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  1. #21
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
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    Isle of Lewis, UK.
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    634

    Default Re: On Vintage Fenwick HMG Fly Rods

    Thanks for the memories, mtbusman, I enjoyed that. Maybe you could post some pics of them for us?
    They certainly sound like the 2nd Gen HMG brown blanks I've read of, even softer than the first but not as soft as the Trad. series. Given that that's only a 5 oz deadweight on my 9 ft #5 1st Gen above I dread to think of the hoop your rod must have made that day!

    Interesting that not all blanks were marked GFL as yours are GFF. I've more to learn on that designation, I think.

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    North Central Montana
    Posts
    1,047

    Default Re: On Vintage Fenwick HMG Fly Rods

    The blanks I used to build the two rods had the Fenwick logo and HMG in gold paint 18.5 inches up from the butt end of the blank. When I built the rods I removed the blank model number and hand inscribed the corresponding rod number and other information about each rod.

    I dug through my old rod building stuff today and found a 1981 Fenwick "Rod Builder's Handbook & Blank Catalog." It includes information on blanks for fly rods, spinning rods, spin casting rods, casting rods, steelhead rods, saltwater spinning, surf rods, and trolling rods made from "New Boron-X," HMG graphite and Fenglass. Under the new Boron-X, only two blanks were listed, a 8 1/2 foot fly rod for 6 or 7 lines, and a casting rod. I guess Boron-X really was new in 1981. Under HMG graphite there was the regular HMG and the HMG graphite Traditional blanks. In the middle of the catalog there is a Rod to Blank Conversion Chart -- so the GFF906 rod I built was made with a GFL-108-6-F blank. The catalog also has rod building instructions, guide spacing charts, and instructions on how to make a diamond wrap.

    I still have not figured out how to post pictures in a post without using a subscription based photo site -- so, no pictures for now.

    PS -- had trouble with the site reloading and losing my post before I finished it. Had to write the above post three times. I've been away from the forum a awhile, but I guess it is still experiencing some difficulties.
    "Sometimes the least important thing about fishing is fishing." --Roderick Haig-Brown

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Isle of Lewis, UK.
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    634

    Default Re: On Vintage Fenwick HMG Fly Rods

    Wow! Thanks!! What a treasure.
    There's a wealth of information there for me to ponder over and digest, cheers. Is 'Woodstream' mentioned anywhere? By '81 I would expect so ....

    Sorry you had so much trouble posting, I honestly haven't had issues for two months or so myself. Hope it doesn't continue for you.
    I'll drop you a p.m. re- hosting, if I may?

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Location
    North Central Montana
    Posts
    1,047

    Default Re: On Vintage Fenwick HMG Fly Rods

    Woodstream is mentioned. On the front cover, under the Fenwick logo, it reads "Part of Woodstream's World." The same thing is printed on the back cover. And the mailing address is to "Fenwick/Woodstream."
    "Sometimes the least important thing about fishing is fishing." --Roderick Haig-Brown

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Isle of Lewis, UK.
    Posts
    634

    Default Re: On Vintage Fenwick HMG Fly Rods

    Thank you, mtbusman. That figures. I've read a few times that Don Green left Fenwick some time around the Woodstream buy-out. Given that he established (what became) Sage in 1979 if the former is true it places the buy-out on or before 1979.
    Kind of you to check, cheers.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Isle of Lewis, UK.
    Posts
    634

    Default Re: On Vintage Fenwick HMG Fly Rods

    I'm indebted to mtbusman who has very kindly sent me a copy of the '1981 Rod Builder's Handbook and Blank Catalog' by 'Fenwick, part of Woodstream's World'.

    It contains a wealth of information about their '81 range and models and helps to clarify certain dates. I'll post just the fly-related information below. Although still under copyright, Fenwick have previously been very generous when old material is posted for educational reasons and I'll gladly remove the images should they so request.

    I should say; I have in no way discounted Rip Tide's comment (post 6, here) that Schwiebert says there were three generations of HMG by 1978. Given the reported break-rate of the first rods it may be that a reworking of the very first rods resulted in a '1.02' slate-grey HMG model c. '75/'76, and that the softer, brown HMG (my '2nd Gen') was introduced in '78. I simply don't yet know when the brown rods came to market. For my own ease alone, until it is clarified I'll continue to call brown rods 2nd Gen and edit to correct errors later.

    Inside Front Cover:

    1-2.jpg

    The highlights for me here are the clear date of introduction for their Boron-X fly rod (see p.3 below) as 1981 and the description of the 2nd Gen HMG blank colour as, ''Chameleon Brown''.

    Page 1 shows their rod action rating:

    1-3.jpg

    Given the curve a 5 oz weight gave my 905 above, either the HMG wasn't that fast after all - or my rod has gone soft with age.
    It mentions here that the HMG range, amongst other rods, are fitted with Feralite ferruling system.

    Page 2:

    1-4.jpg

    Some helpful info on blank codes here, a little more on the ferrule and 'Fenwick's Lifetime Warranty'. I thought Orvis were first at that gambit but later than 1981?

    Page 3:

    1-5.jpg

    Although Jim Green had been experimenting with boron for several years by 1981, here is Fenwick's first boron composite rod, the Boron-X, available in just one length & rating - 8 1/2 ft, #6/7. But that, I hope, is for another thread some day.

    Under 'HMG Graphite Fly Rod Blanks' it states that ''the graphite sleeve, formerly used over the butt section, has been eliminated'' and the new ferruling system was introduced in the previous year - 1980. The 2, 3 & 4 piece HMG blanks are all listed here.
    Great to get more information on the 'Traditional' range. While they may have a ''slimmer look'' and a smaller Butt Size they're the same weights as the standard HMGs and on a couple the Tip Size is half a size greater.

    Page 5: The Fenwick Ferulite fiberglass range, for reference.

    1-7.jpg

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
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    Isle of Lewis, UK.
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    634

    Default Re: On Vintage Fenwick HMG Fly Rods

    Page 9:

    1-11.jpg

    Page 10:

    1-12.jpg

    From p.12:

    1-14.jpg

    From p.16: Not HMG (GFL), but FL.

    1-18.jpg

    From the Back Cover:

    1-20.jpg

    Again, big thanks to mt for his time and generosity!
    Last edited by Lewis Chessman; 12-14-2018 at 11:54 AM.

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  9. #28
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    Nov 2009
    Location
    Isle of Lewis, UK.
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    634

    Default Re: On Vintage Fenwick HMG Fly Rods

    Something is puzzling me ...
    In the above, p. 3, it says that ''the graphite sleeve, formerly used over the butt section, has been eliminated'' and the new ferruling system was introduced in the previous year - 1980.
    The graphite sleeve ferrule on my 1st Gen rod is on the top section, as it is on this 2nd Gen rod off eBay ....
    Or am I misunderstanding the catalog?

  10. #29
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Location
    Isle of Lewis, UK.
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    634

    Default Re: On Vintage Fenwick HMG Fly Rods

    Quote Originally Posted by sweetandsalt View Post
    Here is a lead for you to follow; back in the 70's Fenwick had a School just south of West Yellowstone, Montana on Rt. 20 with casting ponds and guest cabins. The likes of Jim Green, Bob Jacklin (a great caster/angler) and David "Dutch" Schultz were instructors.
    I've just seen this listing on eBayUS for a ''Fenwick Fly Fishing School Notebook'', plus a Jim Green book, 'Fly Casting From the Beginning', two Gary Borger pamphlets and a 1978 School brochure. Presumably the notebook was given to students when they enrolled.
    Hope they go to a good home!

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