Balanced Handle Reel
The balance handle is supposed to be an improvement. It is simply a double length crank with a handle at one end and a weight at the other. It was designed to make the spool run more freely, but why it should be placed on a fly reel is a mystery to me, for the line is never cast from the reel. One thing is in its favor — it gives the reel a more artistic appearance; but it is likely to entangle the line. All good reels of this pattern have the edge of the side plate extended out over the crank a short distance to keep the line from being entangled in the handle. These are called "single action click reels, with protected handle." All single action reels are narrow, so that the line will wind more evenly without being "spooled" by hand.
The click consists of a sort of ratchet working both ways, inside of the left-hand plate. Its use is to keep the reel from running too freely and to show when the line is running out. It is not a necessity by any means, but all fly reels are equipped with a click. It may be stationary, or "back sliding" so that by pushing a little button on the reel plate, it is thrown out of engagement and inoperative. The click, when in action, makes a clicking sound as the spool is turned.
Brooks, Lake. The Science of Fishing. Columbus, OH: A.R. Harding, 1912. Print.
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