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Does anyone use Pflueger Medalist fly reels for spey use. I have a box full of these old reels that my dad and brother used when they were living. One of the larger reels is over 50 years old and in new condition. I'm just curious what people think of them.
 

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Scandit sublima virtus
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hell, yes!
 

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The medalist is the Volvo 240 of fly reels. You'll likely not be turning heads by using one but it will get the job done and probably do so forever. If you've got one big enough to fit your spey line then go for it.
 

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I use a 1498 on my 8 wt switch. It landed a nice winter fish the first time out!
 

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Jamming your finger into the reel cage to add some drag to the spool is a skill all Medalist users can relate to...I love em but gave my last one away years ago...
 

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Bamboo Rod Maker
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reels

1494 1/2 was an old reel when I got it 49 years ago and it is still going strong. Missing some paint but otherwise still in the race. I also use a 1598 on a 10' 6" bamboo switch rod. I have had it around 20 years and it is also going strong.

Jerry
 

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fly fisher 'til it's over
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When I was a wee fisherman, I watched my father mount his 1495 1/2 with the circular line guide on his cane rod, and bitter sweetly knew that it would one day be mine. There isn't a day goes by when fishing with that reel that I don't think of dad, and wish we were fishing together again. One day my son will fish with with that reel. Such is the bond with some of this old gear.
 

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Drags are for Sissys
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Yup, here is my well used 1498 from the 60s, I bought it all hot rod-ded from onepfoot, lotsa mojo. They sent it to me in the original box. Swirl knob, counter weight, wasted pillars, all other plastic parts replaced with metal ones, drag parts are replaced with extra hard metal ones and they added the line guard. Coolest reel I own.
 

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I love the vintage stuff, and that reel will outlive you. I find they generally balance long rods out a lot better than most of the new reels available today-
 

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I have a 1498 on my 10wt muskie switch and 1495 for misc and looking for a 1492 now. They are Great and mine were built 40 miles from where I grew up, making it that much better!

Heck ya mount that thing!!
 

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Macfish,

Yes, I think the 1498 is a good size for 6 & 7-weight spey and switch rods. It weighs 8 ounces and a bit, like many medium-size spey reels.

I think that the soft click sound of the drag, with different cadences between the outgoing and retrieve directions, is one of the good things about the Medalist.
 

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Undertaker
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consider selling?

Those older Medalists were made in the USA and fetch a pretty penny at auction. While I still use my old 1494 for trout fishing, the brass brake hub does tend to go out of round after a while (I have spares) and without a palming rim you would be dependent on the drag, I prefer more modern reels for steelhead fishing. But if they come from family, perhaps you have an emotional attachment.
 

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One of the guides I work with on the kenai has used a medalist day in and day out on his nymphing rod for the last three years and it has taken a beating and held up to it very well. He had to replace the handle last summer but other than that it was a tank.
 
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