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Putting the cart before the horse

September 2014
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I’ll admit to being spoiled. Over the years, the reels I’ve owned have tended to be Penns, Daiwas, and Shakespeares. Reels take wear and tear and occasionally need repairs. In the case of all three manufacturers, all you have to do these days is go to the corporate website, find the parts diagrams online, and order the parts.

In those halcyon days before the internet, all reels came with parts diagrams in the box. This is why I’m spoiled.

Last year, I bought a rod and trolling reel combo as a “pick your own birthday present” thing. I decided it was time to step into the next century, or the current one at least, and get a trolling reel with a line counter. I picked up a Rapala combo from Canadian Tire.

Now, less than a year later, the reel basically fell apart. The level wind stopped functioning, as did the line counter, and the reel jammed. I took it apart and found a number of pieces cheerfully floating around, enjoying their newfound freedom from those restraints that kept them in the places where they were previously located. Such exuberant freedom cannot be tolerated, so I reassembled the parts in their appropriate position, reassembled the cover, and immediately watched the results of them escaping again. Some retaining piece, not contained in the reel body and located somewhere undiscoverable, is not there.

Going online to the Rapala site was useless. I couldn’t find a parts diagram. Actually, I couldn’t even find the reel on the site by its model number. So, with their somewhat limited Contact Us link on the page, I asked for a parts diagram so I could order repair parts.

Credit where credit is due, I got a response in about 12 hours. However, the request was for the parts I wished to order. How do I know this when I don’t have a parts diagram? I suppose I could have asked for the doodad that goes on the end of the whatchamacallit, but figured I should probably point out that I need the parts listing to order the parts I need. I’m still waiting for the response.

At this point, I’m thinking that the rod is quite nice, and the reel, useful for nothing else as is, did come with a lot of really good fishing line…

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