|Seemed like a good idea at the|
time, which was rather late.
Probably lose more weight, though. I suppose you find the good side of things when you can. That's probably why, when fishing through the park this evening and having my fly brutally ignored by every riser I put in front of, I didn't mind. Seems a nice group of churchies decided to spontaneously erupt into gospel for me, and provided a lovely serenade to my failure.
S'OK, though. Still had one of the nicest evenings I'd ever had. Beats the bad amateur rock bands I've fished through listening to, which was different but annoying. Its not that I'm a gospel fan, but really, its a great way to really accent the pleasure. I made sure to thank them, and they were kind enough to give me another song.
Being brutally skunked in the middle of an awesome hatch is pretty humiliating, though. So, I decided to get crafty, tie up a hair mouse and then go fishing in the same park (willfully breakin' the law!) at 2am. It was stupid, and fruitless, but what the hell, gotta try it once. Guess the music was the only blessing I was gonna receive that day, eh?
|Less mouse, more Medalist. Go!|
So, a throw away line in a Lefty Kreh book and some spare time was all the inspiration I needed to make a statement.
|Not my picture.|
|Also not my picture.|
I'm just jingoistic enough to call it "American ingenuity," but willing to acknowledge that someone else may have come up with it first. Fuck 'em in the neck, though, coz hacking shit up to make it cooler is as American as apple pie, fuckers. Happy Memorial Day, bitches. Ergo, America probably did it first.
Anyways, after finding that picture, I'd been thinking about cutting up a Medalist for sometime. However, like most things in my life, I back burnered it and proceded on with general slackwittery and laziness. Fast forward a year or so, 'til a post on the Fiberglass Fly Rod forum kicked it back to the forefront.
About 1"x1.5" came out of the back of the reel, just enough to clamp two fingers into the reel. Based on the only images I'd found, it seemed to be about the right size to get two fingers in there, which matched the only pictures I'd found of this modification. Somehow it didn't seem right, and I figure in hindsight the reel in the first photo is a 1494.5, versus the larger 1495. Anyways, it looked good, but I'd been told that the properly done version utilized a leather finger pad so you wouldn't tear your fingers up. A request for more was put out, and new pictures surfaced.
This reel was different, the big boy of the Medalist line up, a 1498. The poster was kind enough to show a photo of the inside and outside, which gave me an idea for the size and use of the leather pad, but more importantly a better idea for the size of the finger hole. Now, the 1494 is significantly smaller than the 1498 (the 1495 fits the middle, there was also a 1496 that's the same diameter of the 1498, but only 13/16" wide). Suddenly, its obvious that the finger porting was much bigger, on the 1498 it looked like it would be ideal for four fingers or the entire heel of the palm.
|No sir, not my picture.|
So, back to the Dremel I went. I opened up the hole big enough and in the same pattern as the 1498, it was asthetically more pleasing and also seemed to be a functional increase. In addition to being easier to drop all four fingers of my hand onto the reel (and effectively being able to clamp drag down to full stop if required), if I chose to flip it around and use it as intended for RHW, it would be easy to apply the heel of my palm to the brake, as well.
|Not my picture.|
|Post cut, pre pad.|
So, that's the transformation of a modern antique into the 1950s equivilent of high tech big game reel. I find myself using this reel for just about every thing I can, and I'm waiting for a chance to prove its mettle against the latest and greatest of the modern age. While its a little wobblier than a tight, new reel, I'm pretty sure that it'll take whatever I need it to. Plans include taking it steelhead fishing, as well as carping. It was the reel I chose for my (failed) snook adventure to the salt, and its the one that'll go on my striper trip this year.
|Compare and contrast.|
Or, so says the man who doesn't actually get challenged by said hogs. Heh.
I edied this on June 16th to add a few more pictures. While coming up with a leather finger brake that didn't involve cutting up a fine 1963-66 era 1498, I stumbled across another Lefty Kreh book, Flyfishing in Saltwater, this one with pictures of a modified Medalist inside.