Scott G2884 4 and Waterworks Force X SL BBB

Scott G2884-4 and Waterworks Force X SL.

Waterworks Lamson – Designing a Reel: Let’s Start With Design Objectives

When we set out to design our own reels, we started by evaluating not just the reel, but the rod/reel system.

As we discussed, observed and evaluated rod design at the world’s leading rod manufacturers, we quickly came to the conclusion that reels were too heavy.

We needed to lighten reels in order to keep pace with the ever-lighter rods and to eliminate the negative impact that a reel has on a rod’s casting performance.

Call this our first objective: reduce physical weight.

Grand River Brown Trout Lamson Konic Fly Reel A

Grand River Brown Trout – Lamson Konic Fly Reel.

Waterworks Lamson Force Grand River Second Year Brown Trout AA

Waterworks Lamson Force Fly Reel & a Grand River Second Year Brown Trout.

Another objective was to simplify the design of a reel.

With any mechanical device, simplicity is a virtue. We saw reels with 80+ parts.

It is easy to make something with too many parts; it’s hard to make something work with fewer parts.

Simplicity means that there is less that can go wrong, can result in the virtue of less physical weight, and moreover, often becomes the catalyst for an elegant design solution.

A third objective was to optimize large arbor benefit.

The world is full of reels that call themselves “large arbor” but whose bark in this regard is louder than their bite. Call these reels mid-arbor.

We believe in the virtues of large arbor: faster retrieve rate, constant drag tension and elimination of coil memory. So we set out to maximize the benefits.


Waterworks Lamson Fly Reel with a Dobsonfly.

We felt that we could bring a better reel to market by using superior materials and processes.

We looked at fly reels and saw materials being used that were cutting edge at the time of Jesus.

Much advancement has been made in the past 2,000 years, even the past 10 years, that were not being applied to fly reels to make them perform better.

Finally, we set out to design the world’s best drag system. This meant zero start-up inertia.

It meant silk-smooth through the entire torque range. It meant top-end torque sufficient to stop what you catch.

It meant that the drag would perform exactly the same under all conditions that one met in real life: water, sand, dirt. It meant that you shouldn’t have to think about your drag, ever.

No cleaning or lubrication required.

Grand River Steelhead Lamson Konic Fly Reel A

A Grand River Steelhead & a Lamson Konic Fly Reel.

And so our objectives were clear:

  • Reduce physical weight;
  • Achieve mechanical simplicity;
  • Maximize large arbor benefit;
  • Utilize superior materials
  • Create the world’s best drag system.

Follow these Maintenance Tips for the Longevity of your Waterworks Lamson Reels:
Take care of your gear and it will take care of you!

Mirror Carp Waterworks Lamson Guru XV Redington Dually AA

Mirror Carp & a Waterworks Lamson Guru XV.

Follow these easy Maintenance Tips below:

Do NOT lubricate the drag, you may take the gland cap off and remove the roller clutch and rinse with water.

Allow the drag parts to dry thoroughly prior to re-assembling the drag. No lubrication is necessary and it may even cause issues with the inner workings of your reel.

A small amount of WD-40 may be applied to the handle in order to remove any dirt build up between the handle and the handle shaft.

Make certain that your line stays clean and free of cracks and debris, this can cause frame/finish damage.

Important- IF the gland cap is removed for any reason, always make sure its back on tightly.

And check it periodically even if it isn’t removed.

In Saltwater Environments:

Lamson Waterworks Arx Fly Spey Reel Post Custom Handle Conversion EE

A Lamson Waterworks Arx Fly Spey Reel after Custom Handle Conversion.

Always be sure to rinse your reel under fresh running water after every use in a salt environment.

Occasionally rinse the drag of the reel thoroughly by taking the following steps.

These steps are not necessary at the end of every day of fishing, but at the end of each trip:

  • Remove the spool;
  • Unscrew the gland cap and remove the red clutch assembly;
  • Rinse all of the components and inside the drag cylinder thoroughly with fresh running water;
  • Allow all of the components to completely dry;
  • Re-install all of the components.

*Use of salt water specific equipment-rinse such as Salt-X® will not harm your reel or the drag system and can greatly increase the effectiveness of salt removal.*

For Spool Removal:

A 21 1/2

A 21 1/2″ Grand River Brown Trout with a Waterworks Lamson Fly Reel.

Hold the reel towards your body as shown below.

Grasp the edges of the frame with your fingers and place your thumbs on the spool.

While pushing the frame towards your body with your fingers, push the spool away from the frame with your thumbs.


Contact Us for current inventory & ordering details after visiting the Lamson Website here.

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