For sale here is a 4 1/4" caged drum/spool salmon reel. This was the "Humber" model marketed by William Mills & Son - New York and supplied by WH Dingley. Reel is in excellent working condition. Very strong click (strong spring and sharp gear teeth) after all of these years. There is a "VI" artisan mark located on the inside of the spool. It is not stamped with a "D".
A brass roller bar can be seen in the photos between two of the pillars. While I cannot declare this roller bar as factory original, it seems of the right age, having the same patina as the rest of the reel. It also spins freely and has done its primary job of protecting the pillars and frame from line burns. You will not see any line burns on the pillars or frame of this reel. And I should add I have seen another similar example of the Humber model in the last year with the same roller bar in the same position and condition.
If you look closely at the caliper spring, you will notice that the two sides of the spring line up almost in the exact same spot against the sides of the pawl. As you may know, this determines whether the reel has a LHW or RHW bias on these old caliper springs. Usually the right side of the C-spring hits the pawl at a higher position than the left side, thus being a natural RHW operating reel. This one is neutral and thus can be used either way. And the roller bar was obviously installed in a LHW "rings up" position, in front of the first pillar, where the agate line guides are located on some of the rare Hardy reels.
Most of the original leading remains. There are three neatly engraved initials, "EIL", on the frame, which by the way appear in the exact same manner/style as another one of my Wm Mills & Son's caged drum reels. My guess is there was a local jeweler Wm Mills and Son referred their clients to for this type of custom engraving.
Reel weighs 10.7 oz and the original and un-filed reel foot measures 3.1 inches in length.
I have FOUR
Wm Mills Dingley caged spool reels I am selling.....see them here
. Make me an offer on the set. My guess is you won't find another collector with all 4! UPDATE: I will include a brand new spare brass foot that fits modern reel seats. The original foot remains on the reel.