A little TLC for your tackle.

Apply lube with a brush

TJ says: "Brush your teeth".

It’s time to get ready for fishing. Caring for your tackle means more fish in the boat this spring. Here’s a quick list of tips that will keep you fishing, trouble free.

  • If your line is old, replace it now. Treat your line with Real Magic to prevent UV and ozone deterioration.
  • Give your guides a hard look. Use a cotton-swab to find any hairline cracks or imperfections. Replace guides as needed.
  • Clean cork handles on your rods with dandruff shampoo. (Yes, it works) Try some of that Rod Wrap® tape on the handles. It really gives you a better grip.
  • Pull your reels off their rods and inspect them. If they are dirty on the outside, better check them out inside.
  • Lubricate light moving parts like bail hinges and worm-gears. I love the pump version of Real Magic for this purpose. Unscrew the cap and use the tube inside as a dropper for these light parts.
  • Does your bail close slowly? It may not be the bail-spring. Unscrew the left side of the bail from the rotor housing (Some reels use an e-clip) and check for “twang”. Reel techs use this term for a bail hinge that is slightly bent and binding. Carefully re-bend the bail back into shape. Check the bail wire for any nicks that will harm your line too.
  • Pay particular attention to dirt accumulation on either side of the worm-gear housing on baitcasters. This can make a pawl and worm-gear bind and fail.
  • If you’d rather leave that up to the pros, winter is the time to get those reels into the shop. A good reel repair tech will already be behind, at least a week.
  • This is also a great time to take your trolling motor in too. New brushes and seals now will save you some money down the road. You can find a factory authorized service center at: http://www.minnkotamotors.com/service/asclocator.aspx .

If you’re up to the challenge; take your reel all the way down and inspect the parts. There’s a free on-line video code on the inside of the Real Magic Lube package you may find helpful. Here are some tips on a full, C,G & A. (Clean, Grease and Adjust)

  • Prepare a work area with plenty of light and no distractions.
  • You can label parts as you tear down your reel if you use poster board as your work-area. You can literally map the parts as you go.
  • Don’t use terry cloth to clean a reel on. It snags parts and gives “bounce” to dropped parts.
  • NEVER use gasoline as a cleaning solvent. Mineral spirits is okay. (I use a Safety Kleen cleaner and they recycle the dirty fluid.)
  • Inspect each part as you clean and dry them. Place them back on your “Map” as you go. (Look for scratches on the spool edges, etc.)
  • Don’t oil load bearing, bearings. (Spinning reels) Mash lube into them with your thumb and forefinger.
  • Gears (pinion and main) get lubed with a brush. Brush your teeth! (Okay, mom.)
  • Bearings from the spool-shaft in your bait-casters get oil, not lube. (Too much oil will cause suction to the adjustment-cap. One drop is usually enough.) Be sure to oil the spool shaft as well.
  • Take your time and reassemble exactly in the reverse order.
  • Stuck? Go on-line to the reel manufacturer’s site to download the manual.
  • Test every function and coat the reel with Real Magic to protect your reel and line from UV and ozone deterioration.

Watch the weather and go fishing!

Blessings, TJ

About TJ Stallings

45-year tackle industry veteran Marketing and Crazy Ideas at TTI-Blakemore Fishing Group (Home of Road Runner Lures and six hook brands including Tru-Turn, Daiichi, XPoint, Team Catfish, Mr. Crappie and StandOUT Hooks.) Home of Gun Protect. The opinions expressed in this blog are those of TJ Stallings and not necessarily those of TTI-Blakemore.
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2 Responses to A little TLC for your tackle.

  1. Don Gasaway says:

    TJ, This is great stuff. Thanks for the tips. Some of them I had heard of previously but others were new to this old fisherman. Don

  2. Gil says:

    Thanks for the info, as usual T.J., you are always full of good info. See you soon.

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