What is the Wychwood Flow fly reel designed for?
The Wychwood Flow fly reel is a fairly stylish looking fly reel designed for the trout fly fisher. It's priced in the sub-£50 end of fly reel pricing, so it's at the budget end of the market. It's smooth to use, balances the rod nicely and has a decent sized arbor to hold plenty of backing and fly line.
In what sizes is this fly reel available?
The Wychwood Flow fly reel comes in just two sizes: a #5/6 model and a #7/8 mode. It's a shame there's no #3/4 model in the range, although Wychwood has that covered with its more expensive Wychwood River and Stream fly reels, which come in very tiny sizes. Larger Wychwood fly reels are available in the form of its Truefly SLA (super large arbor) cassette fly reels, which come in #5/6, #7/8 and #9/11 sizes.
How is the Wychwood Flow fly reel made?
The body and spool of the Wychwood Flow fly reel are made from pressure-cast aluminium. Wychwood's painfully superlative-laden marketing spiel claims that the Flow is "significantly lighter than any cassette fly reel on the market".
While I'm not sure whether this is true (it feels relatively weighty to me, compared to my machine aluminium reels) the Flow is certainly very sturdy and unlikely to break easily.
The build quality on mine is good, although there are one or two very tiny imperfections in the casting that demonstrate the subtle differences between this low-to-mid end fly reel and a more expensive barstock aluminium model.
That said, they're barely noticeable, very tiny and you have to look pretty hard to spot them.
What's the drag like?
The Wychwood Flow fly reel uses a Rulon drag system. This is semi-sealed in a protective casing to keep dirt out. There's a good sized drag adjuster on the back of the reel which is fitted with grip-lines to help you adjust it with wet hands.
It works well enough, applies pressure fairly evenly and doesn't sound too hideous either. Granted, it doesn't sound as lovely as the drag on the Orvis Access fly reel, but then the Wychwood Flow does cost about a third of the price.
Does it come with a reel case?
Kind of. There's a basic draw-string bag provided, which will keep the reel clean in your bag but doesn't really provide much in the way of protection. However, I suppose it's a bit much to expect a fancy neoprene on-rod reel case on a fly reel at this price.
What colour is the Wychwood Flow fly reel?
There's a choice of two colours available: Titanium and Platinum. The Platinum model is a dark greyish colour while the Titanium one is very pale silver. Both look good - I went for the Titanium one.
How much are they and would you buy one again?
The Wychwood Flow fly reel retails for £49.99, but you can pick them up for around £10-15 less if you shop around. Once discounted, that's pretty good value and is comparable to a similar model from Greys. They're not such a bargain at full price so I'd only be tempted if discounted.