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jwhowells

Brake System Vs Spool Tension On A Baitcast Reel

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No matter how much I read on here I can't understand what the functions of the brake system vs the spool tension system are. I've always used some version of an Abu Garcia 5000 so I've only experienced adjusting the spool tension. I recently ordered a Lew's TS1SH so I want to be prepared when it comes. I watched the video http://www.bassresource.com/bass-fishing-forums/topic/92295-how-to-set-up-a-baitcaster/ but I guess I dont understand when and why I would want to adjust the brakes.

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It's really very simple, turn all the brakes off and adjust your spool tension so the bait fall to the floor slowly, turn a couple of the centrifugal brakes on and the magnetic brakes about 1/2 way. Begin casting, if you are backlashing at the start of the cast, turn on another centrifugal brake, if at the end of the cast add more magnetic brake. Continue to adjust until you can make repeatable casts without backlashing.

Spool tension should not be used as a brake for your reel, you can actually damage your reel by using too much spool tension.

Good Luck

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Usually brakes are set and forget, once you have the brake(s) dialed in all you need to adjust is the spool tension for the smaller variance of weights you'll throw.

One thing people do is ignore the mag brake by setting it down and focus on the centrifugal brakes, if you have both.

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I learned to use baitcasting reels before there was braking systems on reels so the spool tension knob is what you adjusted so I think I may be able to help. What the brakes do is they let you use the reel with a little less tension and it almost eliminates using your thumb if you dial the reel in correctly. Once you get it dialed in you can leave it at that setting and then just adjust the spool tension according to lure weight. Some guys will change their brake settings if it is windy or other things but I like to just use one setting and use the spool tension knob. Centifcal brakes are on the inside of the palm plate so you take it off and there are small pegs, pulled out, that particular brake is on, I adjust the brajkes on and off by gturning them off opposite each other, for example, if it is 6 pin brake system, most of the time I set 2 brakes on and the rest will be in the off position which is pushed down. Think of an ice skater spinning around, arms tucked in and the skater spins faster, arms out and the skater spins slower and the same for the brakes, pull it out to slow it and push them in to speed it up. The brakes I turn off will be opposite each other like I said, I believe it helps spool balance but I'm not sure it is just how I've done it, and what I mean by that is the brake that is positioned at the top of the spool is on, I'll turn the brake positioned on the bottom of the spool on and the rest will be off. I don't know if people turn brakes on right next to each other but I do it as I explained and it has worked. Magnetic brakes are adjustable from the outside and the function is to slow the spool down toward the end of the casts, these I usually have set to 3 or less based on 10 settings, the best thing about them is you will never get a backlash if you forget to use your thumb when the bait hits the water but they are pretty good with dual brakes as it is possible to set both centifical and magnetic up to a point were you can really sling a bait and not have to thumb the spool at all.

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Thanks guys. That actually clears a lot up for me. It sounds like Im going to enjoy having brakes for once.

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Spool tension is for the weight of the bait, brakes are for casting ability and wind conditions.

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