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Chad Love: Classic Fishing Tackle

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April 06, 2009

Chad Love: Classic Fishing Tackle

By Chad Love

I was still feeling a bit nostalgic after my last blog on magazines and memories, so I started digging around the Net for sites that cater to such urges when I stumbled across this website.
 
It's basically a clearinghouse of information and history on great American products that have since gone on to that great department store in the sky. If you look around the site long enough I promise you'll find something to jog some long-dormant youthful memory.
 
Case in point: all you children of the 70s, here's what happened to our beloved Morton Honey Buns.
 
Unfortunately the site doesn't list any great old outdoors companies or products (or at least any I could find) but it got me to thinking: what long-gone hunting and fishing brand names or products take you back? Since the seventies and eighties were my Halcyon Days, I groove to products endorsed by guys sporting lots of facial hair, butterfly collars and trucker hats, but it could be from any decade or time.
 
I'll throw out the first one: The Lew's Speed Stick. The late Lew Childre introduced a number of innovative products in the mid to late seventies, and the Speed Stick rod was one of them. In 1983 I saved enough birthday money to get a 5'6" pistol-grip medium-heavy action Lew's Speed Stick attached to a Shimano Bantam 100 and it was my worm, jig, spinnerbait, crankbait, topwater, pitching, flipping, catfishing, perching and everything else rod.

I don't know exactly when the Speed Stick disappeared, but gone they are. If you want one now it's garage sales, pawn shops, or Internet auction sites, and most of them are, to put it mildly, well-used. I'm still searching for a decent specimen to add to my collection.
 
Anybody else?

Comments (5)

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from buckhunter wrote 5 years 2 weeks ago

I think the Zebco 202 has to be the classic of the 70's. I think every kid in the neighborhood had one except for the rich kid down the road who had the Zebco "33". I think he grew up to be a snobby fly fisherman.

How about the solid fiberglas rods that had the guides wrapped with what looked like bailing twine.

Or the spun fiberglas Shakespeare Wonder Rods.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from 2Poppa wrote 5 years 2 weeks ago

Lew's Speed stick, I swore by them on my baitcasters!

Do you remember the "Creek Chub Darter" with the 3-sets of treble hooks?

They were gospel, according to my best friend and his dad,matter of fact, I had one imbedded in my knee, due to a quick set of "crossing his eyes!"(His dad took it out with a flip of his wrist and a pair of needle nose.)

Why, they were so valued, my buddy told me as I was going on vacation, to pick up any or all, that I could find. I made the mistake of telling him, I was taking all of the back roads I could on vacation.

Sure enough, in this little grocery store, in the middle of, no where,South Carolina, I found 14 of the Darters still in the original package, for a $1.79,each.

A nostalgic walk down memory lane for sure!

I'll be think' of things to jog my poor memory, the rest of the evening ...thanks Chad! Ha,ha,ha!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 5 years 2 weeks ago

Ah memories. Back in about 1975 give or take a few years or so I purchased an identical pair of Lew's rods. I tried unsuccessfully to wear them out "hossin" bigmouth bass out of the southern brushy lakes and reservoirs. I am not sure whatever happened to one of them but I am fairly certain that the other is still being utilized every year by an elderly gentleman that I gave it to when I moved to the west in '81. Great rods for the money and had those slick Fuji guides on them.
Do you guys remember that lure which was painted to resemble a minature Budweiser beer can with treble hooks? We all figured that it would never catch a bass since the fish were very much accustomed to looking at the empty version of the real cans on the bottom of the lakes and realized that this lure was not food.
Do any of you know what a Christmas Tree Bomber is? I think I still have a couple somewhere.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from jjas wrote 5 years 2 weeks ago

Ah, the simple days of fishing.

Back in the '70's I used whatever Kmart was selling @ the time. The rods were "whippy" but I caught tons of fish using rooster tail spinner baits or plastic worms.

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from Chris Dupre wrote 4 years 7 weeks ago

Ah, the Speed Sticks! I've got two; #1-152HOBB and #1-156HOBB along with a stiff Wright-McGill Eagle Claw rod that I got back in the mid-70s in East Texas. Along with the ABU-Garcia Ambassador 5000 and 5000D reels they were - and still are - the best!
As far as other classics, what about the Zebco-33? Still got mine.

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from jjas wrote 5 years 2 weeks ago

Ah, the simple days of fishing.

Back in the '70's I used whatever Kmart was selling @ the time. The rods were "whippy" but I caught tons of fish using rooster tail spinner baits or plastic worms.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from ishawooa wrote 5 years 2 weeks ago

Ah memories. Back in about 1975 give or take a few years or so I purchased an identical pair of Lew's rods. I tried unsuccessfully to wear them out "hossin" bigmouth bass out of the southern brushy lakes and reservoirs. I am not sure whatever happened to one of them but I am fairly certain that the other is still being utilized every year by an elderly gentleman that I gave it to when I moved to the west in '81. Great rods for the money and had those slick Fuji guides on them.
Do you guys remember that lure which was painted to resemble a minature Budweiser beer can with treble hooks? We all figured that it would never catch a bass since the fish were very much accustomed to looking at the empty version of the real cans on the bottom of the lakes and realized that this lure was not food.
Do any of you know what a Christmas Tree Bomber is? I think I still have a couple somewhere.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from buckhunter wrote 5 years 2 weeks ago

I think the Zebco 202 has to be the classic of the 70's. I think every kid in the neighborhood had one except for the rich kid down the road who had the Zebco "33". I think he grew up to be a snobby fly fisherman.

How about the solid fiberglas rods that had the guides wrapped with what looked like bailing twine.

Or the spun fiberglas Shakespeare Wonder Rods.

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from 2Poppa wrote 5 years 2 weeks ago

Lew's Speed stick, I swore by them on my baitcasters!

Do you remember the "Creek Chub Darter" with the 3-sets of treble hooks?

They were gospel, according to my best friend and his dad,matter of fact, I had one imbedded in my knee, due to a quick set of "crossing his eyes!"(His dad took it out with a flip of his wrist and a pair of needle nose.)

Why, they were so valued, my buddy told me as I was going on vacation, to pick up any or all, that I could find. I made the mistake of telling him, I was taking all of the back roads I could on vacation.

Sure enough, in this little grocery store, in the middle of, no where,South Carolina, I found 14 of the Darters still in the original package, for a $1.79,each.

A nostalgic walk down memory lane for sure!

I'll be think' of things to jog my poor memory, the rest of the evening ...thanks Chad! Ha,ha,ha!

+1 Good Comment? | | Report
from Chris Dupre wrote 4 years 7 weeks ago

Ah, the Speed Sticks! I've got two; #1-152HOBB and #1-156HOBB along with a stiff Wright-McGill Eagle Claw rod that I got back in the mid-70s in East Texas. Along with the ABU-Garcia Ambassador 5000 and 5000D reels they were - and still are - the best!
As far as other classics, what about the Zebco-33? Still got mine.

0 Good Comment? | | Report

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