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+44 (0)1253 808447
+44 (0)7941 313329

© 2015 Mark Leggett.
The Alternative Tackle Company

4 Cleveland Road, Lytham,
Lancashire, FY8 5JH. UK

Images courtesy of Malcolm Anderson
( & suppliers

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Vince Huttley is very excited to introduce Vince Huttley’s custom made fly rods and fly reels. Vince is a new and talented Australian craftsman, who produces beautifully made and designed fly rods and fly reels. His work has started to attract a lot of attention and deserves to be recognised more widely. Huttley rods and reels have not been available commercially before and so I am very pleased that Vince has agreed to let me help make them more accessible.
Below is an edited version of an interview Vince did for the excellent blog site
“Tippets and Tales” and is published here with their permission. The full interview is available HERE.

“Tell me a little about yourself…. Where are you from?
Vince Huttley is my name, will answer to pretty much anything though... Reside in tropical Townsville North QLD Australia.

Do you make your living in the fishing/fly fishing industry? If not, what’s your 9-5?
The daily grind, I'm a fitter and turner by trade. I help run a machine/fab shop, which keeps me busy. Quoting, planning, drafting, keeping the apprentices attitudes under control etc, etc. Rod/reel building is something I started as a project for myself, but it's slowly progressing into something more. But I will stress that I'm keeping tight reigns on it as I'm extremely fussy on quality and I won't release any of my work until I know its going to last a lifetime of use. So basically once I'm happy with it, I will start selling more gear.

What got you in to fishing? When did you start fly fishing?
Fishing has always been a big part the family, ever since I was able to walk Dad would take me on trips hunting and fishing. But the fly is something I picked up on my own. Mostly due to a TV show that aired here in Australia called " A River Somewhere" in the late 90's and the saltwater scene that was kicking on pretty hard. My parents bought me a 10wt graphite set up for my 10/11th birthday plus a how to VHS with a few saltwater flies. I cast the shit out of that rod for years! Every once in a while I'd fluke a fish but I just loved bagging out loops. Fishing took a back seat for a few years when I started work, in-between wake boarding, partying and girls or lack of - the fish had to wait. Back into it now for several years and I try to get out to the reef whenever the weather is good for some spearing and bottom bashing. But I definitely need to spend more time with with my Epic 990 out there. An hours drive up the range I have a few good spots chasing sooty grunter on foam hoppers and cicadas with the three and four weights. Plenty of variety here from freshwater, estuaries, saltwater flats, reefs and good blue water to throw in the mix, the closest trout stream is about 1000 miles south though.

I see you’re a rod builder. How did that start and how long have you been doing it?
This is a long and annoying story for me so I will keep it as short as I can. The local tackle stores don't really cater for fly and we are really isolated from the whole fly community here. Pretty much the only decent rods available locally are Sage or G.Loomis which are hellishly over priced and very little range. While both those brands are very reputable, I cannot stand the sight of another boring ass olive green, zero contrast rod. That drove me into searching online and rather than go down the easy sensible path of just buying a rod, I figured I would build my own and have been since, for about 4 years now. With the introduction to glass I think my days of building graphite will be very limited. Glass rods just seem to have more sole in appearance and feel.

How many rods do you build per year? Do you do custom builds to order, or is it only for friends and fishing buddies?
Built several rods for friends and family but I tend to stick to myself locally so and I haven't really chased any work on building customs. I'm in the process of building several Epic 580's and Bandits, and once they are completed I will offer them out for grabs. So I can do it at my own pace then with no deadlines. I don't want to turn this project into a chore.

What are your favorite things about rod building and reel making?
Having the freedom to create something unique to what is available on the market, plus the buzz of catching fish on something I've built not bought.”

The first Huttley rods and reels should be available within the next few weeks. You can get some idea of the rods that are coming below. More information on Vince’s Reels is available on his Huttley Fly Reels page. Please CONTACT ME if you'd like to know more.

Coming Soon

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The first Huttley fly rod has now arrived. This is a Kabuto 663 and has come with one of Vince’s bench made 3 inch “Perfect” fly reels. At the moment Vince is planning on sending 3 rods; this Kabuto 663 rod and two Epic 805s (as well as reels to match). These rods will be used as www.alternativetackle demo rods. As soon as they arrive full details, more images and hopefully a video will be published here, on the Facebook page and in a NEWSLETTER. Please CONTACT ME for more information