History

1932

The Zero Hour Bomb Company, maker of electric time bombs for oil drilling, is
incorporated in Tulsa, Oklahoma

1932 History Image

1947

A West Texas watchmaker named R.D. Hull gets the idea for a new fishing reel after watching a meat counter clerk pull string from a fixed spool


1947

After a friend quips that the Standard resembles a beer can, Hull demonstrates his American ingenuity (and sense of humor) by making a joke version with an actual can.

1947 History Image

1947

Hull takes his idea to Zero Hour Bomb Company and the world’s first spincast reel is born, guaranteed to never backlash

1947 History Image

1949

The first “Standard” spincast reels roll off the line on Friday the 13th in May 1949

1949 History Image

1950

George Goetz, Zebco’s first sales rep, demonstrates the reel’s ease of use with casting tricks – even wearing boxing gloves

1950 History Image

1950

Zebco’s Texas rep, Bill Carter, sets world record for most casts without a backlash (3,453 casts in 14 hours and 14 minutes)

1950 History Image

1950

The Zebco booth attracts crowds at sport shows across the country

1950 History Image

1950

Yep, even Castro got caught up in the Zebco craze

1950 History Image

1954

The original Zebco 33 is introduced, selling for $19.50

1954 History Image

1956

A friend of President Eisenhower asks the company to send a reel to the White House. When security sees the package labeled “Zero Hour Bomb Co” they plunge it into a tub of water and call the bomb squad!


1956

Zero Hour Bomb Company officially changes name to Zebco

1956 History Image

1959

Zebco introduces the first ever youth combo (Zebco Junior)

1959 History Image

1960

Zebco introduces the first “balanced” tackle combos, matching reel to rod (77,88,99,101)

1960 History Image

1960

A young Mickey Mantle and television’s “Tonto” check out the latest Zebco reels at a New York sports show

1960 History Image

1961

Zebco introduces the 202 “ZeeBee” spincast, an instant classic


1961

The company is acquired by Brunswick Corporation

1961 History Image

1966

Zebco builds and moves into current Tulsa headquarters


1975

R.D. Hull is inducted into the Sporting Goods Hall of Fame – at the time 70 million Zebco have been sold

1975 History Image

1976

Zebco becomes the first fishing tackle manufacturer to advertise on US network TV


1977

R.D Hull passes away at the age of 77


1989

Rhino rods set a new standard for tough fishing tackle


1991

Zebco acquires Martin Fly Fishing

1991 History Image

1999

Zebco celebrates 50 years of making fishing tackle


2003

Omega, our most full-featured, high-performance spincast design makes its debut.

2007 History Image

2004

The new Zebco 33 Platinum comes out with an all-metal body and all-metal gears.

2006 History Image

2005

The Zebco 33 makes an appearance in “Walk The Line” when Johnny and June go fishing together


2008

Hawg Seeker & Bite Alert™ hits the shelf with audible and visual fish strike alarms.

2008 History Image

2009

The Zebco 202, 404 & 606 get a total redesign to make these popular favorites even better.

2009 History Image

2011

Zebco takes serious spincasting up another notch with the new Omega Pro.

2011 History Image

2014

Zebco introduces an all-new Zebco 33 for the 60th anniversary

2014 History Image