Reel cleaning is very important after fishing the salt. You spent some good coin on that Hatch 7 or Nautilus X so let’s make sure it lasts! After everyday fishing the salt, be sure to spray down your reel with some fresh water. Once your trip is over, it is important to do a more thorough cleaning. Here we want to separate the spool from the hub and soak it in some warm water. You don’t need to soak it long, I usually just do 5 or 10 mins, but the warm water will help break down any old salt particles. I then go ahead and soak both the spool and the hub in warm water with some mild soap. Try and avoid dish soap or anything too strong, but I do like to use some soap to really make sure I remove all the salt and grit. I take a soft wash cloth and lightly scrub everything with the soapy water before rinsing it with more warm fresh water. After this, make sure you let everything completely dry before replacing the spool on the housing.
I make sure to do this last step when I am back home in the states. Fresh water in some countries such as Belize, Mexico, and the Bahamas can still have a small brackish content to it. I spray the gear down everyday with this water after fishing, but once I return home, I give all my reels one more thorough cleaning before putting everything away.
And just a reminder, don’t forget to also clean your rod, pliers, flies, and pack zippers.
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