The Premium represents the top of the Phillipson bamboo rod line. The catalogs describe it as: “Perfect action, perfect balance, extreme sensitivity and tremendous power for every ounce of weight.”
This 7′ 3oz “51” Premium was likely built on the early side of 1951 due to the brown plastic grip. The “51” rods were marked as a reminder to Mrs. Granger and Agnes Marshall who reportedly told him, “You won’t last five years on your own.” In Phillipson’s 5th year in business—1951—Bill had some rods of each model marked “51” as a subtle way of saying, “It’s been five years, and I’m still here.” According to the employees this was an inside joke and that is why the “51” marked rods were never cataloged.”
Phillipson patented hammer handle cork grip. Brown plastic locking reel seat with anodized metal threads. Hard drawn 18% nickel silver ferrules. Original varnish has been polished out. Wrapped with pure black silk thread tipped with gold and black. Includes original bag (small holes in bottom) and square Phillipson tube (90% label) with square cap.
Both original tips have been scarfed at some point in the past. One was executed by Rick’s Rods (current owners of the Phillipson brand) using original Phillipson cane to the 3rd guide. The black and gold wraps were crafted to resemble the original wraps on the same tip. During that process, the second original tip was discovered to have been scarfed in the past to the 1st guide. The scarfed cane may not be Phillipson as it does not have the formaldehyde-resorcinal glue lines.
The 1951 Catalog (pictured below) shows the Phillipson Premium 7′ – 3oz as one of eight models offered that year. Also available in 7.5′, 8′, 8.5′, 8.5′ DFS, 9′, 9′-6oz and 9.5′ lengths.
PHILLIPSON ADVERTISING IN THE EARLY 1950’S
Phillipson Rod and Tackle Co. ads in the early 1950’s followed a similar format the previous era, however there was one major change… The reel seats on the illustrated rods show the change from plastic to the “new all-metal ‘no-rock’ locking type reel seat”. This is also evidenced in the 1950 Catalog where 3 grades (Premium, Paramount and Powr Pakt) are listed with new aluminum reel seats.
This phase also represents a significant transition in rod design for Phillipson. With the weight savings derived from the reel seat swap, Bill Phillipson was able to add more power to the rods for the same overall weight. The earlier rods with plastic reel seats possess thinner tapers, whereas rods with the aluminum reel seats have enhanced swells in the butt section for added power.
Early 1950’s ads list the Phillipson address as High Street, Denver, Colorado.