The reel is n near mint condition as I doubt it has been used more than a few times, the spare spool has a small mark on the rim. It can be fished with right or left hand retrieve by simply reversing the configuration of the click pawls. Minimal “drag” regulation may be applied via a metal knob on the reverse which causes tension springs to exert pressure on the click pawls. Additional drag pressure may be applied manually by palming the spool rim.
During the 80’s Cortland briefly offered a line of very fine classic fly reels: the CRI reels (Catskill Research Incorporated) They were quality fly reels featuring brass counterweights and beautiful resin-impregnated rosewood handles. The spool and frame were made from a single block of aluminium and then hand-burnished with a satin silver or gunmetal black anodized finish.
Since their resemblance to the classic Orvis CFO line of reels with their simple click and paw adjustable clutch drag system, Orvis successfully stopped sales of the CRI line of reels in the US adding to their status of rare and sought after reels. These reels are very high-quality, made from a “precise one-piece machine cut” single block of aircraft grade aluminium by UFM UEDA CO., LTD. of Japan. The spool overrun protection and “drag” mechanism is a slightly modified version of Orvis’ click spring and pawl system which itself was initially perfected by Hardy Brothers of England. The reels were so close in appearance and basic mechanism to the Orvis CFO that after very limited sales in the USA, Orvis managed to successfully get a cease and desist order placed on Cortland who subsequently stopped selling the reels at least in the USA adding to their rarity for collectors and enthusiasts.
A truly rare classic reel and a wonderful piece of angling history to add your collection and fly fishing equipment. Very desirable fly fishing reel to use or add to your collection.