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Catch and Grease

Is It Hard To Clean A Reel?

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Hey guys, I have a reel from a combo I bought called the shimano zeles that I use alot and it sounds like it needs to be cleaned. I think it has dirt or something in it making it alittle rough... Do you guys think I could take it apart and clean it without breaking something even though I've never took a reel apart? How hard is it to clean a reel?

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If you're comfortable doing that sort of thing, go for it.  It's always good to have an exploded diagram handy if you try it.

 

http://www.shimanofish.com.au/media/fishing/shimano/saf/documents/all_schematics/baitcast_reels/ZELES200_v1_m56577569830877974.pdf

 

 

Tight lines,

Bob

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It depends on your mechanical aptitude and willingness to take your time. Never open a reel without a schematic handy and keep in mind that they are mostly a parts list, not assembly instructions. Someone will inevitably post the link to Shimanos videos, which are just ok. Most reel models have what I call a "Gottcha" somewhere. That's not a super expensive reel to experiment with. Set aside enough time (probably a couple of hours first time) and document with pics and notes just how it came apart. Let me know if you get stuck and I'll try to talk you through.

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If you're comfortable doing that sort of thing, go for it.  It's always good to have an exploded diagram handy if you try it.

 

http://www.shimanofish.com.au/media/fishing/shimano/saf/documents/all_schematics/baitcast_reels/ZELES200_v1_m56577569830877974.pdf

 

 

Tight lines,

Bob

 

 

Well that parts diagram is a lot to look at... didn't expect it to be that complicated haha

 

 

It depends on your mechanical aptitude and willingness to take your time. Never open a reel without a schematic handy and keep in mind that they are mostly a parts list, not assembly instructions. Someone will inevitably post the link to Shimanos videos, which are just ok. Most reel models have what I call a "Gottcha" somewhere. That's not a super expensive reel to experiment with. Set aside enough time (probably a couple of hours first time) and document with pics and notes just how it came apart. Let me know if you get stuck and I'll try to talk you through.

 

Okay, I guess if I want to learn it'd be best to start with a cheap reel like this... When I get some free time ill sit down for a few hours and try to work it out. Probably wont be able to until this weekend but ill give you a shout if I run into trouble. Thanks!

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A helpful hint, if you don't mind.  As you remove the parts from the reel, lay them out from left to right on a clean surface (I like using a gift box cover). Reverse the order when reassembling. This will help you when it comes to location of the smaller parts like washers and screws. Be careful when removing springs and clips. If they fly off, they're a bugger to find.

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Whenever I take apart my reels to clean, I normally lay them out on a clean, soft, white towel. That way I can see everything and it doesn't get lost. 

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When you lay the parts out on a towel as mentioned... lay them in an orientation that helps you remember which side of the part is top vs. bottom.  Some parts it doesn't matter when re-assembling the reel... some parts it does.

 

 

oe

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Really and truly it isn't that bad as long as you pay very good attention and lay all your parts in the order they come out. And also like the guy above me said, lay down a light colored towel or shirt to work on. It really helps you keep track of those small parts and prevents them from bouncing half way across the room whenever you drop something. Good luck!

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Laying parts out on a paper towel is a bad idea.  Orientation can be easily determined with a correct schematic.  Here's how I keep track of a stripped reel.

 

IMG_2925-L.jpg

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To each his own but, for me, I'd rather take it to my professional rod and reel guy and get it done right for a mere 25.00 dollars and always give him a little extra. He does good work.

 

Old school basser....

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There's two pros in this thread, lol.

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It depends on your mechanical aptitude...

 

Inspector Harry Callahan (Clint Eastwood)~  "A man's got to know his limitations"

 

For me that means it's going to be serviced by Mike @ DVT.

 

 

 

:fishing-026: 

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Laying parts out on a paper towel is a bad idea.  Orientation can be easily determined with a correct schematic.  Here's how I keep track of a stripped reel.

 

 

I would agree that using paper towels as a work table cloth isn't a very good idea, but I think a cloth towel (as suggested above) carefully laid flat is a helpful precaution.  Part orientation isn't always easily identified from a schematic.  I've learned that an IAR bearing can be reassembled upside down and doesn't work in that orientation... my schematics aren't discernible as to which end of an IAR bearing is up.  I use a muffin tin like yours as well, but will lightly dot the top of some parts with a felt tip maker.  I'd rather err on the side of caution.

 

 

oe

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Not sure how you can keep track of up or down, when you have to wash the parts...

 

Just put the tube in the AR bearing, and turn. That will tell you which way it goes back.  Some bearings even have an arrow stamped for the direction they turn.  Otherwise, I've yet to encounter a part that goes in the "wrong way" and yet allows the reel to work.  Clutch springs can be tricky - on reels that have two, I recommend taking a a quick cell phone snap before removing them, so you can tell which goes in the top and bottom.  Generally, the smaller one goes on the bottom, connected to the kickplate.

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DVT is right that there is often at least one "gotcha" in just about all modern low profile reel models - something that is easy to take apart but finicky to put back together.  For Shimano reels, the level wind system was often the assembly that most vexed me during reassembly until I developed a knack for it.  When I take apart an unfamiliar reel model for the first time, I find that it helps to shoot some pics of the reel with a digital camera or phone to show how they should fit back together.  The diagram that comes with the reel is primarily for ordering parts.  It will not show you how part X needs to be oriented to make the reel work properly.  That said, it's certainly worthwhile to learn how to do this yourself.  Besides a sense of accomplishment, it gives you a good idea of how the innards of the reel work together so when/if something goes wrong in the future, you'll have a good idea of what it is and how to correct a problem immediately and get back to fishing instead of having to send the reel off for weeks to get it repaired.  It's up to you to decide whether you have the aptitude to reassemble the reel properly after cleaning the parts.  I think it's worth a shot but if you have serious doubts, you can either limit the level of service you attempt on the reel or simply send it off and let a professional to do the work.  

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and yet allows the reel to work.

 

 

... and there in lies the question.  I use four spinning reels that have to have the rotor reassembled to know whether the IAR bearing is installed correctly.  (just an example)  As I wrote above, err on the side of caution.

 

 

oe

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I would send it to DVT (or any other reel technician) but its a cheap reel. Is it really worth it to take a cheap reel and spend 25$ or so every so often to get it cleaned up? That's like paying around half the price of the reel itself to get it cleaned.

I think I'll just try cleaning it and hope for the best...

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What model?

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... and there in lies the question.  I use four spinning reels that have to have the rotor reassembled to know whether the IAR bearing is installed correctly.  (just an example)  As I wrote above, err on the side of caution.

 

 

oe

 

 

The rotor is not connected to the AR sleeve in any reel I've ever worked on.  You should be able to infer what direction the roller bearing is installed using the method I posted above.  You'd have to know what direction the rotor spins in the first place (usually clockwise, looking at the face), though.  Maybe that's the disconnect?

 

At any rate, marking the the top of the AR won't hurt anything, and if it helps, go for it.

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Just this past Saturday I experimented with taking some of my reel's apart and checking them out. Didn't really dive too deep or take too much apart but I learned alot just by experimenting and checking components. I did have a IPL while doing this. I was messing with some of my cheaper baitcasters. Too new to reel cleaning and maintenance to move up and break down my more expensive rigs.

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Something i learned is to work on a large surface. There are lots of little springs, clips and spaces that can go flying. Some of the clips can be super hard to find if they fall on the floor.

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Its not that hard really. Everyone who like to fish should probably know how to do some minor maintenance to there stuff. You don't need to get crazy your first time taking one apart. Just pop off the handle plate and clean and grease the pinion and main gear and see what that gets you. I think chances are though if it feels rough or like gears when you turn the handle one of the gears might be beat. If you have another reel to swap out the gears to test it that's always nice and easy. 

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Its not that hard really. Everyone who like to fish should probably know how to do some minor maintenance to there stuff. You don't need to get crazy your first time taking one apart. Just pop off the handle plate and clean and grease the pinion and main gear and see what that gets you. I think chances are though if it feels rough or like gears when you turn the handle one of the gears might be beat. If you have another reel to swap out the gears to test it that's always nice and easy.

I agree, I know when I first got into baitcaster I took two reels back that only needed to be degreased cause the AR spun backwards. I think some reel company's get a bad rap cause they over grease their reels. All they need is a little cleaning.

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