rod & reel submerged in saltwater

sjokosjoko Posts: 17 Greenhorn
A diver pulled up my rod & reel that had been sitting in 9' of saltwater in the ICW. They had been submerged for 3 weeks. What should I do to get them in working order again?


  • lemaymiamilemaymiami Posts: 2,908 Captain
    The rod might be okay with just a thorough washing using soap and warm water - then a careful rinse in freshwater, then allowed to dry thoroughly.  Once dry, wax both rod blank and reelseat with a good auto cleaner/wax.  You will have some lingering corrosion on the metal parts of your guides - but still get quite a bit of service from them before they finally need to be replaced (and eventually you'll want a complete re-wrap with new guides, thread, and finish) - but your rod is the least of your problems...

    That reel may be toast - and at the very minimum you're going to need to replace every washer and all the bearings.  If you can't tear it down right this minute  then just drop the entire reel into a container of freshwater to stop the corrosive salt effects - until you can either do the job yourself or get it to a repairman...  If you go to a repair facility you'll need to be cold-blooded about the cost of any repair since the cost might easily exceed what buying a used replacement reel in good usable condition would run, if you purchased the same model used...  

    These days many spinning and plug reels are pretty complicated and have lots of bearings (and it's the cost of replacing bearings that might make a repair -just not worth it...).  Even with a good clear schematic of the reel/year/model - just putting everything back together in correct fashion can be a challenge.  Iv'e been repairing reels now since the early 1970's and still have trouble with some of the more complicated reels currently available -and I have all the schematics on hand for Penn, Daiwa, Shimano, and Quantum... Don't even ask about off brands where you just can't get any parts - since they're just not available... 

    Hope this helps

    Tight Lines
    Bob LeMay
    (954) 435-5666
  • HooganHoogan Right on the edge of the EvergladesPosts: 515 Officer
    What Lemaymiami said.
    Unless you are referring to a $200 plus reel, it’s probably more practical to purchase a new one. Or it would be the perfect opportunity for you to start maintaining your own reels and save on the labor.
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