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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Finally caved to pressure and bought an abu 6500 used off of ebay as a fixer upper project for $40. The reel is a late 80's model because I want to use it mostly in the salt so I wanted the anti-reverse dog, not the roller bearing of the newer models. Anyways, I finally got a chance to tear the reel down and see what was wrong with it. Mostly it seemed to be poorly assembled and greased too heavily. The dog was bent and not assembled correctly and this caused the reel not to reel properly. Easy fix and now I have the reel functioning pretty well for no extra money invested, which is nice.

One question though:
I took apart the drag assembly because even when loose the star drag was almost hitting on the tension knob. What I found was a carbon drag washer, which I like. But that's the problem, there was only one washer! No metal washers or anything just a single carbon washer. I have no experience with these 80's reels so I'm not sure if they are only supposed to have one washer? It seems to me that one washer won't be strong or smooth enough and it would make sense as to why the star drag was so far in. I have extra metal and carbon washers from other projects, I just don't want to go throwing parts in it that it isn't supposed to have.

On a side note: My next project is adding bait clickers to two of my 5500's to make them better for catfishing. Anyone ever done this? Following the instructions from this website : http://www.learntocatchcatfish.com/adding-bait-clicker-abu-garcia-reel/
Seems pretty straight forward. I found all of the parts to do both reels for less then $10.
 

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Red X Angler
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yeah, you need to find the schematics for that reel. pretty sure you should have several more washers (2 or 3 fiberglass/carbon washers, then 2 or 3 metal washers, i think) in that stack, and that accounts for at least part of the problem (i.e., star drag almost hitting the tension knob. you could order carbon fiber drag washers from smooothdrag, but you'll have to locate the stainless steel washers somewhere else, e.g., eBay or a shop that sells AG parts. FWIW // joel
 
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
yeah, you need to find the schematics for that reel. pretty sure you should have several more washers (2 or 3 fiberglass/carbon washers, then 2 or 3 metal washers, i think) in that stack, and that accounts for at least part of the problem (i.e., star drag almost hitting the tension knob. you could order carbon fiber drag washers from smooothdrag, but you'll have to locate the stainless steel washers somewhere else, e.g., eBay or a shop that sells AG parts. FWIW // joel
That'd what I figured. I just don't know much about these older abus so I wasnt positive. I have metal and carbon drag washer from scrap abus I bought for parts so I reckon I'll slap some in and try it out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Just took it apart to add washers and it appears that it IS designed for only one. The gear that the washers recess into is not recessed as much as the newer abu's. More then one washer won't fit. The schematics confirms this if I read it right. It's an odd design to me. I reckon that might be why they are famous for weak drags? I may swap out the entire drag assembly for one of the newer ones I have, if it will fit. Until then I added a couple of small spacers to give me more clearance between the star and the tension knob.
 

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I'm gonna highjack the thread a little bit. I have a 6500 c3 that is fairly old. I know its older than 1997, probably from the early 90's or late 80's though as it was my stepdads and he hadn't fished since then.

How can I date this reel accurately and how do I know what kind of drag washers to put into it for a smoother drag? Right now it has a lot of the build up and release that I guess they are common for. I can tear it apart tomorrow and get pics if that would help. I'd like to use it for bait soaking drum fishing and musky/pike when I leave Nc.

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The serial number is 990705. What other info do I need to know in order to get some drag washers for it? Any other upgrades you recommend doing?

Also, the clicker bar seems really easy to move. Is there a way to stiffen it up? I keep accidentally turning it on when I'm casting with it.

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I like to put a ceramic pawl in as I have had two chrome ones wear out on me. It's just a few dollars on ebay and easy to install. As to the numbers, I'm having trouble decoding them. Do they have "-" or anything in between them? And is the reel seat checkered or smooth? From what I can tell, late 90's reels should have a 5 digit number and and the last digit would indicate the year of the 90's that it was produced. So possibly yours is a 96? 80's reels have the 6 digit number and the first two digits are the year but that would make no sense seeing as yours is 99 so obviously not from the 80's. Maybe the 6500's are different but I don't think so. Maybe post a picture of it? regardless and any of the pawls or bearings from the 80's and 90's should be interchangeable. I am by no means an expert, I've just been doing a ton of research about mine lately.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Dunno what your budget is, but you can't go wrong if you send it to Jerry Foran. http://www.hookless.com/index.html
He's also a great source of knowledge and parts if you want to work on it yourself.
That reel should probably have 2 drag washers, one underneath and one on top of the main gear. It's topped off with a 'drag plate', a thick metal washer.
Never thought to put one under the main gear. I'll check when I get home, I should have one that will fit lying around but that would make A TON more sense.
 

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Yep, it'll be something similar to this:
White Handwriting Product Font Motor vehicle

In that photo #5 is the bottom drag washer, then you have stack of drag and metal washers on top of the gear. You can probably find a schematic of your exact model on Google.
 
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