Have you ever seen a fishing pole like this

Discussion in 'Fishing' started by n2deer, Dec 26, 2010.

  1. n2deer

    n2deer Well-Known Member

    Guys I am trying to find out about a pole I came across recently. It says Great lakes products and also Imperial on it. Any help with info would be great.

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  2. catfish1

    catfish1 Well-Known Member

    Yea I've seen a few in my day... It's a Great Lakes Imperial edition very rare and worth a fortune... Na just kiddin man... lol! never in my life have i seen one of these... I bet is rare though.

  3. Tink

    Tink Platinum Member<br>2011-2012 Bowhunting Contest Te

    Great Lakes Products was an industry leader with the introduction of the Whirlaway 500 spinning reel in 1953. They were located in Lexington, MI.
    The first model 500 models produced from 1953 to 1955 were wrought with problems and almost caused the company to go out of business. In 1955 or 1956 they introduced the Whirlaway 75 or Imperial model that worked much better. That was made until about 1970. In the late 50's Great Lakes products dominated the industry with low cost rods and reels (not the Whirlaway which was more costly) that were sold to the mass merchants of the time. Customers such as Wards, Western Auto and Sears were big Great lakes customers. Their sales peaked in probably 1958 or 1959 then gradually declined through the 1960s. My father was the Great Lakes national sales manager from 1954 until 1961. I have caught many fish on a Whirlaway. The Whirlaway because of it's unusual shape was called the "douche bag reel" by it's detractors.
    I am not sure of the dates of production, but believe it to be throughout the middle 1950's. Note that the ad says that "Its New!", and that was 1953.
    This combination rod and reel was produced by Great Lakes Products, 8655 Military Ave., Detroit 4, Michigan.
    Apparently the strange bulb appearance, and the fact that the reel is housed on the end of the handle make these items attractive to yard sale addicts, collectors, and/or speculators. These combo's are still fairly common and there seems to be at least one each month up on eBay for sale. They usually sell in the $40-75 range, depending upon condition. Lawson's Price Guide to Old Fishing Reels lists them from $35 (Good) to $95 (Ex in box).
  4. n2deer

    n2deer Well-Known Member

    Thanks alot that answers alot of my questions and now I know a ball park price on it. Not a bad find for me I just need to decide if I want to sell it or keep it around, it would make a good conversation piece.
  5. Tink

    Tink Platinum Member<br>2011-2012 Bowhunting Contest Te

    I like old stuff like that they are very cool to have around. You also can kearn a lot from stuff like this.
  6. woodsnwater

    woodsnwater Well-Known Member

    I like old fishing stuff. That was a cool pic. Never saw that before.. I got 2 antique trolling motors. 1 transom mount and 1 bow mount. The bow mount retracts..