I‘m a liberal leaning outdoorsman attempting to open the minds of right wingers to the idea that libs fish too. Anglers come from all walks of life, left, right, and center. Not everyone who fishes for bass is a redneck fond of Nascar, country music, and religiosity. Expect posts about largemouth bass fishing, techniques, reviews of lures and other products, but not any condemnable conservative rants. I hope to inspire the online angler community to dial down rhetoric which will do more harm than good to our sport.

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Friday, August 1, 2008

• Back To Basics: Some Spincast Tips

After years of fishing, sometimes we forget how hard it was first starting out in the sport. This is not really a tip per se, but I have seen searches land visitors here looking for answers to various questions related to spincast reels. We were all beginners at one time, so hopefully I can offer the young up and coming anglers something in this post. I get visitors from all walks of life who are at different stages in the learning process. I hope to continue to cater to their needs while at the same time offering information for those of us a little further along.

I am still faced with many of the same problems with spincast reels that I dealt with when I first began using them. For instance, the reel covers were not always easy to remove. A Zebco spincast reel typically has recessed edges that both front and rear covers slide along. The rear covers have always been more difficult to remove. One typically turns in the opposite direction than the other. For instance, on a newer model 33 Platinum reel, the front cover turns towards the handle side and the rear cover turns to the opposite side. If you find turning either cover is a difficult task, keep one of those rubber jar lid openers handy. This will give you more grip against the smooth surface of the reel. Some spincast reels have a button release mechanism, so by forcing the front cover open without using the button, you may be doing minor damage. Always check to see if your reel has a mechanism like this before attempting to open it up. Most rear covers will become easier to open with time as long as you give it a turn every once in a while.

A second common problem I was faced with in the world of spincast reels was when I had to respool, I could not easily reach down in around the spool of the reel to grip the arbor knot I had tied previously. A small pair of hemostats or pliers work just fine and save you a lot of grief. The nail file on a pair of nail clippers can also serve as a useful tool for the job. Fingers were not meant to reach down in there. Pushing the thumbstop will in turn open this area up a little wider and also make the task much easier. I wouldn't use a knife as there is some danger involved should it slip, but that is another option.

Typically the handles are not reversible. I see this question come up often. Although many times a spincast reel looks as though the crank handle can be swapped to the opposite side, the internal components are not arranged in such a way to allow that sort of conversion. If you are a lefty, you'll have a tough time finding a reel that meets your needs.

I don't set a good example with regard to regular maintenance on spincast reels. I usually don't keep them clean and back when I was a child, some WD40 was all I used to lubricate the guts. Zebco has a page which addresses lubricating spincast reels, so I highly recommend reading it. It will tell you what parts to lube with grease and what parts require oil. My spincast reels have served me well having done very little maintenance at all.

I do have two caveats for spincast users. Most reel thumbstops are made of plastic. Plastic breaks. The insertion point for the plastic tabs holding the thumbstop in place are points of stress. I've had thumbstops break at that point on two different Zebco 733's as well as on my 1L Legacy reel. All I can say is to be careful. If you break one, you'll have to order the part and Zebco isn't always the friendliest web site for getting replacement parts on discontinued reels. Another weak spot on a spincast reel is in the part that catches the line when you turn the handle. The friction against this piece from moving line over time may cause erosion and leave a sharp edge that can damage your line and result in a lost fish. Periodically check to see if line has worn a hole into it.

Related Posts:
Spooling a spincast reel


Fish Whisperer said...

Great post, I have not used a spincaster for 20 years or so. Brings back memories. I have been following your site for awhile now and enjoy your posts.

Topwaterlures said...

Very informative Posts...Haven't used spincasts in years because they never seemed to last very long, but I'll have to put these tips to work and see what happens