The Waterworks-Lamson is not a typical fly-fishing company. Their core expertise is in product design. Through innovation, invention, design and engineering art with the highest standards, the Ketchum based company has brought to market some of the most exciting fly reels the market has ever seen. The current product line, with reels like the Litespeed and new Cobalt, have established the company as the market leader in high end fly reels. All Waterworks and Lamson reels feature the patented Conical Drag Design.
For 20 years, Waterworks-Lamson has set a bold benchmark for innovative fly reel architecture.
Large arbour, lightweight, sealed systems, zero maintenance, advanced materials, state of the art machining, innovative and enviable styling—the list is long.
The thing to remember is they were there in the beginning—pushing the envelope, refining ideas, changing how people thought about reels—and they’ve never stopped.
They set out to engineer the best drag system possible: Zero start-up torque with adequate range. Smooth operation. Sealed from the environment. Reliable and maintenance free. Plus, compact, light and technically simple. No sweat, right? They imagined a mechanical solution for a reel that probably seems obvious today: storing line on a large-circumference spool supported by a lightweight frame. But typical drag systems of the time were based on flat counter-rotating discs. Counterproductive. It occurred to them that the same surface area of discs could be configured into a pair of matched cones machined with angular precision. This resulted in a significant reduction in the diameter of the assembly, making it small, light and easy to seal. They also found proprietary friction materials that produced zero start-up torque and could run without lubrication.
Due to their proprietary conical drag, they set out to develop a distinct and efficient frame. The Power Arm frame design is a way of aligning the structural support for the spool along the primary load path. The primary load path for any fly reel runs from the center of the drag core to the reel foot. It’s logical to put most of the material along that load path. Any distribution of material not aligned with the primary load path will result in either a structure that’s too flexible—or heavier than it needs to be. The Power Arm design uses the least amount of material to achieve the maximum stiffness.