In 1881, Ernest F. Pflueger first started manufacturing fish hooks called “The Enterprise Manufacturing Company”. When his son E.A. Pflueger took over his father’s company, he expanded the business to all aspects of fishing tackle and gear.
Recently, as I browsed through the isles of the “Best Out West” antique store located on North Main Street in Sheridan Wyoming, I came across a never-been-used perfect condition Pflueger “Medalist” fly reel – model 1495 DA. To my surprise, this vintage reel included the original box and all paperwork including reel instructions.
In 1931 C.T. Pflueger introduced the first “Medalist” model. In 1966, Shakespeare Tackle Company purchased The Pflueger Company. From 1966-1969 all “Medalist” models ended with the letters “DA”.
I wanted to put this rare and vintage “Medalist” model fly reel to work. After having the guys at The Fly Shop Of The Big Horns install a 5wt. trout fly line with backing, I was headed for the Wyoming streams. Mounted to my new R.L. Winston 7’6” 4wt. rod I knew I was in for a special and fun day. As expected, my new reel performed extremely smooth and had all the rewards of modern technology.
Next time your browsing around an old antique store or rummaging through your neighborhood garage sale, don’t be afraid to purchase old fly reels from the past. New isn’t always better.