Monday, November 22, 2010

Multiplier reels-who uses them?

In my desire to collect vintage Orvis fly reels, I've picked up a few multipliers.  I've taken them out before and generally liked them. There are some big fish to catch where a multiplier would be nice, but they are novelties as far as I'm concerned.  I think the multipliers are for people who regularly catch BIG fish, be it in the salt or freshwater.  I'm not that guy.  Not saying I wouldn't like to be surprised, but fishing small streams like I do most of the time, it just usually doesn't happen.  That being said, I still think they are pretty cool.

Orvis sold a few multipliers over the years, so let's take a look at them.

The first one we'll talk about is the Magnalite Multiplier.  There are actually two versions of the Magnalite.  The first model was made by J.W. Young in England, the later version was made by BFR (British Fly Reels).  I suspect that the original was made at the time Young was producing other reels for Orvis.  When that relationship ended, Orvis was doing business with BFR and in fact owned BFR for a time.

The reel on the left is the JW Young made Magnalite.  On the left is the BFR made.

Front of Young Multiplier left and BFR right

I will add specifics about weight, size, retrieve ratio etc. if anyone is interested.  The BFR model is my preference of the two.

Next up is the Battenkill Multiplier.  Again, this mode was made by BFR and is a sweet reel.  A bit on the heavy side, I've used this a couple of times to match with a specific rod I have that I use for tubing large water where there are big fish.  The Battenkill is smooooth and the drag would stop a speedboat.  

BFR made Battenkill Multiplier

If you're looking for a multiplier, I can high recommend this one.  It has all the sweetness of the regular Battenkill and is built like a tank.  They can be costly and are only available on the second-hand market.

The next reel is one that I don't have in my collection yet.  The CFO Multiplier, built by Hardy is a beauty and the standard-bearer for pure class.  Again, this reel can only be found on the second-hand market.  

 Orvis has other multipliers in their stable that are primarily for the salt.  If there is any interest there, we'll run a second post.  Later...