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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Have been experiencing an issue with my Symetre 3000FL -- and I think the same thing is starting to happen with my Sahara 2500: as I turn the reel handle, I experience one point in the cycle where I feel resistance, i.e., handle doesn't turn 360 degrees smoothly. It's faint/weak but noticeable, especially when reeling slack (e.g., walking the dog w/a topwater lure) -- don't feel it so much if reeling quickly. It's a small thing, but its annoying, especially from a reel that has otherwise been extremely smooth.

Have carefully taken reel apart repeatedly and have eliminated the possibility that it's a bearing or the roller clutch AR cartridge. It occurs when the oscillating slider (RD15431 -- see image excerpt from reel schematic below) is working the oscillating gear (RD15432) -- the slider reaches a point in its cycle around the gear where it generates a lot of resistance before it will complete its circuit. Have torn it all down and (re)greased repeatedly. Finally have the mechanism where the resistance can hardly be felt as you turn the handle, but it's still there. I can't find anything wrong -- no missing parts, no bent parts (looked hard at the oscillating guide, #RD15434), etc. When 2nd reel (Sahara) started manifesting the same issue, I began to wonder what's up -- anyone have a clue? Thanks -- Joel

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Some people replace that drive gear bushing (RD5431) with a bearing (i think 7x11x3mm but not certain yet), but not convinced that's relevant to the problem. (Shimano uses a bushing there on the drive handle where you'd typically expect a bearing -- and does this on multiple models, even on some models more expensive than the $100 Symetre, I think.) Perhaps it could make the handle circuit just a little smoother and reduce that resistance from the oscillating mechanism a bit more. Would try it if I had that bearing size handy, otherwise will have to order. FYI -- joel
 

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Mine does the same thing. It was bought new back in April. I just lube it really well and try not to dunk it. I have been using silicone spray and it seems to work for the day unless the reel gets soaked in the surf.

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
these problems with my Shimano reels did come after a week of saltwater fishing in which I "spritzed" the reels with fresh water then wiped them down. but they were also outside for the whole week in a (covered) boathouse -- so were exposed to tropical-like Florida humidity. It did occur to me that the problem might have been aggravated by high humidity and perhaps moisture build-up inside the reels. but, of course, this didn't affect any of my other reels -- and there was no obvious moisture inside the reels when I tore them down. Plus they've continued to manifest these symptoms (slight resistance in the oscillating mechanism when you slowly turn the handle 360 degrees). will keep working on it and post any progress. so far, best advice is just clean all components of the oscillating mechanism well (gear, slider, main shaft), then grease -- and I put more grease inside the oscillating slider than I normally would. Now I can hardly noticed the resistance. But I can still partially disassemble the reel and turn the oscillating mechanism manually -- and *still* feel that resistance at the same point in the oscillating gear's rotation. beginning to think this might just be partly the physics of this oscillating mechanism, and normally you don't feel that resistance when the mechanism is properly cleaned and lubed.

FYI -- joel
 

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Mine has never been close to the coast and still gives that rub. I did put some rocket lube on it and it seems to have made it tolerable.
 
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I WAS a Shimano man hands down. I started with the Sonora (orange) and had several in different sizes. They lasted about two to three years with normal care. Cost was 40 to 50 dollars so maybe 15 dollars per year per reel. I then bought several Symetre and after a year the lock up starts. Still under warranty so off to Goldsboro to have fixed. It was worse when I got it back than when I carried it.
Call Shimano, send reel and we will replace or fix it OK. New reel arrives and after less than a year it starts the now famous Shimano Lock-up. Call factory and send reel back -they have a problem with some friction rings- send me a new upgrade Soros (free). Well after a year it starts the Lock-up. I did buy a Stradic CL4 on sale and so far no problems. I will say for the money and being problem free I bought a Pflueger president reel and going on three years it was best reel for money. I will agree to what one dealer said buy a good 40-50 dollar reel use it up and throw away, will last just as long as a 100-150 dollar reel. Have seen good and a few bad reports on the Battle ll reels. My reels are used to try and catch a trout,flounder,small drum and striped bass. I use the 1000, 1500 and 2500 sizes with most being 1000 size. We are not the only ones talking about the Shimano Lock-Ups as they call them. Finally I have noticed what the factory told me It will start the lock-up after reels has been used for 30 minutes or more, turns free until a little resistance is applied to reel-MR-17- Long winded but boat is in shop with BAD tilt-trim motor !
 

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Last year I bought a Battle II and a Symetre at the same time. I have used them side by side every week since October and the Penn reel is as smooth as it was on day 1 while the Shimano is starting to lock up on me. I was a Shimano man for years but my next reel will be a Penn. I wish Penn still made the 430 SS, those things were a work horse. ~JOE~
 

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I have/had this EXACT same problem with 4 Shimano Sustain 2500 reels! Sent 3 back for repair and Shimano replaced some gears but when they were returned I had the same problem AGAIN. This is why I will NEVER purchase another product from Shimano. I was really disappointed when they purchased GL Loomis and ruined a good rod company but I am sure that Gary made out. I now have several Daiwa Certate 3000 & 3500 reels & they have all worked very well for about 4 years so far without any problems. Please keep us informed with what your status is & thanks. Reference this site.

http://www.walleyecentral.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-138678.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hope y'all don't mind, but also posted this issue on Alan Tani's reel repair forum and may have a solution -- or at least a solution / explanation for my reel problem. One knowledgeable user suggested the problem was caused by a slight mismatch of the main and pinion gears that could be improved by adding (or removing) shims to change or "tune" how those gears mate.

I just tore down and reassembled my Symetre. [....] I watched and felt the main & pinion gear movement carefully and [realized that] something about the match-up between the main and pinion gear was not perfect in the way my reel was assembled. After reviewing the schematic carefully, I noticed I didn't reinstall the drive gear bushing (#5431) correctly. The schematic clearly shows it with the gear installed with its two "teeth" pointing away from the main gear (and into the housing of the reel opposite the handle). Can't be that simple, can it?! The two "teeth" keep [or raise] that bushing just a "hair" (technical term!) higher and therefore effect how the main gear mates with the pinion gear just slightly. And now I can no longer feel that "resistance" when I turn the reel handle 360 degrees. This may be more complicated, and time will tell. Will report back after I put a few miles on the reel.

If this is even close to correct, it would suggest that if you were to replace that drive gear bushing with a bearing, you'd definitely need to shim it slightly to mate the main gear properly with the pinion gear.

FWIW // Joel
 

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I read a lot of smallie talk on the internet and I have ready many times where people experience Shimano spinning reels locking up after getting a dunking in freshwater. My Sedona 2500's have been underwater many times and I have yet to experience it but expect I will one day.

It may not mean anything but my Sedona 2500's came with a spare metal spool and have the original small handle like the 1000 does now. It could be mine are first generation and built better. I bought them for $45 bucks from a hunting shop that had had them for years. I hate the handle on the new 2500 they use.

FWIW I have several Shimano built Lew's Speed spools from the 1980's that have thousands of miles on them and been abused like you would not believe that work great still. I guess even in Japan they don't build them like they used to.

I can't think it's better to spend big bucks on a spinning reel. Better to go under 50 bucks and throw it out ( or give to Mack) if it acts up and buy a new one. To me the way the handle feels is key in a spinning reel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
just some follow-up notes:

  • I'm skeptical that the orientation of this gear bushing is really the cause/solution of the problem. But when inserted correctly, it does essentially "shim" the main gear slightly and therefore could effect the precise alignment of the main gear with the pinion gear. If it is the cause/solution, then the toleration between that main and pinion gear is pretty fine and unforgiving. Will take some photos next time I tear the reel down. Right now I just wanna put some time on the reel to see if the issue is truly resolved or different.
  • I did tear down my Sahara 2500 (forget exact series) as well, and discovered the oscillating mechanism is significantly different. This difference also means that it's difficult to actually remove the gear bushing (which corresponds to part #RD5431 in the Symetre schematic above) in which the main gear rests. (It's difficult to remove the main gear in the Symetre without also pulling out that gear bushing -- increasing the odds that I'll reinstall it improperly.) So I've never actually removed it on the Sahara and therefore it's unlikely it had anything to do with the resistance/roughness I felt in the reel. Think that reel just needed a good clean and lube -- had been months since I did that, and was giving it a workout with hours of daily fishing. It's been fine since I cleaned/lubed it -- almost as smooth now as it was when new (I've fished it pretty hard for ca. 3 years).
  • Haven't had a chance to tear down my Sedona 2500 -- it's brand new and would like to keep it that way for a little while before I take it apart (!). But will inspect all this very carefully (oscillating mechanism, main & pinion gear matchup, design of gear bushing, etc.) and post anything helpful.

FWIW -- Joel
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
missed this earlier. reel [Symetre 3000FL] now *seems* to be working fine (see rest of thread -- improper installation of gear bushing [now corrected] may have negatively affected the alignment of main and pinion gears). but a warped or worn tooth could affect how those gears mate as well. will visually inspect more carefully next time I tear the reel down -- and check my Sahara 2500, too, as I *did* fight a ca. 20-30lb cobia for 20min or so on it last season! thanks -- joel

Sounds like to me you may have a slightly warped gear OR maybe a tooth or 2 have worn down a bit.. Did you catch any tarpon on that 3k you really had to put the heat on?
 

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I have a 2500 and I also had the same problem, found out it was the shaft. going from the spool to the gear assembly! You can order a new shaft, or just do like I did and heat it and bend it! Just remember that don't bend to hard it will break. Then the other thing is having a new one sent to you, but then it may cost more then it is worth. If it cost to much then cheaper to buy another reel after all they are around $60.00 plus tax and shipping.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yeah, a bent shaft would definitely do it! Was it very obvious on inspection? I suspected at first that might be my problem, but it wasn't. Seems like even a very slight bend would cause problems.

I have a 2500 and I also had the same problem, found out it was the shaft. going from the spool to the gear assembly!
 

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I've been away for a bit and I just saw this thread. In my opinion, the Shimano reels have a design flaw. I don't know for certain, but I'm almost sure that parts 15432 and 15431 are both aluminum. I'm sure 15434 and the main shaft are stainless or chromed steel. Aluminum parts grab onto each other without good lubrication and the steel (being harder than aluminium) would wear the top hole of 15431 over time. As 15431 wears it can bind up at points in the motion, just as you describe. Lots of lubrication can alleviate the problem but as soon as the grease dries our or is washed away the problem comes back. The design flaw is that the main shaft should enter part 15431 in the center and not a the bottom which allows it to apply a torque to 15434 and bind up unless there is perfect alignment or sufficient lubrication. If the main shaft entered the center of 15431 then 15434 is not necessary.

So to fix the problem I have 2 suggestions.
1.) Replace the regular grease on 15434, 15432, and 15431 with something like never-seize. This is good for keeping metals that want to bind up when threaded which is similar to what is happening here.
2.) Replace part 15431.

Hope this helps.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Just a follow-up: I did finally replace that drive gear bushing (RD5431) with a real bearing (size for the Symmetre 3000FL is 7x11x3mm - just got a generic bearing from eBay). Will give it a workout this weekend, but between the work I've done on the reel combined with this bearing, the reel feels great. Didn't shim the bearing any, and right now it doesn't seem to need it. Time will tell. FYI -- joel
 

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Spider Crack, Wish you luck with it, my one reel was also fixed! But after trying to change the line it won't pull the line all over the spool. In fact it just stayed in one area and it build up and had no line on the spool in the rear of it!
 
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