Category Archives: Blog

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Common Spinning Reel Problems and How to Fix Them

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Category : Blog , Spinning Reel

From time to time we all have faced problems with our spinning reel. Most of the time we do not recognize that there are simple fixes for these issues and that they can be easily avoided with proper care and maintenance of our equipment.

In this post, we will be going through some of the common spinning reel issues we face and how they can be easily fixed or prevented.

1: Line Twist

One of the most common problems faced by beginners and seasoned anglers alike. The line twist is much dreaded and can be due to several reasons, long-term usage is a common cause where over time, the constant casting and reeling in results in the lure, rather than the blade spins in the water

Another common cause of line twist is when beginners are spooling their new lines. This has happened to me a few times, where spooling new lines by hand has resulted in a loose and uneven distribution of the line. This especially happens in close faced spinster where the problem only surfaced when actually casting and reeling in the new line.

Solution: Luckily this common problem has an easy fix. I know it is defiantly impossible to untwist the line. Thus one simply has to cut off the old line and apply the new one using a professional machine which will ensure a tight and uniform wind. Always check that the spool is tight after about 6 turns and always match the size of your test line to the size of the reel itself.

 

2: Bail Spring

The internal bail spring is usually the main cause of mechanical failure we usually experience with our spinning reel, this results in the return spring failing to flip the bail back open. Usually, wear and tear are the main cause or impact to the spinning reel itself would be the cause.

Another cause might be due to the bail wire instead; they are likely to be bent out of shape. A simple check can be done by noticing if the bail wire is catching/hitting the rotor turning some of the revolutions.

Solution: For a bail spring issue, a simple replacement is usually the answer, unless you are using an older spinning reel model. Else, replacement parts should be cheap and easy to find.

Check out this video of a walkthrough of a bail spring replacement:

If it appears to be an out of shape bail wire, You need to reshape the bail wire by bending it with your palms so that in the relaxed position it sits where it needs to be. The screw hole in the bail wire should line up with the screw hole in the side of the rotor.

 

3: Gear Slippage / Gear Grinding

Gear slippage is usually caused by long-term wear and tear or, when the side plate screws have loosened and the gears have shifted out of position, causing the teeth to mesh incorrectly, resulting in the grinding sound we hear. This is usually an easy fix, but it is recomended to be done asap, long term grinding of the gear would cause a whole host of other problem to develop.

Solution: It is recommended that a full replacement of the gear set is done. This is the quickest and only fix. However, as a general rule of thumb, we should be conducting general maintenance on the spinning reel frequently, this would include lubrication of moving parts which would help prevent premature wear and tear on the gears.

 

4: Reel Bearing

Another item on the wear and tear list. Bearing wear depending on the quality used by the manufacturer varies greatly. More often than not, the wear is usually due to dirt and grit finding their way into the internals of the spinning reel and there is usually no preventing it from happening, given the environment we usually fish in. Improper lubrication of the ball bearings would also cause excessive wear and tear.

Solution: We, however, can always prolong the life of bearings by ensuring frequent maintenance of the bearings which would prevent the accumulation of dirt and grit. One or two drops of lubricant are more than enough for ball bearing maintenance. If the bearings are still not functioning smoothly after a clean, it would be best to do a replacement as prolong usage of damages bearings would ultimately damage your spinning reel as well.

 

5: Line Size

I get a lot of questions and see a lot of beginners facing this issue. As seen in the first point, the usage of the wrong line size can lead to many problems we face with our spinning reel. The problem also includes casting issues and frequent line entanglement. I notice that anglers usually use lines which are too heavy.

Solution: Always always always adhere to the manufacturer’s recommendation. No one knows the performance capabilities better than the manufacturers themselves. While they may have built extra tolerance into our spinning reel, they have also done multiple tests to determine the optimal performance of our spinning reel which is reflected in the recommended line to be used.

 

6: Corrosion

This is for our saltwater anglers out there. There is no escape from the dreaded rust that creeps up slowly on us. Nothing damages and impedes the performance of a spinning reel then rust.

Solution: This fortunately or unfortunately, depending on your point of view, is an easy fix. Prevention is key in this case, proper maintenance and storage of our spinning reel is the best solution towards rust. It is good practice to always rise of your spinning reel after a session out in the salt water and use a toothbrush for removal of  any early sign of rust.

 

7: Spinning Reel Locking Issue

From the numerous forums questions, I notice that this seems like another common issue faced by many. Regardless of brands or age of the spinning reel, many people were unable to lock their spinning reel. Many times it is due to the breakdown within the locking mechanism.

Solution:  In this case, problems could be caused by the bail wire, line roller or spring. Removal of the bail wire is needed. Check for signs of rust, bending or marring in the mental. At the same time check the line roller for damage or corrosion and the spring for any kinks, breaks or excessive stretching. Replacement of the above parts is recommended.

 

And there you have it, some of the most common problems we face with our spinning reels on a day to day basis. I find that this step by step guide from the Fixitclub has been helpful for my own repairs.

While most of these problems can be easily fixed and reduced with proper maintenance of our reels, their frequent occurrences might be a sign that you have a reel of lesser quality, it might be time for an upgrade instead. Check out our Best Spinning Reel recommendations for quality reels that would not break the bank! Spending a bit more would reduce the number of headaches and missed catch we face.

Also see our best inflatable kayak review today!


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Best Kayaking Accessories

Today we will take a look at the must-have accessories for kayaking! It does not matter if you are a beginner or a seasoned kayaker, we are always on the lookout for the latest innovation or product in the kayaking world that’ll allow us to better enjoy this hobby we so dearly love!

We will be covering products you’ll need as a beginner as well as a seasoned kayaker. Here at propaddling.com we also enjoy fishing, thus we will also take a look at the best fishing kayak accessories available in the market.

 

Best kayaking accessories:

 

  • Kayaking-specific lifevest:onyx-movevent-dynamic-paddle-sports-life-vest

The number 1 tip we at propaddling.com give to every kayaker is always safety related. Many kayakers have met dangerous situations where their lives have been saved by the most important safety gear, which is their lifevest. It is always recommended for a beginner to invest in a good quality kayaking specific life vest which features:

– A higher back, allowing more freedom of movement.

– A snug fit, which would ensure you are not hindered by the vest in any situation.

– Larger arm holes, which allows for greater arm movement/rotation.

– Pockets, for holding your other important lifesaving equipment (whistle or map and compass).

Some of the best life vest in the market that we like and use are from a brand called ONYX, specifically the “MoveVent Dynamic Paddle Sports Life Vest” and “MoveVent Torsion Paddle Sports Life Vest”. Or you can check out Stohlquist’s “Ebb Life Jacket/PFD” as well.

 

  • A Better Paddleseasense-x-1-kayak-paddle

After paying so much for their kayak, unfortunately, many kayakers would then purchase the cheapest paddle. This has been a big mistake we see many people commit. The paddle is the second most important equipment one needs besides their kayak and we recommend you to get a better than average one, the difference in paddle quality can be night and day and can greatly improve your kayaking experience!

Paddles that would not break the bank and yet improve your kayaking experiences are the SeaSense X-1 Kayak Paddle, and the Shoreline Marine Kayak Paddle. A good paddle would go a long way in making your strokes more efficient!

 

  • Bilge Pump:seattle-sports-paddlers-bilge-pump

We’ve all been there, after a capsize, it always feels like we are swimming in our own kayak as it overflows with water. Bailing water with your hand or a mug simply does not cut it and that’s when I’m always thankful for having a bilge pump with me whenever I’m out paddling. Since using this Seattle Sports Paddlers Bilge Pump, I’ve definitely save both time and headache bailing out water. A simple modification I do is to add a tubing at the input valve for easy reach to the inner ends of the kayak!

 

  • Dry Bags:unigear

Despite our love for the water, many of the things we would like to have with us out in the water are sadly not water friendly. I simply love to have a nice meal with me when out kayaking and the perfect dry bag has always been a life saver. I always pack two dry bags when going out, one for my electronics and wallet. The other for my dry clothing and meals. These two brands, Unigear and Afeboo, have never failed me and they offer the bags in different sizes to suit your needs. If you are looking for something bigger and have storage space on your kayak, the Watershed Salmon Stowfloat Kayak Bag is of superior quality.

 

Best kayak fishing accessories:

There are many more accessories one can get when we get into the hobby of kayak fishing and what we’ll like to focus on in this article is accessories that will help us better focus on both tasks of kayaking and fishing. Many times we’ve found ourselves in unpleasant situations when we try to juggle both and are not focused on either task. So I hope these following recommendations would help you better manage and enjoy your time out in the waters.

 

  • Anchor:jet-logic-a-2-complete-folding-anchor

One can’t do without this important item when we need to maintain position in an optimal area to fish for the best success at catching that elusive bass. I’ve found that a simple anchor always helps me to not worry about drafting and lets me keep focus on the fishing instead. The one that I use is from Airhead (Jet Logic A-2 Complete Folding Anchor) and it has served me well.

  • Rod Holders:scotty-powerlock-rod-holder

Another product that helps to minimize unnecessary distractions is a rod holder. The rod holder has saved me many times while out kayaking, it has prevented the loss of my rod when getting into hairy situations while kayaking and is definitely one of the items that are worth more than its weight in gold. I’ve tried out better-known brands such as Scotty and Cannon, both have not let me down thus far and holds up pretty well quality wise. So get one if you’ve not already! Check out this article from paddling.com for an in-depth guide to how to install a rod holder.

  • Drywear:redington-crosswater-wader

This is for our friends up in the Northeast area or any colder regions. Hypothermia is not a joke and we need to take it seriously when out fishing, especially when we are in a kayak where capsizing is more common than making a catch (sadly). I’ve personally found 2 solutions that have worked well for me and I believe they will address any problems you might have.

  1. Waders, I’ve seen many who are into waders and have done well with them, they are my personal first choice when if I’m heading to an area where waters are not too deep and temperatures are within the manageable range. The one that I use is this Redington Crosswater Wader, it is up to chest height which makes a big difference. I also recommend you find one that is more fitting to your body, it’ll be less cumbersome when you move around and rotate in the tight confines of your kayak seat.
  2. However, there is one big flaw with a wader, that is they are not watertight. This becomes a big problem for me when the temperature drops and whenever I capsize. Thus my go-to solution in the colder months is actually a drysuit. I know and I hear you! It is more expensive and usually a pain to get in and out of, but boy was I always thankful that I’m wearing it in colder waters, thus the tradeoff is always well worth it for me. A brand that I’m familiar with and uses is this O’Neill Wetsuits Boost Drysuit, another that’s a cheaper variant is this one from Crewsaver which I’ve heard to be good.

 

  • Fish Grip:united-plastics-fish-grip

This one was a hard lesson learned from my first few outings when kayak fishing. All the excitement of catching a good size bass brought a huge smile on my face! But of course, that feeling was short lived when I was holding up the fish by its mouth while my buddy was trying to get a good picture. Next thing I know, a wiggle by the fish and I’ve almost lost my thumb. That was a lesson learned which lead to me my quick order of a pair of United Plastics Fish Grip on Amazon.

This little device has been a lifesaver and its usage can be applied in many ways, from that memory shot we like to get to helping remove any deep-seated hooks that the fish swallowed. This floating plier will provide a vice-like grip on the lips of the fish without injuring it. Definitely, a mush have on every fishing trip!

Wrap Up

And there you have it, our recommendation of the best kayaking accessories that one needs when out in the water. We hope you find this useful and integrate it into your kayaking system. In this holiday season, I’m sure a few of the above items would make great gift ideas for any kayaking lovers you may know! If you are also interested in getting a new kayak or a new spinning reel, do check out our best inflatable kayak review or our best spinning reel review!