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Smiths.R

Taking my reel for a swim

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I fish the Potomac river a lot, and for various reasons, I end up under the water a lot (I wade).  My reel obviously goes down with me.  How big a deal is this?  Also, what should I do when I'm done fishing if I have gone under with the reel? 

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I might be anal but anytime my reel gets dunked, I'm going to have a look see when I get home. Not only water could get in, but also fine dirt and silt too. You wouldn't want any of this stuff causing your reel to fail when you might have the fish of a lifetime on.

Most of the time you will find some water has seeped in. Just dab a rag to dry the innards and check if other places need to be regreased or lubed.

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I agree with islandbass! Dirt and silt can kill a real. Even when a reel doesn't get dunked it should be cleaned and lubed on a regular basis.

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And if it's a mid-level priced Shimano spinning reel, it may start binding up after getting wet. They are notorious for this, unfortunately.

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In addition to dirt and silt being abrasive, algae is corrosive releasing acids as it wets and dries. Drain, wipe and air dry as best you can. Get all reels serviced regularly increasing the frequency for anything that's been dunked.

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Some reels have sealed drags, and now I noticed that BPS has reels housebranded that claim to have sealed bodies too so if they get dunked it won't be nearly as bad.  You might consider a reel like these for an upgrade if you wade a lot. 

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Is the Potomac salty? I didn't think it was.

Anyway, if you know you're going to submerge the reel frequently, then I'd recommend a couple of things. Bearings and worm gears should be lubricated with something with a corrosion inhibitor. Yes, this oil isn't as fast, but it beats rusted bearings. Be sure all the access ports and parts are secure.  Nothing ruins a reel quicker than a missing handle screw cap.

I'd also be looking at a full featured saltwater reel, not a freshwater reel rated as safe for salt. For spinners, Daiwa Coastal or Shimano Spheros are well made reels. In Baitcasting, Shimano Curado or the TD-A based Daiwa Coastal would be good starts. If you had to nail me down, I'd say the Spheros represents the best bang for the buck.

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Is the Potomac salty?  I didn't think it was.

A good friend of mine might tell you different.....

The Potomac turns brackish around the Rt 301 bridge and gets downright salty by St. Clements Island....which is about 30 miles from Point Lookout (where the Potomac meets the Chesapeake Bay....the River is 12 miles wide by then!). I've hooked many a striper and bluefish down there....and some tasty spot and flounder too!

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Is the Potomac salty? I didn't think it was.

A good friend of mine might tell you different.....

The Potomac turns brackish around the Rt 301 bridge and gets downright salty by St. Clements Island....which is about 30 miles from Point Lookout (where the Potomac meets the Chesapeake Bay....the River is 12 miles wide by then!). I've hooked many a striper and bluefish down there....and some tasty spot and flounder too!

...and the salinity can move up or down depending on drought. Pretty much fresh though in the "bass" waters.

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I wade wen salmon fishing and my reel gets dunked prob. every ten min,Its just a walmart spinning reel but i dont do anything and i have been useing it for years

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That's why I asked.  I can see where it would be down by the Chesapeake and The bigger bays, like Occuquan.  I'm assuming a wade angler is further up the river.

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J Francho is the expert on this question. Listen to him.

Ignore the rest of this post LOL:

I'm a hack. I dunk my reels all the time.  I open them up once a year. They all make loud grinding sounds though. I'm used to it -always thought that's the way reels are supposed to sound. They still cast plenty far, wind in that line and some fish too :D

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I can't stand a reel with the slightest hint of a grind or any noises.  Need them to be as silent as possible, no mechanical noises, and no grinding.  You know how they feel when the drag is fully backed off and completely free to spin the handle??  That's how I want them to feel when cranking.   :D

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I can't stand a reel with the slightest hint of a grind or any noises.  Need them to be as silent as possible, no mechanical noises, and no grinding.  You know how they feel when the drag is fully backed off and completely free to spin the handle??  That's how I want them to feel when cranking.   :D

That's exactly how I feel, too.

Except for the sweet, sweet music of a fish pulling drag and making the guides "sing" with the sound of superline drawn tight, there shouldn't be the sound of anything coming out of the reel.

If it's making a "loud grinding noise" there's some kind of grit, grime, or goo in there that shouldn't be. Saying that your reels "... still cast plenty far, wind in that line and some fish too..." is kind of like saying "My cars lifter's knock and rattle real loud, one cylinder fills with oil at idle, and the brakes shudder and squeal when I stop, but it's still running" - and being proud of it somehow.

If it's some 40-buck reel I can understand how some folks don't care about maintenance, but if you took care of it you might not have it explode when you finally hook that monster. I've seen it. ;D

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I've been in the water plenty of times where I fish on the river, and never tasted any salt.  It is salty down near D.C, but I'm way up near Harpers Ferry.  I'm not worried about salt busting the reel up, just rust in general maybe.  To be honest, I was'nt sure at all.  Hence the question.

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