This early 3rd Era Goodwin Rod is a fully labeled TF9043 Tournament “Distance” rod that was crafted between 1927 and 1929. Not many 9043’s are known to exist—let alone a labeled Tournament model—making this a very rare, original example.
The original grip is a short 5 1/4” cigar shape and has a small chunk out of the top. The spacing of the intermediate wraps is adjusted to accommodate the shorter grip (when compared to a standard 9050). The rod is in Very Good +, All Original condition. Varnish is definitely on the redder side—almost like the 1st era rods. Some bag marks are present. The original sliding band nickel silver reel seat cleanly states: “THE GOODWIN ROD” roll stamped between two incised lines at the top and “Made By / Goodwin Granger & Co. / Denver” below that. Perfection (PAT 8-3-15) tip tops. Oversized tungsten steel line guides. Large red agate stripper guide. Original Nickel silver ferrules.
Original olive bag (in outstanding condition) and original aluminum tube with correct cap that retains 85% of the original cap label. Label is clearly marked TF9043.
This is a fully labeled Granger 9043 Tournament Distance rod with a short cigar grip, oversized line guides, large agate guide and 18/12 ferrules.
The 1927 Catalog (pictured below) shows the 9043 Goodwin Granger The Goodwin Rod Tournament as one of six Tournament models offered that year. Also available were models 8643, 9052, 9652 for Dry Fly Accuracy, 9653 for Distance and the 965A Wet Fly Accuracy.
From the Granger 1927 catalog regarding Tournament Fly Rods: “In distance fly rods, four ounce class, we make two lengths, 8 ½ and 9 feet. The 8 ½ model, because of its shorter length, is stiffer and more powerful than the 9 foot type. In the five ounce class, we also make two lengths, 9 and 9 ½ feet, the nine foot model being stiffer and more powerful than the 9 ½. On our accuracy fly model, we can supply an extra middle section that will make it into a distance rod. Regular tournament models have grip five inches in length, but on special order, we will supply longer grips as on fishing models. Weight of rod, of course, would be slightly more than tournament requirements.”
ABOUT THE GOODWIN ROD
The Goodwin Granger – The Goodwin Rod was introduced in the 1923/1924 Catalog as the second-highest grade available. It was one of Granger’s most popular grades given it’s classic appearance and affordable price point. Constructed with A-Grade cane matched up from different culms, The Goodwin Rod was introduced at a moderate $30 (later reduced to $25) and was available in 7 1/2′ to 10′ lengths (3 oz. to 6.5 oz.)
The Goodwin Rod has a distinctive wrap pattern that consists of black & white jasper windings tipped with full intermediate gold wraps.* This unique trait gives these rods a timeless, classic appearance… and many Granger collectors appreciate the unique aesthetic of this grade.
Goodwin Rods of the 2nd era were labeled beginning with “R1” for Regular Fly Rods or “T1” for Tournament Rods followed by the model number (e.g., R17630 or T19043). Rods of the 3rd era were labeled beginning with “RF” for Regular Fly Rods or “TF” for Tournament Rods followed by the model number (e.g., RF7630 or TF9043).
Production of The Goodwin Rod grade lasted until 1930 when it was renamed the “Favorite”.
*Predecessors with full intermediate wraps included the 1st Era Deluxe grade.
GOODWIN GRANGER ADVERTISING IN THE 3RD ERA (1927 – 1929)
In a short 3-year period, Goodwin Granger created a prolific amount of advertisements for rods of the 3rd Era. The company re-incorporated from “Goodwin Granger & Co” to “Goodwin Granger Company” and may account for the increased ad volume. Several of the ads list the full product lineup that included the “Granger Rod”, “Goodwin Rod”, “Denver Special” and “Colorado Special”.
Ads from 1927 typically focused on what an “extraordinary value” these rods are to the fisherman. Especially with the announcement of “reduced prices” from the previous era. Fly rods were now priced between $12.50 – $40. Granger was also extremely proud of their 1927 full color catalog as referenced in their call-to-action: “Our new 1927 catalog—the classiest little fishing rod catalog you ever saw—depicting our rods in actual colors of windings and finishes, and showing how and where these rods are made—is yours for the asking.”
Many of the ads from 1928 & 1929 depict various stages of the build process with photos from the Granger factory floor. These photos appeared together in a Scientific American article (May 1929) highlighting the various stages of Granger rod production.
All ads list “GOODWIN GRANGER COMPANY” as the business entity and the addresses show a change in location from the “Corner of Broadway & Virginia, Denver, Colorado” to the “Grant St, Denver, Colorado” location.
You might notice that a different street number was assigned to each publication on all Granger ads. This was done to accurately track the responses for the same ad across different publications.