Mitchel reels

hookup

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Joined
May 22, 2012
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VA
I've always loved the old Mitchell reels. Recently, a buddy dropped one by that had see time in salt and needed allot of luv. I didn't know if I was up for the task and let him know.

But these old reels are bullet proof so I gave it a shot.

In addition, I had my Dad's old 300 that's been needed some love. Also, another buddy dropped one off.

After doing allot of research, I went after the corroded reel. Spent allot of time cleaning it up and it now reels sweet as a kitten. Since it has some corrosion on the spool and bail, it will never cast as far as it did new, but still when you set the anti-reverse, the clicker works and it reels smooth.

Took Dad's reel apart and this one took no time at all because it was rarely used, and when used, only in high mountain trout streams or fresh water lakes.

Before I started on the last one, I decided to take pix.

Here's a pix of the two finished reels. The one on the left is the corroded one over and the one on the right's Dad's. I was unable to determine their age, but the salty one's allot older. The anti-reverse cam is metal while the newer reel had a plastic anti-reverse cam.

NX3n4uO.jpg

I started working on the last reel and noted something different. First, it was a 301 and not a 300. I realized quickly the 301 is Mitchell's south paw version. Instead of modern reels where you just move the handle to the other side, back in these times (circa late 60s early 70s) reels were made for right handed reelers and left handed reelers and were not interchangeable.

This reel's reel was pretty dirty, but no corrosion, so after all the dirt was cleaned up, the cleaning of the guts were pretty easy.

One thing about these old reels is there's not many parts and I was pretty much able to strip them down with the help of the Mitchell Museum YouTube videos. Here's a pix of left hand reel disassembled and all the parts clean.

b9TBJ0a.jpg

The next pix is the parts all greased up and in inside assembled

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And the last pix is the finished left-hander reel

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Pretty fun little project to do on a windy day.
 

Hawnjigs

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Ogallala, NE
Do you actually use any Mitchells? I remember many a time getting the line wrapped around the mainshaft under the spool.

Indeed they had way fewer parts than modern reels so even a kid could take em apart for maintenance or repair.

I wore out a bunch of em - broken main gear teeth, worn oscillating slider, nubbed oscillating gear teeth, and of course continual bail spring breaks.

And they wuz heavy speshly on a solid glass rod.
 

hookup

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May 22, 2012
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Location
VA
Since it's been cold, I've been to a bunch of weekend fishing shows. Picked up some new reels and discovered that the reel on the left is one year younger than I am. Couple dings, but still ready to fish - just like me LOL. The reel on the right is from the early 60's as far as I can tell.

P1sOxnT.jpg

Td8Owtc.jpg
 

Hawnjigs

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Never had an 04, but my best bud had one and caught the heck out of fish in our area. Of course 60 yrs ago there were LOTS more fish around. Eventually tho I did alright with a 350, 408, 410, & 406 preferring the high speed 5-1 vs original 3-1.

I think the 4-- series was when Mitchell partnered with Garcia. How many you got now? Got any Luxor, Ru Pacific, or Centaur Pacific from the days when Frenchies ruled?

Didyah fish one of them museum pieces yet ?
 

hookup

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May 22, 2012
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VA
The 304 came out before Garcia - see the names on the pix. The one on the left is from the mid-50's and the one on the right is from the early 60's. Plan on fishing them for white perch in a couple months. Looking for a bamboo spinning rod to restore - but everyone wants an arm and a leg for one.

I'm sticking with Mitchells or else this hobby will turn into an expensive obsession. I have two 304s, five 300's and one 301. Donated a few to Hero's on the Water. At $10 a piece, one keeps me busy a weekend and doesn't break the wallet.

Most of the reels I find are junk and I bring them back to life. Had one that was corroded pretty bad and it's fishable. It's a wall hanger now
 
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