Like a Tudor watch, would you always be explaining it’s made in the same factory as Rolex?
Well, not really because in the 70s Hardy recognised the demand for self-build rods.
I know this coz I built one, badly!
Jim (James Leighton Hardy) was instrumental in setting up the Fibatube factory in Willoburn, Alnwick. This move secured their position as a serious, if not the No.1 contender in the modern blank manufacturing process in fibreglass then carbon rods.
Hardy positioned the range in the mid-price point between a full-blown Hardy rod and a lesser maker’s kit. They produced bare blanks and part finished rods with handle and reel fittings along with a leaflet on how to fit and whip rings or guides.
If you have ever tried to hand sand a cork handle to look like something shop-bought you’re on a long road to frustrationville.
The Fibatube blanks contained a cloth material strategically placed to give strength and the correct performance. Covering a range of course, carp (the one I bought) pike, game and sea rods. There was something for everyone and they came in a brown, not Hardy blue Fibatube logo bag.
On the surface it’s as if Hardy really didn’t want to be known for this range, however it appears towards the back of most catalogues of the era.
Fibatube was remarkably successful enjoying decades of production in fibreglass and latterly carbon fibre rods, but without the Hardy labels, the collectability is less.
They provide excellent value for money for what is a high-performance rod at a fraction of the Hardy model range price; all you have to do it build it!