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Old 09-09-2008, 12:48 PM
Ron Ron is offline
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Default Questions regarding Hardy reels

I'm fairly new to fly fishing and would like to know how Hardy reels are viewed, especially the Flyweight and Featherweight models. Are these considered high-performing, expertly-made reels with good to excellent drags and reliability? Or are they more of a collectors' item that are not often seen on the water in this country?

How would the Flyweight and Featherweight compare to the Ross G-1 and G2?

Many thanks, Ron!
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Old 09-13-2008, 11:59 AM
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Default Re: Questions regarding Hardy reels

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Originally Posted by Ron View Post
I'm fairly new to fly fishing and would like to know how Hardy reels are viewed, especially the Flyweight and Featherweight models. Are these considered high-performing, expertly-made reels with good to excellent drags and reliability? Or are they more of a collectors' item that are not often seen on the water in this country?

How would the Flyweight and Featherweight compare to the Ross G-1 and G2?

Many thanks, Ron!
I use to rep Hardy, and still fish with them. The Hardy Lightweight series which includes everything from the flyweight to the Zenith were one of the first HQ lighter flyreels to hit the market back in the thirties. The English made varieties are very well made, will last forever (I'm fishing one built in the seventies for steelhead) and have great resale as they are considered classic and collectable. As far as drags, they are classic Hardy Click and Pawl assemblies, and the drag is designed to prevent overrun (which it does) and protect light tippets. With heavier tippets (4x and above), you will have to apply additional drag pressure on the inside of the spool. But, you will never lose a fish to tight a set drag or a disc drag that is too loose and overruns. I do not believe their is a better drag for light tippets and I have used my click and Pawl reels in just about every freshwater condition including Alaska with no problems.

The new Hardy lightweights are made in Korea (I believe, I don't know Hardy USA's plans for them). The jury is still out on their reliability although their construction appears fine. I doubt they will escalate in value like the extinct British ones. As far as a comparison to the Ross, the Gunnisons are excellent reels with good drags for trout fishing. My favorite ross (if you can find one ) is the old San Miquel which is one of the finest trout reels ever made. Ross has excellent warranty service (Hardy is changing their service arrangements) and they are quality, classic reels. While I prefer the click and pawl set up you shouldn't have any problems with the Ross.
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Old 09-13-2008, 01:32 PM
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Default Re: Questions regarding Hardy reels

despite the move over the past decade or so to disc drag reels, the hardy lightweight series which includes the models you listed are often held in VERY high esteem among some flyfishers, particularly those who fish bamboo and those who have come full circle from the large/mid arbor disc drag "thing." many would not be caught dead without one. and they are fished regularly.

the earlier ones, made in england and not machined in construction, are every bit as good as machined reels, making up for whatever may be lost in machining tolerances or large arbor needs (often only perceived, as in small stream trout fishing) by a huge level of cachet. all depends on the individual fisher of course. in my world, performance starts with the fisherperson, not reel. and the lightweight series only compliments it. i just lost an orvis CFO III click and pawl reel made by hardy to a house theft and even though i have 2 spare spools left i'm still weeping.... . put me outta my misery!!!! lol

the nice thing about those hardy reels, especially the cast ones, they hold their value when sold as used if it's in good cosmetic shape. and pretty close even if dinged a bit. like burk said, the newer overseas made reels may not hold their used value as well, but i believe the machining holds its own for fihsing needs. do you have one or have a chance to buy one? they can be very light. and that's not a bad thing.

i rarely see hardy reels used in person, but then i often fish alone or with cheap *******s (lol).

eric
fresno, ca.
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Old 09-13-2008, 02:42 PM
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Default Re: Questions regarding Hardy reels

I bought a "perfect" in the mid 70's and in spite of slipping and falling on a dock and bending the side plate, i still use it today. I bought a lightweight and it got stolen so i bought another and just got another used one with a spare spool.
For the size trout that i catch, i dont use anything else and dont need a drag.
For some reason , i just cant get used to a fish pulling out line silently and I miss the ratchet singing .

Ive collected 8 (including a sage 505 and a CFO made by Hardy) over 40 years of trout fishing and they have served me well.

As far as reliability goes, I never had a problem except for falling with the Perfect, I cant say the same for other reels that ive owned.
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Old 09-13-2008, 02:57 PM
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Default Re: Questions regarding Hardy reels

Many thanks for the great discussion re my post on Hardy. I have a Hardy Featherweight that I'm using on an old Sage sp 9', 5 wt rod. It seems to be a nice combo, but since I'm new to the sport, I don't have much to compare it to, hence my post here. My casting shoulder gets sore quickly, so the lighter the rod/reel, the better. Ron
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Old 09-13-2008, 03:50 PM
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Default Re: Questions regarding Hardy reels

Here's a Pink salmon caught Thursday near the Sault in Canada. I was using Prototype Cortland Brook 10' 5 weight and an old Hardy Marquis 6 from the 80's. They still work great. The Brook is a great rod for hi-stick Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 09-13-2008, 05:09 PM
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Default Re: Questions regarding Hardy reels

Wow, Burke, beautiful fish! I have sent the picture off to a few fishing pals. You might see an increase in Canada's population soon! Thanks, Ron
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Old 09-13-2008, 05:15 PM
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Default Re: Questions regarding Hardy reels

Burke--What type/size fly brought this fella up? Ron
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Old 09-13-2008, 06:12 PM
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Default Re: Questions regarding Hardy reels

I believe I was swinging an egg sucking leech when he hit but then again I lost track. I landed between 40-60 Pinks a day fishing Tuesday thru Thursday. So I don't rememeber for sure.
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