Heddon Rod Company
Heddon was a long established tackle company with a history of producing good split cane rods. Heddon started making glass around 1950. Production continued into the 80s. Over the years, Heddon produced a range of glass rods—some good, some bad, and some gaudy.
The First Heddon Fiberglass
The earliest Heddon glass rods were painted to resemble split cane. The reelseat hardware is the same as the Heddon split cane of the time. Guides were wrapped in a reddish brown silk with black tipping. The ferrule is nickel silver. I have little to no model number information for this line of rods.
1954 Fiberglass Models
The next line of fly rods were the first given the name "Pal". These rods were clear coated brown phenolic glass with a very slow, deep flexing, almost cane-like, action. As near as I can tell, all rods of a given length and action (Standard or Bass) were made on the same blank with the same ferrules. The Standard action 7½ foot rods were marked for HEH lines, the 8 footers for HDH, and the 8½ foot rods were marked for HCH. The 7' Black Beauty #75 - Trout was marked E - HEH. The Bass action rods were a little stiffer for one line weight heavier. The Standard action rods usually have a long cigar style rod grip and the Bass action rods usually have a half Wells rod grip.
The Superlative Pal rods were the highest grade, with gold plated hardware. The Black Beauty Pal rods were wrapped in the same colors of the Black Beauty cane rods, black with orange tipping. The reelseat was a chrome plated downlock with a black spacer or an all black reelseat like those seen on Black Beauty cane rods. The Deluxe Pal rods had a reddish brown plastic reelseat similar the Pyralin reelseats of the cane rods. The Deluxe rods were wrapped with dark red silk with ?? tipping. The Standard grade rods had a mottled plastic reelseat and wraps of alternating brown and tan colored silk. The Thorobred rods had a black Pyralin reelseat with a red butt cap and wraps of red silk tipped in black.
1954 Heddon Fiberglass Fly Rods
|770||Superlative Pal||2||7'6" to 9'|
|880||Superlative Pal||3||8' to 9'|
|75||Black Beauty Pal||2||7' to 9'|
|85||Black Beauty Pal||3||8' to 9'|
|86||Black Beauty Pal||3||9' Salmon|
|70||Deluxe Pal||2||7'6" to 9'|
|80||Deluxe Pal||3||8' to 9'|
|30||Standard Pal||2||7'6" to 9'|
|40||Standard Pal||3||8' to 9'|
|55||Thorobred||2||7'6" (E HEH)|
1960s Fiberglass Models
By the mid 60s, Heddon made a wide range of fly rods. They sold the Pal, Pal Mark I, II, III, and IV rods, as well as the Pro Weight, Mark I Custom, and Lifetime Pal Stainless Steel models. Like the earlier rods, the various models may have been made on the same blanks with the variations in price simply due to the cosmetics and hardware.
The Pal rods were the economy models, with with olive painted blanks, black wraps over a white backing, nickel silver ferrules, and an anodized black reelseat with silver hoods.
- The Mark I Pal rods had brown blanks, black wraps over a white backing, nickel silver ferrules, and an anodized silver reelseat with black hoods.
- The Mark I Custom rods had yellow blanks, maroon wraps over a mylar backing, nickel silver ferrules, and a maroon anodized reelseat with silver hoods.
- The Mark II rods had an olive blank, all black hardware (reelseat and guides, and ferrules), and black wraps over a dark red backing.
- The Pro Weight rods were advertised as 1/3 lighter than other rods. They had an yellow or translucent brown blank, maroon anodized reelseat, maroon Sizematic O-ring ferrules with reddish silk wraps and black tipping.
- The Lifetime Pal rods had an bronze blank, silver anodized reelseat with black hoods, burnt cork grips, black nickel silver ferrules, and stainless steel wraps over a black backing.
- The Mark III rods had an olive blank, gold anodized reelseat and Sizematic O-ring ferrules with reddish silk wraps and black tipping.
- The Mark IV rods had an yellowish blank, silver anodized reelseat, walnut-trimmed cork grip, silver Sizematic O-ring ferrules, and dark maroon silk wraps over a white thread background.
Prices are from the 1966 catalog.
|Mark I||8303||7'6"||6||2||Controlled Flex Action||$17.95|
|Mark I||8305||8'||6/7||2||Controlled Flex Action||$17.95|
|Mark I||8306||8'3"||7/8||2||Power Plus Action||$17.95|
|Mark I||8307||8'6"||7/8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$17.95|
|Mark I||8309||9'||8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$17.95|
|Mark I Custom||8325||8'||6/7||2||Controlled Flex Action||$19.95|
|Mark I Custom||8327||8'6"||7/8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$19.95|
|Mark I Custom||8329||9'||8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$19.95|
|Mark II||8353||7'6"||6||2||Controlled Flex Action||$22.95|
|Mark II||8355||8'||6/7||2||Controlled Flex Action||$22.95|
|Mark II||8356||8'3"||7/8||2||Power Plus Action||$22.95|
|Mark II||8357||8'6"||7/8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$22.95|
|Mark II||8359||9'||8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$22.95|
|Pro Weight||8381||7'||5||2||Controlled Flex Action||$27.95|
|Pro Weight||8383||7'6"||6||2||Controlled Flex Action||$27.95|
|Pro Weight||8385||8'||6/7||2||Controlled Flex Action||$27.95|
|Pro Weight||8387||8'6"||7/8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$27.95|
|Pro Weight||8389||9'||8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$27.95|
|Lifetime Pal||8245||8'||6/7||2||Controlled Flex Action||$32.95|
|Lifetime Pal||8246||8'3"||7/8||2||Power Plus Action||$32.95|
|Lifetime Pal||8247||8'6"||7/8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$32.95|
|Mark III||8403||7'6"||6||2||Controlled Flex Action||$32.95|
|Mark III||8405||8'||6/7||2||Controlled Flex Action||$32.95|
|Mark III||8406||8'3"||7/8||2||Power Plus Action||$32.95|
|Mark III||8407||8'6"||7/8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$32.95|
|Mark III||8409||9'||8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$32.95|
|Mark IV||8453||7'6"||6||2||Controlled Flex Action||$40.00|
|Mark IV||8455||8'||6/7||2||Controlled Flex Action||$40.00|
|Mark IV||8456||8'3"||7/8||2||Power Plus Action||$40.00|
|Mark IV||8457||8'6"||7/8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$40.00|
|Mark IV||8459||9'||8||2||Controlled Flex Action||$40.00|
There are a few other model numbers reported/found on eBay, but without other information
A series of glass sleeve ferruled rods with the sleeve on the rod butt section. Painted yellow blanks and cosmetics like a ProWeight. "Dry Fly Action", these rods run a line weight or so heavier than expected for the length.
8651 7' for a 6 weight line
8652 7'6" for a 7 weight line
GOLDEN MARK 50 (MARK GOLDEN 50?), glass sleeve ferruled rods with the sleeve on the rod butt section. Translucent blanks.
1978 8'6" for 7 weight ?
8948 8' 4 piece rod for 7 weight line
3985 8'6" for ? weight line. Green/silver painted blank with metal ferrules and discount fittings.
- 1966 Heddon Catalog (Gregg B.)
- Personal rod collections (Gregg B. and Tom)