Over the weekend I was able to add this beautiful classic to the arsenal. I thought about getting one of these for a long time, and finally decided to got for it. In recent years I more and more stepped back from using modern reels of popular manufacturers and started to go for the compelling Japanese replicas of vintage Ambassadeur and Pflüger reels.

ABU Ambassadeur 5001C
Made in Sweden: Abu Garcia Ambassadeur 5001C (1974)

As much as I love the reels that are currently produced and manufactured by Isuzu and branded by several topwater makers over there in Japan, I adore the feel and aesthetic of the vintage originals and I know to appreciate their simplicity and solid finishing. A good reason to broaden the range of reels in my tackle box and a sound basis for more challenging tasks and projects.

ABU Ambassadeur 5001C
Vintage ABU Ambassadeur 5001C (1974)

Within the last weeks I already made a lot of research about ways to improve the performance of classic Ambassadeurs without affecting and spoiling the vintage look and feel of these reels.

There are a lot of good resources available, covering topics from professional performance enhancements and paid tuning services up to more self-build / handicraft instructions. Luckily there are still a lot of spare and tuning parts available for purchase and because of consistent and traditional reel constructions between the early 70’s to late 90’s, one is able to add and exchange parts between classic and ‘more recent’ models.

Below I’m adding some useful websites and instructions I came a cross in recent days.

Further links and resources

Edit: Just ordered a Abu Garcia Upgrade Kit at Reeldrags.com. Here’s a list of included parts and upgrades:

• Worm Gear With Ball Bearing
• Line Pawl
• Ball Bearing
• Worm Gear Cover
• Line Carriage Nut
• Worm Gear Lock
• Cog Wheel With Bearing
• Line Guide, Titanium Coated
• Abec 5 Ceramic Bearings
• Carbontex Drag Washers (Set Of 7)

I’m not 100% sure about the carbontex washers and ceramic bearings – stainless ones might do a better job here. Besides that, the remaining parts should help making the 5001C classic reel a tiny performance wonders in a vintage jacket..

And that’s how a perfectly tuned 5001C reel can perform:

4 thoughts on “70’s Ambassadeur 5001C

  1. Dan wrote on :

    Nice work!
    What did you do with the orig. handle. Would you want to sell it.

  2. Garland C Redmon wrote on :

    Thanks for all the info. Just wanted to tell you that I have the brother (or sister) to your 5001c purchased in 1974. Still works great but I wish the retrieval was faster. I’m looking to do an upgrade so thanks again for the information.

    Garland Redmon

  3. Christian wrote on :

    Hello Garland,
    you are welcome! Glad this post was helpful for you.
    Take care!

  4. Ben wrote on :

    G’day, doing up my Grandfather’s 5001C. Definitely needs a lot of work. Couldn’t find that reeldrags site has it moved? Cheers

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