An excellent Dana Gray Carlson Four fly rod, 6'6", 2-piece, 2-tip, built for what feels to me like a #3 or #4 line. 2.9 ounces. Serial number 061-4652, manufactured as the first rod in 2006. Lawn cast only. Inspection of the inner guides shows no signs of brassing nor is there any on the rest of the hardware. A lot of rods come across my workbench and it is a real pleasure to handle a rod like this with such an outstanding level of craftsmanship, including the shop-made ferrules, reel seat, and tube. Light flame color cane with a spiral node pattern. Very small nodes indicating the use of very good quality cane and excellent node pressing work (I copied Sam Carlson's node press when I was first starting out). Superb Cosmo spar varnish. Maroon wraps with black edges at the keeper and male ferrules. Agate stripper and antique high-arch black oxidized HSS snake guides. The rod shaft is inked "Carlson Four" and on the reverse of the wrap flat "061-4652" and "Gray - Carlson Makers" on the wrap flat. The front cork check is squared as well as the front of the grip. The butt section for this rod was glued up in 2001 jointly by Sam Carlson and Dana, while the tips were made by Dana alone. The lettering on the rod shaft was done by Verna Carlson. The grip is shaped to a blunt western style and is 5 1/4" long. The slide band and cap is fitted over a mortised and varnished piece of spectactular burl walnut. Sam Carlson worked at Mossberg in the 1950's and the walnut was from "cut around" pieces from the gun stocks. The oxidized nickel silver cap is mounted over plastic and the end cap is knurled and turned from delrin. The ferrule fits are perfect and the rod is straight as a pin. The rod packs in an olive colored cloth bag and comes in a highly polished aluminum tube with Dana's brass fittings. All in all, a superb light line quad.
This rod comes from the collection of Dr. Earl Fleegler, a passionate angler and well-known collector in the fly fishing community as well as a renowned hand surgeon. Dr. Fleegler was close friends with a number of angling luminaries including Tom Maxwell, Vince Marinaro, and Stan Bogdan (among others) and devoted considerable effort to collecting some of the finest tackle available from masters of the craft.