Start your search here


Can the chipped edge on my spool be fixed?

If your spool is a yellow DMC spool this can be patched with Plasti Bond compound or Araldite available from your local hardware.

Slightly over fill the chip and allow compound to set then sand back to shape with very fine sand paper (minimum 240 grit) or file.

Bakelite spools can be patched with Araldite using the same method and you may even glue a broken section back into the spool.

Later spools are injection moulded and any rough surface areas can usually be sanded back to be smooth or again use Araldite if required.

How do I adjust the tightness of the index mechanism on the side cast reel?

  1. Loosen the lock nut on the top of the reel.
  2. Tighten the screw through the index plate until it is firm then loosen off about a 1/4 of a turn.
  3. You must hold the screw driver firmly in place at this position while you do up the lock nut firmly. If you do not hold the screw in position while adjusting the lock nut the adjustment will vary.
  4. If the reel is too hard or too loose to turn then repeat adjustment either with less or more release on the screw before doing the lock nut up. This must be done with the screw driver holding the screw in position.


How do I change ball bearings in my 475 model reel?

Steps to change sealed ball bearings in 475 Ball bearing reels.

Remove old bearings

  1. Remove spindle cap and take the spool off the back plate.
  2. Remove ball bearing retaining bush on back of spool (this is a tight press fit, lever off carefully from a number of positions).
  3. Remove spindle from back plate, undo hex nut then using shifting spanner on the ‘D’ of the spindle unscrew the spindle.
  4. Locate the short end of the spindle in the front of the spool.
  5. Turn over the spool and spindle, rest the spindle on a wooden board and gently push down on the spool, this should force the bearings out of the spool housing.

Insert new bearings, note bearings must be replaced squarely or damage can occur when pressing into the housing.

DO NOT push in the new bearings on the inside part of the bearing as this will damage the bearing.

  1.  Place spool face down on a drill press table. Support the centre boss so handles are not damaged, or remove the handles.
  2. Using a piece of dowel as close to the same diameter as the outside of the bearing as possible, use the drill press to push the first bearing squarely into the housing.
  3. Insert the spacer bush.
  4. Repeat process 2 with the second bearing.
  5. Replace the bearing retaining bush, this may need to be glued.
  6. Screw the spindle into the back plate and lock into to place with hex nut.
  7. Assemble the spool to the back plate.
  8. Fit the spindle cap

How do I replace drag knob on a 500BC MkII reel?

The replacement of the drag knob is a little difficult because the knob is a tight press fit.

To remove the knob firstly remove the spindle screw, D washer and then the spool.

With a Philips head screw driver remove the drag pawl and washer, the drag cam will now slide up the spindle.

To enable the knob to be removed you now have to drill the centre out of the knob, a drill up to 8mm (5/16″) will do.

Once the knob is weakened a pair of multigrips should assist in removing the knob by collapsing the drilled out lever into the hole.

To insert the new knob, place the lever section through from the inside of the back, support the back allowing the knob to come through.

Using a wooden dowel and hammer give the inside of the knob a light tap to seat in the recess.

Replace the drag cam on the spindle, make sure it spins freely.

Replace the drag pawl with the drag pin (under the pawl) placed in the slot of the drag cam.

Replace small washer and tighten self tapping screw, then back screw off half a turn.

Make sure pawl and cam can move freely, adjust screw if required.

Place drag in off position 0.

Replace spool, D washer and spindle screw.


How do I restore my wooden spool?

The vast majority of wooden spools were Cedar, some were Silky Oak, and very early models may have been Camphor Laurel. Boat reels were manufactured from Marine Ply. If the spool is a reddish colour, the spool is Queensland Red Cedar timber.

The original reels had a Rosewood stain applied to add colour, over a Mahogany grain filler which was applied to the bare timber. To restore the final finish any clear lacquer used for timber floors is suitable. These are usually a two pot mix to achieve a hard surface and are usually UV stabilized to withstand sunlight (Polyurethane is one example). Sand between coats with a very fine sand paper or use Scotchbrite pads to achieve a fine finish. To achieve the best finish, the reel should be rotated while being painted then left to dry thoroughly between coats. The more coats applied, the deeper the finish.

How do you locate the drag pawl springs?


I can not get enough drag tension on my lever drag reel.

You can increase or decrease the amount of drag tension available on this style of reel by rotating the handle plate.

To do this first remove the spindle screw from the front of the reel, and then remove the ‘D’ washer.

If you now undo the top handle plate lock nut whilst holding the handle plate, you will be able to remove the handle plate. Take note of the current position of your handle plate.

You will notice that the friction tube where tha handle plate was located has 3 slots.

To increase the amount of tension you can apply through the drag advance the handle plate 1 slot in an clockwise position.

To reduce tension rotate 1 slot in an anti-clockwise position.

Replace the handle plate lock nut finger tight only to check your drag tension. If satisfied tighten but take care not to over tighten as you may damage the friction tube. Replace the ‘D’ washer and the spindle screw.

My drag reel ‘clicks’ as I turn the spool even though the fish alert is off.

The most common cause of this is the silent drag mechanism.

Remove the spindle screw and ‘D’ washer, then remove the spool from the back plate.

On the back plate you will see a bronze or brass drag pawl with a pin protruding.

Underneath the spool you will see a cam with a slot.

When assembling the spool to the back plate ensure that the pin on the drag pawl fits into the slot on the cam. This is best done with the drag in the ‘OFF’ position. Now engage the drag in the ‘ON’ position and wind forward. If assembled correctly the reel should now be silent. It may take a couple of goes to correctly assemble.

Now replace the ‘D’ washer and spindle screw.


What is better for maintaining my reel, oil or grease?

Although grease will stay on the reel a lot longer it does have the disadvantage of ‘gumming up’ after time, making the reel harder to wind and can stop the drag pawl engaging. It also collects sand and becomes more of a grinding paste than lubricant.

After a days fishing a quick rinse in fresh water and the application of our Alvey Oil (or sewing machine oil) on moving parts such as the spindle, casting mechanism, handles and drag pawl and lever, will ensure your reel is ready for any action on the next fishing trip.