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Abu 6500C3

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ABU's classic C series reels are a dream to work on. Wherever possible the engineering is similar between models, parts are often interchangeable between models of the same size and spares are readily available for most... even quite old... models.

I can't imagine how many 6500C3's are out there but its a whole lot. These 2 reels I acquired recently from another Fishraider and even though they were already well looked after, I decided to give them the treatment. One is a 6500C3 Daintree - model #06 00, the other is a slightly earlier #99 10.

There are only minimal differences between them... mostly around the clicker. If you have a 6500C3 of any model, I hope this service tutorial will help. Just open up your specific schematic and otherwise the general approach should be similar.

Here's the reels... for the tutorial I've focused on the 'Daintree' model.

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Back out the 2 right side plate assembly captive retaining screws and remove the side plate assembly... put it aside for later

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Remove the spool (Ref #970387)

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Now we can service the spool beginning by removing the spool shaft (Ref #802631) and the spool pinion gear (Ref #19373)

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Remove the brake assembly (Ref #19372 & #'s20211) from the other end of the spool after first removing the c-clip (Ref #13084) that secures it.

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Now the spool bearings (Ref #13472 - size 3x10x4mm) and bearing spring washer (Ref #13104) can be removed. For some reason, this reel had a second spring washer beneath the 2nd spool bearing that isn't shown on the schematic. With some testing, it became really obvious that this washer was badly impeding freespool so I left it out. (maybe someone thought it was missing in the past so put one in??)

The best tool for removing small bearings is simply a bent paperclip...

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The bearing shields can be removed, the bearings cleaned (I use Carby Cleaner), oiled (I use Corrosion X) and replaced unshielded.

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Reassemble the spool and give it a spin to make sure everything is running well... sweeeeet, sweeeeet spin!!

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Moving on to the left side, back out the 3 side plate screws (Ref #13582) and remove the side plate (Ref #23049).

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To clean the inside of the left side plate remove the level-wind idler gear (ref #21800)... it's secured to the shaft by clips molded as part of the gear itself. Slip out the spool clicker assembly (ref #'s 21805 & 21807)... then give the inside of the side plate a good clean with a lint-free cloth and cotton buds (to get into those hard to reach areas)

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I like to brush on a fine coat of grease to the inside of side plates to protect against corrosion. Then the right side plate assembly can be put back together with a single drop of oil going on the idler gear shaft.

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To service the level-wind begin by moving to the left side of the reel frame plate (Ref #803204) and removing the level-wind retaining clip plate (Ref #5178)

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Unscrew the pawl cap (Ref #5177) and remove the level-wind pawl (Ref #5177)

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Now the worm screw (Ref #5205), worm screw cover (Ref #2496) and line guide (Ref #5174) can be slipped out, cleaned, oiled and reassembled.

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The left side plate can now be returned (with a tiny dob of grease on the thread of each screw) and the spool replaced in the frame.

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Time to sort out the main mechanical workings of the reel. Begin by removing the handle nut cap screw (ref #15652) and handle nut cap (ref #20934)

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Now remove the 'e-clip' (ref #4490) and handle nut (ref #15359) allowing the handle (ref #20931) to be lifted off.

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Next remove the handle spring washer (ref #5115) and drag star (ref #20680)

Now... you're all lining up your parts in order as you remove them right?

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To get at the internals of the reel, now back out the 2 right side plate screws (ref #13584)

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Lift off the right side plate (ref #23052) and carefully put aside the 2 belleville washers (ref #5131) that sit atop the anti reverse bearing. (this is one area where you might find significant differences between ABU 'C' series reels... some have anti-reverse bearings, some have anti-reverse dogs)

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Now gently remove the drive gear assembly consisting of the drive shaft (ref #22079), main drive gear (ref #212000), drag washers and the anti-reverse bearing collar (ref #22001)

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Changing the drag to Carbontex is pretty much automatic for me... it's worth noting that these days, most ABU reels come new with carbon washers!!

The drag assembly is separated and the Carbontex washers are greased (with Cal's or Shimano drag grease) and used to replace the corresponding 4 originals (ref #'s 13169, 20907)

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To disassemble the clutch first lift off the clutch position holder (ref #22808), then lift of the pinion yoke (ref #20664) and pinion gear (ref #20848)

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Lift off the clutch slider (ref #22807), clutch lever (ref #20671) and clutch link arm (ref #20685)

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Finally, lift off and put aside the main gear thrust washer clutch button (ref #5189).

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Now all the components can get a thorough clean, the outside surface of the brake plate a coat of grease, a sparing smear of gear grease on the drive and pinion gears and it all goes back together.

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Reattach the right side plate and reassemble the drag star and handle (adding a protective light brush of grease to all the 'hidden' metal surfaces as you go)

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A drop of oil on each handle knob and we're done.

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Just a quick final note... when I serviced the other C3 I discovered that the splines securing the spool pinion gear had been stripped, allowing it to turn and thus rendering the level wind inoperative. Most level winds use a 'sacrificial' nylon gear somewhere in the system so that should you get a finger stuck, the gear will break before bits of you!!

I also replaced one of the brake blocks (ref #20211) on the casting brake since it was sticking.

This is where good after-sales service is important for any reel. I don't think I've ever waited for more than 72 hours for any ABU part I've ever ordered to get to me on the Gold Coast from Pure Fishing in Sydney.

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And there you have it. One of ABU's most popular and enduring reels... and for good reason. The 6500C3 is simple, well engineered, easy to maintain, easy to modify to suit particular tastes and performs beautifully.

See you on the water, Slinky

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