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SA Fishing Tackle Makers / History  Rating:  Rating
 
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 Posted: Sun Mar 25th, 2012 09:58 am
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Celtic Angler
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Joined: Fri Dec 31st, 2010
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
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Equipment: Hardy & Shilton reels, Vision, Stealth & Pflueger rods + ...
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Mana: 
Hi Guys, I have started an ambitious project whereby I am researching the history of fishing tackle making in South Africa. I am slowly building up a record of who the old classic tackle makers were from the pre 1st world war period right through to the current times.

The main focus is on the old reel makers but I am also including rod makers and makers of other fishing related equipment such as fly tying vices, etc. The only stipulation is that this is all restricted to locally made items. South Africa has had (and still does have) a surprisingly large number of really good quality tackle makers that we can be proud of. Historic examples include the Castle Reel Company that used to be in Cape Town and J.H. Healy of Johannesburg. There were also numerous local makers of the old wooden Scarborough type reels. Today of course, we have examples such as the makers of the world class Jvice and the highly regarded Shilton reels. We also have a few makers of excellent quality bamboo rods who have become very well known and sought after internationally.

I would really appreciate any information that any of you may have on the old South African made tackle and their makers. Do any of you perhaps have any of these items in your collection or maybe even a family connection to one of the vintage tackle makers? Any photographs, guidance or related information would be great.

Please either PM me or maybe even share what info or pics you have on this thread.

I hope to eventually build up enough information to be able to publish a book on this topic.

Cheers,
Tim

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 Posted: Mon Mar 26th, 2012 07:40 am
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Serra Moz
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Joined: Sun Apr 15th, 2007
Location: Marracuene (The Bush), Mozambique
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Mana: 
I am sure you are going to find lots of info on SL and input from SL members. Keep is us posted.

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 Posted: Mon Mar 26th, 2012 07:43 am
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Pylstert
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Joined: Fri May 4th, 2007
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Mana: 
Nice project,
You can add the following to the list:
Policansky reels
Vivtek - reels and other tackle
Nighthawk reels
Blue Marlin rods
Purglas rods
Predator fly reels

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 Posted: Tue Mar 27th, 2012 07:11 am
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Celtic Angler
Member


Joined: Fri Dec 31st, 2010
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Posts: 4
Equipment: Hardy & Shilton reels, Vision, Stealth & Pflueger rods + ...
Best Catch: Kob, 17kg
Favorite Fishing Spot: Hermanus area
Boat: None
Club: None
Status: 
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Mana: 
Pylstert wrote:
Nice project,
You can add the following to the list:
Policansky reels
Vivtek - reels and other tackle
Nighthawk reels
Blue Marlin rods
Purglas rods
Predator fly reels


Thank you for the suggestions - all very worthy of recognition. The Policansky reels have certainly made their mark both locally and internationally.

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 Posted: Tue Mar 27th, 2012 07:23 am
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Serra Moz
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Location: Marracuene (The Bush), Mozambique
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Boat: Got a few that can float
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Mana: 
You might want to mention Penn Reels too, although not a SA product, but Penn reels are part of our angling history as well. Many anglers started with Penn.

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 Posted: Tue Mar 27th, 2012 08:48 pm
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Celtic Angler
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Joined: Fri Dec 31st, 2010
Location: Cape Town, South Africa
Posts: 4
Equipment: Hardy & Shilton reels, Vision, Stealth & Pflueger rods + ...
Best Catch: Kob, 17kg
Favorite Fishing Spot: Hermanus area
Boat: None
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Mana: 
Serra Moz wrote:
You might want to mention Penn Reels too, although not a SA product, but Penn reels are part of our angling history as well. Many anglers started with Penn.

Although an American made classic, Penn reels are definitely a big part of our angling history. I understand that SA has been a big market for them. I also believe that certain Penn models were only available in SA such as the 49A which was imported from the mid 1950's.

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 Posted: Mon Jun 17th, 2013 09:07 pm
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Ed Barrett
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Joined: Sun Jun 9th, 2013
Location: Rio Vista , California USA
Posts: 5
Equipment: Penn
Best Catch: Salmon
Favorite Fishing Spot: Sacramento River California USA & San Francisco Bay
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Mana: 
Celtic Angler wrote: Serra Moz wrote:
You might want to mention Penn Reels too, although not a SA product, but Penn reels are part of our angling history as well. Many anglers started with Penn.

Although an American made classic, Penn reels are definitely a big part of our angling history. I understand that SA has been a big market for them. I also believe that certain Penn models were only available in SA such as the 49A which was imported from the mid 1950's.

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 Posted: Mon Jun 17th, 2013 09:08 pm
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Ed Barrett
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Joined: Sun Jun 9th, 2013
Location: Rio Vista , California USA
Posts: 5
Equipment: Penn
Best Catch: Salmon
Favorite Fishing Spot: Sacramento River California USA & San Francisco Bay
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Mana: 
Hi Folks,

Thanks again for the information you furnished us about the Africanized
Penn 49A wide spool reel made in the USA, but only available and sold to the anglers in S. Africa in the 1950s and 1960s.

If you have any further information as to how much these reels cost and copies of any paperwork that accompanied the 49A reel, we would appreciate hearing from you.

What would be especially interesting to us as where these reels used and what species of fish were caught.

Best regards,

Ed Barrett
Rio Vista, CA 94571
USA

antfish@frontiernet.net.

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 Posted: Mon Jun 17th, 2013 09:33 pm
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Serra Moz
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Joined: Sun Apr 15th, 2007
Location: Marracuene (The Bush), Mozambique
Posts: 4673
Equipment: A - Z (Penn Rules)
Best Catch: Lots and Lots
Favorite Fishing Spot: WorldWideWaters - (Fresh + Salt)
Boat: Got a few that can float
Club: Macaneta Ski Boat Club (MOZ)
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Mana: 
Pleasure mate.... I am sure everyone enjoyed ur post, and lots will be added as we go along.

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 Posted: Tue Jun 18th, 2013 08:42 am
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Guppigetta
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Joined: Sat Feb 7th, 2009
Location: Kimberley, South Africa
Posts: 250
Equipment: 13 ft Surf rod, Penn 555 GS, 30lb nylon and ...
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Mana: 
Hi Ed, in the 1970's I paid R 22.00 for my first two Penn 49 As. Don't know what the exchange rate was in those days.

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 Posted: Tue Jun 18th, 2013 08:57 am
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Koper
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Joined: Sun Jan 4th, 2009
Location: Springbok, South Africa
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Equipment: Enigma build Seagrand Rods, Shimi & Daiwa Reels
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Mana: 
Another chapter you can add:

"Homemade Reels"

http://www.sealine.co.za/view_topic.php?id=64406&forum_id=1

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 Posted: Tue Jun 18th, 2013 10:19 am
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Vades
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Joined: Mon Nov 22nd, 2010
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Mana: 
Koper wrote:
Another chapter you can add:

"Homemade Reels"

http://www.sealine.co.za/view_topic.php?id=64406&forum_id=1


I was also going to mention this. Reread that entire thread a few weeks back - classic stuff!

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 Posted: Tue Jun 18th, 2013 10:40 am
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Koper
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Joined: Sun Jan 4th, 2009
Location: Springbok, South Africa
Posts: 6411
Equipment: Enigma build Seagrand Rods, Shimi & Daiwa Reels
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Mana: 
Vades wrote: Koper wrote:
Another chapter you can add:

"Homemade Reels"

http://www.sealine.co.za/view_topic.php?id=64406&forum_id=1


I was also going to mention this. Reread that entire thread a few weeks back - classic stuff!

Still rate this as one of the best threads on SL.

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 Posted: Tue Jun 18th, 2013 06:08 pm
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jb2
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Mana: 
Hi Tim

The story of Policansky reels is a big part of South African Tackle.

The inventor, Hymie Poicansky was involved in cigarette production and turned his skills to fishing reels.

The reel was years ahead of its time in conception and design.

His son David Policansky lives in the USA and will be able to tell you more. He is on Sealine somewhere and I will try to track him down.

There are a lot of lure manufacturers as well.

There was a company that made hooks in the mid or late 80's called Trident Manufacturing (Pty.) Ltd

A search of old company records might help. They were based in Port Shepstone so people in that area might know what happened to them.

My scrounging around talking to older fishermen leads me to believe that a lot of tackle was handmade.

Sinkers were moulded by making the "mould" by pressing the shape into we beach sand and pouring in hot lead.

The end traces were often out of wire in the days before nylon.

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 Posted: Wed Jun 19th, 2013 05:59 am
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CLS
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Mana: 
Not sure if the Siloflex or Sealy rods were made in SA or Rhodesia, I have some in my garage from my late dad ???

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 Posted: Wed Jun 19th, 2013 09:52 am
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MichaelK
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Mana: 
Don't forget the KP reel, it is locally manufactured in Umkomass. The factory moved to the eastern cape for a short while, but has relocated back to umkomass

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 Posted: Tue Jun 25th, 2013 06:35 am
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m3040c
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Joined: Mon Jun 10th, 2013
Location: Wantagh, New York USA
Posts: 24
Equipment: Penn, Shakespere, Power Pro
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Mana: 
A Penn South African reel is the 49A. It was exported to South Africa in the 1950's and 1960's. I believe the reel was marked in its logo with a "A" after the model number early in the export run of the reel but later on it was only marked on the box. I am not 100% on this but the evidence seems to show the history that way. Finding a 49A with the "A" marking molded in the reel's logo is much more difficult than finding a wide Penn 49 without the molded in "A".




In this picture you can a Penn 1960's box identified with the 49A model number on the box. The Penn 49A is a very simple expanded version of the Penn 49. The reel is made wider by adding a stand and posts from a Penn Squidder. The only thing unique to the Model 49A is the wide plastic spool.




What I find really interesting about this photo of the 49A is that the outer trim rings are missing on this reel. I am not sure if that was part of how the 49A was built in its later 1960's export version. I know that the two South African 49A's that I have found with the molded "A" in the logo used the outer trim rings but they were both 1950's reels. Possibly Penn eliminated the rings on later export models.

The particular reel and box in these two photos was sold about two years ago on EBAy Australia.
     

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 Posted: Tue Jun 25th, 2013 06:52 am
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jb2
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Mana: 
m3040c wrote:
A Penn South African reel is the 49A. It was exported to South Africa in the 1950's and 1960's. I believe the reel was marked in its logo with a "A" after the model number early in the export run of the reel but later on it was only marked on the box. I am not 100% on this but the evidence seems to show the history that way. Finding a 49A with the "A" marking molded in the reel's logo is much more difficult than finding a wide Penn 49 without the molded in "A".




In this picture you can a Penn 1960's box identified with the 49A model number on the box. The Penn 49A is a very simple expanded version of the Penn 49. The reel is made wider by adding a stand and posts from a Penn Squidder. The only thing unique to the Model 49A is the wide plastic spool.




What I find really interesting about this photo of the 49A is that the outer trim rings are missing on this reel. I am not sure if that was part of how the 49A was built in its later 1960's export version. I know that the two South African 49A's that I have found with the molded "A" in the logo used the outer trim rings but they were both 1950's reels. Possibly Penn eliminated the rings on later export models.

The particular reel and box in these two photos was sold about two years ago on EBAy Australia.
     


Hi

My guess is that the outer rings of the reel were removed after manufacture.

Many of the 49's that I have seen have a crack in the rings where the wrong type of screw has been used or where too much tension has been used.

It is not unlikely that a reel in a box would have ended up being used as a "donor" for rebuilding another reel.

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 Posted: Tue Jun 25th, 2013 09:54 pm
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m3040c
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Joined: Mon Jun 10th, 2013
Location: Wantagh, New York USA
Posts: 24
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Mana: 
Hello jb2,

I agree. The rings do crack. The reel in this picture is not new, so maybe they were cracked and simply discarded.

Strange that the seller of the reel would sell it that way. Even in Australia, the parts for a Penn 49 are available.

Anyways, it is what it is, the box seems very difficult to find.

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 Posted: Tue Feb 9th, 2016 03:44 pm
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Obsessed
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Location: Durban, South Africa
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Mana: 
@ Edd Barrett : See the book " STRIKE " written by Stephan Schoeman in the 40's / 50's it often makes reference to the reel in the context of fishing for red steenbras and poenskop (black musselcracker) in the old days. Also mentioned the spools that used to break under the strain prior to it being made of improved materials.

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