Have you ever wanted to make your own fishing reel? I have. In fact, it has been a burning desire of mine. I started out with wood, making simple ice fishing reels, but what I've always wanted to do is make an actual, functioning fishing reel from metal.
But where to start? There are absolutely no manuals, instructions, or advice available in books. Even on-line there is almost nothing of use. Besides, getting into metal working can be a daunting task. What is needed is a sage to lead us out of the wilderness.
Which is why Michael Hackney should be commended for founding his Reelsmithing Forum, the first web site and chat board dedicated to the art of reel making. What a revelation! I remember coming across Michael over a year ago when he posted a hand-made fishing reel on his Eclectic Guy blog. What was amazing about this reel is that it was made entirely with hand tools.
I knew I had to contact him and encourage him to write a book on the subject, as there was no one out there doing what he was doing. He agreed, and not only did he pen an awesome new book on the subject, but he also opened up the new Reelsmithing Forum web site.
Now we have a start for those interested in making fishing reels, and from the looks of things, there are a lot of people like me who are fascinated by the subject. I strongly suggest if you have even a passing interest in the subject to go off and explore the forum and see what kind of reels others are making. They are wonderful and functional and look to be a blast to make. I plan on doing one over the summer, and will let you know how it works out!
The Reelsmith Forum can be found by Clicking Here. Michael Hackney's new book The Reelsmith's Primer can be found by Clicking Here.
-- Dr. Todd