Different iterations of the Saginaw Gears spent parts of thirty years entertaining eastern Michigan, but probably the most memorable were the Gears that played in the IHL from 1972-83. Those Gears made the IHL playoffs in nine of their 11 seasons, including five Finals appearances and two Turner Cup wins in 1977 and 1981. For many years, they were coached by Don Perry, who would later go on to coach the Kings. The Gears would fold after the 1982-83 season. Two team would take their place for a couple years -- first the Generals, then the Hawks -- but neither would hold their footing for very long.
The Gears moniker would be brought back a few different times after the original Gears went out of business in 1983. From 1991-96 a NAHL junior team took the name for five seasons. The Gears would be brought back by Saginaw's UHL team from 1998-2000. That franchise started as the Wheels, then the Lumber Kings before giving the Gears a spin. After a poor year and a half in Saginaw, the Gears moved in the middle of the night (and the 99-00 season) to Massillon, Ohio. There, the team was even worse on the ice and in the stands and played in a small community rink. They would go out of business after the 1999-00 season.