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So pardon my ignorance on this subject, that's why I am asking you guys... Do bocca bearings make that big of a difference? Are they worth the money? And also, is it something I can install myself? Or is it something that requires professional installation?

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Probably not, I think they are for enthusiasts. I have them in several reels, but I don't really get maximum performance. The bearings are too noisy for my taste when run dry.

 

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1 hour ago, roadwarrior said:

Probably not, I think they are for enthusiasts. I have them in several reels, but I don't really get maximum performance. The bearings are too noisy for my taste when run dry.

 

:fishing-026:

Interesting. Thanks for the feedback!

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Typically just cleaning and oiling the bearings that came with the reel will give you some inprovement, but I agree with roadwarrior, I've never seen the benefit from upgrading bearings.  

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A few years ago I upgraded a bunch of reels with Bocas and hh airs.  IMO the real benefit is less effort to cast and not distance.  I like them in my finesse reels, but for general purpose reels I don't see much benefit.  Nowadays I just flush and oil the stock bearings and I think it's just as good.  

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If you want to spend money to upgrade a reel, look for a shallow spool.  You'll notice a big benefit from that. 

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Bocas are nice but check out zpi sic bearings. 

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Boca makes a decent bearing, so do a few other companies.  I typically use ABEC 7 hybrids from Smooth Drags.  Generally, flushing a bearing pack, and oiling with a performance oil will give a big gain in performance.  It depends on your ability with small mechanical parts and tools.  It's not hard to work on the reel, but if you're not inclined, I'd say send it to Mike at Delaware Valley Tackle.

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I upgraded one of my reels with Bocas and didn't care for them that much. They were really loud and annoying sounding, even after oiling them. So I took them out and put the stock ones back in. I didn't notice too much improvement on my end. 

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18 hours ago, Yudo1 said:

A few years ago I upgraded a bunch of reels with Bocas and hh airs.  IMO the real benefit is less effort to cast and not distance.  I like them in my finesse reels, but for general purpose reels I don't see much benefit.  Nowadays I just flush and oil the stock bearings and I think it's just as good.  

This. Ceramics will spin faster, thus allowing you to achieve the same results with less effort required on the cast. I've been pretty impressed with the Hedgehog Air bearings. They will give you a slight advantage in distance over stock bearings - slight. Where bearing upgrades really shine is with finesse reels. 

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5 hours ago, Hogsticker said:

Where bearing upgrades really shine is with finesse reels.

I agree with this, too.  Too often, guys read about it, and want to just pop new bearings in.  I'm cool with that, as long as there isn't some expectation of massive performance gains.  That assumes the bearings being replaced aren't shot.

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On 7/28/2016 at 6:49 AM, Nathan Burton said:

So pardon my ignorance on this subject, that's why I am asking you guys... Do bocca bearings make that big of a difference? Are they worth the money? And also, is it something I can install myself? Or is it something that requires professional installation?

Spend your money on some quality line and baits! 

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for your first two questions, the answer is no.

for the last two, the answer is; if you have to ask that question, no.

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