By Terri Cheatham, Kel’s Rod and Reel
Alvey has again arrived on the shores of America showing us the “down- under” way of fishing. The Alvey is 100 years old and celebrating with a new range of reels. This reel is a round “fly style” reel that pivots on its foot, so the line flies unfettered off the front of the spool allowing for distance casting. It is different, but a lot of fun once you master the technique of holding and casting this reel.
The company gives a 10-year warranty on its Sidecast Reels, and Bruce, the grandson of the founder of the company encourages you to put it in the saltwater and rinse, and if you know me from my business at Kel’s Rod & Reel Service, I shuddered when I heard that. The reels are incredibly well made and simple in design. So well made, that the reels were passed down from generation to generation. I had a young man stop and talk to me at ICAST letting me know he was from Australia. He was so happy to see Alvey in the U.S., he broke out his iPhone and proceeded to show me pictures of his families’ car setup and his family posing with their Alveys. I even had an older gentleman from another large company tell me he used Alveys when he was much younger and loved them.
Alvey got a shot in the arm when local businessman Con Athans bought into the much-loved company, bringing much needed capital and innovative ideas. He helped design a line of spinning reels called Orbiters in sizes of 60, 80, 100 and 200 including a right and left-handed baitcaster. His latest designs are a Stealth Hybrid (sidecast) designed with titanium gears and titanium infused resin for the body. His stealth rod is incredibly light and tough at the same time. His conventional overhead reel, the OS300 is the fast-dropping conventional reel, with a whopping 66lbs of drag, quite a feat for this purple and silver reel. Alvey has great products, and I can go on about how great they are, but you really have to try them out.
There are really good YouTube videos that show the Alvey in action. The Florida Insider Fishing Report has been showing the reels and commercials. Dave Ferrell can be seen around the Florida beaches not just promoting them but using them too.
The Orbiters which are the spinning and baitcasting reels are designed with comfort, durability and strength. The handle has a rounded oversize knob that fits the hand nicely especially reeling in a 21.5” redfish off the pier in Green Cove Springs, the home of Mayor Ed Gaw and owner of Hiliner (Momoi fishing line). No problem with my Orbital 200. Greg at the shop fishes with the baitcaster and has turned several of his fishing club into fans. Fred Pharis a local guide has given up his more “Well known” reels to just fish with his size 80 Alvey Orbiter.
The truth is if you want to have fun fishing try the Sidecasts at the beach and the Orbiters everywhere else and let Alvey show you their “Better Way to Fish”!