John Emery was a fishing guide in the Florida Keys who designed a heavy-duty direct drive fly fishing reel for tarpon fishing. The project was funded by famous tarpon fisherman, Ted Evans, and the reels were built by Frank Johnson at Mold Craft in Ft. Lauderdale Florida. The reel had a large drag surface and a palming spool which was ventilated to help the line dry faster. Later a bonefish size reel was added to the line-up.
Early Emery reels had a foot that was dove-tailed onto the reel's frame. This design became a problem so Emery recalled as many reels as he could and added screws to secure the foot to the frame.
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