Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Something Old, Something New

To be honest, with the heat of summer currently bearing down on ye olde plains, and with dove season just around the corner, (and early teal, deer, duck and (finally!) quail season on the horizon) I've not done much fishing lately. However, that hasn't kept me from playing with a few fishing toys... 

A well-used, seventies-vintage Ambassadeur 2500C, found in an Oklahoma City pawn shop for twenty bucks, paired up with a brand-new, just-redesigned G. Loomis IMX 844C MBR, which cost, uh...considerably more than twenty bucks, but was a birthday present to myself. In fact, this is the first baitcasting rod I've bought new in probably, hell, ten years or so. Lately all of my energies (and monies) have been going to flyfishing pursuits, so I decided I needed a good, stout, all-around bass rod to balance out my increasingly feverish trout-fueled, fu-fu fairy wand escapist fantasy. And the 844C is about as good an all-around bass stick as you can get.

The reel, on the other hand, needs some work. It'll be getting new spool bearings, a new drag, new handle, a ball bearing levelwind, a ball bearing cog wheel, a ceramic pawl, and whatever else I can stuff inside there. When I'm finished it'll be as smooth as a modern reel, but twice as tough, three times as simple, and four times as classy. Amazing things, those old Ambassadeurs. My last modern, low-profile baitcaster went to that great reel parts bin in the sky earlier this year, victim of an accidental dropping on to my garage floor that shattered the sideplate, broke the reel seat and generally destroyed its innards (goodbye, $160, I hardly knew ye...) but every Ambassadeur I've had since childhood is still happily cranking away, despite a helluva lot of hard - sometimes negligent - use. They truly are the Kalishnikovs of the fishing world.

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