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Tight Lines Tuesday Silver King

Tight Lines Tuesday Silver King

by John Etchieson –

Tight Lines Tuesday Silver King; The “Silver King” and the Schmelzer Arms Company – The first tarpon ever caught with a rod and reel was taken in 1885 by W. H. Wood using bait and a thumb stall reel with linen line on Sanibel Island in Tarpon Bay, Florida. The incredible size and tremendous fight put up by these beautiful leaping salt water tarpon fish, also known as the “Silver King”, made them an immediate hit with big game sports fishermen worldwide.

Hundreds of prominent anglers such as American industrialist Henry Ford and Harvey Firestone, and world famous inventor Thomas Edison all built their vacation mansions in Florida just so they could fish for the “Silver king” annually. And, as early as 1887 the Henry Hall Sons Line company was making their special “SILVER KING” brand of linen fishing lines for a number of prominent American sporting goods firms. One such famous sporting goods firm that Hall made their “Silver King” line for in 1903 was the Schmelzer Arms Company of Kansas City, MO.

The “Silver King” Tarpon fishing line spool shown here is the only known surviving example in existence today that features Schmelzer’s famous “turn of the century” logo with their slogan “We Pride Ourselves On quality”.

Comments or questions may be sent to John at

2018-01-30T07:17:07+00:00 January 30th, 2018|0 Comments

Creek Chub Salt Surfster Lure

Creek Chub Salt Surfster Lure

The Creek Chub Salt Surfster Lure is the largest in the Surfster family line. This giant piece of lumber was given a model 7400 by the Creek Chub Bait Company of Garrett Indiana. The lure was first produced in 1953 and lasted less than a half dozen years, being discontinued in 1958. The Salt Surfster was a huge lure, larger than most of the fish I catch measuring in at 7 1/4″ in length and weighing 2 1/2 oz. This lure isn’t to be fished by the weak of heart or even those needing Rotator cuff repairs, because if you didn’t need them before, you will after surf casting with this for an afternoon.

The lure has the heavy duty wire through construction to help reinforce it to make sure it can withstand that fight. The lure was actually discontinued not because of lack sale-ability, but due to a shortage of cedar. The lure has three large heavy duty hooks to secure its catch and a pair of glass eyes to give it that extra realistic look.

The colors the Salt Surfster can be found in are

00 – Pike Scale
01 – Perch
02 – Red & White
04 – Golden Shiner
07 – Mullet
18 – Silver Flash
34 – Blue Flash (Shown Below)
35 – Blue Eel (Shown Below)
37 – Yellow Flash

Creek Chub Salt Surfster Lure Photo Gallery

2017-09-02T13:41:38+00:00 August 18th, 2017|Comments Off on Creek Chub Salt Surfster Lure

ORCA Old Reel Collectors Association

ORCA Old Reel Collectors Association

The ORCA Old Reel Collectors Association is a wonderful group of guys and gals focused on and promoting the History of Sport Fishing Reels. If your not a member, you should be. For the membership fees you are given access to more information, history and research capabilities then one could ever compile on their own. The amount of research capabilities are second to none. The great women and men who make up the reel community are a organization worthy of supporting. From the rich and deep history of fly fishing, to the turn of the century bait casting, to the wild world of Big Game Fishing ORCA Welcomes all.

If your looking to expand your knowledge, figure out what just what you might have in your collection, or just be part of a great group of people who are working diligently to provide and share the history of the Sport-Fishing please consider joining ORCA.

You Can do so by clicking the link below .


ORCA Brochure

If youve missed the NFLCC National or would like to attend another, ORCA is having their national on Sept 6-10. Details by clicking the banner below.

2017 ORCA National 2017 ORCA National

The History as borrowed from the ORCA Website

In 1989 Mike Nogay, a dedicated reel collector from West Virginia, decided […]

2017-07-28T11:37:31+00:00 July 28th, 2017|Comments Off on ORCA Old Reel Collectors Association

Nichols Jumbo Killer Lure

Nichols Jumbo Killer Lure

The Nichols Jumbo Killer Lure was first introduced in the early 1940’s. The Jumbo Killer, made by the Nichols Bait Company of Corpus Christi Texas, later to be known by PICO. This lure bears a striking resemblance to most of the top water type lures of the day, the Heddon Lucky 13 being one of them. This wooden Nichols lure measures 4″ in length and who’s mouth its notched out in a rounded shape and is where the single forward line tie is attached. This antique fishing lure was ceramic instead of the typical glass eyes found on most antique lures. On this lure itself it employs the use of a the screw eye type hook hardware to hold its two body treble hooks, and the screw eye for the rear treble. The lure is shown in the early Nichols shrimp photo box. The side flaps of the lure box are marked J 8 for the Jumbo Killer, the 8 I believe refers to a Mullet scale, and not the frog spot that’s in the box. I believe frog finish is color code 15.

Nichols Jumbo Killer Lure Photo Gallery

2016-08-19T01:56:19+00:00 August 19th, 2016|Comments Off on Nichols Jumbo Killer Lure

Shakespeare Sardinia Salt Water Minnow

Shakespeare Sardinia Salt Water Minnow Lure

The Shakespeare Sardinia Salt Water Minnow Lure was first introduced in 1925. This antique fishing lure made by the Shakespeare Bait Company of Kalamazoo Michigan was a series number 721. This wooden minnow was another in Shakespeare’s attempts to create a Salt Water bait casting minnow. The lure was very short-lived and is rather tough to come by. This antique lure measures 3″ in length, and is a bit wider than the sea witch which came out a few years later. The lure has glass eyes and a distinctive inverted 90 degree angle chin or cut away. The has a heavy-duty forward line tie and two treble hooks to catch its prey.

The lure was available in a small amount of colors such as the salt water flitter below. You notice the cup rigging is set between 2 belly weights. Finding one in decent shape can be a challenge as well.

Shakespeare Sardinia Salt Water Minnow Lure Photo Gallery

2016-07-23T12:53:10+00:00 July 23rd, 2016|Comments Off on Shakespeare Sardinia Salt Water Minnow

South Bend Zane Grey Teaser Lure

South Bend Zane Grey Teaser Lure

The South Bend Zane Grey Teaser Lure is a giant antique fishing lure. This monstrous wooden lure was given a model series number 981. This huge salt water teaser lure measures 11″ in length. Originally introduced in 1928 it was in the South Bend antique lure line up for almost 4 decades, until 1964.

Zane Grey an iconic American, was given legendary status in the fishing community for his off shore escapades. Zane was said to have fished 300 days a year in his adult life. From the coast of Australia to the shores of Catalina Zane’s epic battles are forever written in American as well as International fishing lore through his many novels or being the subject of other authors. While Zane is given and almost demi god status for pioneering fishing adventures, his movies, production of them and Western cult status rivaled that of many that ever appeared on film and in written word.

The Zane Grey Teaser as stated above was 11 inches in length, and was made through many transitions, in company as well as lure variations. The antique lure can be found with Glass, Tack and painted eyes. The lure being a “Teaser” , unlike its smaller Tarp Oreno cousin, has no hooks to secure prey. The Teaser was only used as an attractant for the bait and switch style of fishing.

Stated in the 1928 South Bend Bait Company lure Catalog: “After […]

2016-07-20T20:38:49+00:00 July 20th, 2016|Comments Off on South Bend Zane Grey Teaser Lure

Shakespeare Darting Shrimp Lure

Shakespeare Darting Shrimp Lure

The Shakespeare Darting Shrimp Lure is a series 6535. This antique wooden lure was first introduced by the Shakespeare Bait Company of Kalamazoo around 1925. This antique fishing lure was a multi segmented wooden fishing lure that measured 4 1/4″ in length. The lure had some resemblance of a shrimp in its curvature of the two segments but it never really gives rise to a true rendition of a typical shrimp. The Shrimp lure features a treble on each of the two segments to secure its catch, the front being held on by the use of a cup rig, and the rear using just a looped screw eye.

The Darting Shrimp utilizes a belly weight in each of the two sections to make it dive deeper faster. The Darting Shrimp had typical glass eyes and a forward line tie of its front end positioned in the center of a forked or notched mouth. The antique fishing lure would wobble upon retrieval the back section moving independently on a staple rig. The antique shrimp fishing lure came painted in roughly a half dozen colors scheme patterns some salt water patterns some fresh. Condition seem to always been a problem when you find these, or at least is when I do, so to find them in perfect unadulterated condition unaffected by age or humidity is one to enjoy. The lure can be found housed in the typical period type Shakespeare […]

2017-08-01T08:08:27+00:00 May 13th, 2016|Comments Off on Shakespeare Darting Shrimp Lure

Pfleuger TNT Lure

Pfleuger TNT Lure

The Pfleuger TNT Lure is a series 6900. The metalized minnow lure was first introduced in 1929. This antique lure made by Pflueger of Akron Ohio, measures 3 1/4″ in length. It was available in roughly 6 Different colors. The lure features a deep diving lip in the notched mouth and painted eyes, when they are present. This is where the front single line tie is attached to the minnow. The lure has 2 trailing treble hooks, the front of which is attached via surface rig. The rear is attached via a crewed in wire loop.

Pfleuger TNT Lure Photo Gallery

2016-07-13T12:53:14+00:00 May 5th, 2016|Comments Off on Pfleuger TNT Lure

Pflueger Mustang Minnow Heavy Duty Lure

Pflueger Mustang Minnow Heavy Duty Lure

The Pflueger Mustang Minnow Heavy Duty Lure is the largest of the Mustang Minnow Lure series. This Pflueger of Akron Ohio antique fishing lure is a series model number 9500, and the color code is 46. This wooden, pressed eye, antique lure is 5″ in length. It dates from the early 1950’s and feature the heavy duty flasher plate mounted,or faceted to the top and bottom of the lure. The fishing lure has a scooped diving lip to get it down to the depths of its prey. It has 3 large treble hooks secured with heavy duty surface type hardware to secure and hold its prey it once it takes the bait. The Heavy Duty Mustang lure shown in the gallery is in a fishing called Eel, however the lure was offered in many different color scheme finishes. The Mustang is housed in its correct picturesque green canoe box correct marked for the lure.

Pflueger Mustang Minnow Heavy Duty Lure Photo Gallery

2016-07-10T23:28:45+00:00 May 1st, 2016|Comments Off on Pflueger Mustang Minnow Heavy Duty Lure

Heddon Shrimpy Spook Lure Series 9000

Heddon Shrimpy Spook Lure

The Heddon Shrimpy Spook lure is a series 9000, produced by James Heddon & Son, of Dowagiac, Michigan. This antique plastic spook lure is 3 7/8″ inches in length. The lure was first introduced in 1930 and was only in its catalogs a few years. The lure is made of Pyralin as was most of Heddon’s first spook series lures. The lure shown has two treble hooks held on by Toilet Seat hardware the only hardware I’ve ever seen on a shrimpy. The lure has its original feelers while lots you find in the field are missing.

The antique Shrimpy Spook lure shown is in fine condition. I’ve included in the gallery below a second Lure and box combo to show a condition contrast. The lure box combo is shown the correct up leaping bass box for the lure marked 9009 NS, natural shrimp.

Heddon Shrimpy Spook Lure Gallery

2017-06-14T10:03:03+00:00 March 6th, 2016|Comments Off on Heddon Shrimpy Spook Lure Series 9000