6) Next, clean and grease the main drive gear assembly. The main gear assembly is usually attached to a mounting plate that is then attached to the side plate. In this situation you need to remove the two screws that attach the mounting plate to the side plate. You can then carefully lift the whole mounting plate and gear assembly away from the side plate. In some cases, there will be no mounting plate and the gear assembly can just be lifted out. Clean and grease the gears liberally.
7) On top of the main drive gear you will notice the drag washers. Remove each drag washer carefully and set them aside in the EXACT same order as they are removed. Starting with the last washer removed apply a small amount of grease on your finger tips and massage the grease into the washer. Use a clean rag to wipe away all excess grease. The washers should feel dry. Grease and replace each washer in the same order as they were removed.
8) Be sure the interior of the side plate is clean and then mount the main drive gear mechanism back into the side plate.
9) If your reel contains bearings, you can grease or oil them at this point. If a bearing is seized, you can try to loosen it back up by smearing grease along the side of the bearing case to coat the ball bearings. Work the bearing back and forth to try to get the bearings rolling again. In the event that a bearing will not spin any longer, I recommend replacing the entire bearing rather than trying to disassemble the bearing. The parts are extremely small and fragile and the price of a new bearing is absolutely worth the price of not having to chase a dozen steel BB’s around your work space!
10) With the spool in place inside of the reel casing, position the right side plate and gear assembly over the end pin of the exposed spool. Line the screw holes up and press the two parts together. They should marry back up easily. Reinstall the screws into the side plate.
11) Screw the star drag back onto the reel and then mount the reel handle.
So, as you can see, greasing a reel is not necessarily rocket science but it does take some time, know how and a steady hand to handle the small parts. Many conventional and baitcasting reels are a bit more complicated than the one used for this tutorial. This lesson is really to be used in situations where you do not have the time to wait for professional service or you are unable to obtain professional service. It is always recommended that your fishing reels be serviced by an experienced service person. They’re experience often times allows them to identify issues before they become serious problems.
Now, take that newly greased conventional reel down to the water and put it to use!