Original Orvis Vortex

Blakethesnake00

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I’m pretty new to fly fishing and my grandfather has giving me most of his fly fishing gear. I can’t find any information about the Orvis Vortex 5/6 online. If anyone has some information that would be greatly appreciated.
Also I’m not sure how to adjust the drag on it I see the bug knob in the middle but it doesn’t move
 

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jayr

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The drag is on the back side, the knurled knob just below the 5/6.

You do not see many for sale. The current for sale prices on Ebay are not relative. These are out of Japan and the guy selling them is nuts.

Sold prices on Ebay look to be in the $150-$200 range with the heavier weights bringing the better money.
 

Ard

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Sounds like you need to remove the spool, look at the image.



See those 2 tabs? They are holding the spool on, you have to gently pull both toward the hub with one hand and use the other to push against the hub while pulling the spool outward.

get that off and you'll see a cork disc assembly, look for obvious signs of corrosion. If you can't see any it's probably just the tension knob stuck. I would take mine apart but would rather not at the moment. I've had a few of them and still have the one in the image.

Just checked and mine was rather stuck, not bad but it required more than light torque to turn it free. They turn clockwise, if the reel was left with the drag engaged that means it will only turn counter clockwise.

Look at the back side. At the center oof the drag knob you see a hub with the Vortex logo on it. If the hub is sticking up and you canfeel it protruding above the knob, the drag is engaged and so can only turn counter clockwise which will loosen it.

If the knob and hub are flush with one another the drag is completely disengaged and will turn clockwise, you may have to turn hard. Avoid using tools for this because you'll scar the knob.
 
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Blakethesnake00

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Okay sounds good thank you for the info man. One more question to you would be is this still a good reel or it new technology far superior
 

Daz

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The current for sale prices on Ebay are not relative. These are out of Japan and the guy selling them is nuts.
Not to get too far off track, but... I don't know what his deal is but he lists tons of stuff for outrageous prices (he currently had 3,185 listing in fishing gear alone). I used to think that maybe he gets lucky once in a while and somebody pays his price, but I checked his completed listings and there are no fly gear sales at all (lots of listings, zero sales).
 

jayr

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Not to get too far off track, but... I don't know what his deal is but he lists tons of stuff for outrageous prices (he currently had 3,185 listing in fishing gear alone). I used to think that maybe he gets lucky once in a while and somebody pays his price, but I checked his completed listings and there are no fly gear sales at all (lots of listings, zero sales).
Ive wondered the same thing. The only thing that I can think of is that it’s a scam and eBay just hasn’t caught it or have anyone lodge a complaint. It’s ridiculous what he’s asking for stuff.
 

Ard

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Okay sounds good thank you for the info man. One more question to you would be is this still a good reel or it new technology far superior
They are heavy so it matters what you intend to put it on regarding the rod. When working proper they are fine and were originally big game reels. The one I posted is a big one that I use on a 15 foot 10/11 weight Winston Spey rod. The drag is more than good for salmon here.
 

Ard

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Ive wondered the same thing. The only thing that I can think of is that it’s a scam and eBay just hasn’t caught it or have anyone lodge a complaint. It’s ridiculous what he’s asking for stuff.
I'm familiar with the seller you guys are talking about, never considered his stuff because I've been at this too long I guess. Sometimes I wonder what the hell I'm doing looking at stuff on eBay anyway :oops:
 

jayr

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I'm familiar with the seller you guys are talking about, never considered his stuff because I've been at this too long I guess. Sometimes I wonder what the hell I'm doing looking at stuff on eBay anyway :oops:
I still look at it as well, and don't need anymore fly fishing gear, but every now and then I come across a buy it now that is a really good deal.
 
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sweetandsalt

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It is one of the small handful of reels Orvis actually designed and had built. It is a good reel and like Ard said was more popular in larger salty sizes. If the drag knob is seized up, do not force it, send it into Orvis and they will handle it. It is a little overly complex and yes many newer designs are better but it is an eminently fishable reel.
 

pnc

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Stated elsewhere I had purchased a DXR just before the Vortex was released. At the time the Vortex was the pinnacle of reels made by Orvis. A friend of mine purchases one for his 9w striper rod. I remember.him raving over how great it was.

See it said that it was heavy. Maybe by today's standards. But nowhere near as heavy as my DXR. The Vortex was state of the art at the time. The porting is what started my ich started for a ported reel. Got a Abel Super8. Still use it on a 8w RPL+.

Get it fixed and use it. That would be my approach. I still use reels and rods from that time ... mmm... and before. They work as good as ever. Better in a way familiarity breeds.
 

sweetandsalt

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Just for technical clarity, pnc, Orvis has NEVER made a reel. CFO was designed by S. Bogdan and made by Hardy, your DXR was made and designed by original Lamson (and a solid piece of kit) but Vortex was unique in being designed in house and built by a contract shop as Mirage is today. I used mine too on a 9-weight for bass and albies and remain fond of its character despite its idiosyncrasys. Its propensity to counter wind during casting finally put the kibosh on it for me and it is long retired. I liked its porting too.
 

GManBart

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Just for technical clarity, pnc, Orvis has NEVER made a reel. CFO was designed by S. Bogdan and made by Hardy, your DXR was made and designed by original Lamson (and a solid piece of kit) but Vortex was unique in being designed in house and built by a contract shop as Mirage is today. I used mine too on a 9-weight for bass and albies and remain fond of its character despite its idiosyncrasys. Its propensity to counter wind during casting finally put the kibosh on it for me and it is long retired. I liked its porting too.
Wasn't the Odyssey line also designed in-house and machined at a contract shop?
 
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