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  #21 (permalink)  
Old 09-04-2012, 12:40 PM
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Default Re: Battenkill Bar Stock or Access

Oh my. Thanks for that info.
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Old 09-05-2012, 03:25 PM
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Default Re: Battenkill Bar Stock or Access

I just got around to washing trout reels and cleaning lines that got the most use this season (so far). Five reels were involved and are arrayed before me drying as I write. This group includes both the BBS III made in Korea rigged with a #4 line and a Hydros IV made in China with a 6-weight line. They are both OK but not "birthday present" grade. The BBS ate the tippet into its drag hub which I discovered only when I went to strip the line into the bathtub filled with warm water; OK, I got it out no problem but the tolerances on both these reels is just so so. The BBS is more "classic" looking which you like but the Chinese Hydros is a better design with a stacked drag system so much in style today. Hydros is a bit clunky and has some shake to it, not noticeable when fishing though. What you do notice is the drag detentes are close together and in very little knob rotation you go from light to heavy drag setting, the knob feel is rather stiff too. Neither of these are quality pieces though both are competent to catch trout on as I have. Serviceable? Yes. Desirable? Not really. Not only will I not buy another of either but will ultimately replace both.

In addition to performance and capacity, weight is a major factor in selecting a reel to go with a rod. In this case the BBS III is a spot-on balance match for a 4-weight I love and the Hydros is perfect with my heavier #6 boat rod, so it may stick around longer. So it is not just reel preference but balance for a given rod that I have to factor as I do my homework.
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Old 09-05-2012, 03:53 PM
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Default Re: Battenkill Bar Stock or Access

Thank you for the info. I think if I do get a new Orvis, I want the guy to show me how to clean it. I want to see it opened up. I don't want to have a cranky reel to clean. I guess I got spoiled cleaning old click and pawls. They are easy to figure out. I have almost cleaned every fly reel I have now. I think there are two modern reels left. One is an Okuma. The other is a BPS reel, a Hobbs Creek. I think I am gonna sell that BPS reel. I was using it for a spare, but I have plenty of spares now. The reel works fine. It is in really good shape. But it is not one of my favorites. It is a good beginner reel for someone.
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Old 10-08-2012, 05:56 PM
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Default Re: Battenkill Bar Stock or Access

I know this is an old thread but I just read down through it.

I have a BBS III reel that I bought around 2003, along with a 6wt TLS rod. The reel is made in England. It is a nice reel and has been pretty dependable. However, about 3 or 4 years ago I had to replace the pawl gear. While I was at it I got a spare. It hasn't shown any signs of letting up since.

I am curious where the pawl gear is made. Does anyone know around what time period the machining went to China?

A couple months ago I bought a 4wt Access rod/reel combo. I was not real fond of buying a reel that said "China" on it, but I didn't have much time to choose and after my inspecting I decided it was good enough. I have not caught any fish big enough to run on the drag with it, but from what I can tell it is a decent reel. I don't like the use of plastic in the mechanism, such as the clicker piece. Only time will tell how it holds up. This isn't a big fish rod/reel setup so it may be fine.
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Old 10-09-2012, 10:57 AM
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Default Re: Battenkill Bar Stock or Access

plastic clicker?
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Old 11-15-2012, 07:24 PM
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Default Re: Battenkill Bar Stock or Access

I just noticed that Orvis says to use Penn reel lube on the Access. I was looking for a warranty. I thought this was totally sealed, requiring no maintenance? I don't mind lubing, but I don't have Penn, and if I use another type of lube, I don't want that to void the warranty. I have about 4 types of grease and oil as it is now. I have Hot Sauce oil, and grease. Yamalube grease. Reel Butter by Ardent, oil and grease. Cal's grease is my newest. I have not used it yet.
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Old 11-16-2012, 12:05 PM
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Default Re: Battenkill Bar Stock or Access

Quote:
Originally Posted by kelkay View Post
I just noticed that Orvis says to use Penn reel lube on the Access. I was looking for a warranty. I thought this was totally sealed, requiring no maintenance? I don't mind lubing, but I don't have Penn, and if I use another type of lube, I don't want that to void the warranty. I have about 4 types of grease and oil as it is now. I have Hot Sauce oil, and grease. Yamalube grease. Reel Butter by Ardent, oil and grease. Cal's grease is my newest. I have not used it yet.
You can't really void Orvis' warranty.Tell them you're not satisfied, and they do their best to make it right.
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Old 11-16-2012, 01:24 PM
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Default Re: Battenkill Bar Stock or Access

Quote:
Originally Posted by kelkay View Post
If you have tried both, which do you prefer? I heard they quit making the Battenkill. But if it is made better than the Access, I'd rather have that. This is for around December. I won't be getting one any time soon. But I wanted to hear opinions.
Do you mean Battenkill Bar Stock (BBS) or Battenkill Mid Arbor (BMA)?

Orvis discontinued the BMA's last year and replaced them with the Access series. The Access is basically the same design as the BMA with minor improvements -- fully sealed drag, a little less weight. The are both good choices for a durable mid-arbor reel that can hold plenty of backing and handle strong fish. Unless you really want the sealed drag, you can save a few bucks by buying the discontinued BMA at a clearance price if you can still find one, and you probably wouldn't ever notice a difference.

However, the BBS is a different model entirely. It's a lightweight, standard-arbor, more traditionally styled reel, a redesign of the classic old Battenkill that was the mainstay of the Orvis reel offerings for decades. It's still listed at the current Orvis website, so I don't think it has been discontinued, although I don't see the older Battenkill there any longer.

I like standard-arbor reels for smaller fish (like panfish and trout) and line sizes (up to 6), where you don't need to worry about having miles of backing that need a huge outer diameter when you're reeling it all back in. I like mid-or large-arbor reels for heavier line sizes and bigger fish, where you might find yourself with 100 or 150 yards of backing out, and you need a stronger drag to help control the fish and a bigger spool that can retrieve more line with every crank of the handle.

I wouldn't worry about where it was made. Orvis stands behind their stuff. The old CFO models were made in England by Hardy and are becoming collectors' items, but these days, among the better products in the market, it doesn't really matter. A couple of years ago a Hardy rep told me they moved the Lightweight and Marquis production to Korea from England not because of labor costs (the machining is done by computer), but because the quality of the aluminum barstock in Korea is higher, so they can produce a more consistent finished product with less material wastage and quality defects.
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Old 11-16-2012, 01:49 PM
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Default Re: Battenkill Bar Stock or Access

I was talking about the Access reel in particular. I could of sworn they just went up in price though. Any thoughts on that Penn reel lube? I appreciate the thoughts on the differences between the two Orvis reels.
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Old 11-16-2012, 02:48 PM
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Default Re: Battenkill Bar Stock or Access

I have a couple of BBSIIs that I use on my trout rod and an Access IV that I use in the salt. Both are well made.
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