antique reel

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Tight Lines Tuesday the Black Witch

Tight Lines Tuesday the Black Witch

by John Etchieson
For Halloween today the BLACK WITCH brand fishing line would be the Ideal one to use. Made in the late 1930s by the Newton Line Company of Homer, New York, this black colored supreme silk casting line had a label featuring an image of a black witch flying on her broom stick and the letters “O.V.B.” inside of a shield next to her.
This line was sold by the wholesale hardware distributor Hibbard, Spencer, Bartlett, & Company of Chicago (1882 – 1962) which sold their top of the line quality merchandise with those letters “O.V.B.” which meant “OUR VERY BEST”
Comments or questions may be sent to John at

2017-10-31T08:42:53+00:00 October 31st, 2017|Comments Off on Tight Lines Tuesday the Black Witch

Pflueger SkillKast 1953 Reel

Pflueger SkillKast 1953 Reel

The Pflueger SkillKast 1953 Reel is a reel that seems to have transcended the years. Made in Akron, Ohio this reel would last over three decades in the Pflueger Reel line up. Introduced as new in 1941 the lure would be produced until into the 1970’s. A good reel if your looking to start a collection and theres actually a more tough variation to find. The example here, is shown with the number of screw variation. New in 1941 this pre WWII model has six screws on the side plate instead of the later 5. A Orca online resource stated” This extra screw is the same size as the screw that holds the pawl cover on the level wind. A picture of this screw is shown on the Skilkast AMPRO reel in the copyright 1941 catalog. The description in the 1941 catalog also states that the reel came with a cork arbor glued onto the lightweight aluminum spool”

So Just when you think things are common digging a bit deeper you can find small yet significant differences, which of course leads to why you need to buy another one.

Pflueger SkillKast 1953 Reel & Box Combo Gallery

2017-08-07T08:05:20+00:00 August 2nd, 2017|Comments Off on Pflueger SkillKast 1953 Reel

Heddon Waltonian No31 AB Reel

Heddon Waltonian No31 AB Reel

The Heddon Waltonian No31 AB Reel was first introduced around 1927. Made in Dowagiac Michigan by James Heddons Sons, the Heddon NO.31 AB “WALTONIAN” Casting reel was produced. The level wind reel themselves made are of lightweight aluminum. The casting reels were first introduced by James Heddon’s Sons in their 1927 catalog and would only sell for a couple years. These were actually Trade reels produced for Heddon by the Meisselbach-Catucci Mfg. Co. of Newark, N.J. and were identical to their No.1000 “Superlite” models.

Heddon Waltonian No31 AB Photo Gallery



2017-08-07T08:03:07+00:00 July 31st, 2017|Comments Off on Heddon Waltonian No31 AB Reel

Winchester Reel Model 4250

Winchester Reel Model 4250

In the 1920s and into the 1930s the Winchester Repeating Arms company dabbled in fishing goods selling Winchester reel and well as rods, lures and flies. As of today is still one of the most prominent names that comes to mind when one thinks longevity in the sporting good vein. Diving all the way back to 1866 to one of its namesakes Oliver Winchester and how he retooled and revamped the Henry rifle from New Haven Arms to create its most famous rifle model, the 1866.

The Winchester reel 4250 below in the gallery is a 80 yard reel. The reel has a wonderful patina and is in nice condition. Unfortunately, Winchester like many other that are considered to be antiques now have been subject to decades of fake and fantasy items. Where there is money to be made there will always be fakes. Winchester has placed their name son so many items it sometimes hard to tell if its true so do your due diligence.

Winchester Reel 4250 Gallery


2017-06-14T12:49:15+00:00 June 14th, 2017|1 Comment

J.A Coxe Reel Oil Bottle

J.A Coxe Reel Oil Bottle

This great J.A Coxe Reel Oil bottle shows us that yes there are other things we can collect besides just the lures, reel and rods themselves. This hard to find oil bottle is part of a segment of collecting, Reel Oil Bottles, Rod Varnish Bottles, even Fly Dope or Mosquito Repellents. Thus giving some of us hoarders a green light to add and amass something else outside of the proverbial tackle box. J.A. Coxe began manufacturing and selling reels on the west coast. Coxe an Ex Shakespeare Reel Company employee turned his small company to one of the largest Reel Manufactures in the whole country. The company would early on move its operations to Bronson, Michigan and would seemingly have changed is small handcrafted reel stature to an assembly line typ production of some of America’s most favored Bakelite reels.

J.A Coxe Reel Oil Bottle Photo Gallery

2016-12-13T08:50:00+00:00 November 14th, 2016|Comments Off on J.A Coxe Reel Oil Bottle

Heddon Dowagiac Pal P41 Reel

Heddon Dowagiac Pal P41 Reel

The Heddon Dowagiac Pal P41 Reel is almost 70 years old. Its hard to believe when you find examples as clean as this. This antique reel mad by Heddon of Dowagiac Michigan was first introduced in 1947.  I was really suprised to read that Bronson made this reel for Heddon, I really would have thought they would have mad it themselves. The reel is atributed to a gentleman who was a famous tournoment caster Walter William. The reel would have a few differnt stariations through the years from bing made of just aluminum, to have a jeweled end cap. The reel was made with a easily removable endcap so that cleaning and oiling would be of ease. The foot of the reel is stamped patent applied for made in the USA.

Heddon Pal P41 Reel

Heddon Dowagiac Pal P41 Reel Photo Gallery

2016-07-05T23:32:16+00:00 July 5th, 2016|Comments Off on Heddon Dowagiac Pal P41 Reel

Fowler Reel Ad Abbey Imbrie 1884

Fowler Reel Ad Abbey Imbrie 1884

This Fowler Reel Ad comes to us from a Abbey Imbrie antique fishing tackle catalog. The antique lure and reel catalog was published in 1884 and provides for us this great ad. Enough cant be said about vintage or antique advertising giving us glimpses into the past from which the things we now collect came from. The ad shows us in a plate format the 40 and 60 yard versions of the coveted antique Fowler reel. The Fowler reel was named after its namesake Alonzo Fowler of Batavia N.Y., and his patent from June of 1872 which was #128,137. The reel shown wasn’t made of metal say like the Billinghurst reel, unfortunately, it was made out of hardened rubber. The problem with this is that nature wasn’t so kind and not many have made it through the years. The reel a side mount reel that was first made in the early 1870’s.

Fowler Reel Ad From the Abbey Imbrie Antique Lure and Reel Catalog Printed in 1884

Fowler Reel Ad from 1884 Fowler Reel Ad from 1884

2016-10-26T11:41:18+00:00 May 6th, 2016|Comments Off on Fowler Reel Ad Abbey Imbrie 1884

LS Mirro Reel

LS Mirro Reel in Box

The LS Mirro Reel is a nifty miscellaneous reel. The antique reel born of the same make as the famous L&S bait Company, out of Bradley Illinois and Clearwater Florida.The marketing behind the reel was to couple or ride upon the already successful lures and make it a combination that fishermen would request. The model was a 4610 and came with 10 pound test already wound upon the reel spool. These don’t turn up too often and the one I owned years ago shown in the gallery was brittle and not functional. Maybe a good reason that you don’t find this antique reel around too much.

The flyer touts:
Amazing Strength and Durability – Made of Stainless Steel and Space Age Materials
Exceptional Light Weight – Only 4 Ounces
Adjustable Automatic Drag – Surer then the Human thumb to Prevent Back Lash
Casts with Bulls-eye Accuracy – Goes Farther More Freely with More Feel, All the Way!
Fast To Retrieve – To Control Lure or Fish with Ease
One Hand Control – Of Cast, Snub and Engagement
Easily Dissembled – By A Simple Quarter Turn Twist

LS Mirro Reel in Box Photo Gallery

2016-10-26T11:41:18+00:00 May 4th, 2016|Comments Off on LS Mirro Reel