Chris Lythe Eclipse 3½” x ⅞” centre pin reel № 1.

Made by Chris Lythe for his own use, this beautiful and rare Aerial is in exceptional condition.

£1,600.00

I love this reel. Chris Lythe, who I admire beyond reason, loves conkers. And so he should. Who doesn’t? I suspect that Chris is less fond of spiders and he places conkers strategically about his house to fend them off. I can’t confirm the efficacy of this deterrent because I haven’t tried it. I too like conkers very much, but I’m also fond of spiders. I know, weird.

Although I’ve known Chris for about thirty years, the Eclipse in this format is not one I’ve come across before. I think it’s fair to describe it as rare and highly desirable. This may be an understatement. Take a look at the accompanying pictures. It’s a beautiful reel of such neatness and perfection of construction that it speaks for itself. I hardly need to say more (but you know I’m going to).

There are certain made objects that enrich our lives whose names alone assure us of absolute rightness. Lawrence Waldron fly tying vices- Staffordshire, John Lobb shoes- London, Bonanno Pisano’s campinile- Pisa (which is actually perfectly straight, it’s the surrounding land that’s on the piss), Jesus of Nazareth- carpenter, Chris Lythe Centre Pins- Scotton.  These people are the best at what they do.

Some say that Lythe reels are like Swiss watches. The Swiss should be flattered that their watches are likened to Chris Lythe reels. I’m a big fan.

This special reel spins without visible deviation or any apparent adherence to the laws of physics. It feels correct in the hand, instinctively. Imagine fitting it to your most lissom Avon rod and seeing it effortlessly pay line out to the red topped Colin Whitehouse float. See -no you don’t, it’s gone under and a lively chub of just under five pounds is trying, and failing, to make free. The Chris Lythe Eclipse brings the fish to net, your winding hand merely its humble assistant in this demonstration of man’s mastery over nature.

Well, something along those lines at any rate. I’ve had two cups of tea and I’m quite excitable. So will you be when you purchase this reel and take it home, there to gaze upon it, a supplicant, a pilgrim back from Scotton, Santiago de Compostela- or Newbury.

Specification.

Polished alloy drum and back plate, flawlessly machined. Overall weight: 7¼ oz.  Spool weight: 3¼ oz

The 3½” x ⅞” spool is double ventilated with 12 large holes and 12 small holes to both flanges.

The spokes, line pins, handle axles, spool release and adjustable regulator are nickel silver. The hub, ribbed reel foot (stamped 1) and screws are brass. Note the perfect alignment of the line pin securing screws on the spool’s face. Amazing attention to detail.

The check wheel and pawl are blued steel. The sweetly crisp and positively musical V-spring check, set up for left hand wind, is operated by a brass button mounted on the back plate. The spindle is tool steel.

The back plate is very attractively engraved: Chris Lythe Centre Pins, Scotton – England The Eclipse. The engraving is  infilled with red enamel. Should you wish it, this enamel can be removed, after purchase, by me, using acetone. This will cause no harm to the reel and is completely effective. Don’t try it at home though!

The reel comes in its embroidered draw string pouch.