Daiwa UK's advice on general spinning reel maintenance, including Magsealed reels

A friend of mine recently had some issues with his Daiwa Certate Magsealed spinning reels, and via some people I know up at Daiwa UK I got to asking them - as an angler - what we should be doing to better try and look after or protect our spinning reels against the ravages of saltwater especially.

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We all have our own ways of trying to look after our fishing tackle, but at the end of the day if you or I spend a lot of time around saltwater, spinning reels especially are going to suffer - how fast they suffer depends on any number of different factors, but I can’t help but be drawn to a Daiwa’s Magsealed technology and how it claims to do a really good job at keeping the bad stuff out of the reels’ internals. Does Magsealed actually do this a better job at this than say a Shimano or Penn spinning reel? I have my own opinions here that are based upon personal experiences and also some trusted friends who use and abuse some different Mag Sealed spinning reels, but whatever does or does not seem to work, below are Daiwa UK’s instructions on how we as anglers should be treating our spinning reels - the company’s exact words are in bold text, with some comments of mine interspersed in regular text. A big thanks to Daiwa UK for providing me with this document to use here, I hope it might prove useful.  

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General Reel Maintenance FAQ’s

This page is intended as a quick guide to the best practices when maintaining your Daiwa reels.

  • How can I minimise damage to my reel during use?

Saltwater is your number one enemy, followed closely by sand or dirt. Try your best not to get saltwater or sand onto or into your gear.

Cradle your outfit in your arm rather than laying it in the sand

Put your gear away whilst travelling in a boat to avoid exposure to salt spray

  • Do I need to maintain my reel after using it?

Yes, absolutely. Simple maintenance will prolong the life of your reel, and ensure that it continues to function with optimum performance.

  • My Reel is Magsealed. How do I service it?

All Magsealed reels should be returned to the

Daiwa service centre for servicing of Magsealed components.

  • My Reel is Magsealed. Is it waterproof?

Absolutely NO!

Magsealed is a barrier designed to reduce water and dust penetration into the reel through the most common points of entry during normal use.

Magsealed does not completely waterproof or dust proof your reel!

I think a lot of anglers are perhaps making the assumption that the Magsealed technology is actually completely sealing their spinning reel against saltwater and sand or dust intrusion, but as per Daiwa’s text above, this is not the case. I note with interest though that these words can be found here on Daiwa’s global website, and I quote: “MAGSEALED is a technology that implements a special liquid material developed by space engineering called "MAGOIL". "MAGOIL" is used to create a water and dust-resistant barrier. Unlike normal oils MAGOIL can be solidified using a magnetic force, creating a practical solution to permanently seal a device from water.”

Note the word “resistant” above, which does not mean sealed against, but then in the next sentence you find the phrase “creating a practical solution to permanently seal a device from water”. Ummmm. As much as I have loved fishing with a number of Daiwa spinning reels over the years, Magsealed technology is sure as hell not permanently sealing the reels against saltwater intrusion, and especially not around the roller bearing area as per a blog post of mine here which you might want to have a look at.

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Similar thing here, again quoting from the Daiwa website: “All mechanical products are destined to lose their performance as time passes. Daiwa's solution to this problem is "MAGSEALED". "MAGSEALED" blocks water and prevents degradation and performance fatigue caused by saltwater and dust that may enter the main reel mechanism, preserving a light and smooth rotation for optimal performance. Every angler's dream come true.” Note the word “blocks” above - surely that implies that Magsealed technology is meant to be blocking water from getting in, as opposed to simply resisting its intrusion?

  • How often should I wash my reel?

If you fish in saltwater, it is inevitable you will get small amounts on your gear and what you do from there is quite important. Simply leaving it to sit on your gear can be the start of problems.

Whether you fish in freshwater or saltwater, Daiwa recommends washing your gear after every outing.

  • How do I wash my reel?

The best defence against saltwater is a light spray of freshwater to wash it away.

Tighten the drags to avoid water contamination of the drag stack.

Using a garden hose, tighten the nozzle right down until only a fine mist is coming out. Lightly “mist” over the outside of the reel to remove any residual salt. Then spray the rod paying attention to the guides.

Afterwards, grip the outfit near the reel seat and shake off any excess water. DO NOT bang the rod butt on the ground or hard surface.

Loosen the drag right back so as not to compress the drag washers.

Let your gear air dry out of the sun.

I do hose my spinning reels down after use, but I hadn’t thought of tightening down the drag before doing so, but thanks to this document I do now, and then loosen it after a spray down.

  • What do I do if my reel gets completely “dunked” in water?

Total immersion in water of any kind, but particularly saltwater, is bad news for a reel.

Daiwa recommends you have the reel stripped and rebuilt by our service centre.

  • What do I do if my reel gets completely “dunked” in saltwater?

If your reel has been immersed in saltwater, follow these steps as quickly as possible:

Re-immerse the reel in a bucket of freshwater

Shake out the water

Refill the bucket with more freshwater

Re-immerse the reel again.

Repeat until you are confident there should be no salt left.

Sounds like some really good advice to me, but how can we be confident that there “should be no salt left” when on a Magsealed reel especially we are not meant to be opening the thing up?

Have the reel stripped and rebuilt by our service centre as soon as possible (be sure to advise them that the reel has been submerged).

NB: Freshwater inside a reel, while not good is nowhere near as bad as salt which could start damaging reel components within days.

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  • Can I use Penetrating Lubricant Sprays on my reel?

Daiwa does not recommend the use of aerosol style penetrating lubricant sprays directly on or in any of our reels.

These sprays have a tendency to do more long term harm to the reel than any short term benefits that they may have. These sprays tend to dissolve and strip away the grease from inside bearings and gears leaving them dry and more prone to long term corrosion.

These lubricant sprays can be sprayed onto a clean rag and safely wiped over the reel

  • Should I oil/grease my reel?

Oils should not be used on internal mechanical parts of Daiwa reels as they will also eventually thin grease reducing lubrication of the bearings and gears.

Oils & Grease are good in a few key areas outlined below.

Grease

When using grease in your Daiwa reel it is most effectively used in moderate amounts on parts that contact and move on other parts.

Grease is the best lubricant, The Daiwa service team choose to use it.

Daiwa recommends applying grease directly to individual parts with a small paintbrush or similar tool rather than squeezing an unnecessary amount from outside the reel body.

Oil

Oil is most often used in reels intended for cold climates where grease becomes too thick.

The three places where oil is very useful is as follows

The handle knob bearings of all reels

Line roller bearings of spinning reels

Spool bearings of bait cast reels.

In these situations oil can be used often but should be used in tiny amounts. One drop is more than enough for each bearing and any more will be a waste.

Please note, never put oil down the main shaft of a spinning reel as this is the most common cause of a slipping anti reverse.

Funnily enough I’ve got one of those old blue coloured Daiwa Luvias 3000 spinning reels here, and the anti-reverse is in fact slipping - and I wonder if me having put some oil on the main shaft has caused that? I love this reel so I will send it to the excellent Ron Whittingdon of Unit 5 Reel Servicing & Repair for a bit of love and attention (check this blog post here for more details).

Anyway, so there you go. Thanks again to Daiwa UK for their help here, but as you can tell from my own questions above - and believe me, I could ask so many more questions here - there do seem to be some, how shall we put it, “grey” areas when it comes to the whole Magsealed thing? A few times now I have heard of anglers receiving some pretty big repair bills for their Magsealed Certate reels especially, and if you take into consideration the two year warranty these particular reels have plus what is stated on the Daiwa websites as to what the Magsealed technology is actually meant to do, well to me that raises a bunch of stuff that I don’t feel remotely qualified to try and answer. Do we as anglers unrealistically hope for too much from our spinning reels, or are the tackle companies giving us degrees of false hope about saltwater protection especially?