperclip to work it in case one's line got behind the drum?)

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Wed May 30 2018 11:08

Vole wrote:
That farthing-face reel is intriguing. Does that little groove under the hub lead to a drum-release mechanism? (And did one's man have to carry a straightened-out paperclip to work it in case one's line got behind the drum?)
I suspect it does, or perhaps the hub pries off to reveal a drum-release mechanism? I've not had the courage to try it! There are a few faint marks, suggesting it has been done (or at least tried!).

I suspect there was a little tool provided for the purpose (long lost). The familiar 'gem' paper clip was not invented until the early 1870's :smile:
"He's some sort of lure savant. Or just has an unhealthy addiction to old lures. We are not quite sure . . . . . "

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Will Smith » Wed May 30 2018 12:36

John Milford wrote:
Vole wrote:
That farthing-face reel is intriguing. Does that little groove under the hub lead to a drum-release mechanism? (And did one's man have to carry a straightened-out paperclip to work it in case one's line got behind the drum?)
I suspect it does, or perhaps the hub pries off to reveal a drum-release mechanism? I've not had the courage to try it! There are a few faint marks, suggesting it has been done (or at least tried!).

I suspect there was a little tool provided for the purpose (long lost). The familiar 'gem' paper clip was not invented until the early 1870's :smile:


Ha ha John, did you just make that up or is it a fact ?
Do you keep all this knowledge you regale us with in your head or do you have to look some of it up occasionally.

Will.

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Wed May 30 2018 13:16

:laughs: No, my head really is crammed full of useless information Will. :clown:

To be honest though, while I was fairly sure paperclips came after the reel was made, I looked it up to be certain :wink:

'Knowledge' is often a broad thing and as much about knowing where to look, once triggered, as it is retaining all the fine detail in your head.

As an example, I knew I'd seen that 'Josephson Hollow-fin Minnow' in the vintage lure porn thread somewhere before - and I was fairly sure it was a rare, early Hardy lure - but I had to delve into my reference books to make the full identification.
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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Will Smith » Wed May 30 2018 16:36

Thats what I need John, some good reference books, is there not an online reference website or anything like that I could sign up to, all the old reference books and catalogues are so dammed expensive and really difficult to get hold of.

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Wed May 30 2018 17:26

Will Smith wrote:
Thats what I need John, some good reference books, is there not an online reference website or anything like that I could sign up to, all the old reference books and catalogues are so dammed expensive and really difficult to get hold of.

Will.
They certainly are - they're becoming 'collectors items' themselves! (Whenever I see an old British catalogue page reproduced online, I always save it. That way I've built up a small archive of reference material I might never find elsewhere :wink: ).

The specialist American collector's websites are very good - the level of minute detail they can go into is mind blowing! Some of the N.F.L.C.C (National Fishing Lure Collectors Club) guys can date a lure to specific years based on tiny variations in hardware or body tapers. They get massively excited over 'transition' lures - say, where they find 1929 hardware on a 1930 colour variant!

To borrow Lumby's quip, their "Nerdery knows no limits" :laughs:
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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Will Smith » Wed May 30 2018 18:26

Yep, I have started to save pages out of catalogues into files, oh dear :afraid: I must be turning into a N&£@ :laughs: , can't bring myself to say it :laughs: :laughs: .
I will look into the American sites.

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Wed May 30 2018 19:22

We really need a 'Nerd Face' added to the forum's Smilies!

Actually there is one: Nerd Face. A sterotypically “nerd-like” face with glasses, and buck teeth. Nerd Face was approved as part of Unicode 8.0 in 2015 and added to Emoji 1.0 in 2015.

:laughs: How 'nerdy' is that piece of information?! 🤓
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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Will Smith » Wed May 30 2018 20:13

John Milford wrote:
We really need a 'Nerd Face' added to the forum's Smilies!

Actually there is one: Nerd Face. A sterotypically “nerd-like” face with glasses, and buck teeth. Nerd Face was approved as part of Unicode 8.0 in 2015 and added to Emoji 1.0 in 2015.

:laughs: How 'nerdy' is that piece of information?! 🤓
Extremely nerdy but, we would expect nothing less from you Mr M.

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Sat Jun 02 2018 13:35

To illustrate how trout reels differ from 'bottom fishing' ones like my 'Farthing' check-winch, this Charles Farlow fly reel from my small collection it typical of its type. It is the 2 1/2" plate-wind trout size and the engraving, being 'Chas. Farlow & Co.', dates it between 1885 and 1894 (after which 'Ltd.' was added to the company name).
Image
Reel foot 'Salmon' logo:
Image

I like it for two reasons - firstly, because I picked it up for virtually peanuts, and secondly because it has not had the bejasus polished out of it and retains a nice patina.

Image

Like a lot of antique brass reels, my one 'leans' slightly on its foot. No big deal and not worth the risk of trying to straighten it!

Image
Image
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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Mon Jul 29 2019 10:48

There's another 'Broken old reel' flying on eBay at the moment. It's missing the winding knob on the handle.

I'm really interested to see where this one finishes, as I don't believe it is anywhere near its final price yet - because of one little word: "Ustonson".

This one really is something very rare and special as the maker, Onesimus Ustonson, was the tackle supplier to George III, George IV and Queen Victoria, not to mention countless Georgian and Victorian nobility. Twitchy sphincter time for quite a few hopeful (well-heeled) reel collectors! :laughs:
Screenshot_20190729-101148.png

https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre ... 3232515399
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"He's some sort of lure savant. Or just has an unhealthy addiction to old lures. We are not quite sure . . . . . "

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by davelumb » Mon Jul 29 2019 10:58

John Milford wrote:
There's another 'Broken old reel' flying on eBay at the moment. It's missing the winding knob on the handle.

I'm really interested to see where this one finishes, as I don't believe it is anywhere near its final price yet - because of one little word: "Ustonson".

This one really is something very rare and special as the maker, Onesimus Ustonson, was the tackle supplier to George III, George IV and Queen Victoria, not to mention countless Georgian and Victorian nobility. Twitchy sphincter time for quite a few hopeful (well-heeled) reel collectors! :laughs:

Screenshot_20190729-101148.png


https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre ... 3232515399
Yikes!!!

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by phil.c » Mon Jul 29 2019 19:41

davelumb wrote:
John Milford wrote:
There's another 'Broken old reel' flying on eBay at the moment. It's missing the winding knob on the handle.

I'm really interested to see where this one finishes, as I don't believe it is anywhere near its final price yet - because of one little word: "Ustonson".

This one really is something very rare and special as the maker, Onesimus Ustonson, was the tackle supplier to George III, George IV and Queen Victoria, not to mention countless Georgian and Victorian nobility. Twitchy sphincter time for quite a few hopeful (well-heeled) reel collectors! :laughs:

Screenshot_20190729-101148.png


https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre ... 3232515399
Yikes!!!
Now there's a word from my childhood.. favourite word in the Dandy and Beano.. :laughs:
My opinion may offend, but it's only an opinion that may differ to your's.
It doesn't make me wrong.

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Will Smith » Mon Jul 29 2019 21:00

I wonder if he had any idea of the value John, he started the bidding at just 49p, I suspect maybe not, although he will be well pleased with the way its going methinks.

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Mon Jul 29 2019 23:27

Will Smith wrote:
I wonder if he had any idea of the value John, he started the bidding at just 49p, I suspect maybe not, although he will be well pleased with the way its going methinks.

Will.
He's probably already planning his holiday Will! :laughs: Seven bidders so far - and probably a few more trying to tempt him to end the listing and sell if privately.

I hope his nerve holds or he'll get rolled over :roll:
"He's some sort of lure savant. Or just has an unhealthy addiction to old lures. We are not quite sure . . . . . "

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Mike J » Tue Jul 30 2019 09:19

John,
Send a pic of the reel to Garry Mills he will tell you what it is for sure.
'No Man Ever Fishes The Same River Twice, .... For It Is Not The Same River, .... And He Is Not The Same Man' Heraclitus of Ephesus

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by davelumb » Tue Jul 30 2019 09:22

phil.c wrote:
davelumb wrote:
John Milford wrote:
There's another 'Broken old reel' flying on eBay at the moment. It's missing the winding knob on the handle.

I'm really interested to see where this one finishes, as I don't believe it is anywhere near its final price yet - because of one little word: "Ustonson".

This one really is something very rare and special as the maker, Onesimus Ustonson, was the tackle supplier to George III, George IV and Queen Victoria, not to mention countless Georgian and Victorian nobility. Twitchy sphincter time for quite a few hopeful (well-heeled) reel collectors! :laughs:

Screenshot_20190729-101148.png


https://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/0/0?mpre ... 3232515399
Yikes!!!
Now there's a word from my childhood.. favourite word in the Dandy and Beano.. :laughs:
:thumbs:

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Tue Jul 30 2019 10:56

Mike J wrote:
John,
Send a pic of the reel to Garry Mills he will tell you what it is for sure.
I don't think there is much doubt what it is Mike. It's a 4" crank-wind brass 'check winch' by Ustonson. It was probably bought as a salmon reel and used with a double-handed Spey rod, but could have been used for pike fishing?

It's engraved "Maker to the Queen", so that places it between 1837 and 1855 (when Ustonson's company ceased to trade). It's a relatively late reel for an Ustonson, as he started in 1760, so it's unlikely it was made by old Onesimus himself.
"He's some sort of lure savant. Or just has an unhealthy addiction to old lures. We are not quite sure . . . . . "

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by jonsykes » Tue Jul 30 2019 11:33

I just hope he listed it when it was the £1 max fees offer - or eBay will be quids in!

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Mercman » Tue Jul 30 2019 12:28

John Milford wrote:
Mike J wrote:
John,
Send a pic of the reel to Garry Mills he will tell you what it is for sure.
I don't think there is much doubt what it is Mike. It's a 4" crank-wind brass 'check winch' by Ustonson. It was probably bought as a salmon reel and used with a double-handed Spey rod, but could have been used for pike fishing?

It's engraved "Maker to the Queen", so that places it between 1837 and 1855 (when Ustonson's company ceased to trade). It's a relatively late reel for an Ustonson, as he started in 1760, so it's unlikely it was made by old Onesimus himself.
John
Would that make a decent investment at that £1270 price? Would it return 5% or so more pa over the next ten years or is it a major gamble with this old tackle for investment? I have been lucky with the odd classic car and watch over the years and wondered if fishing tackle would give decent returns.
Maybe Delboy is a secret millionaire :grin:
Delboy is actually now 66 years old.

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Tue Jul 30 2019 13:17

Mercman wrote:
John Milford wrote:
Mike J wrote:
John,
Send a pic of the reel to Garry Mills he will tell you what it is for sure.
I don't think there is much doubt what it is Mike. It's a 4" crank-wind brass 'check winch' by Ustonson. It was probably bought as a salmon reel and used with a double-handed Spey rod, but could have been used for pike fishing?

It's engraved "Maker to the Queen", so that places it between 1837 and 1855 (when Ustonson's company ceased to trade). It's a relatively late reel for an Ustonson, as he started in 1760, so it's unlikely it was made by old Onesimus himself.
John
Would that make a decent investment at that £1270 price? Would it return 5% or so more pa over the next ten years or is it a major gamble with this old tackle for investment? I have been lucky with the odd classic car and watch over the years and wondered if fishing tackle would give decent returns.
Maybe Delboy is a secret millionaire :grin:
As David Dickenson always says "Quality sells" and Ustonson is probably top among the most desirable makers of reels. I've seen a few trends in prices for lures since I've been collecting them, but over the long term the direction has been very much up. The big question is whether the 'up' out-performs normal investments?

My feeling is that it generally does. Antique fishing tackle is quite different to antique furniture, china and paintings as these are subject to shifts in fashion which can inflate or depress market values, depending what is currently 'in'.

The downside is that antique tackle is a small, niche market and, as the saying goes "Nothing ain't worth nothing until somebody wants to buy it". :shrug:
"He's some sort of lure savant. Or just has an unhealthy addiction to old lures. We are not quite sure . . . . . "

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Mercman » Tue Jul 30 2019 14:45

Thanks for your comprehensive reply John. To be honest I have not heard of Ustonson before however I have an interest in old tackle but no experience in the market. I have bought a few job lots of stuff and sold a few bits and pieces on, making a little money.
Trouble is I usually give Delboy a few bits out of the profits... :grin:
Delboy is actually now 66 years old.

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Tue Jul 30 2019 18:46

The top bid has been cancelled. 🤔 Jiggery-pokery? :suspect:
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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Mercman » Tue Jul 30 2019 19:19

John Milford wrote:
The top bid has been cancelled. 🤔 Jiggery-pokery? :suspect:
Wow that's knocked it down a bit...only £700 knocked off!
Delboy is actually now 66 years old.

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Tue Jul 30 2019 20:39

Mercman wrote:
John Milford wrote:
The top bid has been cancelled. 🤔 Jiggery-pokery? :suspect:
Wow that's knocked it down a bit...only £700 knocked off!
Something dodgy there. Seeing as bid increments are relatively small, it looks to me like a withdrawn 'shill bid' to test somebody else's max bid.

Some dealers and top-end collectors can be ruthless jerks.
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Re: Broken old reel

Post by jonsykes » Tue Jul 30 2019 23:55

Usually when that happens the bidder is named as ‘private’ & that really rouses my suspicions. I won’t bid on anything if I’m competing with those - dodgy.

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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Mike J » Wed Jul 31 2019 09:01

So who actually buys these reels?
In my experience it is those who remember seeing them used when we were children. I remember seeing an old guy spin for salmon with a wooden starback centrepin and watch my uncle trot with a match Aerial, Ive never hankered after any reel made of wood but do own an old Aerial which is a b useless reel for trotting a pacy river btw.
When us older generation dies off will centrepins still hold the same attraction to say a millennial?

Same as trotting a river, every winter I watch the slow river guys trying to trot a pacy chalkstream with their fixed spools and failing to catch because they are unable to 'boss the river' when I suggest they try a cetrepin they either say its to difficult to learn or they have one in their box but their fixed spool is easier.

It seems most of the younger anglers want instant everything, learning a Wallis cast or how to run a float down a river isnt for them, and I doubt there is one who will be the next John Roberts.
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Re: Broken old reel

Post by John Milford » Wed Jul 31 2019 10:15

Mike J wrote:
So who actually buys these reels?
In my experience it is those who remember seeing them used when we were children. I remember seeing an old guy spin for salmon with a wooden starback centrepin and watch my uncle trot with a match Aerial, Ive never hankered after any reel made of wood but do own an old Aerial which is a b useless reel for trotting a pacy river btw.
When us older generation dies off will centrepins still hold the same attraction to say a millennial?

Same as trotting a river, every winter I watch the slow river guys trying to trot a pacy chalkstream with their fixed spools and failing to catch because they are unable to 'boss the river' when I suggest they try a cetrepin they either say its to difficult to learn or they have one in their box but their fixed spool is easier.

It seems most of the younger anglers want instant everything, learning a Wallis cast or how to run a float down a river isnt for them, and I doubt there is one who will be the next John Roberts.
There are two distinct markets for vintage tackle Mike - 'Users' and 'Collectors'. You're right about most of the users who are more interested in vintage rather than antique and also mechanical rather than cosmetic condition.

Collectors are another breed entirely and range from simple enthusiasts, like me, to a few who are absolutely obsessive fanatics!
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Re: Broken old reel

Post by Mattjb » Wed Jul 31 2019 12:15

I was born in 1971 and can't remember centrepins being used when I was growing up it was all fixed spools then.my first reel was a fixed spool intrepid boyo.Thanks to Keith the piker on here , I became interested in cane rods and centrepins but as a child I was always interested in old stuff and collecting it, mainly old bottles, coins, militaria etc so I suppose that side of me is drawn to it.I only buy stuff I'll use though and there is definately something different about the action of a cane rod and using a pin to play a decent fish is a pleasure with the amount of control you can apply with the thumb.Have'nt properly tried long trotting with a pin yet , the rapidex and allcocks match special I have isn't really suitable but maybe I'll invest in a decent user sometime but need to weigh up how much use it will get!

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