Author Topic: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions  (Read 1667 times)

Offline CoachWalleye74

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Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« on: May 05, 2020, 11:53 AM »
I've always been intrigued with having a reel "operate" (drag, spin, etc) more efficiently.  I clean my reels out of the box and once a year (remove excess oil and grease, dust, re-lubricate with quantum hot sauce).

There's been some posts on changing to carbon drag washers and how much smoother that makes a reel.  Thoughts/opinions?

Is there a company that changes these for you, or do you buy the washers ans change yourself?

Does this work for inlines?

I am leaning towards trying this with 2-3 of my ice reels and 2-3 of my open water reels. 

Offline slipperybob

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2020, 10:05 PM »
Buy the washers and change them out for yourself.

Personally have not had a reel burned out it's drag.  I make sure to back off the drags when not in use.  Some are old style, old oil felt washer drags.  On the low end smoothness I'll stick with felt washers.  Except for my super cheap 10-$20 reels I just don't see a need to change up.

Newer ones with carbon drags...well they are smooth too.  However that super low end pressure smoothness isn't there.  It sort of works more so along the mid range benefits.

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Offline hardwater diehard

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #2 on: May 06, 2020, 12:03 PM »


Give a man a fish he eats for a day .Teach a man to ice fish he has an obsession for a lifetime

Offline gorf37

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #3 on: May 07, 2020, 11:10 AM »
I'm guessing you already read my last post on the subject...

I fish a lot of heavy fish on heavy line.  My laker/pike/burbot rigs are all spooled with 20lb triline big game with 25lb fluoro leaders, so bottom-end drag sensitivity u/slipperybob is referencing isn't really on my radar.  Even my 'light' rigs are 6lb mono/fluoro.

What is on my radar is fishing outside in cold weather.  My go-to dead stick is a rod in a coil holder, and very often it lives in -30C while I fish in my pop-up.  When a drag seizes in the cold and a big pike hits in shallow water, the results are spectacular, I'm surprised I haven't broken a rod!  I have a really old felt drag shimano that doesn't mind the cold.  I assume either it never had any oil or the oil is long since gone.  Any new spinning reels I've bought in the past 5 years all have oiled felt drags, and they seize up terribly in the cold.  I did the sonora's drag upgrade and it made all the difference in the world.  The drag is smooth throughout the range I would ever use, and it performs consistently no matter the temperature.

If temperature sensitivity didn't drive me, I don't know that I would bother.  I've never had any trouble with the felt drags otherwise.  The thing that really put it out of the park for me was the cost.  For $10CAD it's not really a risk.  I recommend just picking a reel and trying it.

My research is that any reel can be upgraded, provided you're up to having it apart enough to access the drag.  I imagine in-lines are a little more involved to get at the drag than spinning reels.

Offline RStock521

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #4 on: May 08, 2020, 07:32 PM »
I did the carbon drag washer thing on my Stradic Ci4+, and two 2500 Nasci's.  To be honest, I can't really tell a difference.  I use the Nasci on my steelhead rod, so I thought that they would help on drag-peeling runs, and meh, I can't really tell.  For $10, it was a minimal investment and I'm keeping them in there.  Give them a try if you're curious, a lot of people swear by them.

Offline HWeber

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #5 on: May 10, 2020, 12:41 PM »
If it helps with temperature sensitivity it'd be worth it.  I have a couple Siena's that the drags need to be backed off significantly if you go outside

Offline Seamonkey84

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #6 on: May 10, 2020, 01:13 PM »
From what Iíve read, itís improved reliability in extreme temperature, and itís smooth through the whole range of the drag, no stop and slip. Havenít done it it my reels yet, but I have a few I want to try it in soon.

Offline HWeber

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #7 on: May 10, 2020, 05:40 PM »
Anyone willing to share a link to where to buy them?

Offline OldSailor

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Don't reel against the drag!!!

Ex Minnesnowta lad! You can take the lad out of Minnesnowta, but you can't take Minnesnowta out of the lad!!

Offline Rebelss

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #10 on: May 10, 2020, 08:43 PM »
HWeber, I know there's a place in California called Smoothdrag that I have ordered some from in the past for my Shimano's. My cuz who lives in Pismo Beach turned me on to them....they sell little kits of them depending on your reel brand. Maybe they can help ya.

                                    


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Offline gorf37

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #11 on: May 10, 2020, 09:02 PM »
I bought mine from HP Reel Bearings via eBay.  (eBay appears to have more models listed than their website.) https://www.hpreelbearings.com

Offline HWeber

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #12 on: May 10, 2020, 11:13 PM »
Thanks for the recommendations.

Offline OldSailor

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #13 on: May 11, 2020, 09:42 AM »
Thanks so much.  I guess wanting places people have personally bought them from its too much to ask. In some cases personal experience trumps Google.
I'm sorry that you didn't appreciate my general answer. My crystal ball is broke and I can't get parts for it anymore! Now I understand that you wanted personal experience for guidance. Don't forget the 'google' route as a part of your research! A lot of good videos and contact information in there!! Good luck!!  :thumbsup:
My two favorite college football teams are Ohio State and whoever's playing Michigan!!!

Don't reel against the drag!!!

Ex Minnesnowta lad! You can take the lad out of Minnesnowta, but you can't take Minnesnowta out of the lad!!

Offline RStock521

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #14 on: May 11, 2020, 11:45 AM »
I highly recommend Smooth Drag.  They have everything you need for reel maintenance, all the greases and everything.

http://www.smoothdrag.com/

Offline matzilla

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #15 on: May 15, 2020, 01:36 PM »
I wouldn't add carbon....i actually prefer oiled felt for panfish. I pull the drag apart on all my reels 1-2 times a year and reoil with synthetic reel oil. All my ice reels have polished steels which helps more with smoothness than anything else.




I have a carbon drag reel - it works great when properly tuned but oiled felt will always have a smoother breakaway with polished steels

Catchin' Fish

Offline RStock521

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #16 on: May 15, 2020, 01:53 PM »
I wouldn't add carbon....i actually prefer oiled felt for panfish. I pull the drag apart on all my reels 1-2 times a year and reoil with synthetic reel oil. All my ice reels have polished steels which helps more with smoothness than anything else.


(Image removed from quote.)

I have a carbon drag reel - it works great when properly tuned but oiled felt will always have a smoother breakaway with polished steels

Care to share how you polish the steel?  Just a wire brush on a wheel?

Offline Baetis62

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #17 on: May 15, 2020, 02:37 PM »
I'm interested in Zilla's answer too.  I ordered some Carbon Washers but only for the Sienna 2500 I use on my Laker rods. My thinking is that the value reel might need some extra beef if I hook into a good fish.  I don't want to mess with my Stradic, Symetres or Sedonas.  I'm curious about polishing the steel but also if there might be an upgraded felt washer available out there?

Offline Rebelss

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #18 on: May 15, 2020, 02:43 PM »
You use emery polishing compound and a felt buffing wheel to polish stainless.

                                    


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Offline Baetis62

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #19 on: May 15, 2020, 06:40 PM »
Thanks Reb.  Was actually thinking maybe scope lapping compound but the emery looks to be reasonably priced...right tool for the job.

Offline Rebelss

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #20 on: May 15, 2020, 07:40 PM »
Welcome. Places like Northern Tool and some good hardware stores have little "blocks" of it. Usually three different grades in a small pack. I actually need some more myself.

                                    


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Offline Seamonkey84

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #21 on: May 16, 2020, 05:14 PM »
Gee, if just polishing the metal parts make such a difference, why donít they just start that way?!? Or is it like one of those gunsmith tricks lol.

Offline Rebelss

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #22 on: May 16, 2020, 08:38 PM »
Gee, if just polishing the metal parts make such a difference, why donít they just start that way?!? Or is it like one of those gunsmith tricks lol.

Danged good question! ;D

                                    


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Offline matzilla

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Re: Carbon Drag Reel options/opinions
« Reply #23 on: May 18, 2020, 08:38 AM »
step sand down to 1000 grit then polishing compound and a buff....for ice fishing you usually don't need to increase the drag force, you want to decrease the breakaway force. Think smooth transition from no drag to drag and back again

Catchin' Fish

 



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