Many of us owned or still own a Battenkill Disc Reel. It was known as the best selling fly reel in the world. And to this day the original is still made and sold by Orvis and Little River Outfitters. The original reel is cast in a mold. Though this process is time honored and an inexpensive way to make reels, the quality of the finish and tolerances are not equal to a machined reel. Machined reels are usually much lighter than a cast reel.
The Battenkill Bar Stock reel is machined from bar stock aluminum not cast. There are times when something comes to the market and becomes an immediate success. One common factor seems to always drive product market performance, price vs quality or perceived value. The Orvis Battenkill Bar Stock Reel is one of those outstanding pieces of gear that sell so well. People who work in fly shops know their customers get a lot for their money if they buy one of these reels. And they tell the customers about them. You know when a customer walks out the door with one of these reels they are going to be happy with it.
The Battenkill Bar Stock or “BBS” is light, durable, good looking and smooth. They are machined from 6262-T6 aircraft-grade bar stock aluminum. The offset disc drag uses dependable Rulon and it is virtually maintenance-free. And the anodized finish in either black or titanium is beautiful, low maintenance and durable.
Every ounce of extra weight has been carved away, leaving a light durable cage that will provide years of use. Though ideal for freshwater, they are an affordable option for light salt water use. Consistently precise, a result of manufacturing tolerances that are much tighter compared to die-cast-reels. And they are built around an infinitely adjustable offset disc drag mechanism recognized as the most dependable in the industry. All gearing in the drag system is stainless steel.
It’s hard to beat a BBS reel especially for the price. They are available in Black or Titanium to match almost any fly rod made. Both colors are equally popular. Throughout the BBS lineup we sell right at 50% of each color. And we sell a lot of them.
So if you are considering a new trout, panfish or bass reel take a close look at the BBS. You will find value, light weight and a good looking piece of fly fishing gear that you will cherish for a long time.
The BBS I is a small reel for line weights 1, 2 or 3. This reel has a diameter of 2 ½” and weighs a mere 3.2 ounces. It sells for $119 and extra spools cost $49. Using 20# Dacron backing you can load it up with 100 yards with a WF1F line, 75 yards with a WF2F line and 50 yards with a WF3F line. Offered in Black and Titanium.
The BBS II is designed for those fishing with 3 to 5 weight rods. This reel has a 2 ¾” diameter and weighs 3.5 ounces. It is also available in Black and Titanium and sells for $119. An extra spool sells for $49. Using 20# Dacron backing the capacity is 125 yards with a WF3F line, 100 yards with a WF4F line and 75 yards with a WF5F line.
The BBS III is a great trout or bass reel. It is best suited for line weights 5 through 7. The diameter is 3” and it weighs 3.9 ounces. Available in both colors it sells for $129 and the extra spool goes for $59. With 20# Dacron backing your capacity on this reel is: 125 yards with a WF5F line, 100 yards and a WF6F and 75 yards with a WF7F line.
BBS IV reels are made for lines in the 7 to 9 weight range. This model has a diameter of 3 3/8” and weighs 4.5 ounces. It sells for $139 and the extra spool should you want one goes for $65. It is also available in Black or Titanium. Capacity using 30# Dacron is as follows: 150 yards with WF7F line, 125 yards with WF8F line and 100 yards with WF9F line.
There is a BBS V reel but we don’t sell many of them. It is made for line weights 9 through 11. We don’t recommend this reel for big game fishing due to the size of the drag. But if you want a high capacity reel and you don’t require a big game drag this one will be fine. The diameter is 3 5/8” and it weighs 5 ounces. It sells for $149 and the extra spool costs $69. Using 30# Dacron backing the capacity of this reel is: 200 yards with WF9F, 175 yards with WF10F and 150 yards with WF11F. This reel is also available in both colors.
So there you have everything we know about a Battenkill Bar Stock Reel. We sell the heck out of them and we use them too. Great reel for the money.
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