Don't Get Salty- How to properly care for your Offshore Tackle

When it comes to fishing offshore one of the many challenges anglers face is not found while out on the water. The main challenge many anglers face is how to properly clean and store their gear to keep away salt corrosion. Salt corrosion occurs when a piece of gear is not properly maintained and cleaned after a day out on the water. Salt corrosion is especially troublesome when considering the investment an angler makes into  larger reels and more expensive rods. In this blog post we would like to outline our tips for properly maintaining and storing offshore gear to protect your investment.

Salt Corrosion - How does It Happen?

Salt corrosion occurs when any amount of salt comes into contact with a metal or plastic. When salt comes into contact with aluminum the effects may not be observed for several weeks however it can be detrimental in the long run and ruin a reel. This happens because the salt reacts with the aluminum and oxidizes the metal turning it into a brittle substance that can permanently damage the reels integrity. Salt can also seep into the innards of the reel and make core components become weak and seize up the reel also leaving the reel useless. This is why it is important to properly clean any gear used out in a saltwater environment to maximize the lifespan of your gear.

Methods for removing salt after a day out on the water:

There are many tried and true ways to remove salt after a day out on the water however some of the more mainstream ways may end up speeding up the corrosion process.

Saltaway - Saltaway is a compound that is made to remove salt from boats, reels, and more, however using too much can end up damaging the component you are trying to clean. When it comes to saltaway and cleaning fishing gear, it is best to use a diluted amount in a spray bottle to mist your reel then remove with a damp paper towel and spray with freshwater. This allows the salt to be removed and does not leave any salt away on the reel. NEVER: Soak a reel in saltaway as this can allow the compound to seep into the reel and destroy inner components.

Soap And Water:

This method is probably the go-to for many anglers and it works! Here at Eat My Tackle, we recommend that before going to clean your offshore reels, it is necessary to tighten down and engage the drag on your reel to keep contaminants from seeping into the internals of the reel. Start off using a light spray of freshwater and a small amount of dawn dish soap to remove any extra salt buildup, lightly wipe any residual salt and spray thoroughly with freshwater until all of the soapy residue is off of the reel. After rinsing, try to tap or shake out any remaining water. Leave the reel’s drag engaged and come back the following day once fully dry to back the drag off and spin the spool a couple of times to knock off any leftover grime. Dawn dish detergent is an excellent choice for cleaning offshore rods and reels because it's tough on dirt and grime, yet gentle on your equipment and biodegradable. 

In Conclusion:

Spending the time to properly clean and maintain your offshore gear saves time and money, and ensures that  the gear will perform as intended for years to come. While it may be time consuming after a long day on the water, it is more than worth it to protect your investment and keep your gear ready for the next trip.

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