Striptease and Call Girl

Striptease and Call Girl

Viking Lars | Saturday, 14 December 2019

Let me, at least for a while, continue down the path of historic flies. I’m not the only only who likes them and angling history - thankfully. If one wishes to research early, modern flyfishing history, access to the different journals of the late 19th/early 20th century is imperative, and very little of those can be found online. Later fly-history is just as interesting and today I’ll present a book that researches a piece of late, modern fly fishing history.

My friend, Michael Jensen, has written a book on the streamer-series called ABU Optic. ABU is an old, Swedish company which was founded in 1921 on the banks of the later so famous salmon river, River Mörrum, in Svängsta. ABU is short for AB Urfabrikken, which translates to “The Watch Factory, Inc.”. From the beginning they produced watches, taximeters and timers. The demand for those declined drastically during WWII, and the founders son was a fishing enthusiast and was quick to turn his (and the company’s attention) to fishing reels. I believe the first spinning reels were launched in 1944 (I might be wrong).

ABU was succesful in marketing their fishing tackle, and genuine, Swedish built reels like the Cardinal-series claim high prices in collector communities today. Soon they also began marketing fly fishing tackle.

My friend, Michael Jensen, is a great connoisseur of vintage tackle, and especially that from ABU and he enjoys fishing it still. And in 1967 ABU introduced the Optic streamers and sold 80.000 flies the first season! And those flies hit young Michael hard, and I think he’s had what can best be described as a love affair with them ever since.

He’s now written a great little book about the flies, uncovering their history, their tying and since he’s fished with them since they came out, he’s got plenty of fishing tips as well. The book of course contains photos of all 25 flies, and covers in detail the tying of 8 of them. The book is published in hard cover and features lots of beautiful photographs, all shot by the author.

Michael states himself that the purpose of the book is to preserve a piece of Scandinavian flyfishing history, and Michael has accomplished that very well. A very important factor in doing this is that Michael has been in personal contact with Lennart Borgström, who was CEO at ABU when the flies were released. Lennart’s grandfather was the founder of ABU and Lennart has written a nice foreword.

So if you’re interested in fly-history, maybe Scandinavian fly-history in particular, the ABU Optic-flies are essential to know, and now there’s no better source than Michael’s book.

Have a great weekend