Shimano Stella 2013 SWB 14000..quick review

Started by Clem, May 07, 2013, 08:15:10 AM

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Hi Guys,

Its been a while, I was hoping to report the trip to Oman but unfortunately the weather turned day 2 and we had to get off the island. I guess thats fishing so will have to come back to you on that one..

The new Stella is out for distribution and starting to make its way into stores. I thought it would be worthwhile to do a quick breakdown and a basic comparison with the outgoing model. The review is based on the new 14k which is similar in body size to the outgoing 8/10k 2008 model; I will also try and answer some questions regarding compatibility with accessories.

From a functional point of view it seems similar to a 10k reel with one of the aftermarket spools.

This will be quite a long post so just skip forward to the relevant parts that interest you. I'll make some comments where I can (just my personal observations and opinions). I will post a full service tutorial separately.

The general feel of the reel is the same as the previous model, handle is smooth to turn, no unusual quirks or noises and very smooth. I can see that at least some external parts are shared between the outgoing and new models, parts of the line roller assembly and handle knob etc.

In regard to comparing the old with the new, we'll take some measurements as take a detailed look at some parts as we go.

A few pics of the new SWB 14000.

The reel feels solid in the hand, you will notice that the bail wire on the new model is thicker now..approx 3mm vs the old model which was approx 2.3mm. Overall design is similar, a little more metal in key places is likely to make it more rigid..rotor arms and base of rotor.

The new reel is a little wider due to the addition of a oscillation gear to improve line lay..closer wraps. You can see that it is also wider where the stem meets the reel body.

Remove the handle.

As you can see they have listened to the masses and finally produced a better handle. Nice design that eliminates the play that the old handle had via the hinge.

This is achieved by a threaded sleeve, the sleeve has a small amount of play once it's on the shaft. The play is then removed as the handle is tightened against the body of the reel.

The knob is the same old egg design as the previous model, at least on the 14000. Same shaft dimensions so all the current aftermarket knobs will fit.

Undo the drag knob and remove the spool from the body.

The spool has taken a redesign, this specific spool has a different drag layout compared to the 08 10K and is actually similar to the 08 18k spool. One of the questions I have heard being asked is the compatibility of the 08 spool and the many aftermarket spools?

This is really determined by the design of the new reel and some basic dimensions of relevant components. The spool shaft on the new reel is basically identical to the old reel which is great. This suggests the internals of the spool, drag washers etc are LIKELY to also be similar in design and function.

A key question relates to the dimensions of the spool; remember the rotor is set at a specific height, the spool is at a fixed height on the shaft (determined by the number of spacers used). The movement (length of stroke) is determined by the design of the worm gear and length of shaft.

The key points relating to the spool are, the width of the opening – where the line lays, the overall width of the spool – does it fit within the rotor arms? and the overall height – is there adequate space on the shaft once the spool is on?

If it all adds up there should be no issue.

From the can see the new spool is of a different design resembling a bowl shape as opposed the step design of the 08.

Underneath there are also differences, the new spool uses a smaller shaft washer than the 08, similar in size to the 08 18/20k. You can see that the clicker is now external is certainly louder than the old model.

Lets hit the

10k 08 for comparison

New drag knob..sealing is now at the top of the knob as opposed to the middle section.

08 10k knob.

The new 14k body.

08 10k body.

Ok, let's have a look at the rotor, as mentioned a little thicker through the arm.

08 10k rotor.

Looking into the rotor you will see that the nut retainer has changed and is now fixed in place by 3 screws.

Remove the spacers and shaft/spool washer.

Removing the retainer.

This exposes a larger rotor nut, 22mm and the shaft/bearing seal washer.

Remove the nut, reverse thread.

This exposes a collar and at the base one of the new O-ring seals.

Separate the rotor from the body.

Take a look at the rotor and you will see another of the new sealing washers..a better design than before.

Remove the clutch cover, again another sealing washer at the base.

Remove the top seal and you will see a few changes, new oil soaked to seal..also the small O-ring. The rest is basically the same.

Cover back on, better shot of the sealing washer.

To remove the rear shield you need to first pull the seal.

Once that is out a small Phillips is required to back out the screw.

Flip the reel over and remove the bottom shield screw and remove the shield/gasket.

Back to the body, 4 torx screws, 1 smaller than the others. You can just see another of the new seals on the main bearing, where the handle attaches.

Remove the screws and the plastic retainer.

Remove the cover and take a look.

Looking at the side plate you can see the new cover seal and that the bearing is retained by 3 screws.

You can see the new main gear, larger and faster than the 08 10k. Also the new idler gear layout due the addition of the new gear..similar in principle to the old FA.

Remove the main gear and you can see the changed idler, bearing retained also and the screw cover at the top for the shield. The AR pawl is the same as the previous model.

Couple of shots of the main gear, longer overall to accommodate the oscillating gear..thicker also however the teeth are basically the same size.

Ok, I have reassembled the reel so we can take another look at these spools and the compatibility of parts.

3 spools, the original, the 08 10k and a JM 16k – Fortunately the basic dims of these items are the same.

Different designs but essentially the same dimensions.

As mentioned previously, the spool shaft has the same dimensions as the old reel..let's try the 08 10k spool.

Works fine, the JM spool also works without issue.

The JM handle also fits perfectly.

What about the other way around? I'll call this the SW A-B or 2013 SWAB for short. To do this I had to fit the smaller shaft/spool washer from the 14k, remember this is smaller than the 10k washer..also works fine.

And a final shot of the 2 reels.

To summarise, a very nice reel with some great new features. The sealing should be a lot better than the old model although water inside the old Stella was rare and generally came in via the spool shaft. The rotor and base of the reel stem have a little more meat so should be more rigid but again based on the 10k body this wasn't really a notable problem with the old reel. I have seen more bent shafts and rotor arms on the 18 and 20k's..the 10k is squat reel and in my opinion more rigid than the 20k.

I didn't show it but the drag layout is now reminiscent of the 20k, 2 large washers at the base and a single at the top.

The other new features like X-Shield and X-Tough drag etc all sound good but will have to wait and see how the reel performs overtime. Looking at the schematic there are a number of parts shared between the old and new model which makes things simple. Is it worth paying the extra dollars? I like the new reel, colour scheme is growing on me, actually uses JDM colours, purple/black/grey sort of colour, however I won't be rushing to replace what I have... :)


Thanks Clem. I've been wanting a good look at the new Stella. Bob
"Quemadmoeum gladuis neminem occidit, occidentis telum est." (A sword is never a killer, it is a tool in the killer's hands.)
   -    Lucius Annaeus Seneca, circa 4 BC – 65 AD

Dr. Jekyll - AKA MeL B

thanks! are there any changes in the drag stack?

Alto Mare

Always an awesome tutorial Clem, thank you!
Sorry to hear the trip didn't work out. Hey, if it was always easy, we would lose interest ;D.
Forget about all the reasons why something may not work. You only need to find one good reason why it will.


Great stuff as always Clem.
Looks good with the handle and spool upgrades.

QuoteSorry to hear the trip didn't work out. Hey, if it was always easy, we would lose interest  ;D
x2 - better luck next time  ;)
All the best mate, Justin
Fortitudine vincimus - By endurance we conquer


Thx very much for that Clem. Anyone that appreciates reel machinery should hold a Stella in their hands and fish it some day. Just amazing in every regard.

Beautiful post  ;D.


how do you know all this bloody stuff clem! ::)



if you interchange the spool, all the spool function worked normal?
like clicker? and drag knob?



Hi Madday,

Yes all seems to function well...the clicker is internal  :)


nice stuff and very good reel good thing many diffrent sizes are available in the usa market that where its more easy to buy these reels from got my eyes set on a pair of the 6000pg.


Good stuff Clem......I'm famiilar with the replacement carbon knob but not the replacement handle you show......can you provide the maker? Thank you.


Hi Doug,

I got your PM - The handle is from Jigging Master, they make them in 2 sizes to suit the 8/10K and 18/20K bodies.

the only reason I used to use them is due to there one piece feel (actually multiple pieces) but they eliminate the play in that the standard handle had. Shimano has improved this on the new model Stella, it is similar in principle to the JM handle and is very light so arguably no functional reason to change.

That said the JM handles are power handles and are approx 10mm longer than the standard Shimano handles.

JM did not make a handle for the 5K bodies unfortunately but SOM do, if you want something different and longer the Yumeya 5K long handle is available from PLAT in Japan.  :)


Thanks Clem for the review. Now its decision time for me. They do look good in the flesh.



Did anyone try to disassemble the handle of a 5k/6k Stella SW-B?
How to remove the axle for the screw in screw? It is not screwable anymore! Pressed in? Somehow secured?

picci of it: