Ross Reels Leaving Big Box Stores to Focus On Specialty Fly Shops

Beginning in January 2018, Ross Reels has announced they will cut ties with big box stores and instead focus on independent retailers.

Read more in the press release below.

Ross Reels Leaving Big Box Stores to Focus On Specialty Fly Shops

From Ross:

Our team at Ross Reels has been working hard to bring you the most compelling new products while bringing the brand back to its roots as the go-to reel company for quality, 100% USA-made reels and unmatched customer service. The support of our dealers has been paramount in this endeavor.

Since we began producing reels in 1973, our greatest asset has always been you, our independent dealer base. Now, in an effort to further support that base, we are ending our sales relationships with major big box retailers, effective January 1, 2018.

By making this decision, we are renewing our commitment to you by focusing sales through the independent retailer network that is the backbone of our industry. The knowledge and expertise of specialty local fly shops cannot be matched, and there is no other place that the Ross Reels® brand should be.

Thank you as always for your continued support.

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Jack Charlton’s Personal Fly Reels Up for Sale

MidCurrent just got word that a set of very exclusive fly reels is for sale at The Angling Company in Key West, Florida. Jack Charlton began his career in precision aerospace machining in 1965 in the Los Angeles area and founded Charlton Outdoor Technologies in 1991.  The first Charlton fly reel was introduced in 1993, and Charlton continued making fly reels with painstaking care and precision and in very limited quantities until 2003. Charlton passed away in October 2011. The collection (the reels are being sold individually) includes reels with Jack Charlton’s signature, production prototypes that bear early serial numbers, and rare sizes.  For more information go to the Angling Company website, email [email protected], or call them at (305) 292-6306.

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Abel Automatics Releases Johnny Cash Limited Edition Fly Reel

Abel, in partnership with the Johnny Cash estate, has announced the release of a Johnny Cash Limited Edition Fly Reel. “We’ve really outdone ourselves with this design, and we couldn’t be happier to be associated with one of our personal favorites in Johnny Cash,” says Abel Director of Sales, Jeff Patterson.

Read more in the press release below.

Abel Automatics Releases Johnny Cash Limited Edition Fly Reel

MONTROSE, Colorado – Abel Automatics, Inc., in partnership with the Johnny Cash estate, has announced today the release of the Johnny Cash Limited Edition Fly Reel.

Johnny Cash, one of America’s most beloved artists, becomes part of Abel’s legendary hand painted, hand anodized graphic designs. The development project was part of a significant collaboration between Abel’s design team and the Johnny Cash family, bringing the first HD finishes to the market in a limited edition production run. The reel is available immediately, according to Abel Director of Sales, Jeff Patterson.

Every detail has been scrutinized, from Johnny Cash’s favorite Martin® D-35 guitar silhouette to the black/satin black sunburst, Abel even developed a new proprietary metallurgical process called HD to achieve different textures and color hues of black for this product. These limited edition fly reels are available in the Super Series model in two sizes, 5|6 and 7|8. Each reel is individually serialized 1 through 250.

“We’ve really outdone ourselves with this design, and we couldn’t be happier to be associated with one of our personal favorites in Johnny Cash. We can’t wait to share this reel with his loyal fans,” said Patterson. The design is one that has particular meaning to the Cash family. “My father and I spent years of my young life fishing together around the world. He taught me to fly fish, and I know he would be excited to associate his name with such a high quality product as Abel Reels,” said John Carter Cash.

The Thread Shop is the innovative merchandising company of Sony Music Entertainment – one of the world’s largest record companies, and helped to make this partnership happen. “We look to partner our amazing and iconic artists with the best brands; Johnny Cash and Abel is a perfect example of this” said Howard Lau, SVP and Head of The Thread Shop. “These guys just knocked it out of the park. We love their approach, their quality, and their commitment to USA manufacturing.”

Abel Reels are noted for their precision machining and bullet-proof anodized finish, often completed with a fish graphic representation or image. “Abel’s are the go-to reel for all types of anglers, from casual vacation anglers to serious big game fly-fishers and even collectors,” said Patterson. “We can’t think of a better way to mark the beginning of the our 30th year than by offering a limited edition custom designed reel that celebrates the rich American heritage of both Abel Reels and one of America’s most esteemed artists in Johnny Cash,” said Patterson

The Johnny Cash Limited Edition fly reels are available through Abel’s premier network of authorized dealers or at


In addition to numerous design awards, Abel Reels have established a remarkable number of International Game Fish Association (IGFA) World Records in both fresh and saltwater categories. While the Abel machine shop existed prior to 1988, it was in that year the first Made-in-the-USA Abel Reels went into production, revolutionizing fresh and saltwater big game fly fishing. The company previously specialized in aerospace and other high-precision metal work. Unique to the industry, all components are made in Abel’s USA based factory on state-of-the art precision machining tools and anodizing equipment.


The Thread Shop has established itself as one of the best in the artist merchandising business. The company brings a revolutionary perspective to pop culture branding and marketing, and are committed to providing the ultimate shopping experience—and the highest quality products—for music fans and devotees of popular culture alike. The company touts an impressive and growing roster including A Tribe Called Quest, Bob Dylan, Iggy Pop, NAS, and Miles Davis. With a focus on quality and design, and with an “artist first”philosophy, The Thread Shop works hand-in-hand with the artists and brands they partner with to create beautiful, fashionable and elevated new merchandise and products designed to enhance every lifestyle.


Sony Music Entertainment is a global recorded music company with a current roster that includes a broad array of both local artists and international superstars. The company boasts a vast catalog that comprises some of the most important recordings in history. It is home to premier record labels representing music from every genre, including Arista Nashville, Bazmark Records, Beach Street Records, Black Butter Records, BPG Music, Bystorm Entertainment, Columbia Nashville, Columbia Records, Day 1, Descendant Records, Epic Records, Essential Records, Essential Worship, Flying Buddha, Fo Yo Soul Recordings, Insanity Records, Kemosabe Records, Latium Entertainment, Legacy Recordings, Louder Than Life, Masterworks, Masterworks Broadway, OKeh, Polo Ground Music, Portrait, RCA Inspiration, RCA Nashville, RCA Records, Relentless Records, Reunion Records, Sony Classical, Sony Music Latin, Star Time International, Syco Music, Vested in Culture and Volcano. Sony Music Entertainment is a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America.

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