• Email: sales@conoflex.co.uk
    Phone: 01892 664 388
    Fax: 01892 664 178

About Us | History

Conoflex has been manufacturing high quality British designed rods and composite tubes for over 40 years. Michael McManus, who founded the company in 1972, created rods which soon became the benchmark of British rod building quality. Cono-Flex, British Made, British Design.

Cono-Flex started as the company ‘Carroll McManus Ltd’ in 1972 as a partnership between Michael McManus and Terry Carroll in a factory in Hailsham, East Sussex. The challenge was to make lighter thin walled, fast taper blanks for surfcasting, in competition with the solid glass blanks that were around at the time, and to ultimately incorporate the ‘new’ carbon material that was in a very early stage of development.

When the first blanks weighed in at under the magic 1lb mark, it was widely accepted as a major step forward in blank design. Some of the early green and brown blanks are still in use today.

The design process was applied to a growing range of fishing applications, course rods, boat rod and spinning rods soon had a Carroll McManus Conoflex label and a reputation for reliability.

Carbon fibre had been problematic in this application, being light, but fragile, and it was Michael's concept of blending a fine glass ‘scrim’ with the carbon to improve the hoop strength that really made it work.

This then brought about the ‘Flick tip’ design, where rods could be made that would ‘spin up’ the multiplier reels that were becoming more popular in tournament casting. These rods set several UKSF records with a number of casters, first to cast over 200, 220, 240, 257 yards.

A Tournament Extreme was the first to cast over 300 yards by Neil Kelland, but this was in Cornwall and not a UKSF event.

Conoflex became the company name in 1986 and moved to a purpose built factory in Crowborough, East Sussex. The rods could now be supplied fully built using quality components such as U.S. threads and high-builds and Fuji fittings, to produce reliable, hard working tools for the varied demands of the angling market.

Developments have included using ant new materials that come on to the market such as X-weave, Carbon Kevlar and more recently the availability of the S2 ballistic glass incorporating the nanotube resin systems.

Stephen prepares to roll a sheet of fibreglass and carbon onto the mandrel

Conoflex have always followed the requirements of customers and have been involved in many commercial projects, such as marine whip covers, bicycle forks, insulator tubes for high voltage tooling and cryogenic freezing.

We are able to manufacture small batch work so would accept prototype work as well as small volume niche applications.

Quick Links

Stephen McManus with a Cod taken on
Brighton Diver 2012

Aidan McManusAidan preparing a blank

Aidan McManusHanging blanks in the warming racks

Aidan McManus Preparing the blanks

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