The paint was chipped, cracked, and faded; corrosion covered the cast metal.
The spool was in similar shape. Note the broken handle.
The spring wasn't much better.
Papa's reel had clearly seen better days.
I won't pretend to fully understand the process by the which Ben was able to breath some life back into Pop's reel. I know that both a sand-blaster and bead-blaster were employed (I don't what a bead-blaster is either). I know he used a little epoxy to reshape the broken handle. I think everything came together nicely, and I suppose that if this were a high dollar Hardy Perfect from the 1920s - rather than an inexpensive 1960s Garcia - we would probably call the end-result a Spitfire finish.
Corrosion and all but a few flecks of paint are gone.
You would be hard pressed to tell the handle was cracked, and the spool appears new.
If Ben could work this kind of magic on turn-of-the century Hardys ... his business might take a new turn.
Not bad Ben, not bad at all.