The Complete Fisherman’s Catalog, By Harmon Henkin, 1977

Today I found the most amazing book today for $5, The Complete Fisherman’s Catalog by Harmon Henkin. This is a first edition book published in 1977. This book covers all aspects of fishing, history of vintage equipments, tackle makers, and listing of the top of the line equipments at the time. The book even provides the specifications of the reels and rods recommended. Since there are so many spingcast enthusiast here, I posted the spincast articles in this book.





Spincast reels.










Spincast rods.










So... what do you think? Please leave me a comment.


  • dustyjoe: Good buy Ron, but where are the pics. ? Jim
  • dustyjoe: Well, they weren’t there when I said that. :( That Spincast they’re showing looks like an Abu-Matic to me, what do you guys think ? Jim
  • Alpenflage:

    Yes, the first reel pictured is a earlier Abumatic dual drag version with what looks to be the older style push button. So I don’t think it’s a 170. I’m not good at ID’ing older Abu reels. The second reel a the top of the page that is a little sketch looks like a Abumatic 120. That is a great vintage book. Paul

  • Ron: I hit the publish button before I loaded the pictures. 🤓
    I added spincast and baitcast rods.
  • Alpenflage: Over the weekend I hope to read through all the pages you have posted Ron. I would have purchased this book for $5 as well. Great buy!
  • Vale: Great find Ron!
  • TheReelDeal: What a coincidence; I found this post today & had just returned this book to my library! Had a lot of information and opinions (not all of which I agreed with) and some nice stories too. Another book like this with helpful reviews of reels, rods, etc. from the ’70s is Consumer Guide Fishing, which I believe was dated 1973. Also, if anybody has any of the Herter’s catalogs from this time frame, I’m told they have lots of info too. Don’t remember Herter’s? Super huge outdoors products seller from Minnesota in the 1940s-1980s time frame. Gone now, but I believe the name lives on in some Cabela’s products.
  • skip smith: Ron, Wow, I just came across the latest comment on your post! Don’t know how I missed it earlier,
    As a dyed-in-the-wool spincast fisherperson, I’m willing to go on record as saying, it’s more challenging to catch fish with a spincast outfit, because of the slower retrieve, than with any other type of tackle.
    I may be wrong, I’m willing to be contradicted, but that’s my point of view.
    Comments welcomed.
  • Brian W.: Okay, now I have to find a copy!
    Thanks for sharing this.
  • TheReelDeal: Can appreciate what you say, skip smith, about the slow retrieve rates on spincasters. Some of the old spinning reels are that way too.
    I kinda like the slow retrieve; a lot of artificials I fish with (Flatfish, Colorado & Indiana spinners, metal lures like the Z-ray & SuperDuper, curly tail jigs, etc.) work well for me fished slow. With fast retrieve reels, I sometimes feel like I have to reel in slow motion to get the rate I want. Just a personal preference to be able to reel at a moderate speed & know the retrieve is still slow enuf for what I want to do.
  • skip smith: You make a good point about lure action, TRD. Hadn’t considered that. I mostly fish with artificial bait, so the spin casters are a good fit for me.
  • TheReelDeal: Fast retrieve has it’s place. Some plugs, buzzbaits and willow leaf spinners need it. Depends on what you’re fishing for, too. Northerns and muskies are notorious for chasing down a fast moving lure, especially spinners.
  • skip smith: Muskies and Northerns are uncommon in my area, so most of my fishing is a bass, crappie and other small panfish. Perfect for spin cast.
  • Brian W.: I did order the catalog. They are on both E Bay and Amazon. Around $7.00 for paperback and $10.00 for the hard cover.
  • skip smith: Thank you for the info, Brian!

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