Chris Yates ‘The Merlin’ 11′ 2piece Avon rod.

Made by the Barder Rod Co in 2006. In unused as-new mint condition.


Fifteen years in a cool, dark, dry place. Mmmm. Sounds like  heaven, whether we’re referring to a bottle of the underrated Leoville Barton of the same vintage or a fine split cane Avon rod. You see, the marine grade varnish we use takes its time to cure and toughen. It does no harm to let the split cane and the glue that bonds it have some extra maturity either.

It’s an unused example of our best selling Avon rod, unaltered since Chris Yates approved of its design on the Royalty’s Railway Pool in 1991 (he christened his with a sweetcorn caught seat trout. I was there). It’s fitted with our aircraft grade alloy handle fittings for lightness. The rings are the now unavailable and best ever stand-offs made by Sapphrite Laurels. The varnish-impregnated transparent whippings, including perfectly graduated intermediates, are Pearsall’s Superfine & Gossamer pure silk.

This is a really fantastic rod. In fact, it might be the best Avon rod (along with others just like it that we’ve made and continue to make, of course) of all time. It will perform its role supremely well and if you look after it, your grandchildren will be able to fish for whatever swims in our rivers fifty years from now. By then, it’ll be virtually priceless.

An unused Chris Yates Merlin for a tiny bit less than a new one, available now. Oh, go on then.


11′ 2-piece hand made split cane. Flame tempered, hand split and hand straightened Tonkin bamboo. Precision built to a tolerance of +/- one thousandth of an inch.

24″ Flor grade cork handle with an onion shaped top and aluminium fittings.

Perfectly fitted blued & lacquered nickel silver ferrule with its hardwood and cork stopper.

Sapphrite Laurels ‘Europa’ stand-off rings (hard chrome plated) with matching lightweight Amberfin butt and tip rings. Hook keeper ring secured by a seamlessly over-whipped hand forged nickel sliver strap.

Varnish impregnated Pearsall’s silk whippings and a flawless marine grade varnish finish.

The Indian ink inscription is as follows: The Chris Yates Merlin ’06.

The rod comes in its tailor made bag.

Test curve: 1¼ lbs. Reel lines: 3 – 6 lbs BS. Casting weights: up to 1 oz.