Release Reel - SG

Started by Bryan Young, February 01, 2014, 09:09:08 AM

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hello and greetings from the P.I., we currently have 1 SG paired to a JM power spell 52B loaded with 500 mtrs. of 50 lbs. berkley whiplash. we fish mainly bet 80-150 mtrs and do a lot of jigging and bottom fishing and this has become my wife's personal favorite, at first though i thought that she would find the gearing of the SG at 6:1 kinda heavy since she is on the petit side at a 120 lbs. and that the combo would eventually end up with me, but she found the retrieve to be just right even if working with 200-220 gm jigs all day long and so the set up never leaves her sight. the reel has been with us for 7 months bought from the New World Camping Fishing and Tackle store in CA., after 3 trips she complained to me that the retrieve sort of became heavy so i decided to service the reel. i proceeded to opening the reel and checked all bearings and all were in order except for the pinion bearing which turned out to have seized. so i took out the covers of the bearing, placed them in a kerosene bath for a few minutes dried them out and the bearing became free but already had a coarse feel. i tried to repack the bearings with marine grease and ran the bearings but i suppose they were already shot. i suppose i will be replacing the pinion bearing which i measured with a calliper OD 19mm x ID 7mm X thickness 5mm. since we are all the way here in the Philippines sending the reel all the way to VA. would be too impractical ($20.00 for shipping for a simple bearing replacement) i will just replace it myself. i was not able to check the reel bearings for proper lube/grease packing before heading out to our fishing trip as allan and bryan advised because i had too much confidence in the company and honestly just completely forgot about it ;D, my bad i guess and so it is what it is. not to be deterred we have another SG coming since my wife and i love the reel so much, i guess this time i will open up the reel and check for proper lubrication. i honestly find this reel to be very simple and solid! design is purposeful, not as smooth as our ocea jiggers but very powerful and robust  Wink  was not able to take photos of the disassembly but will try to document the process soon as i replace the pinion bearing.  Smiley


the right main side plate bearing (pinion bearing) is always the first one to fail.  these bearings should be available in stainless steel.  pack them in grease as best you can.  if the shields can be removed without damage, do that and pack them with grease by hand, then replace the shields. 
send me an email at for questions!


thanks again alan! i sent someone out to look for the bearing specified but was unsuccessful in getting the 7x19x5 mm abec 5's  :( i was however able to secure the bearings from boca but will have to wait for the items to arrive here i the P.I. oh and i already got a couple just for good measure. :) this time i'll make sure they are packed with grease!

Bryan Young

I would also try to contact Release Reel directly.  If you are on FB, they can be found  Send them a personal message.  They may be up to sending you a or few replacement bearings.
:D I talk with every part I send out and each reel I repair so that they perform at the top of their game. :D


thanks bryan, that we did and  justin of release was so swift to reply. he wanted us to send the reel back to the states for bearing replacement and other parts upgrade but when we told him about the logistical situation he agreed to just send the replacement parts to my son in vegas, shipping care of me of course. that said we couldn't be more happier with the company's after sales service. thanks again bryan and alan and heres hoping to getting the SG back in action real soon!

Bryan Young

Justin is a great guy.  Very helpful.  Glad he was able to assist.

If you or your son doesn't have a bearing packer, send the bearing to me and I'll pack them for you and return to your son.

:D I talk with every part I send out and each reel I repair so that they perform at the top of their game. :D


thanks bryan, fortunately we have one at the shop. oh and a very nice lady at release by the name of Tracy was soooo kind to send us the part plus some more spares! top that! what a great bunch of people! except for this issue the reel works great, so much so that the wifey asked me to get another one. how do you expect me to argue with that?  ;) thanks again guys!


Anthony the t bar handle you have on your sg reels are those the ones from


Ok, so here's an update, I just took out my 2nd SG after it arrived almost 5 months ago. I noticed something different  & very unusual, while setting the drag on strike position the reel worked just fine but with the drag on full setting the drag actually slipped more and the handle became very hard to turn. To my disappointment I had no choice but to decommission the reel for the rest of the trip. When we got back the following day I stripped the reel apart to see what was wrong. Everything seemed ok except for the drag material. Upon inspection the drag material was bone dry. Also the the drag thickness was measured at an average thickness  of 0.92 mm and drag material from my other SG was measured at 0.98 mm. First thing I did was to rid the drag material of the dried up grease and applied cal's drag grease, reassembled the reel and tried her out. The drag significantly improved but at full drag setting cranking presented some resistance unlike my other SG. We have sent Release an email this morning &  have yet to receive an answer. Just a bit disappointed with the issue since it's already supposed to be the improved version. Planning on putting some masking tape where the drag material rests to make up for the thickness deficiency while waiting for a drag replacement from Release. And yes I placed the drag from my other SG and it worked just as it should. Bummed for now but hopefully this helps other people should anyone else encounter the  same issue.


docjun, I am curious to know the results. Was it fixed? If so, what was the fix?


I just finished another SG today with bad results. The owner had sent the reels back twice because of no drag and hard to turn.

The no drag was Spectra slipping on the spool. That was a quick fix after re spooling the reel and another pinion bearing.

Then when testing the drag at 12lbs the handle goes backwards!!!

I went back on and made sure everything was correct and it was. I cleaned out some of the sticky grease so I could barely hear it click. No Bueno.

It will have to go back for replacement of the pawl, or main gear, or both.
OCD Reel Service & Repair
Gulf Breeze, FL


I just ordered two SG.
Hoping they will be perfect for Halibut off Langara Island....


I purchased a Release SG in oct 2013, at the same time i also got a Accurate Boss Fury fx400n ($30.00 dearer). On its first trip the release suffered the hard / tight to crank problem with reel engaged but very light drag. FX400N was great.
Put the release on the shelf where its sat for the last 2 years. Got it down the other day and googled to see if there was a answer to the problem. I found this thread. Iam making the brass bearing spacer sleeve & going to replace the pinion bearing and see if that helps / fixes the problem. Living in Aust doesn't help in regards to life time warranty.
Hopefully the new bearing & sleeve will make the reel work as it should. Currently there is no way it would take 15lb drag let alone 30. Was glad to see i wasn't the only one with problems.

Sorry to say,  i have got another Accurate, a  fx500 since and its been flawless also.

PS, love the frame design with the "barrel" shape for clearance.


Made the brass spacer tube today & fitted. While better, the reel still can't handle more than 15lb drag. Haven't got the pinion bearing yet, so there is still hope.


heloo FoulHooked, unfortunately the issue was never resolved as Release company then never got back to me. as mentioned the problem was with the drag fix was to make a spacer mor e specifically duct tape shaped just like the drag washer placed adhesive side on the spool to push the drag washer did work since the wifey fought and landed a good sized doggie...maybe they where in transition during that time?  that said i think the washer needs to be replaced just the same...