Friday, March 30, 2012

Fly Box Hero - Old Yankee Rodsmith, Andy Manchester

Well....Andy Manchester finished my vintage Scientific Anglers System 10 rebuild as well a family  mini-series.  Check out the pictures below:

Top Down: OYRS 5wt, Three Fenwick HMG's 6 wts and the rebuilt System 10 wt.
Andy does incredible work.

The rebuilt System 10 with custom fighting butts.
New double wrapped, modern titanium guides
Andy Manchester is a true craftsman.  The System 10 was in really bad shape when I sent it to Andy and look at it!  Andy repaired, rebuilt and refinished the rod and created two threaded fighting butts that are amazing.

Many of you view fiberglass as "old technology," but this rod is special.  Fischer made the blank and Andy transformed it into something EXTRA special.

The HMG's and OYRS rod were made for my family.  My wife gets the OYRS rod with the green blank and gold reel seat.  Me and my two sons get the Fenwick HMG series.  All of these rods are numbered and scripted with our names.

You can see the level of craftsmanship and detail on these rods.  If you have a rod that needs repairs or a blank you want put up - you need to get a hold of Andy Manchester.  Contact me and I'll get you his contact information.  I can't say enough about the quality of his work or about him as a person.

Airflo Supple EX Fly Line

I have been messing around with Airflo's Supple EX fly line and I have been happy with the results.  This line is in Cabela's Bargain Cave for $29.88 (down from $59.99).  You also get two Airflo Poly Leaders with the purchase as well.  Loop to loop connections make swapping out the shooting heads a breeze.

Cabela's offers one "fast" and one "slow" poly leader and they are very slick.  Here are the sink rates for the poly leaders included in the purchase.
  • Slow Sink – 2.6"/sec.
  • Fast Sink – 3.9"/sec.
I only have one beef about the line and it is minor.  The box states that the WFF line comes with two welded loops for easy line connection (to the backing and to the leader), but the end going to the backing is straight (no loop).  This is a minor issue, but I wanted to make sure you all knew not to expect the two loops.  I went ahead and tied a bimini twist on the line.

This line shoots very well and gives a guy options on the water.  The poly leaders get the fly down without the use of excessive weight etc.  Great line for $59.99 and unbelievable at $29.88. Here is the link to the Cabela's Bargain Cave.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Lietzau Taxidermy - Cosmos, Minnesota

Lietzau Taxidermy, Cosmos MN
I visited the craziest place today in Cosmos, Minnesota called Lietzau Taxidermy.  I didn't think places like this existed any more.  My sales partner at work is into making period clothing, snowshoes, guns etc.  Lietzau Taxidermy is one of his sources for animal hides and furs.  He actually has a buffalo robe!

I picked up a very nice fox tail for $7.95!  This place every type of dead animal known to man.  Moose it....badger betya!  I bought the fox tail and 6 Indian arrow flints for under $10 (flints are for my boys).  I got the tail home and it was immediately interrogated by my dogs, so if the tails looks wet on the end it's my dogs nose juice.  The tail is super full and everything was professionally tanned.

Foxee Red Clouser (Joe Cornwall - Fly Fish Ohio)
Here is the address:  Lietzau Taxidermy
                                 353 Milky Way Street
                                 Cosmos, MN 56228

Friday, March 16, 2012

5" Manley Super Pliers

One of the best things I saw at the Rigging for Big Gamefish seminar was the pair of pliers they used for rigging.  The Manley Super Pliers (5") are well built and have a very nice wire cutter along the outside edge.  The jaws are wide and are outstanding for crimping down barbs.  The jaws have a groove that serve as a nest for the hook keeping it centered in jaws for an even crimp.

I ordered mine online for $35 with a synthetic sheath.  Worth every penny!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

New Musky Rod Rebuild - System 10

Joe Cornwall's Reworked System 10

I am very excited to see my System 10 fiberglass rod pictorial on Fiberglass Flyrodders.  My good friend, the Old Yankee Rodsmith himself, Andy Manchester is completely rebuilding the rod.  Catch the link here!

Andy is a fantastic rod maker and has become a good friend.  I have two of his signature rods and absolutely love his work.  In fact, I just had him build a series of 6wts for my whole family.  I'll be posting pictures of those rods in the coming weeks.

Right now I am focusing on my System 10.  The rod is not new, but the blank is considered very special.  I bought the rod a few years back and boy did it have problems.  The guides were damaged, the end cap was missing, the male ferrule was loose and the female ferrule had a small crack.  Andy is transforming the rod into a Muskie slayer.  Over-sized titanium guides (completely rewrapped), new ferrule, fighting butt etc.

The rod is in tough shape now, but it is about to get a whole lot better.  Some of you might not understand why guys rebuild rods....the one is a real gem.

Keep your eyes open for pictures soon, but for now hop on over to the Fiberglass Flyrodders site and see it all unfold.  Andy knows his'll learn something from him for sure.

Check out Joe Cornwall's (Fly Fish Ohio) System 10 in the same thread (link above).  Andy documented the whole rebuilding process.  It's great to follow along and read what Andy has to say.  Joe Cornwall recently wrote me and said he will NEVER sell his System 10 rework that Andy pulled off.  Hopefully my grand kids will get mine!

Rigging for BIG Gamefish

Hello All-

I am attending a seminar Thursday night at Bob Mitchell's Fly Shop in Lake Elmo, MN.  Another local fly fishing legend (Bob Nasby) is teaching the class called "Rigging for BIG Gamefish."  Here is the description from Bob Mitchell's website:

"Rigging for BIG Gamefish. Think pike, muskie, bonefish and 'cuda and you've got the idea. Bob Nasby will teach you to rig so you can actually land these fish rather than just have them shred your leader. This will be the best $20 you'll ever spend. 7-9 PM. Call to register."

I am not sure if there are anymore slots open, but you can call Mike at 651-770-5854 and find out.  If you can't make it to the class make sure to stop by Bob Mitchell's and support a great local fly shop.  The owner Mike Alwin has been a friend for a few decades and I sincerely believe he owns the best little fly shop around.

I'll be posting pictures and techniques from the seminar this week.  Stop back and learn how to rig for the toothy critters!