Vintage Heddon Black Beauty #17 Split Bamboo Fly Rod
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Vintage Heddon Black Beauty #17 Split Bamboo Fly Rod Picture and Description:
This nice vintage split bamboo fly rod was produced by James Heddon's Sons of Dowegiac, Michigan. The rod is in very good condition, and it is quite fishable and would make a nice addition to a collection of American fly rods. This is the model #17, the "Black Beauty". The Black Beauty has always been a very popular model. It was made to be eight and one-half feet long in three sections with two tip pieces provided. The rod has a 2F butt ferrule size, and this would indicate that the rod was made to cast a HDH or six weight double taper fly line. It weighs in at five and one-forth ounces. Heddon advertised that this was a "Trout" model, and it casts the six weight double taper very well and can achieve some distance. The rod comes with the original rod bag with lable, and it comes with a black rod tube with no lable. A detailed description follows. The finish on the rod varies from shiney to semi-gloss. It is smooth and adequately covers the wood. I had a bit of success in shining the finish by rubbing it with a polishing cloth, but more work needs to be done to make it completely shiney. No nicks have been observed in the finish. The wood underneath the finish is a beautiful dark brown Tonkin cane. The wood is in excellent condition, and the color is uniform throught the length of the four pieces. There are no nicks, splits, areas of delamination, or other defects noted. All pieces are the correct length, straight, and free of set. The decorative, line guide, ferrule, hook keep, and grip check thread wraps are all black. The wrap for the upper foot of the lowest line guide on one tip piece does not cover the foot, and it should have addition thread wrapped over the foot. All other wraps are present, tightly wound, and free of loose threads. The black thread is attractive against the dark brown wood. There are eight black wire snake line guides on the mid and tip section(s). The wire loop tip tops and the low bridge stripping guide appear to have been bronzed. Much of the color and finish has been retained on the guides. All guides are smooth and free of rust or corrosion. The previously mentioned guide need to be tied down, but all are present and tightly tied to the wood. The suction type ferrules are black, and they have retained essentially one hundred percent of the color. They fit together tightly, and they separate with an audible pop. When the assembled rod is shaken there is no heard or felt ticking, and this is true with either tip piece in place. There is no line of separation on the black ferrule wraps. There is a free hanging hook keep just above the black thread grip check. The stacked cork grip is in a forward Wells configuration. The grip is six and one-half inches long, and it is one inch in diameter at the palm swell. The cork is in excellent condition, and there is no discoloring. There are no nicks, gouges, or lines of separation on the cork. Below the grip is the black Pyralin reel seat barrel. The top portion of barrel is threaded, and a black knurled band with internal threads rides on the threaded portion. The knurled band locks down on a black sliding band with hood for the upper reel foot. There is a stationary black band with hood for the lower reel foot at the butt end of the barrel. Finally, there is a black Pyralin disc for the butt cap. All components have retained nearly one hundred percent of the black color, but the knurled band has lost some color on the knurling. There is no shrinkage of the Pyralin, and all components of the seat and lock are present and in good working order. The rod is identified by inscriptions in black script on the flats of the wood above the hook keep. The first inscription states "Heddon". The next inscription gives the rod model name: "Black Beauty". The final inscription gives us the rod number and the rod characteristics; "# 17 - 8 1/2' - 2F - HDH or E". There is a patent number engraved on the knurled band of the reel lock. Finally, the rod is identified by the Heddon lable sewn on the rod bag. This very nice split Tonkin cane fly rod is ready for the stream or the collection. It would be rated as being in excellent condition except for the variation in the finish and the line guide that needs further wrapping. The rod comes with the original rod bag and black rod tube. The packaging, insurance, and shipping fee for U.S. buyers is $16USD, and the fee for all others is $46USD. Payment is expected within four days of the conclusion of the auction, and PayPal Instant Payment is the only acceptable form of payment (no e-checks, etc.). All others please inquire. The rod will be shipped within four days of receipt of payment. Returns are accepted within seven days of delivery of the rod, and the buyer is responsible for return shipping fees. Good luck with your bidding!!!