THE issue I'd like to talk about this edition is the basic care of fishing gear.
At the end of every session, I wash my gear with fresh water. Anything that's been with me is hosed off and allowed to dry before being put away, including terminal tackle.
Salt is extremely corrosive and quickly degrades our gear to the point of repair or replacement. Salt gets left behind once saltwater and spray has dried and this causes corrosion very quickly.
Line guides: Tiny deposits get in between the metal frame of the guide and insert ring, and begin to grow and expand. They will eventually break the metal of the guide frame, which results in the ring falling out and leaving a corroded metal frame for our line to pass through. This drastically damages line and causes breakages.
Rod grips: Give these a thorough spray to remove any fish slime, scales or similar. If left, these cause pitting and damage to the grip material.
Reels: I screw my drags down tightly prior to hosing down. This helps seal some of the reel's internals against fresh water carrying tiny salt particles inside, causing corrosion. I then give the reel a good rinse down, not using too much pressure anywhere that water may force its way inside. I also ensure the line on the reel gets a good rinse off, as leaving salt deposits here can decrease its lifespan. Leave everything to dry for a couple of hours, then back the drags right off to nothing. Don't forget to back them off as it will lessen the drag’s effectiveness due to the drag washers being continually compressed. I turn the reel handle and open the bail arm while it’s under the hose, including the bail roller. Corrosion here causes seizing and pitting which damages line and costs us fish.
In general: A light oil or spray of Inox or similar on all metal and moving parts will increase the longevity and effectiveness of our equipment, as does storing gear out of the elements … inside.
Lastly, happy birthday to my mum, who turned 70 last week. While I don't think it's quite what she meant at the time … she always told me, when I was a young bloke, that if I didn't start behaving myself she'd be reading about me in the paper one day. Looks like you were right Mum!
Remember … Talk to old people, they know stuff you don't. Talk to young people, they know stuff you don't.