Waste not want not

December 7, 2017 at 5:28 pm

Reluctant to venture outside due to bitterly cold winds, I resolved to sort through my tackle with a view to chucking some of it out this week. Reels were stripped and greased, while new lines were purchased for the various spools. A fly reel was partially seized and put to one side for later attention. At least it was now on the work bench instead of still attached to my fly rod, where on several occasions it had caused trouble, because I meant to fix it each time I returned home, only to lean the rod against the garage wall and forget it.

An almost new swing tip rod, the latest technology for still water bream back in the day, was taken out of its bag, sighed over and put back again. Must give it a go next season. My little 7 ft Hardy split cane spinning rod was put to one side, the moth eaten rod bag needs replacing. I’ve got another one somewhere? I bought this rod when I was 17, it doubled as a fly rod catching River Colne dace and chub, while in the same year, casting a Mepps spoon, I landed a 32 inch pike from the Thames at Romney weir in Windsor below the Castle. At least this has seen some use in recent years, with pike from the Basingstoke Canal and perch from my local pond.

I found a 9 metre carbon pole. I’d forgotten that I still had it. This pole had given me my biggest match win ever in the early 80’s on the Grand Union Canal, bread punch bringing me a net of roach and skimmer bream in baking heat for a weight of about 7 lb, that topped the weight of the 140 strong field. Even sharing part of the winnings with my team mates left me with a tidy sum, which went toward an 11 metre carbon pole, that was lighter and stiffer, with more street cred than its predecessor. Kept as a spare, until another 11 metre pole found its way into the rod bag, the 9 metre ended up alongside the swing tip rod in the loft.

I took the pole out of its bag. It was in perfect condition. A put over type to improve stiffness, opposed to the more modern push in narrow poles with more advanced carbon fibre, that are straight as a die at 18 metres, I remember this one getting floppy beyond 7 metres. There was still a white elastic fitted to the top section. A good pull and it broke, perished. The sort out stopped there. I would fit a new elastic and with no street cred left, use it for close in punch fishing.

The top ferule I had made from PTFE, a very slippery plastic. This was OK, but the bottom bung, which I had turned from nylon, was replaced by an up to date adjustable one that was cut down to suit. Fitted with a new blue No 6 easy slip elastic, I was ready to give it a go. All I needed was some mild weather.