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rbreedi1

Flushing Reel Bearings

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Ive never done this on my reels, can someone explain the process and materials needed? Better yet, if you have a link to a tutorial or video that would be great. Thanks in advance!

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Take the spool out of the reel. Remove the clip holding the bearing in the side plate and pull out that bearing. Using spool pin pliers pull the pin on the spool and remove that bearing. Take the bearing shields off and use a product like bearing blaster or put them in a shotglass full of lighter fluid and I put my shotglass into a ultrasonic cleaner.

 

Spin the bearings after dried, check to see if they spin freely. Add one drop of a lube of choice I use quantum hot sauce. Install the bearings in reverse they came out. Keep in mind sometimes theres another bearing inside the reel also and to get to it, everything has to come out of the reel except a few select things.

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Is it worth while to do this on a new curado or chronarch? They should have excellent bearings from the factory

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Not all reels have a bearing on the spool axle trapped behind a pin beside the spool.  When they do, I don't remove it;  I strip the line and soak the bearings in situ.  Just too easy to damage the pin or the spool axle while trying to remove it unless you have a dedicated tool for the job.  I use a very small screwdriver to remove the clips in front of the 2 outer spool bearings while holding a finger tip over them to prevent them from shooting off into infinity.  A piece of stainless wire with a 90 degree bend in the last 1/4" can be used to pull the bearings out of their recesses.  Then soak them in a cleaner or solvent to remove the old lubricant.  I use ether-based aerosol starting fluid in a shot glass.  Swirl them around in the solvent for awhile then take them out and spin them by hand on a pencil point to see if they run smoothly.  If not, repeat until they do.  They spin smoothly for a long time when they're clean.  Lay them on a paper towel to dry out and lube them with a drop of fine bearing oil.  Put an added drop of fine bearing oil in the spool bearings every 10-12 hrs of actual use and clean/relube them yearly.  On a new reel, cleaning the spool bearings might (or might not) give you marginally better casting distance.  It depends on how they were lubed at the factory.

 

There are other bearings in reels.  Some of them require lots of disassembly to get to them and some, like a pinion bearing or the anti reverse bearing, might be pressed into the reel at the factory and not intended for removal during normal maintenance.  The spool bearings spin at high rpm and determine how easily and smoothly the spool turns during a cast.  The other bearings work at slower rpm and can be serviced less often with a heavier viscosity oil.  Service interval depends on how often and how hard you use your reel.  Manufacturers usually recommend a complete cleaning/relube yearly.

 

I don't mess with a new Shimano except to add oil to spool bearings, until it's ready for a complete takedown & relube after a year of weekend use.  To me, the marginal gain is not worth the trouble but you may feel differently.

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The only thing i do right away to a shimano is take out the anti reverse ratchet(not the bearing). At that point though, im already in the reel so i usually flush the bearings if i got some time.

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A set of these works great for helping to work on reels. I use the straight one to hold spool bearings while I spin them to test them. I use the offset bent one to help remove E clips and bearing retaining wires from the side plates. Very handy to get into tight places. They also are helpful to pull up the spacers behind the spool bearings in the side plate, and beneath the tension knob. In spinning reels they're helpful to stretch and reinstall the spring that goes on the anti-reverse switch.

http://t.harborfreight.com/hand-tools/precision-hand-tools/4-piece-pick-and-hook-set-66836.html#.UxLAkZK9KSM

Another tip. I read once to use a sharpie pen cap to help soak the trapped bearing on the spool shaft of reels that use a spool shaft pin to keep it on. Fill the cap with your solvent, I use brake parts cleaner, and then dip the shaft into it until the bearing is in the cleaner and leave it to soak.

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Is it worth while to do this on a new curado or chronarch? They should have excellent bearings from the factory

Flushing the bearings has little to do with the quality of the bearing. Even a ceramic abec9 bearing can be slowed down to a crawl if it's packed with grease. Flushing the stock bearings is about getting the most performance out of them as possible. They're often shipped with a lot of heavy oil or even packed with grease from the factory because it prevents them from being damaged. Most folks just run them as is from the factory, so manufacturers don't want them binding up because they're dry. Packing them also prevents saltwater intrusion and corrosion. It hurts performance overall, because the bearings can't spin at full potential.  

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What kind of oil does everyone like to use on the bearings?

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Can someone list the items to which I would need for this.  The cleaner, tool, etc...and if you can be detailed on where to buy or how much. 

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