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Ceramic OillessReel Bearings

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I started to use them, and I do like them. I went with ZPI bearings, and they are smooth casting bearings, I do however oil mine.

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This year at ICAST there was even a whole reel based on the ceramic oil free bearings.  I think it even won a best in class rating.

New minds, new ideas. 

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Last weekend my son was having a problem with one of his reels. No matter what he did it would only cast about 35 ft, even with all the brakes off. No birds nests, no stuck line?

Did some research and ran across an article that talked about how bearings in baitcasters can get dry and also dirty which will hinder casting.

Took the problem reel and re lubed the drum bearings yesterday and today the reel worked like a charm!

Gonna have to take it back apart and check sizes and give them a try.

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You can find them at Boca Bearings. Tackle Warehouse. Amazon,Com  and most reel repair shops. pretty much all the companies have a listing by reel MFG. Model. size ect., and some offer upgrade kits and others offer in quantities of 10 or more at pretty good discounts. Most kits run about $30.

 

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On ‎10‎/‎8‎/‎2017 at 6:53 PM, TerryF2858 said:

where do you get them from and how to order them by size or reel brand?

 

thanks

 

 

I get mine from Tackle Trap. The bearings I put on my reel were ZPI ceramic. About $8 each. My reel an ABU MGX baitcaster only needs 2 bearings , (1) on the spool and (1) on the side plate (brake side). Many reels have similar size bearings. You do not need to replace all the bearings in your reel, unless a bearing is not working. Only use ceramic bearings on the spool and sideplate. Putting ceramic bearing anywhere else is a waste of money. The best way to get your bearings, is to tell them what reel you have model and make. I always measure mine to make sure they send me the correct ones. If you want to measure them, than take a pair of calipers and measure inside diameter (5mm), outside diameter (11mm) and thickness (4mm). So the bearing size would be 5x11x4. On your calipers, always round up.  I would also suggest getting carbontex drag washers for your drag upgrade. Your reel will definitely cast much better.

If you have any questions you can PM me and I will help you.

 

One last note, you will need spool pin pliers to remove the pin on the spool to get your old bearing off. The tool is around $18.00

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I've been using Shimano Curados a lot of years and swapped out the bearings with Boca's, I did this with the "i" series and found out that particular model really didn't need an upgrade. The factory ones work just fine. My $.02.

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I only use Shimano Bantams . I own around 80 or 90 of them . The ones that I take with me have all been upgraded with the ceramic bearings. I also put a very small amount of quantum hot sauce synthetic lube on them. The reels cast farther and smoother. I get mine at hrpbearing on EBay. 

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Before buying high priced bearings thoroughly clean them and put a drop of high tech oil, something like Hot Sauce or TSI 321, see if that will give you the performance you want. Many times perfectly good bearings are being retired  when they will do quite well.

Rodney

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I've done reel servicing for a few winters now and make several thousand casts with a baitcaster each summer. Stainless Abec5 bearings are as far as I go when recommending upgrades. Always lube with a small drop of TSI 321 cut 50/50 with isopropyl alcohol. The alky evaporates leaving a thin synthetic film. Polish the brake surfaces and spool shaft bearing surfaces ("Super Tune"). Ceramics are much noisier and may give only the most experienced caster 5 more yards on a bomb cast. Picture a nice quiet morning and you're the guy making noise. My advice is spool up with no heavier line than is needed and practice casting with only your thumb. This will get you accuracy and distance. Also, when putting your baitcasters away for the winter, back off the drag pressure.

For spinning reels I always replace factory plastic bushings with SS bearings, Abec3 good enough.

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I’ve got all the brake rings, spool tension pads, and both ends of my spool bolished by using Cerium Oxide in first course and then fine grade. Cerium Oxide is a powder (flour) used to make a paste to polish eyeglass lenses. All parts that that contact the spool are polished to a mirror like finish. My bearings are all cleaned with an ultrasonic cleaner using liquid brake cleaner! Much cheaper than the spray cans!! Gears get a minimal touch up of grease and drag washers have the recommended grease applied also. Oil is sparingly applied to friction pads and bearings using an insulin syringe! After close inspection, I’ve found a couple of bearings “bad” with a feeling like a flat spot! Cleaning did not help, so I replaced them. Most of the reels I’m tuning are to throw finesse worms/baits with no weight except the look and soft plastic. So far the addition of any new bearings have not given me much improvement over the steps I’ve mentioned above! The polishing seemed to have the greatest impact on distance!

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Big A hits a BINGO! I must add this, I recommend servicing any new spinning or baitcast reel you buy!

Most sub-$150 reels come with greased bearings instead of a proper lube and with over or under greased gear assemblies. Manufacturers must use an injection process for these reels. Over greasing is a hack to make the reel feel smooth. A couple years ago I serviced 11 Kastking "Speed Demon" reels and found all had drag springs improperly positioned which allowed hardly any range of drag adjustment. I informed the US Kastking office in New York and the manufacturer in China. Both gave lip service but have not corrected the issue. I just cleaned two a week ago with the same issue. To alert other users I did posts on a couple popular bass fishing forums. Many members replied finding the same issue.

Sorry about the lengthy post but need to get this out there too! Don't think higher bearing count makes for a better performing reel. I have found up to six bearings in the handle. I think there is a youtube video about this subject. The guy is right on!

Here's my baitcast servicing routine;

If not provided with reel, look up and save schematics. Customer receives a copy with finished reel.

Disassemble reel, remove large amounts of grease and inspect for worn parts.

Call customer with inspection concerns, recommend upgrades and order parts.

Small metal parts go into an ultrasonic bath using warm water and couple drops of dawn. (a little vinegar if reel exposed to salt water)

Once excess grease is removed, side plates and greased parts go into a clear plastic peanut butter jar containing some Dawn and hot to the touch water. Soak for a few minutes, then agitate with toothbrush until clean. I usually having several reels being done at the same time in separate jars. Hit parts carefully with compressed air or blow dryer to aid drying.

Handles, due to many having bearings either get taken apart or cleaned as best I can.

If customer desires, perform super tune polishing using a light blue jeweler's rouge with dremel felt pads.

Lubricate during reassembly, light coat of Abu Garcia Reel Lube on bearing races, one small drop of diluted TSI 321 for bearings using syringe type nozzle and a light coating (just so you can see your fingerprint) of Cal's purple drag grease on drag washers. I also apply this light coating to carbon washers because it provides a better range of adjustability (for the guys who don't always crank them down tight) and a tooth-high application of AG lube on main gear. I use a small amount of AG lube on the worm gear too. Many say a drop of oil is better since it attracts less dust/dirt although I have not been told of any issues when I ask customers.

I keep track of jobs on an excel spreadsheet and with codes for each task to provide a good servicing snapshot.

Here's something to remember though, my servicing method makes for an easy rotating assembly. Some may not prefer the feel. On that occasion I add a thicker grease to the main gear. Make it feel more like factory I guess.

Edited by Tuna

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On 3/1/2019 at 8:52 AM, Tuna said:

Big A hits a BINGO! I must add this, I recommend servicing any new spinning or baitcast reel you buy!

Most sub-$150 reels come with greased bearings instead of a proper lube and with over or under greased gear assemblies. Manufacturers must use an injection process for these reels. Over greasing is a hack to make the reel feel smooth. A couple years ago I serviced 11 Kastking "Speed Demon" reels and found all had drag springs improperly positioned which allowed hardly any range of drag adjustment. I informed the US Kastking office in New York and the manufacturer in China. Both gave lip service but have not corrected the issue. I just cleaned two a week ago with the same issue. To alert other users I did posts on a couple popular bass fishing forums. Many members replied finding the same issue.

Sorry about the lengthy post but need to get this out there too! Don't think higher bearing count makes for a better performing reel. I have found up to six bearings in the handle. I think there is a youtube video about this subject. The guy is right on!

Here's my baitcast servicing routine;

If not provided with reel, look up and save schematics. Customer receives a copy with finished reel.

Disassemble reel, remove large amounts of grease and inspect for worn parts.

Call customer with inspection concerns, recommend upgrades and order parts.

Small metal parts go into an ultrasonic bath using warm water and couple drops of dawn. (a little vinegar if reel exposed to salt water)

Once excess grease is removed, side plates and greased parts go into a clear plastic peanut butter jar containing some Dawn and hot to the touch water. Soak for a few minutes, then agitate with toothbrush until clean. I usually having several reels being done at the same time in separate jars. Hit parts carefully with compressed air or blow dryer to aid drying.

Handles, due to many having bearings either get taken apart or cleaned as best I can.

If customer desires, perform super tune polishing using a light blue jeweler's rouge with dremel felt pads.

Lubricate during reassembly, light coat of Abu Garcia Reel Lube on bearing races, one small drop of diluted TSI 321 for bearings using syringe type nozzle and a light coating (just so you can see your fingerprint) of Cal's purple drag grease on drag washers. I also apply this light coating to carbon washers because it provides a better range of adjustability (for the guys who don't always crank them down tight) and a tooth-high application of AG lube on main gear. I use a small amount of AG lube on the worm gear too. Many say a drop of oil is better since it attracts less dust/dirt although I have not been told of any issues when I ask customers.

I keep track of jobs on an excel spreadsheet and with codes for each task to provide a good servicing snapshot.

Here's something to remember though, my servicing method makes for an easy rotating assembly. Some may not prefer the feel. On that occasion I add a thicker grease to the main gear. Make it feel more like factory I guess.

Good Write-up. I have a question for you. Do you mark the drive gear and the pinion gear before you take them off the reel? This is on spinning reels. The reason I ask is I have to Gen 1 Stradics, and back in the day I took them apart to clean them. Well, I didn't mark the original location of the gear set, and now they aren't as smooth as they were when I took them apart. At some point I will have to get two gear sets to replace them. This was years ago when I did this . I have been cleaning and repairing reels for about 7 years.

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Cadman, I'm not aware of any indexing between the drive and pinion gears of a Stradic. Is it when the reel is under load or all the time? I know the line guide bearings can be a problem (noisy). Been a while since I took one apart, do they have the crappy black friction rings? If so, I always replace with the blue silicone rings. Has to be in the assembly process right? We've all been there. Here's how I would troubleshoot:

First Google "Shimano Stradic Gen 1 rubbing". If you get nowhere doing this I would: Rotate the crank until you detect the rub, pull the side cover, mark drive gear position, remove drive gear and inspect. Check for an index marks. Check for play between main shaft and pinion. I repaired one a guy bought for a "good price" on eBay. It had a slightly bent main shaft. Can't see this as your issue though. Check to make sure you have the correct allen screw going into worm drive. Make sure you have the correct shims on the sides of the crank assembly.

For everyone else, non-worm drive spool oscillating Shimanos you have to use the index (triangle) marks to align oscillation gears.

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On 3/9/2019 at 7:39 AM, Tuna said:

Cadman, I'm not aware of any indexing between the drive and pinion gears of a Stradic. Is it when the reel is under load or all the time? I know the line guide bearings can be a problem (noisy). Been a while since I took one apart, do they have the crappy black friction rings? If so, I always replace with the blue silicone rings. Has to be in the assembly process right? We've all been there. Here's how I would troubleshoot:

First Google "Shimano Stradic Gen 1 rubbing". If you get nowhere doing this I would: Rotate the crank until you detect the rub, pull the side cover, mark drive gear position, remove drive gear and inspect. Check for an index marks. Check for play between main shaft and pinion. I repaired one a guy bought for a "good price" on eBay. It had a slightly bent main shaft. Can't see this as your issue though. Check to make sure you have the correct allen screw going into worm drive. Make sure you have the correct shims on the sides of the crank assembly.

For everyone else, non-worm drive spool oscillating Shimanos you have to use the index (triangle) marks to align oscillation gears.

You have a PM from me.

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