Thanks Thanks:  1
Likes Likes:  102
Page 1 of 7 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 61
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Scottsdale, AZ
    Posts
    1,097

    Default Abel: The Harley Davidson of fishing reels.

    It just dawned on me.

    Before I was obsessed with fly fishing I was obsessed with motorcycles. I pretty much rode most styles of bikes except Harley Davidson's and the like; although I did spend a day riding a rented Harley on some Colorado "twisties" near Grand Junction. It was like riding a sofa.

    So, this is my observation:

    Both Harley Davidson motorcycles and Abel reels are made in the USA.

    Both are pretty much rock solid, although both are somewhat antiquated.

    Both have been reluctantly dragged into the 21st century. Harley has to had to make concessions to meet strict environmental requirements and Abel appears to finally be making sealed drags de rigueur.

    Aesthetics is at or near the top of the list of reasons why people buy these respective products.

    If aesthetics isn't at the top of the list of why people buy these products it is only because "the sound" is more important to some people than looks.

    And both products lag significantly behind their higher tech brethren in the performance category, at least according to the numerous reviews that I have read. Although both are better than they used to be.

    Dare I say as well that both are over priced for what you get?

    It is kinda like the Asquith thing, another very expensive fishing product, except with the Asquith you are spending a lot of money to buy a rod that pretty much unequivocally is considered great, or close to it.

    With Harley's and Abel's you are spending a lot of money for looks and sound...attributes that have little or nothing to do with catching fish... and very equivocal performance. That is a huge difference in my opinion.

  2. Likes dynaflow, tln1313 liked this post
  3. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Albuquerque, NM
    Posts
    2,105

    Default Re: Abel: The Harley Davidson of fishing reels.

    Funny enough, yesterday a buddy of mine called on his way back to town from his fishing cabin, where he had broken his 4-weight. He stopped at the local fly shop to replace that 4-weight, and also needed a reel. He said he looked at the Abel reels I like, but hated their features (he was looking at the Super Series, as was I when with him a few weeks ago at the same shop). He ended up with a Hatch, and wondered why I liked the Abels so much. I told him it had nothing to do with the technical superiority, which it lacks, but was 100% about the aesthetics (I was looking a Cutthroat Trout pattern on a Super 5N). For me, it was about the artwork, and beauty, as the reel is functionally decrepit by today's standards. I want that reel because it is gorgeous; there is no second reason.

  4. Likes vpsihop1, steveid, myt1, flyminded liked this post
  5. Default Re: Abel: The Harley Davidson of fishing reels.

    If I believed this analogy and many of the espoused reasons, I might feel bad for just deciding on an Abel as my next reel purchase.

  6. Likes myt1, mcnerney liked this post
  7. Default Re: Abel: The Harley Davidson of fishing reels.

    Probably the most important technical feature of a fly reel is reliability. It is totally ignored in all reel shootouts (it is not really measurable). Being able to repair it on the field is also a huge plus.
    So for me a Tibor, an Abel or even a Hardy Perfect is technically superior to any reel that has a one way bearing in the mechanism, which will eventually fail because of humidity, cold, water intrusion, dirt, salt, too much lubrication, etc.

  8. #5

    Default Re: Abel: The Harley Davidson of fishing reels.

    Quote Originally Posted by denver1911 View Post
    I might feel bad for just deciding on an Abel as my next reel purchase.
    Any chance of that happening will disappear like a fart in the wind once that Abel is in your hands ! Good Luck on your trip !

  9. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Hudson, Florida
    Posts
    1,202

    Default Re: Abel: The Harley Davidson of fishing reels.

    No , furthest thing from HD. Still use a Super 8. No leaks in 20 yrs.

    Interesting staement about being outdated. Maybe I am too. I like big cork disc drags.

    ....... pc

  10. Likes duker, myt1, nevadanstig, mcnerney liked this post
  11. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Northwest Territories
    Posts
    777

    Default Re: Abel: The Harley Davidson of fishing reels.

    I don't own an Abel, but as I just commented in another thread I do own a Tibor and a couple of Islander (basically a Canadian Abel) reels, use them for saltwater, fresh, including one of the Islanders on a spey rod. I guess I too am an old-fashioned guy, as I like the bullet-proofness and ease of maintenance and repair of draw-bar reels. There's just not much that can go wrong with them, and as akos75 points out if something does go wrong you can likely fix it quickly and easily.

    Sealed drags are all well and good, but I think that those seals are eventually going to go--the question isn't if they're going to leak, but when. As another posted pointed out in another thread, NASA lost a Space Shuttle due to a faulty O-ring. I know that many anglers use Hatch, Nautilus, Abel, and other sealed drag reels and have given them good reviews, and I have no doubt that they are fine reels. I may even buy one myself some day. But I'll never go on a faraway fishing trip without a drag-bar reel.

    Scott

  12. Likes myt1, scotty macfly, audax, mcnerney liked this post
  13. #8
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Location
    Snake, Clearwater and tribs
    Posts
    555

    Default Re: Abel: The Harley Davidson of fishing reels.

    Not sure the OP is using the same Abels that I am? The ones I use are bomb proof and just keep working year after year.

  14. Likes myt1, rockriver, mcnerney liked this post
  15. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Crowded Colorado
    Posts
    2,110

    Default Re: Abel: The Harley Davidson of fishing reels.

    Quote Originally Posted by myt1 View Post
    It just dawned on me.

    Before I was obsessed with fly fishing I was obsessed with motorcycles. I pretty much rode most styles of bikes except Harley Davidson's and the like; although I did spend a day riding a rented Harley on some Colorado "twisties" near Grand Junction. It was like riding a sofa.

    So, this is my observation:

    Both Harley Davidson motorcycles and Abel reels are made in the USA.

    Both are pretty much rock solid, although both are somewhat antiquated.

    Both have been reluctantly dragged into the 21st century. Harley has to had to make concessions to meet strict environmental requirements and Abel appears to finally be making sealed drags de rigueur.

    Aesthetics is at or near the top of the list of reasons why people buy these respective products.

    If aesthetics isn't at the top of the list of why people buy these products it is only because "the sound" is more important to some people than looks.

    And both products lag significantly behind their higher tech brethren in the performance category, at least according to the numerous reviews that I have read. Although both are better than they used to be.

    Dare I say as well that both are over priced for what you get?

    It is kinda like the Asquith thing, another very expensive fishing product, except with the Asquith you are spending a lot of money to buy a rod that pretty much unequivocally is considered great, or close to it.

    With Harley's and Abel's you are spending a lot of money for looks and sound...attributes that have little or nothing to do with catching fish... and very equivocal performance. That is a huge difference in my opinion.

    As for motorcycles, is there a cheaper version of the Harley? I ask because I don't know much about bikes.

    As for Abel, there is a cheaper version. Ross Reels.

    When the boys from Scott Rods came down, they also brought with them Abel and Ross reels. Jake took apart both reels to show me the drag system, and the only thing different was the housings for the drag, other than that and Abels expensive paint jobs, they are the same reel.

    So I guess you can get a lower priced Abel, just pronounce it as Ross.
    The only thing human kind ever learned through history, is that through history, human kind has learned nothing.

  16. Likes dynaflow, Masteri liked this post
  17. #10
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Location
    Albuquerque
    Posts
    1,062

    Default Re: Abel: The Harley Davidson of fishing reels.

    I have to agree, El Jefe and Myt1...I admit that no matter what the product, for me, if it ain't beautiful I'm not buying. Beautiful design matters (a great deal) for most consumers...but I'm biased, my first degree and career was in graphic design

    Confession: I play with Abels
    [/url]
    MIKE ADAIR - Exploring New Mexico landscapes through fly fishing, golf, and art.
    @mka133

Page 1 of 7 123 ... LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 09-28-2011, 04:10 AM
  2. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 09-19-2011, 02:20 AM
  3. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 09-12-2011, 01:00 AM
  4. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 08-27-2011, 09:50 AM
  5. Replies: 0
    Last Post: 08-21-2011, 08:30 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •