Question about old Orvis bamboo fly rod

Discussion in 'Bamboo, Fiberglass & Classic Reels' started by Twins Fan, Mar 19, 2007.

  1. Twins Fan

    Twins Fan New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2007
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    USA
    Hello,
    I had asked this question at a few places and got no replies, but you guys look promising! So, here's the thing, I have a "Orvis Impregnated Equinox" rod that is around 7 1/2 feet, the rod also has the word "scotland" on the butt cap. When I look over the rod it seems to be in perfect, if not excellent condition. It is a 2 piece rod and it came in a tan cloth that looks fairly old. So my question is, just how nice is this rod, value wise? I mean, I always knew it was a nice rod {hence why I never had the courage to use it} but after looking around online I realize it may be nicer then I had imagined. If anybody could give me some info on the rod and maybe a rough estimate at what to price it at I would be ever so grateful. Thanks, Max.
     
  2. rockymountain_brown

    rockymountain_brown Senore Member

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2004
    Messages:
    307
    Media:
    260
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Montana.
    Orvis Equinox...
    7.5' Is quite a desirable length for any bamboo rod. According to Fishnbanjo's website, they didn't make a 2 peice Equinox, just 3 piece rods:confused: Either way, most Orvis's with one tip and in good condition are around $350-500.
    Best wishes,
    RMB
     
  3. Kent Lufkin

    Kent Lufkin Remember when you could remember everything?

    Joined:
    Apr 7, 2004
    Messages:
    7,159
    Media:
    54
    Likes Received:
    1,241
    Location:
    Not sure
    During the heady days for bamboo rods in the late 1960s through the early 1970s, demand for Orvis rods exceeded even their ability to produce them.

    As a sidebar, it's worth noting that unlike 'factory' rods by makers like Heddon, South Bend, and others, that were built on a sort of mass production assembly line, Orvis rods were largely built by only two or three craftsmen at most. One knowledgeable collector suggests that one of them, Ron White, may have built more rods than any other individual in the history of cane rods.

    Unwilling (or perhaps unable) to lower their production standards to crank out additional rods, Orvis joint ventured with Sharpe's of Aberdeen to produce additional blanks which would then be finished out in Manchester. Orvis licensed the recipe for their impregnation process and Sharpe's was allowed to market impregnated blanks to other rodmakers, built to their individual tapers such as Leonard's Duracane series.

    The Equinox rods were the first of a planned series of rod models built on the initial Sharpe's blanks. But the plans hit a snag when the quality control on the Sharpe's blanks didn't meet Orvis' standards. The rejection rate was so high that Orvis ultimately terminated the relationship.

    Surviving Equinox rods are a sort of good-news, bad-news model in the vintage cane market. The good news is that they're fairly uncommon and minty models can command the attention of serious Orvis collectors. The bad news is that as fishing tools they were not highly regarded compared with Orvis' other, more successful models like the Battenkill. The value of your rod will depend in large part on what condition it's in. An all-original example with no issues and a pristine sock, tube and label could command as much as $750 or more. A missing or broken top section, loose ferrules, missing guides, dinged-up cork or reel seat, and missing sock or tube could cut that price by as much as 2/3.

    K
     
  4. Twins Fan

    Twins Fan New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2007
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    USA
    Thank you very much for the replies. I appreciate it greatly!
     
  5. Tim Cottage

    Tim Cottage Formerly tbc1415

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2003
    Messages:
    1,776
    Likes Received:
    324
    Location:
    Outer Duvall
    Most of what you wanted to know has already been covered but here is some more info the chew on, relevant to your rod.

    I happen to have a Sharpes built Equinox with the Scotland stamped butt and I can tell you that it is a fine rod. Fully up to standard Orvis quality. Mine is an 8 1/2' 7wgt. It casts a long belly 7wt with much authority. It is a fine steelhead rod. Orvis definitely offered the Equinox in a two piece rod. There are four models listed in the 1965 catalog; a 7-foot rod for #6 line, and 7 1/2-foot, 8-foot & 8 1/2-foot rods for #7 line.

    A large part of the supply and demand issues were caused by the US/Chinese Trade Embargo in place at that time. Orvis and others were scrambling for bamboo. United States trade law allowed domestic companies to buy products "manufactured" in a free country regardless of where the raw materials were obtained. Orvis circumvented the embargo by having rods manufactured in Scotland which had no such embargo in place.


    It is important to remember that the rods that suffered from Sharpes quality issues were usually culled by Orvis before being offered for sale. Sharpes made blanks for the Leonard Duracane using the same impregnation process licensed from Orvis and not many people complain about those despite Leonard's own quality control which was certainly questionable during certain periods of their history.

    Your rod is intended as an every day fishing tool. Take it out and use it. It is less fragile than your graphite rods.

    TC
     
  6. Twins Fan

    Twins Fan New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2007
    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    USA
    Hey thanks Tim. This is all interesting to me, so I appreciate your replies. The rod, and another unmarked bamboo fly rod, were given to me by me Grandpa, but he never told me just how nice that Orvis was. He just said "here's some old fly rods, I don't use them anymore", silly Grandpa! I don't think I'd ever sell the rod though, I mean, the thought had crossed my mind initially, but I don't think I could ever bring myself to actually do it. I'm gonna take your advice and just use it. Well, thanks again guys, take care:)
     

Share This Page