ABU Garcia 1973 – The Casting Reels

ABU Garcia Fishing Annual 1973. ABU Garcia 5000-series reels.

Garcia Fishing Annual 1973. ABU Garcia 5000-series reels.

Last week I posted a set of ads from the 1973 Garcia Fishing Annual regarding the Mitchell series reels. I did this mainly to stay true to a promise I’d made back when I posted a story about the Zebco Cardinal series reels, in which I received a plethora of emails from the Mitchell camp. Well, there’s no doubt there were the Cardinal supporters, the Mitchell supporters and even the Shakespeare supporters because I’ve been deluged with email since last week with comments.  You’d think old rivalries would end with time? Maybe I should consult the Hatfields and McCoys.

Well today I decided to post something from that same 1973 Garcia catalog that shouldn’t spark such a feisty dialog – the ABU Garcia 5000-series reels offered that year. Really, back then there wasn’t much else in casting reels that could compete – especially if you consider the number of these reels that are not only still around, but still functioning. [Read more…]

Way Before the Revo

ABU 2600 and 2650 circa mid-1960s. Both are freespool reels with centrifugal cast control.

ABU 2600 and 2650 circa mid-1960s. Both are freespool reels with centrifugal cast control. Note the button on the handle acts as the freespool button.

A B Urfabriken, or ABU as it’s more commonly known has been making fishing reels since the World War II era. It wasn’t until the mid-1950s, though, that United States anglers got see a new style and quality casting reel. That’s when The Garcia Corporation decided to market the ABU reels in the U.S.

The first reel to my knowledge that came over was the ABU 5000. The ABU 5000, marketed as the Record Ambassadeur 5000, introduced a number of new design concepts in casting reel design. One of these was the centrifugal brake system that nearly all reels today incorporate. The 5000 came in a number of models and versions over the years and include the 5000C (Bearing model) and the 5000D (direct drive model). [Read more…]