Appeal – the mystery of the side casting reel

In the vintage tackle collecting game we see many side casting reels.

Pre-1900, no spinning reels as we know them today existed, so drum reels were the order of the day.

Casting with a drum-type reel can be a nightmare. I know this having been hit on the forehead with a high speed returning lead weight when I got it so wrong.

The twisting foot reel style has been around for approx. 140 years, with PD Malloch of Perth, Scotland making his famous Patent side caster in the 1880s – it was the reel to have.

Since then many attempts have been made to better it, few have succeeded.

So that’s the background to this plea for help!

When this beauty turned up, it was straight out come the tools and take it to bits…uh? No maker’s marks anywhere.

The workmanship & engineering quality is Bentley-esque. Actually, that’s a thought, could this be the night shift reel?

The alloy is a combination of cast and turned parts, the fit and tolerance is amazing, the finish is glass smooth too.

The foot twists by pressing a sprung brass release toggle and locating into a slotted brass base. The brass knurled centre drum screw is a work of art by itself. The spool holes I assume to reduce weight and perhaps dry the line. Those old issues never go away, but I haven’t seen another reel like it.

So, answers on a postcard please, who made it?


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