...so why not avail yourself of a more modern rod to get a kid started?
This rod is in hand and ready to use (well nearly, see below). While an 8'6" rod isn't an ideal starter, it isn't bad. For catching fish it will work just fine. Meanwhile, keep visiting tag sales and flea markets for other inexpensive rods and cheap finds.
Most importantly for a young fisherman, this rod is an expendable learning experience. If the rod gets broken by a car trunk, screen door, or tree branches (it happens), that's not much money lost. Take the reel and line off and put them on another tag sale acquisition. More care will be taken once the consequences are understood.
, the last posted photo shows a metal guide only held by one foot. A couple wraps of electrical tape over the unheld foot will hold it for the rest of the season. If your son is still excited about fishing, he can make inexpensive repairs over the winter. The Rod Building forum is full of advice on repairs to classic rods.