Philbrook & Payne

Here is a Philbrook and Payne salmon reel that was recently on Ebay auction. Bidding went over $11K, but “reserve not met”.

The listing called it “Phillbrook and Paine” and this may have caused some doubts about authenticity.

Reelmaker “Holireels” recently made several of this style but in trout size; see link. His experience with molding the side plates is documented at Rod and Reel Maker’s Forum; see link.

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5 Responses to Philbrook & Payne

  1. Rich Bahl says:

    Dave – I noticed this reel on ebay and was intrigued by it. Is the the plastic just a decorative element on a metal plate or does it actually form the outer plate on the spool? I have no idea how durable the plastics that Michael Hackney is making are. Instinctively I worry about them being rather brittle.

    • dave49 says:

      I don’t know the answer. I would be grateful to the owner of one of these priceless treasures if he would disassemble and post some pictures.

      In the case of round reels, I am slightly better informed. EVH made reels with hard rubber side plates, and they were the main structure. A strip of nickel silver was soldered into a loop and radially pinned into the side plate. The pillars on such reels are often of increased diameter at the ends in order to reduce the stress at the junction with the side plate. I have not done a first hand inspection of this construction; someone told me this, perhaps at Clarke’s forum.

      Another round reel construction is sometimes called “full bands”, see
      The one antique reel that I have been able to disassemble had full bands, see 17 July 2011 post at this blog. The stationary part of the bearings were simply holes in the rubber side plates. When I made round reels last year, I used full bands of aluminum. I felt pretty confident of the simple bearing since the side plates were Delrin.

      My current raised pillar design has one piece aluminum side plates and teflon filled Delrin bushings.


  2. John Paullus says:


    First….you do amazing work on your little Sherline equipment. I’m very impressed.

    I know a gent, who owns quite a few of the originals, both trout and salmon. I saw his reels this summer and he also owns one of mine. I met another member on the forum and we met and reviewed some Philbrook side plates that he had borrowed from Hoagy Carmichael. Best that I can tell is that the reason they are so rare is that there were very few made and most did not survive use/abuse. The side plates only are molded mud and they pretty thin material. I perforated my side plates so that the mud material would be a composite/mechanically joined to the side plates. Still, the material is brittle and will break if a strong enough blow is applied. The spools are very similar to Vom Hofes or others at that time. The side plate material is brittle and I can fathom that many side plates were broken taking a spill on a slippery rock in the river. Hope that helps.


  3. dave49 says:

    John (Holireels) has also pointed out to me this link
    where (page 3&4) you can see the back plate from the inside.
    If I understand correctly, on the Philbrook reel the molded plates really are the structure, even supporting a hard rubber disk that further supports drag components. However, on John’s new reels the molding is only decorative, being bonded (molded) to a structural side plate. I would think that this side plate is one piece with the rings/lugs.

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