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Tekota 500LC Tekota 500
REEL MAINTENANCE

"Reel, Reel, Reel!", I screamed, as the main line broke free from the Scotty downrigger release clip and a large king started peeling line off the Shimano Tekota Reel like a rocket.

After a 15 minute hard fight I netted a large chinook well over 30-pounds. During this trip my tackle performed perfectly.

Catching large salmon or any hard fighting sport fish can and will tax your tackle to the breaking point. Rods, reels and tackle must be maintained flawlessly to give the angler the upper hand against fierce fighting fish. It's imperative that you perform routine, maintenance on all your tackle from the rod and reel to last knot you tied to you're tackle. If not the only thing you will have is the story about the big one that got away. I look at quality rods and reels as long-term investments and take the time to care for them properly. Weekend warriors should at a minimum have their reels inspected once a year, charter captains and hardcore anglers should service them monthly to insure flawless operation. There is nothing that will sour a days fishing more then loss of a large fish because of a bad or sticky drag on a reel.

Here are some simple steps I perform on my Shimano reels to insure reliability on every fishing trip.

  1. At the end of the days fishing with the drag system set to a high setting (to prevent water intrusion) clean the entire exterior of the reel using a soft spray of Salt-Away and wash down or wipe clean with a soft spray of fresh water. Clean every nook and cranny to ensure that all the salt water and dirt deposits are removed.
  2. Dry the reel thoroughly with a soft clean towel and place in a warm dry location to air dry. Back off the drag adjustment to "free spool" is achieved. Leaving the drag system under a heavy thrust setting for extended periods will lead to erratic drag performance.
  3. For longer storage periods take the reel off the rod and wipe it down with Reel-X. A small brush can be used to ensure the protective spray is worked into tight corners of the reel. This will also help prevent oxidation built up on the reel seat or foot.
  4. Lightly lubricate exterior components using top quality reel oil. Reel Handle, drag knobs, bar arm pivots and rollers, clicker assemblies and all oil ports can be serviced easily.
  5. For the continued top performance of your reel, I recommend a full strip down, complete servicing, and re-lubrication at least every 12 months or even more often if the reel is used frequently like mine are. If you don't want to do it yourself then send it to a recommended reel repair pro-shop to be completed by a knowledgeable service pro. Your reel manufacture can provide you a local contact for service on your brand of reel.
  6. I also keep a kit on the boat for quick reel tune-ups or repairs when on the road with my boat to Canada and other distant fishing locations.

    This includes the following:

    a. 4-ounce bottle of Salt-Away
    b. Bottle of Reel-X
    c. Reel Grease
    d. Reel Lube
    e. Small brush & Q-tips
    f. Spare set of drags for the brand reel I fish
    g. Shimano reel handle tool for breakdown

    Yes, of course I do keep an extra Shimano Reel spooled
    with 20-pound line and ready for fast changeovers should a problem arise while fishing.

Rod Care


Model Color Length Line
Weight
Lure
Weight
Action Power Handle Item# MSRP
GL2 Evergreen 10' 6" 10-40 2 - 8 Moderate Heavy 13 11054-01 $220.00
GL2 Merlot 10' 6" 10-40 2 - 8 Moderate Heavy 13 11109-01 $220.00
GL2 Neptune 10' 6" 10-40 2 - 8 Moderate Heavy 13 10944-01 $220.00
GL2 Champagne 10' 6" 10-40 2 - 8 Moderate Heavy 13 10999-01 $220.00

For up keep on high quality graphite rods like the G. Loomis SAR1265C downrigger rods I run on my boat I like to wash down with Salt-Away and then wipe them off with liquid furniture polish to protect the finish. I then store them on the boat in rod socks for protection.

For prolonged storage take the reel off the rod and store it separately, and give the reel seat a good cleaning to remove any salt residue build up.

As the old saying goes you take care of your equipment and it will take care of you.

Salmon University Staff