Getting into centerpin fishing can be expensive. When people see a reel costing upward of $600, it might deter them from getting into centerpin fishing. For those people willing to take the time with a do-it-yourself project they can have the best budget centerpin reel for under $60.
Most centerpin reel starts at $150. But you can find centerpin reel on eBay or Amazon for around $40. The quality of these reels aren’t really good but they provide a solid foundation for a good centerpin reel.
The signature of a good centerpin is how well the centerpin spins, both in the initial spin start and the smoothness of the continuous spin. And it is the bearings that mediate these two spinning factors. This project will take the cheap centerpin reel and replaced bearings with the high-end ABEC 7 ceramic centerpin reel bearings resulting in the best budge centerpin reel.
Where to buy the best budget centerpin reel?
Click on the buttons below to search for the best budget centerpin reel:
These reels are mass produced in China and are not sold under a single brand name. They are sometimes re-branded under generic names making them difficult to find. The best way to find them is to use the picture as reference. They have a 108mm or 4 1/4 inches diameter and are sometimes referred to as “center pin float reel 4 1/4 inches” or “center pin trout reel”. They range in price from $38-$70. Don’t pay more than $50 for it!
Now click on the buttons below to search for the ABEC 7 Ceramic Bearings:
These bearings are similar to the ones used in high-end centerpin like the Islander Steelheaders. The bearings are ABEC 7 Ceramic Ball Bearings. You will need 2 of these bearings one for the front and one for the back. The bearings size is: 7x14x5 mm
Inner = 7mm
Outer = 14mm
height = 5mm
Warning: Before you buy the ABEC 7 Ceramic Bearings take the reel apart to confirm the bearing specs are correct.
Once you receive the reel and bearings the bearing upgrade process is simple.
- Remove the screw from the front of the reel.
- Take off the cap and remove the front bearing.
- Take the spool off and remove 4 screws on the back of the spool and remove the sprocket.
- Replace the back bearing and re-attach the sprocket with 4 screws and put the spool back on reel bracket.
- Replace the front bearing with the ceramic bearing, put the cap and screw back on.