This is an Excellent +, all original W&M “Favorite” 8040 that has been extremely well taken care of. This particular rod actually belonged to a former employee who worked in the W&M Granger shop beginning in 1948. It was clearly not used much—if at all. This 8040 Favorite has 2 full length tips (with no sets). The wraps are all original and in perfect condition. German nickel silver ferrules are all tight and separate with a loud pop. Reverse half-wells cork grip is smooth with no ridging—you can even see the line where the plastic was removed. The perfection chromium plated pear shape tip-top guides still have a lot of the original varnish in the eyes. The patented W&M Granger up-locking nickel silver reel seat stamped with “MADE By WRIGHT & MCGILL ROD CO., DENVER, COLO. U.S.A.” Another unique trait of this rod is that it does not have the Patent number stamped on the reel seat. The varnish is original and is in excellent condition with just a few small blemishes. Wrapped in black & white jasper tipped in gold along with a full compliment of gold intermediate wraps. Comes with original tan bag (perfect condition) and Burgundy aluminum tube with chained cap (95%+ label).
The 1950 Catalog (pictured below) shows the Wright & McGill Granger Favorite 8040 as one of eight models offered that year. Also available were models 7633, 8642, 9050, 9053 and 9660.
ABOUT THE GRANGER FAVORITE
“The Granger Favorite is a beautifully balanced rod, with quick action, sensitiveness, and power. This rod is one of our most popular models, and although moderately priced, is definitely in the ‘high grade’ class, and measures up to the exacting standards of performance. It will meet the approval of any fisherman who knows and appreciates a really good fly rod.”
The Favorite (formerly The Goodwin Rod) was one of Granger’s most popular grades given its classic appearance and moderate price point—at $25, it was half the cost of the top-of-the-line ($50) Premier.
Goodwin Granger Favorite rods of the 4th Era were available in 7 1/2′ to 10′ lengths (3 oz. to 6.5oz.) and priced at $25. Tournament models were available in 9 and 9.5′ lengths. Each was outfitted with a sliding band reel seat with “GRANGER FAVORITE” inscribed between two knurled bands. Grips were Coke Bottle shaped. Windings consisted of black & white jasper tipped in gold with full intermediate wraps.*
Changes to the Favorite grade in the 5th Era included the new uplocking reel seat and a Western (Reverse Half-wells) style grip.
Production of the Goodwin Granger Favorite grade lasted until the company closed its doors during WWII in 1941.
Wright & McGill Rod Co. purchased Granger Rods in 1946 and resumed production of the Favorite grade beginning with the 1947 Catalog. It was offered in 7.5′ to 9.5′ lengths (3.75 oz. to 6.0oz.) and priced at $50. Interestingly, the 1947 W&M Catalog also shows two 9′ Tournament models offered in the Favorite grade. The Favorite grade was offered for sale until the last W&M bamboo rods were listed in the 1953 Catalog.
The Favorite is listed as a “High Grade” rod constructed with A-Grade cane matched from different culms.
The Favorite is the only grade in the Wright & McGill lineup to offer full intermediate wraps.* This unique trait gives these rods a timeless, classic appearance… and many Granger collectors consider this grade their “Favorite”.
*Prior to the introduction of the Favorite grade, predecessors with full intermediate wraps included the 1st Era Deluxe grade and 2nd & 3rd Era Goodwin Rod.
WRIGHT & MCGILL ADVERTISING IN THE EARLY 1950’S
In the early 50’s, Wright & McGill changed the style of their advertising to reflect the more diversified product portfolio. They also began to tell a story of the Granger heritage with the slogan, “for 40 years the World’s Best!”
The first ad in 1950 follows the same format as the 1950 W&M Catalog where each grade was listed along with the available lengths and prices (although the Stream & Lake grade was left out.)
Later in 1950, Wright & McGill created a large number of skyscraper ads in the same format so they could occupy a consistent space in a wide variety of sporting publications.
Advertising for 1951 followed a similar skyscraper format with the addition of the 1951 Catalog pictured along the bottom.
Interestingly, there was a single ad from 1951 that saw the return of actor Dennis Morgan as a spokesperson for W&M Fishing Tackle. Mr. Morgan graced the cover of earlier Granger Rods catalogs from 1947, 1948 and 1949.
All 1950 & 1951 ads show the W&M address as Capitol Hill Station, Denver Colo.