The River Expert Reel
by Jesper Fohrmann
In the late 1940s Mr. Malte Pontus Blohm of Gothenborg in Sweden started the production of some of the nicest and most innovative multipliers ever made. These reels were the River Expert that featured a free spool system developed by Mr. Donald Anderson. The spool of the reel was freely turning on the axel of the reel when casting – once the angler started winding in… the spool would become engaged by the gear. Ball bearings embedded on each side of the spool would assure a smooth drive. Mr Donald Anderson also had a very elegant casting brake designed for the River Expert reel consisting of a oil-filled chamber where a pair of curved wires rotating inside the oil chamber would function as a anti backlash brake when the spool was rotating at high speed. Later this advanced braking system was replaced with a more traditional centrifugal system and on later models the free-spool system also was altered to a more conventional system with a manual release-button. Through time the River Expert reels went through numerous changes and it seems like the engineers never really wanted to finish improving on these beautiful reels.
-- Jesper Fohrmann April 2010
Jesper Fohrmann is an author, guide and fishing historian. He runs the Fish Mad Man web site which you can access by clicking here.
ADDENDUM: Jesper sent in the patent information for the River Expert reel: British patent 683,520 filed September 1951, published November, 1952.