Most of the 300 series Southbends were considered to be Bass rods. However most have lost a little over the years and do quite a nice job with a modern 5/6WF line. My Southbends (unrestored) dont seem to lose as much of their punch
as some of the higher end production rods,. I have always atributed this to the fact that in the butt sections they are usually heavier than their higher end counter parts.
As for the Bill Stanley Favorite model #20 Heddon If it is a #2 ferrule in would be a true 5 weight , and most will also cast a 4WF as all classic era
rods tend to lose a little over time unless they have had a recent restoration
. A quality restoration job with modern varnishes or polyurethanes tends to tighten them up and restore some of the power lost over the last 50+ years. If its a # 2 & 1/2 ferrule then it would be a solid 6wf. A solid 2 & 1/2 ferrule works great as a big river rod
As for the quality issue you could argue that it is in the eye of the beholder
I personally own and love both brands. With that being said the only rod in the Southbend line that would be of comparable quality to Heddon would be the Southbend #290, and even the wonderful #290's aren't in the same league as the higher end Heddons.
Now if you were talking about a Heddon #35 or a #50 then they are clearly high quality rods. Both of my #50's are the superior to all of my classic and neo classic era production rods
(that includes my Grangers, F.E. Thomas' and my Leonards) Only my Wes Jordan gives them a run for their money. Hope i didn't offend any fans of the above makers cause really I love those rods too.
Hope some of my rambling helps, ...........Tentwing