alan tani @ alantani.com fishing reel repair rebuild tutorial Ambassadeur XLT Plus won't engage retrieve
Reel Repair by Alan Tani
August 13, 2020, 07:06:25 PM *
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Author Topic: Ambassadeur XLT Plus won't engage retrieve  (Read 339 times)
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Cuttyhunker
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Cuttyhunk mid 50's


« on: July 26, 2020, 05:47:44 AM »

This little bait caster came in a lot and seems to operate like a spin caster with the "Fast Cast" thumb button ah-la Zebco. The reel will not engage, always in free spool mode, drag setting makes no difference.  Any suggestions, tips, tricks, or horrors before I dive in?
Thanks


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swede 53
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« Reply #1 on: July 27, 2020, 04:09:59 AM »

You will have a c-clip to remove to get the handle off and will have to remove the spool tension cap and take off another clip to remove the spool shaft,you shouldn't have anything popping out when you remove the cover.It could be just hard old grease causing the problem but there is a spring that could be disconnected or broken on the spool release,I think that spring is common with the 5000 series.The switch on top when rotated towards you will put it in fast-cast or flippin mode where the spool will release only when you hold the button down,the other way it should operate like any other baitcaster.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   They had some nice features for the day, the levelwind disengaged for casting and the spool was easily removed by lifting the bayonet and rotating the sideplate.I still use 2 of these and other than drag washers and normal lube and cleaning have never had any problems,built like most Abu Garcia products.
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Cuttyhunker
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« Reply #2 on: July 27, 2020, 10:46:10 AM »

Thank you sir!
That was the info I was hoping for, will dive in in a day or so.
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Cuttyhunker
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Cuttyhunk mid 50's


« Reply #3 on: August 11, 2020, 09:16:59 AM »

I've opened up the headplate side and everything looks like it belongs I think. The main gear turns the much smaller spool gear with tension on the drags, spool not moving.  Is my problem on the tail side that I haven't opened.  Is there something wrong in the pics that I'm missing?
Thanks in advance


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Gfish
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« Reply #4 on: August 11, 2020, 10:17:29 AM »

I just went into a early 80's Ultra Mag XL Plus. Internally, looks almost exactly the same. I assume XL is high speed and Plus = fast cast? If you ever do a complete rebuild, prepare to spend some serious time. Took me bout 2 hrs. just to dis. and re-assemble the levelwind system.

Possibly the "kick" lever is not in the right position, for the AR cog(below the main gear) to kick the rather complicated free-spool/level-wind-release system back and move it into gear.
Try(carefully) playing with the freespool button to see how all the parts move. Look for a part that should move back against the AR cog as you engage the freespool button. Push down on the freespool button, does that part move towards the AR cog? Next turn the handle. Does it kick back moving the small(pinion)gear down, as you are turning the handle? If not, hold the freespool button down and reposition that lever, release the fs button with the lever in the new position.

Working off memory here so I'll go back and look at your pictures to see if I needa update this. I played with my side-plate internal stuff for about 1/2 hr. before I started to get how it all worked. To grease it I removed the c-clips to lossen things but but was afraid take alla parts off(esp. those with springs).

Workin on one a these isn't a job, it's an adventure!
« Last Edit: August 12, 2020, 02:28:33 PM by Gfish » Logged

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Gfish
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« Reply #5 on: August 11, 2020, 10:21:39 AM »

I think the kick lever is in the last picture you posted. That dark colored one at the bottom with the c-clip on top.

Interesting. Before I took mine apart, I thought the "F" button(sometimes called the flippin' button) would be a complex unit. All it does though, is block the freespool system from staying fully engaged in the casting position. Could that have been the problem for you?

 Also, If you get it going back into gear, you should see the small gear(pinion) moving in, towards the spool(center of the reel).
« Last Edit: August 11, 2020, 10:36:19 AM by Gfish » Logged

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Wompus Cat
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« Reply #6 on: August 11, 2020, 12:50:00 PM »

The arrow in black points to the saddle which moves the gear and plastic boss up and down on the Spool Shaft in Red. I believe so it looks to be in the disengaged position and maybe a piece of the Plastic boss is broken or just need a good cleaning to get those pieces moving freely again
You might gently push the Pinion gear back down to see if it will re-engage the spool. You need to tear it down completely before you can see the problem as a piece of that White Round plastic boss may be stuck under the gear.
Just my 2 Cents woith..


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« Last Edit: August 11, 2020, 01:03:13 PM by Wompus Cat » Logged
swede 53
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« Reply #7 on: August 12, 2020, 10:15:11 AM »

Because these have the quick change spool the spool slides on the shaft and has two small ears that engage the pinion gear.Remove the spool and check that they aren't bent or broken.
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Wompus Cat
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« Reply #8 on: August 12, 2020, 04:39:47 PM »

Because these have the quick change spool the spool slides on the shaft and has two small ears that engage the pinion gear.Remove the spool and check that they aren't bent or broken.

That makes a lot more sense .
I have never torn into one .
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Cuttyhunker
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« Reply #9 on: Today at 01:24:15 AM »

I was unaware of the quick change spool feature. All the gizmos under the head-plate seem okay, the pinion
does move up and down with the thumb fast cast lever.  The spool removal I'm guessing is activated by the button under the little trap door, I've high-lighted in the schematic. Do things then just twist apart a la Squidder?  It looks like all the pieces on the sides of the spool are held in with spring clips like a spinning reel drag.  The drawing doesn't show the "tabs", but playing with the reel it felt like things were trying to engage, maybe on the remains of those tabs.


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Mandelstam
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« Reply #10 on: Today at 02:35:46 AM »

Can't help you with your problem but couldn't help but compare it to my first ever Ambassadeur, the 822 model that came out a few years earlier. It's all graphite and looks a bit more extreme in the design (designed by Porsche!) compared to the round reels. Apparently it kind of flopped and was not in production for long. The XLT looks like they were trying to move back towards round reels and it's right in the middle between the 822 and traditional round reel design wise. The XLT looks like the 822 and an older steel framed round reel had a baby and the XLT was it haha!

Here's my 822
« Last Edit: Today at 02:38:11 AM by Mandelstam » Logged

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swede 53
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« Reply #11 on: Today at 03:08:16 AM »

Pull up on what you refer to as the trap door and while holding up rotate it counter clockwise and the sideplate pulls right out,you can then remove the spool.The side plate has your magnetic spool control and you can clean and lube the bushing.
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Cuttyhunker
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Cuttyhunk mid 50's


« Reply #12 on: Today at 03:29:58 AM »

Thank you gentlemen, coffee first then to the shop.  Will let you know.
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Wompus Cat
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« Reply #13 on: Today at 04:00:11 AM »

If there is an award for stuffing more parts in a small area than anyone else this Reel would either Win it or get Honorable Mention!



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Cuttyhunker
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Cuttyhunk mid 50's


« Reply #14 on: Today at 08:33:21 AM »

It works!!
No idea why it does.
Opened the tail plate removed the spool and the axle fell out right after it with the C clip removed. reinstalled the axle and spool, monkeyed around and got the headplate lined up by pushing down the thumb lever to free spool mode and installed the 3 screws after it seated.  Screwed down the star to get some drag, gave it a turn and the spool engaged like you read about in the comic books. No clue what or why, now I'm terrified of reinstalling those teeny tiny c clips.
Thank you all
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