No matter how technological the fishing industry becomes, it's nice to know it still holds a place for the timeless values of integrity and Old World craftsmanship. In the world of fly fishing, that place is occupied by legends like Billy Pate, Lefty Kreh and a Hungarian tool and die master with a passion for fly fishing and a gift for reel design: Tibor "Ted" Juracsik.
Ted's family business, Tibor (pronounced TEE-bor) Reel Corporation is the world leader in the design and manufacture of the highest quality fly fishing reels. Juracsik revolutionized the saltwater fly fishing reel industry with the introduction of his first anti-reverse Billy Pate Fly Reel in 1976, The internationally acclaimed line of Tibor Reels was introduced in 1995, the exciting Tibor QC series in 2005 and in 2008 the Tibor Spey – destined to become another classic. 2011 marks the 35th anniversary of Tibor Reels and to celebrate Ted is introducing a revolutionary new line of reels – The Tibor Signature Series.
Tibor Juracsik was born in Budapest, Hungary where much of his youth was spent fishing on the Danube River. At 17 he became the youngest Hungarian ever to earn his Masterpapers in the tool and die trade. In the 1950's, having joined the Hungarian Freedom Fighters in their unsuccessful revolt against Soviet rule, Tibor was forced to flee his native land. Eventually, he immigrated to the United States and established his own tool and die business in New York State in 1959, where in the waters off Long Island, he also resumed his interest in fishing.
In 1970, Ted met Billy Pate on a trip to the Florida Keys. The two became fishing buddies and Pate shared with Ted the problems inherent in the saltwater reels of the time — corrosion, the uneven action of early drag systems, and simply being overmatched by the power and "reel smoking" runs of larger saltwater prey.
Back at his shop, Juracsik applied his tool and die making skills to these challenges. After testing several prototypes, the Billy Pate Fly Reel was introduced and instantly established new standards of quality, design, and durability for saltwater fly reels. The design has proven so sound, that nothing has changed since its inception. Suddenly, the nearly impossible task of landing world-class saltwater fish was not only possible, but pleasurable. Still revered by many as the toughest and most dependable on the market, Billy Pate Reels are manufactured exclusively by the Tibor Reel Corporation to this day.
In 1979, Juracsik moved his manufacturing operations to South Florida, where he also maintains a smaller machine shop devoted to research and development.
Tibor reels are made "by fishermen for fishermen," and the Juracsik family is proud their products are 100% "Made in the USA." With the exception of the ball bearings, every part of every reel is precision machined and hand assembled in their Delray Beach facility. Ted's belief in design based on simplicity and functionality goes back to his days as a young apprentice. "The old masters always told me the most beautiful machines have the least moving parts," he says.
At the recent International Game Fish Association (IGFA) Inaugural World Record Achievement Awards, Tibor Reel Corporation received First Place honors for the most world records set on their fly reels in 2011 - more than any other fly fishing reel in history. IGFA Hall of Fame fisherman, Lefty Kreh describes Tibor Reels as "the finest saltwater reels I have ever used." They are the prized possession of every fisherman who owns one. Each is capable of delivering a lifetime of virtually maintenance-free fishing enjoyment for which Tibor Reels are famous.