A Little Unknown History…

Here is some history that most don’t know – The Common Cents System was NOT developed for custom rod builders. It was developed for rod and blank manufacturers. It was Dr. Hanneman’s hope that no fishermen would ever need to know where the figures came from or how they were obtained, and simply used them as a means to compare certain characteristics of one blank or rod to another blank or rod. Very similar to what most blank and rod companies were already doing, but in an across-the-board manner so that one company’s products could be compared to another company’s products. Instead of a separate rating systems by each company, one single system used by all.

Dr. Hanneman sent his system and the research behind it to a well known fishing resource entity for consideration. They never responded. After about a year, he sent the same thing to Ralph O’Quinn and asked him if he knew anyone that might be able to get the idea out to the public which might then convince some of the manufacturers to adopt it by consumer demand. Ralph read it, thought it had merit and sent it to me. It sat on my desk for 3 or 4 months before I bothered to open and look at it. I enthusiastically decided to publish it but I made one huge mistake – I included Dr. Hanneman’s background research and his reasons for doing what he did. I know an awful lot of rod builders told me they wouldn’t read the original article beyond a few paragraphs because it all sounded so complicated and time consuming. It is therefore likely my fault that the system has not been widely accepted and put into use by the fishing industry and that some were able to rip it off, rename it yet still use terms coined by the inventor (ERN and AA) but with different measurement constants. Can you imagine people using “inches” to measure length but one person’s inch and another person’s inch describe two different lengths?
Too much information, particularly when it’s not needed for the endeavor at hand, often fails to accomplish the very thing it was intended to do. Looking back, had I just published the CCS concept and terms as a means of relative comparisons, the manufacturers might have taken it on. You cannot find the underpinnings for the power numbers that manufacturers publish for their blanks and rods, but millions of fishermen use them every day. The manufacturers take the measurements and the fishermen use the results. Had I gone this route I think the CCS might well have become the single, across-the-board standard for for all action and power ratings today. And nobody would have bothered to ask how the numbers were derived. They’d have used them just as intuitively as they do the respective ratings used by the manufacturers currently.