The Chris Yates ‘Barbus Maximus’ MK II

Made by us in 2002, this 11' 2-piece barbel rod has had one owner since new &remains in 99.9% of new condition.


I looked up this rod’s order paper in the files. It was commissioned in March 2001 from an Englishman then living in Baku, Azerbaijan. We’re nothing if not exotic in the company we keep here. Even in 2001 we weren’t known as The Speedy Brothers down at the local Rodbuilder’s Club so I’m confident that the rod was completed in 2002.

It’s a fairly early example of the MK II Chris Yates Barbus Maximus. It was commissioned with a trumpet shaped handle top, nickel silver fittings throughout and lovely chestnut coloured silk whippings, including the perfectly graduated intermediates. It’s a very, very lovely rod.

It doesn’t show any signs of use whatsoever and it’s perfectly straight. There is a tiny amount of speckling in the lacquer over the blued portion of the male ferrule. I’d have to show it to you and you’d probably still struggle to see it. Actually the lacquer we used then wasn’t as good as the stuff we’ve got now. This is the only reason I’m not giving the rod a 100% mint score.

The action is very deliberately intended for contemporary barbel fishing, or at least, barbel fishing as it was in the golden age of the early millennium, before it was decreed that barbel fishing should be done with two rods propped up high, with 4 oz leads, regardless of the conditions or location. This really is how most people fish for barbel now. I bet you don’t though, unless you’re way down on the tidal Trent in a big flood, in which case, fair enough. Bit strange elsewhere though.

As you can see from the accompanying pictures, this is a very fine, elegant rod with a superb specification. It’s without doubt the last word in split cane barbel rods. Priced very attractively indeed and available immediately.

Test curve: 1½ lbs. Reel lines: 6 – 8 lbs BS. Casting weights: up to 1¼ oz.


11’ 2-piece. The split cane was hand made by me from flame tempered, hand split & straightened Tonkin bamboo to our precise proprietary tapers.

The 24” handle has a trumpet shaped top and our own make of finely knurled & engraved nickel sliver fittings throughout.

The blued & lacquered nickel sliver ferrule retains its original firm fit and the hand-turned Poplar and cork stopper is in place.

The rings are lightweight hard chrome plated stainless steel bridge pattern with Amberfin butt and tip rings. There is a hook keeper ring secured with a hand forged strap above the handle.

Whippings are Chestnut silk throughout including the perfectly graduated intermediates. The rod has a flawless hand applied marine grade varnish finish, which is fully mature and tough. The rod is ready to fish!

The rod comes in its tailor made bag with traditional ribbon fastenings.