alan tani @ alantani.com fishing reel repair rebuild tutorial Garcia Mitchell 304--detailed look inside and service
Reel Repair by Alan Tani
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Author Topic: Garcia Mitchell 304--detailed look inside and service  (Read 1675 times)
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festus
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« on: October 04, 2019, 05:28:11 PM »

The last couple of days I came into possession of two Garcia Mitchell 304.  Yesterday I posted a brief look with photos of the first one on Mo's B-grade spinning reel thread.  Today I opened the second one which has a couple of variations.  The reel was functioning very well even though it may have never been serviced.

There are several YouTube videos on servicing various models of Garcia Mitchell reels--the 300, 308, and 302.  I checked and didn't see a 304 tutorial on this forum so I thought I'd jump right in.



Removing the handle by cranking in a clockwise direction.


An old tool from a Shakespeare Royal Maroon spinning reel is a perfect fit for the cover plate screws.


Removing the cover plate.  Lots of old grease inside that is still soft.


Removing the drive gear exposes even more of that soft brown grease.


A look at the anti-reverse assembly on the back side of the cover plate.


A look at the face of the drive gear exposes something different than the reel I serviced yesterday--a crosswind cam.


Swabbing off the oscillating slide to expose the screws.


Removing the oscillating slide and screws.


Removing the axle and spool.


Removing the lube port screw.


Using a 5/16" socket to remove the rotor hex nut.


Removing the bail trip.


Underneath is one bail trip washer and one rotor shim.


A look at the trip lever, trip lever screw, and trip lever spring.


Removing the bail trip lever assembly.


Inspecting the bail wire assembly.  It's grungy, so it's a good idea to take it apart and give it a good cleaning.







These 304 are the simplest built Garcia Mitchell I've serviced, but seem very efficient.  As I mentioned earlier, the grease was still soft, so cleanup wasn't too difficult.




Reassembling the bail wire and components.


Reassembling the bail trip lever components.


Reassembling the bail trip and fastening the rotor and pinon back to the housing.


A look at a clean drive gear and crosswind cam.  


Another look after reassembly and lubrication.


Oiling the axle with Ardent Reel Butter reel oil.


Fastening the oscillating slide to the axle.


Reattaching the drive gear to the oscillating slide.


Oiling the drive gear shaft.


Reattaching the handle knob.


Reattaching the handle.


Reattaching spool and drag knob.


By the way, the spool on the reel I serviced yesterday could be taken apart.  The spool on today's reel is depicted in the schematic as one piece.


There was a debate yesterday whether these reels should be graded A or B.  I'm still scratching my head and still can't decide.  I'd put them on the borderline of both,  A- or B+.  Back in the day, 1950s and 1960s they were probably considered ultralight reels. By today's standards maybe they'd be considered light or medium.  Actually the diameter of the 304 spool is wider than the larger Mitchell 300.




« Last Edit: October 04, 2019, 07:30:00 PM by festus » Logged
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« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2019, 05:33:16 PM »

Thank you, a very nice tutorial.
  I don't have this model, yet. I would put the reel in the A category, they have stood the test of time.

Tom
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Midway Tommy
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« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2019, 07:02:57 PM »

Nice walk through, Chester!
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Love those open face spinning reels! (Especially ABU & ABU/Zebco Cardinals)

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« Reply #3 on: October 04, 2019, 07:12:03 PM »

Thanks so much for the Tutorial.   

I received my first 304 six months ago and did the rebuild by just taking out each piece and laying them in order of disassembly.  The rebuild came out pretty good so I purchased two more on Ebay for a very low price because they came without handles.

Sure wish I had your tutorial from the beginning.

I really like the Mitchell 304 and found it much easier to service than the Mitchell 300 model

Tad
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« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2019, 07:47:14 PM »

Great job...thanks for the tutorial. Your pics are a great help by the way, clear and concise!
Brett
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« Reply #5 on: October 05, 2019, 04:45:42 AM »

Another great write up,Festus !!
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mo65
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« Reply #6 on: October 05, 2019, 07:31:33 AM »

   Great tutorial Chester! That simplicity is something I like in a reel...less chances for something to go wrong. Cool
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« Reply #7 on: October 05, 2019, 08:31:44 AM »

Chester is excellent with his tutorials!

Good job, Sir...

Thought of Festus (Chester) when we attended an antique event in Clovis, last Sunday.

This is the town that Ken Curtis (Festus on Gunsmoke) called home.  The town erected a statue in his honor.

Great history -- excellent professional singer, WWII vet, successful actor, and a good modest family man that did not go in for the Hollywood lifestyle.

Best,

Fred


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« Last Edit: October 05, 2019, 08:35:24 AM by foakes » Logged

The Official, Un-Authorized Service and Restoration Center for quality vintage spinning reels.

D-A-M Quick, Penn, Mitchell, and ABU/Zebco Cardinals

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« Reply #8 on: October 05, 2019, 06:42:44 PM »

Nice look at a reel all too often overlooked.

Frank
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« Reply #9 on: October 11, 2019, 01:37:10 PM »

Chester is excellent with his tutorials!

Good job, Sir...

Thought of Festus (Chester) when we attended an antique event in Clovis, last Sunday.

This is the town that Ken Curtis (Festus on Gunsmoke) called home.  The town erected a statue in his honor.

Great history -- excellent professional singer, WWII vet, successful actor, and a good modest family man that did not go in for the Hollywood lifestyle.

Best,

Fred
yeah, festus haz setteled down quiet a bit and purdy much quit kreating kaos on the innernet.  Festus used to kreate quiet a ruckus on saveral forems.  got kicked plum off a wine connesewer messaje bored tellin' them fokes that muskiedime graips and catalpa graips make bettor whine than murlow, kabbernay sawvenyawn and udder hi falootin fantsy city whine. this is befour i dis-kovered they was sech a thang as speel-check.  maid postor of the yaer on the teneseee hi schoul footbawl messaje bored 1 yaer out of saveral thowsand fokes ya see.


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« Reply #10 on: October 11, 2019, 02:01:35 PM »

 Cheesy
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« Reply #11 on: December 17, 2019, 09:18:45 AM »

Hey Fellas,
   I picked up a 304 because...well...everybody should have at least one of these.Wink The first thing I noticed was it was completely filled with grease, just like my uncle's 304 always was. It's just the way they lubed reels back in the day. After I scraped it all out, I thought about how easy a tiny spring or screw could be trapped in that petroleum glob. I deferred to the schematic to check off all parts on the list before tossing that rag into the trash. After cleaning all the nuggets I polished the bail wire and handle arm. This reel doesn't have super tight tolerances, but properly lubed it does have a decent feel. The design contributes to it's ability to live forever...one of Mitchell's classics! Cool


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« Reply #12 on: December 17, 2019, 09:22:46 AM »

Very nice Chester,

Look for the older Mitchell CAP reels that are almost if not identical to the 304.

Keith
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foakes
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« Reply #13 on: December 17, 2019, 10:11:10 AM »

Looks like you are already money ahead for next year, Mike!

Won't need to buy any grease for at least 6 months!

Nice little reels!

Plus, a really superior clean up job -- just like new...

Best,

Fred


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« Last Edit: December 17, 2019, 10:14:13 AM by foakes » Logged

The Official, Un-Authorized Service and Restoration Center for quality vintage spinning reels.

D-A-M Quick, Penn, Mitchell, and ABU/Zebco Cardinals

---------

Self-worth is how you value yourself. It’s not based on what others think of you or the things you have (or haven’t) accomplished—it comes from within. But it’s easy to forget that our worth isn’t determined by outside forces -- each of us sets our own price.
Midway Tommy
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« Reply #14 on: December 17, 2019, 10:30:00 AM »

Sure cleaned up nicely, Mike. It amazes me how well those nylon/plastic crosswind blocks have stood up over time.  Shocked They're kind of like the Energizer Bunny.  Grin
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Love those open face spinning reels! (Especially ABU & ABU/Zebco Cardinals)

Tommy D (ORCA), NE



Favorite Activity? ............... In our boat fishing
RELAXING w/ MY BEST FRIEND (My wife Bonnie)
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