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"A" Letter Suffix on Conventional Reels (A)

The letter "A" Suffix after model numbers on Conventional Reels was first used in 1966 on some 600 Series Mitchell reels that were specially designed for saltwater casting.


"A" Letter Suffix on Spinning Reels (A)

The letter "A" Suffix after model numbers on some Mitchell spinning reels marks the transitional period away from Garcia (USA) involvement with Mitchell in 1978 along with other transitions to the looks and mechanics of these same reels.


Albatros Mitchell Reels (Albatros)

Exclusive importer and distributor of Mitchell for the Netherlands.


Alphanumeric Serial Numbers

First used on the 300 series on the last half bail versions (A – C). It was then used on the first version 302 series half bails and full bails (A – D). All serial numbers were then changed to numeric numbers only up to 1970. In 1971 the alphanumeric serial numbers returned through the 1988/89 Season. The letters A – T were used with the exception of the letters I and O as not to be confused with the numbers 1 and 0.


AM for Mitchell 300 Reels (AM)

This abbreviation first appeared for the Mitchell 300 series reels in factory texts when the changeover was made from the Half Bail or "AM" as it was designated to the Full Bail or "AP" as it was designated. You will not see “AM” used in text after the early fifties.


Anniversary Mitchell Reels (Anniversary)

Special celebratory reels made by Mitchell to commemorate the anniversary of The Mitchell Reel or in some cases, the anniversary of a specific reel. Due to many factors such as loss of all old records; we find that even as of today very few of these are correct but still highly prized collectables.


AP for Mitchell 300 Reels (AP)

This abbreviation first appeared in 1952 for the Mitchell 300 series reels in factory texts when the changeover was made from the open Half Bail (finger pick up or AM as is was designated in French) to the Full Bail. Mitchell distinguished this change – and improvement – by the name “Anse de Panier”  (AP for short) which in French language means “basket handle”.  This term seemed appropriate to help potential buyers understand the change. You will see “AP” used in text and schematics for many decades. This is not to be confused with the AP Suffix on model numbers. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)


AP Letter Suffix (AP)

The "AP" suffix after a reel's model number was first used in 1966 on some 600A Series Mitchell reels that were specially designed for saltwater casting but with a plastic (P) spool.  This is not to be confused with the AP text.


Arca Mitchell Reels (Arca)

Exclusive importer and distributor of Mitchell for Belgium.


Auto-Bail Mitchell Reel (Auto-Bail)

Common name used for the original Otomatic which carried on to all future versions including the 330, 440, 540 and 840 series Mitchell Reels. The name Otomatic was used as a derivative of Automatic.


Automatic Mitchell Reels (Automatic)

Term used for the Mitchell 710 and 720 fly reels which had an Automatic line retrieve lever. This term is also misused for the Otomatic.


Balzer Mitchell Reels (Balzer)

Exclusive importer and distributor of Mitchell for Germany.


Bass Pro Shops

Since the mid-1980s, Bass Pro Shops still has a long time standing relationship with Mitchell as a very large retailer of fishing equipment and other outdoor sporting goods. It was because of this relationship that Mitchell made the Mitchell G series reels and quite possibly the Mitchell Pro Series reels.

 


Benjamin Mitchell Reels (Benjamin)

A Benjamin Sticker was placed on a limited quantity of Albatros Mitchell 308 reels that are also inscribed with The Flying Albatros logo naturally distributed only in The Netherlands.


BHV Fishing Reels (BHV)

Three Mitchell reels were made by Mitchell in France for exclusive sale by Le Bazar de L’Hotel de Ville commonly called B.H.V pronounced "Bay Hash Vay" in French. The first release was the Mitchell 314 series inscribed with only Super BHVA Mitchell 300 and 306 with only BHV inscribed was produced later. There was also a second release of the 314 with only BHV inscribed. The B.H.V is just across the street from the Hotel de Ville in Paris, France.


Bicentennial Garcia Mitchell 300 Reel (Bicentennial)

A Garcia Mitchell 300 that was repainted by Garcia red, white and blue in 1976 as a presentation gift to select retailers in celebration of America’s 200th Independence Day (1776 – 1976). See our Collector’s Gallery for more information.


Big Game Mitchell Reels (Big Game)

The Big Game Mitchell Reels are known as the 1000 "trolling" series. The first three issues – 1040 (4/0), 1060 (6/0) and the 1090 (9/0) were offered in a wood display case. These were sold in both European markets and by Garcia starting in the late sixties. In 1977 Mitchell introduced the 1120 (12/0) that was only distributed in Europe. Mitchell also made another series of big game reels starting in the early 1980s simply called The President.

 

The 1000 series of Mitchell big game reels were not made to compete with Penn as some believe, but to compete with the Californian brand also made of anodized aluminum side plates. It is the much smaller Mitchell 600 series that was originally designed to compete with Penn. It was later on when Penn came out with their own series to compete against all metal reels! (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)


BlackFish Fishing Reels (BlackFish)

The BlackFish reels were made by Carpano & Pons for discount stores and only sold in France. These reels have a Blackfish Sticker followed by B10, B20, B30, B40 and B50. These were less expensive copies of the Mitchell 320, 324, 300, 316 and 386 series reels sold in the seventies.


Bronze Series Mitchell Fishing Reels (Bronze)

During Browning’s short involvement with Mitchell, a Mitchell Bronze Series was introduced in 1983 which included the 320, 324, 382, 906, 908, 910 and the 440A series reels.


C Letter Suffix Mitchell Reels (C Suffix)

The letter "C" suffix on model numbers was first used in 1968 on the 300C designed and distributed by Garcia USA only. After Garcia’s involvement, the 300C was manufactured again in the eighties for European distribution. Since the only difference between this reel and the 300 series is bearings in both the Rotating Head and the Handle axis, we assume the “C” stands for this difference.


CAP / C.A.P Fishing Reel (CAP)

The CAP, or as molded on the body as C.A.P, and not to be confused with C&P (Carpano & Pons), was a fishing reel originally made exclusively for it’s “inventor - wholesaler" or jobber from Angers, La Canne à Pêche, most likely the largest jobber in France at that time. Carpano & Pons at that time had no direct sales responsibility or territory at all for the CAP reel but did for their own reel referred to then as "The Mitchell", with completely different mechanics and "sexy" looking as well!

 

Carpano & Pons formed "Mitchell" as a separate corporation in the mid fifties along with the introduction of their own "round Body" called the Mitchell CAP 54. Thus the soon to be called "Mitchell 304" series was born. For more information see the Collector’s Gallery. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)


Carpano & Pons Company (C&P)

Carpano & Pons was the company who invented all vintage Mitchell reels but formed "Mitchell" as a separate corporation under their control in the mid 1950s. See our Mitchell History Page for more information.


Conolon Fishing Rods (Conolon)

Dr. G. G. Havens and his associates produce a new laminate material known as "Conolon" in early 1943. National Research and Manufacturing Company (NARMCO) founded in 1944 by Dr. G. G. Havens was established initially to develop a series of structural adhesives under the trademark "Metlbond" and a reinforced laminate under the "Conolon" name. NARMCO Sporting Goods Company Manufactured fishing rods for the Garcia Corporation under the "Garcia-Conolon" name.

 

NARMCO industries was sold to "Telecomputing Corporation" in February 1960 (later re-named Whitaker Corporation listed on the NYSE) We believe that during this time period the "Telecomputing Corporation" spins off the National Rod Company and NARMCO Sporting Goods company to the "Garcia Corporation", which re-names the two "The Conolon Corporation" a Division of the Garcia Corporation.

 

Please see the Conolon Narmco Timeline Article for more information.


Cross Wind / CW Gearing in Mitchell Reels (Cross Wind)

Mitchell reels Cross Wind gears were offered as an alternate to Level Wind gears as far back as the late forties for an extra price. Cross-Wind gearing increased the speed of oscillation or movement of the spool in and out to criss-cross the fishing line on the spool. Although this reduced the amount of line; it limited the risk of line binding. In the early fifties Cross-Wind gearing became the standard.


Cutaway Mitchell Fishing Reels (Cutaway)

Mitchell cutaways were made by Mitchell to be used as sales ad material and as demonstration models for salesmen. For more information see the Collector’s Gallery.


DL / Deluxe Mitchell Reel Models (DL)

Included are the 300DL, 301DL, 408DL and the 410DL which were made for public distribution. All have gold plating on certain components, a plate on the reel for engraving the owner’s name and a wooden presentation box. There is insurmountable evidence that the first release did not come in a box and was given to select vendors by Garcia as a test market in the late fifties. For more information see our Gallery.


Dual Series Rod and Reel Combos (Dual)

In 1971 Mitchell was celebrating 20 million reels being sold. Balzer of Germany helped celebrate this event by advertising and selling the first “Dual” series. These were the 500, 508, 510 and 540 offered as a “set” with a matching Conolon rod. Neither the rod or reel had the Balzer name inscribed but instead, the Dual Wedge Sticker. For more information see our Gallery.

 


Egg Shape Classic Mitchell Reels (Egg Shape)

Egg Shape is a term used for the "classic" shape of the Mitchell 300, 350, 400, 410, 440, 500, 524, 800 and 900 series reels.


Even Numbered Mitchell Reel Model Numbers (Even)

Even Numbered Mitchell Reel Model Numbers were Right Hand RH models as opposed to Odd model numbers being Left Hand LH. Example: The 300 (RH) verses the 301 (LH) models.

 


Forked Foot Mitchell Reels and Conolon Rods (Forked)

In 1968 Mitchell started producing Mitchell reels with a modified Forked foot starting with the Mitchell 510; a modified Mitchell 410. They later produced the Mitchell 508 (408), 500 (300), 524 (324) and the 540 (440) reels with this same foot. Special made Conolon rods were also made to accept the reels. The first evidence of a Special wedge emblem was on the early versions of this rod. No left hand (LH) versions of these reels are known to exist. For more information see our Gallery.

 


G Suffix on Mitchell Reels (G Suffix)

Two gold trim Mitchell reels were made by Mitchell in 1986/87 for Bass Pro Shops; the 400G and the 408G. The first issues had two serial numbers. One was Alphanumeric located on the foot of both reels. The other was a special serial number written on the side of both reels. Others have been found with no serial number on the foot making us believe these were a second issue made after serial numbering, probably in 1990.

 


Galion Fishing Reels (Galion)

Galion fishing reels were a series of low price reels made at Impecco, France request to begin entrenching against Far Eastern competition. The name was not palatable for the US market so it was changed to Kingfisher.Kingfisher. Because of serious mechanical problems with the original versions, name and colour changes were required. Garcia got on this bandwagon fairly late; originally they did not believe there was any need for this series reel. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)


Garcia Mitchell Reels (Garcia)

Charles Garcia & Company, Inc. (1947 - 1955) – The Garcia Corporation (1955 – 1978) - Exclusive distributor of Mitchell for The United States and Canada. Garcia was not originally the Canadian distributor. There was an independent importer working under control of Ets Impecco Paris. This became bothersome at one stage, and then Garcia took control of CDN. Garcia became the owner of Mitchell in June, 1974 and then sold it back to Carpano & Pons in 1977. Garcia Tackle Ltd was the name used for the Impecco subsidiary to distribute Mitchell in the UK. We got license from Garcia to do this. It was not ever a Garcia Europe though, purely British. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)

 


Gearing / Spooling in Mitchell Reels (Gears)

Mitchell reels had three types of gear systems affecting spooling during line retrieval. The first was Level-Wind on the Mitchell Half Bails followed quickly by Cross-Wind gearing as an alternate choice due to problems with line binding. The third was Planamatic gearing which combined the best features of the first two.

 

The various “qualities” of efficiency in the gearing has been a subject of controversy ever since the Cap and 300 were launched. This may seem a little “too much” for the average holiday angler who doesn’t use his equipment with a full knowledge of how to best employ it, but to a confirmed angler and caster the wide spool of the 300 – a unique feature – is the key to the success of the reel along with it’s sex appeal look.

 

If one is expert at handling the reel and doesn’t constantly get his line and lures or bait snarled in the bottom rocks or weeds, then the 300 consistently gave better casting distance potential…and that is what an expert angler is looking for. Maurice JacqueminMaurice Jacquemin then took other routes to design the planamatic, a fairly good substitute.

 

Cross wind is a relatively poor alternative since the covering over of line spires on the spool doesn’t’ make for the best ease on getting away from the reel. Highly technical, I admit, but some anglers in the best qualified markets: GB, Scandinavia, France new the difference. To this knowledgeable group the difference as similar to comparing the casting characteristics of ordinary bamboo rods, and a technical split cane rod… all before plastics and fibreglass of course. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)

 


High Speed Stickers on Mitchell Reels (High Speed)

Small red, blue or black sticker on the handle of Mitchell 400 and 900 series reels indicating the high retrieve ratio.


Impecco Import / Export Company (Impecco)

Impecco was the exclusive import-export company for Mitchell France. Impecco Ltd handled The USA and Canada. Impecco France handled the other 85 countries around the world.


Intermediate Mitchell Reels (Intermediate)

Term used for the Mitchell 306 when introduced in 1958. The reel size was between the 300 and 302 series for heavy freshwater or light to medium saltwater fishing.


Inverted Engraving on Mitchell Reels (Inverted)

The early versions of the Mitchell 301 and the 303 series reels had the Mitchell engraving inverted on the reel due to tooling set for right Hand (RH) models only. Eventually this was corrected on all LH reels.


Jacquemin, Maurice

Maurice Jacquemin was the inventor of The Mitchell Reel in the late-1930s. As the designer and chief engineer for Carpano & Pons Company from the mid-1930s, he went on to invent most of the old classic Mitchell reels. See our History Page for more information.

 


JWA / Johnson Worldwide Associates

JWA acquired the Mitchell company in 1990. See our History Page for more information.


K Kits Garcia Mitchell Reels (K Kits)

Starting in 1953/1954 Garcia Mitchell USA made up Garcia Mitchell 300 reel K Kits with special Garcia tackle boxes. These kits also included many other items such as lures, fishing line, grease and much more. Garcia soon expanded these to other models. For more information see our Gallery.

 


Kilt Fishing Reels (Kilt)

In the early sixties the Kilt reels were made by Mitchell as a private brand for Nouvelles Galeries and Galeries Lafayette; a major French traditional chain store which use to cover all major cities in France. These reels have Kilt in place of Mitchell engraved followed by a 0 for the 300, 4 for the 304 and 6 for the 306 Mitchell series reels. You will also find several Galion series reels with the KILT insignia. JP Gumprich


Kingfisher Fishing Reels (Kingfisher)

Kingfisher Fishing Reels were first called Galion. Galion fishing reels were a series of low price reels made at Impecco, France request to begin entrenching against Far Eastern competition. The name was not palatable for the US market so it was changed to Kingfisher.

 

Because of serious mechanical problems with the original versions, name and colour changes were required. Garcia got on this bandwagon fairly late; originally they did not believe there was any need for this series reel. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)

 


Kirk Odo Fishing Reels (Kirk Odo)

The Odo Manufacturing Plant in France was (believed to be) a subcontractor for Mitchell at a time when plant production capacities were limited and sales began to peak in the fifties. When “jilted” by C&P they decided to do things their own way and started making their own reel called Kirk Odo Fishing Reels. With only 20,000 units made; Impecco picked up the export/import and Garcia began marketing of this reel but had the name changed to Kroyden. The reasons behind the names Kirk-Odo and then Kroyden can only be speculative. Though this reel was never part of "Mitchell" it is part of Mitchell's history. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)


L Suffix on Mitchell Match Reels (L Suffix)

In the late sixties, Garcia (UK) sold a Mitchell 440 and 441 in The UK but only had the words Garcia Mitchell Match inscribed on the reel with no series number. The letter L was inscribed next to the word Match on the left hand “LH” version.


Level-Wind Mitchell Reel Gears (Level-Wind)

The very first Mitchell reel had Level-Wind gears for line retrieval. Due to a very slow oscillation of the spool’s motion in and out; the line was distributed evenly on the spool. The problem with this type of gearing was line binding.

 


LH Mitchell Fishing Reels (LH)

LH in Mitchell Fishing Reels is a term used for Left Hand reels also called right hand wind or odd numbered reels. You would hold the rod and reel in your left hand and cast with your right. To this day, this causes much confusion amongst anglers but this is what Mitchell called them.

 


Lightning Cast Mitchell 440A LC Reels (ALC)

First made in 1983/84 by Mitchell for Browning during Browning’s short involvement. Browning decided to “bring back the Mitchell 440A because it never gained the popularity it deserves.” This reel was the Mitchell 440A Lightning Cast commonly called the “ALC”. First versions were Match Grade quality and also available was the 441A Lightning Cast in very limited quantities.


Match Competition Mitchell Reels (Match)

Match is a term used mainly in The UK for Competition Coarse Fishing. Mitchell made several Match Competition Mitchell Reels specifically designed for this event with the word Match engraved in script on the cover plate. These include but are not limited to; the 440 and 840 series Auto-Bail reels. Naturally, other models and brands were also used in this competition.

 


Match Engraved Mitchell Fishing Reels (Match Engraved)

In the late sixties through the eighties Mitchell made several versions of Match Engraved Mitchell Fishing Reels on the 440 and 840 series models. These reels have the word Match engraved on them and were made for public distribution mainly in The UK. Please note that some were Match Grade whereas others were not.

 


Match Grade Mitchell Reels (Match Grade)

The early versions of Match Grade Mitchell Reels were assembled using what they called Match Grade and had the word Match engraved on the cover plate. The gearing and tooling of these reels were of higher standards than those of the same series not labeled Match. The first was the Garcia Mitchell Match that was a 440 series but without the model number engraved. The last known Match Grade Mitchell was not a Match Reel but was Browning’s first version 440A Lightning Cast.

 


MIB | Mint in Box (MIB)

Abbreviation for Mint in Box which should mean the reel has only a tiny amount of shelf wear from age and never used. It should also be in the original box it was sold in. Matching serial numbers are very important to determine this as well as the correct spool and all other components. The problem with this is a lot of people use this term that have no idea what it means. Others that do know what it means TRY to make up “Frankenstein” reels MIB. Buyers Beware!

 


Milbro | Millard Brothers of Scotland (Milbro)

Milbro is an abbreviation for Millard Brothers of Scotland, a large fishing tackle company with close affiliation with Mitchell France documented as far back as 1946/47.  In those days they were wholesaler N° 1 for the whole North of the British and Scottish nations. They were also one of the very few retailers and wholesalers allowed to sell Mitchell reels due to these old friendships. They also came out with a few Mitchell reels with their Milbro Sticker attached. Needless to say they were quite disappointed when Barrie Welham opened shop in The UK with Garcia Tackle. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)


Millard Brothers of Scotland (Millard)

Millard Brothers of Scotland, see Milbro.


Mint Condition Mitchell Reels (Mint)

Mint Condition in Mitchell Reels is a term used to describe the condition in appearance as near new looking with very tiny shelf wear only and never used. Beware when someone uses this term Mint for its age and not the condition both in appearance and mechanical. Good close up photographs say a lot so when you hear it's in Mint Condition for it's age, beware!


N Suffix on Mitchell 302N Reels (N Suffix)

The N Suffix on Mitchell 302N Reels started when Mitchell stopped making the Mitchell 302 series reels in 1974. In 1968 they had started making the Mitchell 386 series saltwater reel that were not so popular. In 1975 they renamed the 386 series to the 302N series!?

 

We can only speculate that due to good sales volumes of the Mitchell 402, the high speed version of the 302, and the low sales volumes for the Mitchell 386 series, this was a necessary step. Just remember; the Mitchell 302N is just a Mitchell 386 and nothing special.


NIB New in Box Mitchell Reels (NIB)

NIB New in Box Mitchell Reels must mean the Mitchell reel has no shelf wear from age and never used. The reel must be in perfect aesthetic appearance and mechanical condition! It must also be in the original condition box it was sold in with complete packaging including the owner’s manual, warranty cards and so on.

 

Matching reel and box serial numbers are very important to determine this as well as the correct spare spool and all other components. To give you an idea of just how rare this is, in the past 14 years, I've only owned three Mitchell reels that were NIB!!!

 

The problem with this is a lot of people use this term that have no idea what it means. Others that do know what it means TRY to make up Frankenstein sets and call them NIB.

 


Odd Numbered Mitchell Reel Model Numbers (Odd)

Odd Numbered Mitchell Reel Model Numbers were Left Hand LH models as opposed to Even model numbers being Right Hand RH. Example: The 300 (RH) verses the 301 (LH) models.

 


Otomatic Mitchell Reel (Otomatic)

A derivative of the word Automatic, the first Auto Bail was the Mitchell Otomatic (no number) first released in 1955. It was the predecessor to all future Auto Bails made by Mitchell. At a time when the numerical sequence had not yet been adopted for the growing Mitchell range of reels Carpano & Pons thought they should find suitable names, and protect then against copiers. Under French patent laws one could not protect a common dictionary word (automatic) so they chose the derivative word Otomatic. The name changed in 1957 to Mitchell with Otomatic 330 underneath. In the late sixties the name changed to Mitchell 330 with just Otomatic underneath. Garcia’s version changed these to just Garcia Mitchell 330 in the early sixties which stayed the same throughout their history. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)

 


P Letter Suffix on Conventional Mitchell Reels (P)

The P Letter Suffix on Conventional Mitchell Reels was first used in 1963 on the original 600 Series Mitchell reels that were specially designed for saltwater casting but with a plastic (P) spool.


Page Fishing Reel (Page)

In 1964 Mitchell decided to make their first economy reel. It was introduced at first without the Mitchell name called Page. These were made in limited quantities and soon became the Mitchell 320 series. Garcia introduced the Garcia Mitchell 320 in 1967.


Pecos Fishing Reel (Pecos)

The Pecos fishing reel was designed and sold by Pêcheur Ecossais, a fishing tackle shop in Paris, with the "assistance" of Carpano & Pons. It is believed by some that this reel was made prior to the first version CAP reel but it would be a big surprise for me if Pecos had “originally” came out along with the Cap (whether prototype or production) since they were just a luxury fishing tackle shop. I believe they still exist. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)


Planamatic Gearing in Mitchell Reels (Planamatic)

A revolution for Mitchell was their Planamatic Gearing for the CAP reel in the early fifties. This gearing combined the best features of both the old Level-wind and the Cross-wind for maximum line capacity and no line binding and was later used on other Mitchell reels. Patented by Charles Pons as CEO of Carpano and Pons; the original inventor is believed to be Maurice Jacquemin who still worked for Carpano & Pons in those days. You will see these confusing Patents but under French ownership and patent laws in those days, if you invented something while employed by a corporation; the CEO or owner of the company was entitled to the patent in his name. (Updated October 5th, 2008 by JP Gumprich)

 


President Series Mitchell Big Game Reels (President)

Mitchell France started making the President series in the mid-1980s to compete with other big game reels. These consisted of several sizes including 4/0, 6/0, 9/0 and the 12/0 and priced far less than the Mitchell 1000 series big game reels. See Mitchell Big Game Trolling Reels for more information.


Prince Mitchell 308 Fishing Reel (Prince)

In the late fifties the Mitchell 308 fishing reel was introduced mainly for the European market as the Prince. Mitchell 308 was engraved on the housing right over a raised cast in the Housing that looks like FRONCE only on these first versions. A Prince sticker was placed on the cover plate. These same stickers were placed later on the High Speed 358 series for a very short period of time.


Prisu Fishing Reel (Prisu)

In the late sixties the Prisu series reels were made by Mitchell for a chain store in France. These reels have Prisu stickers (no Mitchell) followed by a 0 for the 300; 4 for the 340 and 6 for the 306 Mitchell series reels. The Prisu 4 is identical to the Arca M40 except for the sticker.


Pro Africa Mitchell Spinning Reel (Pro Africa)

In 1997 Mitchell Sports of France along with JWA, Johnson Diversified of Canada, STS Outdoor Fishing Worldwide of Germany and Mitchell Italia of Italy produced two magnificent reels; the 498X Pro and the 498X Pro Africa. The only difference was the Pro Africa came with a special aluminum spool for use with braided line. The 498 Pro Africa was in limited quantities. For more information see our Collector’s Gallery.


PRO Suffix on Mitchell Reels (PRO)

A standard Mitchell reel made in the eighties by Mitchell Sports but improved in appearance, mechanically and with special packaging. Some people including us believe these were used to entice professional fishermen to use Mitchell reels. I also believe it was to entice Bass Pro Shops since it was at this time period that Mitchell created the 400G and the 408G for Bass Pro!

 


Profile 50 Mitchell Cane Pole Fishing Reel (Profile 50)

In the mid eighties Mitchell made these very unusual reels in limited quantities for use with cane poles.


Promatic Mitchell Fishing Reel (Promatic)

The Promatic Mitchell Fishing Reel is a combination of a 300 PRO with an Auto-Bail 440A Lighting Cast rotating head from the mid-1980s. There is no Provenance on these reels having ever been made by Mitchell. I do feel there's a possibility that limited quantities of these reels were made but always beware of “Frankenstein” reels! (WC Update October 5, 2008)


Provenance in Mitchell Reels (Provenance)

Provenance is proof of authenticity and/or of past original ownership when used with antiques such as Mitchell Reels. These are normally letters of authenticity from the owners and absolutely never hearsay or rumors. Provenance can also be established by memories of those who were there or by close and exact examination by an expert of known existing reels. Correct serial numbers also establishes Provenance in most cases but not all. All Mitchell reels with Provenance are far more valuable than those without.


PUM Mitchell Pick Up Manual Reel (PUM)

PUM is the most common term for the Mitchell Pick Up Manual (a French term) which started its popularity in Europe. These were fixed Roller Line Guide as opposed to the Full Bail system. Other abbreviations were MP for Manual Pickup and PM for Pickup Manual.

 

Some Mitchell reel PUMs were original factory made such as the early model Mitchell 302 however, this same reel had a optional PUM part that could be ordered. This makes it very difficult to determine authenticity. Other Mitchell reels like the Mitchell 498 only came with a PUM.

 

You can read about and see images of all Mitchell PUM variations in our Mitchell Reel PUM Gallery.


Pure Fishing | Mitchell Fishing Reels (Pure Fishing)

One of the largest fishing tackle suppliers in the world; Pure Fishing has acquired many top brand name products including Penn, Abu-Garcia, Fenwick, Berkley and many others including Mitchell from JWA in 2000. See our History Page for more information.


Quartz Mitchell Fishing Reels (Quartz)

Mitchell made a very nice presentation quality reel in the mid nineties in limited quantities called The Mitchell 330 Quartz which can be seen in our Gallery. Mitchell has used the term Quartz since then on other much less desirable reels.


Rapid Mitchell 350 Series Fishing Reel (Rapid)

Rapid was engraved on the first High Speed (5:1) 300 series reel. The first issue did not have a model number but just Mitchell Rapid. This reel soon became the Rapid Mitchell 350 Series Fishing Reel 5/1 in 1957.


RD Suffix on Mitchell Fishing Reels (RD)

Term used on Mitchell reels with an adjustable Rear Drag.


RH Mitchell Fishing Reels (RH)

RH in Mitchell Fishing Reels is a term used for Right Hand reels also called left hand wind or even numbered reels. You would hold the rod and reel in your right hand and cast with your left. To this day, this causes much confusion amongst anglers but this is what Mitchell called them.

 


RK Kits Garcia Mitchell Fishing Rod & Reel (RK)

Starting in 1953/1954 Garcia made up Mitchell 300 rod and reel kits with special packaging. These kits also included many other items such as lures, fishing line, grease and much more. Garcia soon expanded these to other models. For more information see Garcia Kits in our Gallery.

 


Round Body Mitchell Fishing Reels

Round Body is a term used to describe Mitchell reels where the Gear Housing is round by design. There are many examples starting with the original CAP and on throughout the evolution of this reel including the 304, 314 and 340 series reel.


S Suffix on Mitchell Reels (S Suffix)

The letter S-suffix to a Mitchell reel’s model number was first used on the 304S with unfounded claims to stand for saltwater because of its durability for light saltwater use. When used on a reel with a skirted spool; it seams to designate “Skirted Spool” but Mitchell also made this kind of spool on other models without the "S" Suffix. This will always be subject to debate.


Salt Water Mitchell Saltwater Reels

Mitchell’s first version of a saltwater reel was the 302 series affectionately called The Salt Water Mitchell reel. Like The Mitchell 300 series early versions, these were before model numbers were placed on Mitchell reels. “Salt Water” was engraved on the 302 series and the high speed version 402 series. Mitchell made several other versions for saltwater use but in the Mitchell world; this term applies only to very early Mitchell 302 and 303 models without a model number.


Seasons Mitchell Reel Production (Season)

Mitchell France had their production runs from September 1st of one year through July 31st of the following year which gave the workers the month of August off for holiday. This was and still is common practice in France for all businesses. Due to the lapse over two years, Mitchell referred to their runs as “Seasons” instead of years. You can also look at this as a fiscal year and not a calender year or September 1st through August 31st.


Serial Numbers on Mitchell Reels (SN)

All Mitchell reels from 1949/50 through 1988/89 have serial numbers stamped on them in manufacturing sequence. In some very early models you will also find these on the back of the Housing or on the Cover Plates for the 302 series. Some exceptions are those made prior to 1949, Prototypes, Tournament Reels made for professional use and other Presentation Super Rare reels.

 


Stickers on Mitchell Fishing Reels (Stickers)

Many Stickers were used on Mitchell reels for aesthetic and informative use. Due to poorly made aftermarket copies of these; stickers should not increase values except for one. These were the original ones first placed on reels to designate which wholesale “Distributor” was marketing Mitchell reels prior to engraving.

 

The first to do this was Albatros followed by Garcia. Balzer and Arca started doing the same for a short period of time. All eventually had their name or Logo engraved directly on the reels. Balzer came back in the late sixties with another sticker.

 


Super Cap Fishing Reel (Super Cap)

The first Mitchell 314 was advertised (only) as the Super Cap fishing reel. The word Super was due to the much improved design over the 304. The word CAP was due to Mitchell still using the old style 304 housings with C.A.P in raised lettering. For more information see our Gallery.

 


Tool Kits Garcia Mitchell Reel (Tool Kits)

Starting in the late fifties Garcia made up Dealer Tool Kits with special packaging. These kits included all the tools needed to work on Mitchell reels. For more information see Garcia Kits in our Gallery.


Tournament Mitchell 300 Reels (Tournament Reels)

Professional casting competition became very popular in the sixties mainly in The UK. This included “Skish” or more commonly referred to as Accuracy Casting and the ever popular Distance Casting. In the early sixties Mitchell started their own line of the high quality and very expensive Mitchell tournament reels. These were highly modified Mitchell 300 reels with special gearing and in all cases included an extra gear. This gear reversed the rotation of the Rotating Head which enabled the caster to use his finger for easy line control during a cast if needed.

 

The Mitchell Tournament Reels made for Distance Casting have a locking mechanism on the Handle’s axis to lock it in place to not be disqualified for movement which was not allowed. These Mitchell Tournament Reels also incorporated the use of two or more Manual Pickups for perfect line placement on the spool. Made for Professional Casters only and never sold to the general public; these reels are highly prized in collections but not to be confused with standard models with aftermarket tournament style spools.

 

Mitchell only made three different Mitchell Tournament Reels you can find out more about in our Mitchell 300 Tournament Reels Gallery.


Trigger Drag on Mitchell Reels (Trigger Drag)

A Trigger Drag on Mitchell Reels is a trigger located under the reel on the Mitchell RD Rear Drag spinning reel series. By gently applying pressure with a finger, this would tighten the drag friction when landing a fish.


Ultra Light Mitchell Fishing Reels (Ultra Light)

Like the term Intermediate; starting in the late fifties this was used as a sales marketing aid to describe the small Mitchell 308, 358 and later on the 408 series reels.  Although the Round Bodies were the true first Ultra Light reels by Mitchell, this term never applied to them. In the nineties Mitchell made the 310 with a UL Suffix which stood for Ultra Light.


Wedge Stickers on Mitchell Reels (Wedge Stickers)

Garcia Wedge StickerWedge Stickers on Mitchell Reels were used by Garcia and Mitchell and wedge shaped by design. The first use was the Garcia Wedge Sticker first used in the fifties. These were first used as advertisement and on Garcia Mitchell reels boxes and eventually used directly on reels. This became Garcia’s Logo that was red with the word Garcia in white.  The next use of this wedge design was by Mitchell with the word Special in white on red background.

 

These Special Wedge Stickers were first placed on rods special made for the Forked Foot series reels by Mitchell and sold in very limited quantity for the European market only. These Special Wedges were then used on the 400 series Mitchell reels sold in Europe only. For some reason, toward the end of Garcia’s involvement, the Garcia Wedge changed to silver with the word Garcia in black. After Garcia’s involvement, the Special wedge sticker was used in place of the Garcia wedge.

 

During Browning short involvement, for a very short period of time in the early eighties; Browning used this red and white wedge on boxes only but with Reels in place of Garcia.

 


White Mitchell 300 Fishing Reel (White Reel)

A one of a kind white Mitchell 300 fishing reel called The Lady Mitchell 300 by collectors. For more information see our Collector’s Gallery.


X Kits Garcia Mitchell Reels (X Kits)

Starting in 1959/1960 Garcia Mitchell made up Mitchell 300 reels in X Kits with special packaging called the Mitchell 300X on the box only. The Letter X stood for X-tra parts. Garcia Mitchell later expanded these to other models. For more information see our Gallery.


X Suffix on Mitchell Reels (X Suffix)

Not to be confused with Garcia Mitchell X Kits, starting in the late nineties JWA made an attempt to bring back the good old Mitchell by using old model numbers followed by the letter X. Due to quality issues, it didn’t work.

 


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