October 24, 2013
Vintage Tackle Contest: ABU Garcia Killer
By Joe Cermele
I know...the lure below doesn't look old enough to be vintage. And I also know you might be saying, "I saw one of those in the tackle shop last week." It looks like a Rapala Magnum, but it's not, and the story of this deep-diver from the 1970s is pretty cool. This ABU Garcia Killer belongs to Mikael Ranta, who wrote: When I lived in Finland a couple years ago, I always visited the flea markets and found many fishing lures that ended up becoming a part of my tackle box. This is one of my vintage lure finds." Dr. Todd Larson of The Whitefish Press and "Fishing For History" blog has more on the classic rivalry tied to this bait.
Dr. Todd says:
"The ABU Garcia Killer was this famous firm's answer to the Rapala Magnum -- a heavy duty, deep diving saltwater casting and trolling plug. In fact, they are so similar it is difficult to tell the difference between them. First introduced in the 1970s as part of a general line of ABU lures, it never gained the popularity of its rival, and I don't believe it was widely available in America (almost all used lures seem to originate in Europe). As a relatively new bait it does not have as many collectors as some others, but since ABU is very popular, it has some value. Copies sell for $15-$30 depending on condition and price. "
If you've already sent me photos of your vintage tackle, keep checking every Thursday to see if I chose it for an appraisal by Dr. Todd. If you haven't and want to enter the contest, email photos of your old tackle to firstname.lastname@example.org, along with your name, mailing address, and story of how you acquired the gear. If I use it in a Thursday post, you get a pair of Berkley Aluminum Pliers (above) worth $50.