New to lever drags - Fathom 40NLD2

Discussion in 'World Of PENN' started by weiman83, Jul 29, 2015.

  1. weiman83

    weiman83 Newbie

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    I just received my FTH40NLD2 today and was setting the drags to test it out (made sure to only adjust when on free spool) when set to 15lbs the reel seems to have a lot of resistance when reeling. To push up to the full position it it takes quite some force to do this and when trying to set it to "sunset" while depressing the block button at full it doesnt want to move more than a few mm past the button, i don't want to force it since im scared it may break.

    Is this normal? is my drag set too high? I am using a spring scale.

    Maybe im just use to a star drag reel that doesnt increase any reel resistance when drag is set to full?

    Thanks,

    Richard
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2015
  2. ripped

    ripped I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    What is your freespool like? When a reel is maxed out it will effect ability for the spool to spin. All the leverdrags I own have some resistance when turning the handle. I agree the Fathom 40NLD lever arm is hard to push forward to max out the drag but truthfully haven't had enough real life experiences with it to judge it.
     
  3. weiman83

    weiman83 Newbie

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    free spool spins fine, when i turn the drag to max i cant even engage the drag. This is at 15 lb strike. I am also testing drag with a full spool
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2015
  4. ripped

    ripped I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    Since you have good freespool I would say your reel is operating within it's limits. You may want to contact Penn customer service to answer any questions you have. Given the reel has no stop from strike to full, I wouldn't worry too much unless the lever locks at strike. I can push mine to full with maybe 25% more pressure, and have to push even harder to sunset. The way I see it is I'm going to fish at least 95% of the time at strike or below and will be desperation time to go higher and will do what it takes to get more if I need it.
     
  5. bueller

    bueller Desert Dweller

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    Glad you posted this, because I had the same questions about my new Fathom 25NLD2 which is also my first lever drag. I set the drag at strike to 11 lbs and freespool is great. I was just concerned about the resistance turning the handle compared to my star drags. Mine however will go to full pretty easy and also to sunset without too much force.
     
  6. johndtuttle

    johndtuttle Angler/Client

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    It's a case of the high gearing with the (relatively) heavy spool. Put it in low and check and you won't even know the spool is there.

    A star drag has a much lighter spool which is why we like them for casting baits.

    Without a thrust bearing we would worry about pinion bearing binding, but that is not the case here as the Penn's have one to protect the internals.
     
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  7. Steve K

    Steve K Hey, I'm gettin' bit...

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    Sure you're no looking at kg, not lbs? ;)

    Seriously, I am able to get 20 lbs on mine at full. I don't feel the stop at strike. Maybe with a lighter setting. No binding in the handle and free spool is good. If you bought from a shop, go back and ask there.

    The reason I ask about which side of the scale is because a buddy experienced that while checking drags with his friend who was reading the scale. They both had a good laugh about that.
     
  8. weiman83

    weiman83 Newbie

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    Haha, yeah my scale only reads in pounds. I bought it online so it won't be that easy. I am testing the reel by itself not on a rod.....maybe that's the issue. I took apart the drag and followed johns tutorial to seat the drag cam, i'm not sure it's better but i just tested it at 14lb on strike 24 on full and 34 on sunset (not quite sunset but the furthest i could push it past the sunset button.
     
    Last edited: Jul 30, 2015
  9. stripedbizzle

    stripedbizzle Member

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    every lever drag ive ever owned brought upon more resistance when increasing the drag to full. in the actual process of pushing the lever up and the turning of the handle. realistically, with lever drags, pushing the lever past strike to full or even "sunset" is and should be considered a last ditch effort on a stubborn fish threatening to empty the spool.
     
  10. steelfish

    steelfish the BBB, Baja Bass Boy..

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    Hmm glad I found this thread, I just got my 40LD2 that I bought online and found out this bit of resistance while cranking the handle outta the box, this is my 1st ever LD reel but I didnt though it was normal until reading this.

    - Does this feel go lower with use ?
    - Doest it feel the same with the spool full of braid líne?
    - how do you set your drag, On full or Max?
     
  11. tunanorth

    tunanorth I've posted enough I should edit this section

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    Anglers who have used exclusively star drags previously will take a bit of acclimation time to get used to the fact that all compact lever drags have some cranking resistance, which indeed does increase with higher drag settings.
    The resistance does not decrease with time, but you do get acclimated to it.
    As mentioned, only change the "pre-set" with the reel in freespool.
    Go up on the pre-set dial just a few clicks at a time, until the drag at "Strike" is at about 1/4 of your line's break strength, which will give you plenty of range between Strike and "Full" for you to fight the fish, and "Full" will end up being around 1/3 of your line's break strength, or possibly a bit more.
    Reserve moving into the "Sunset" part of the range for exceptional situations like a sea lion; you are correct that the ramp-up is pretty steep. Just think of "Sunset" as "Extra Full" for special needs only.
    Set your drag off the rod tip with line thru the guides and the rod bent, which will be the real-world fishing condition, not just straight off the reel while it sits on a work bench.
     
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  12. mindbent

    mindbent Member

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    I set up my friends FTH30LD2 and there's no resistance what so ever. The drag is set between 12-13# at strike and can move the lever to sunset with no problem. If you can't move the drag lever full forward smoothly with little resistance then there's a problem. You could back the preset almost all the way off so you can keep the spool from turning with your hand when you turn the handle (sometimes it will loosen sticky drags) and then readjust accordingly. After you get it set where you want then check for smooth operation. Also when in free spool give the handle a few turns and see if the spool spins or doesn't move, which it shouldn't. If that doesn't work I would send it back for service. When you store the reel be sure to put the lever back in freespool and clicker on. As far as resistance when turning the handle think of riding a bike and trying to start off in high gear. You should be able to turn the handle with no binding whatsoever. It won't turn like it does in freespool but it shouldn't be difficult either.
     
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  13. gary760

    gary760 Member

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    The reason the lever takes a significant amount of presure to move past strike is because there is a step on the drag cam at this point. All the fathom lever drags have this feature. some like it.
    I prefare smooth movement all the way to the button and have had the drag cams modified on my reels so I can use the full position as strike then depress the button to give me more when I need it.
    Generaly as you apply more drag with the lever the harder it is to move, more so with steeper drag cams
    As for the handle hard to turn at 15lbs at strike, there will be noticable resistance as tunanorth says thats just the mechanics of small lever drags but the thrust bearing in these reels reduce this and protect your other bearings. If it is very hard to tun the handle maybe there is a problem - compare it to others at a dealers.
    Regards Gary
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2016
  14. steelfish

    steelfish the BBB, Baja Bass Boy..

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    thanks Steve, that really helped, it must be like when I just got my Van Staal VS275, really hard to crack and the reason is because the many rubber seals all over places to make the reel waterproof, not same case exactly but once you set your mind on thats the way it is there is no more worries.


    thanks buddy, this is exaclty how it feels just like you describe it, it takes a minimal effort to crack the handle but you never get that feel with a star drag.




    finally, help me on this
    since I just got my FTH40LD2 today which is brand new from tackledirect store.

    Its my first LD reel like I said before, so I have to ask, when you turn the handle fast many times in high gear, with the lever set on full drag (not max) with estimated 15# drag, does it normal to hear a sound like just barely rubbing something ?
    (hard to describe the sound but for me star drag reels make a buzzing sound when retrieving fast with drag activated while the LD reel make a "rubbing sound" type).

    Not like I´m Actually worry for the sound thinking that its rubbing something but I have never hear it on a star drag reel before even on pretty high drag settings.

    On same settings, with lever still set on Full, but once I switched to low gear the reel is as smooth and silence (mute) as my best star drag reel or 2x better.
    free spool its great, the spool spins forever, and lever moves all the way back and forth smooth and efforthless
     
  15. gary760

    gary760 Member

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    I think the reason the reels are just about silent in low gear is due to the relative sizes and efficiencies of the pinion and drive gears in low as apposed to high and the fact with a two speed reel you are not only turning the spool but also the free spinning drive gear that you are not using via the pinion gear that you are not using. this phenomenon is noticeable in other silent anti reverse reels such as okuma Makaira's and much less noticeable in clicking anti reverse reels such as tiagras and internationals
    But this is only my uneducated guess

    I should say the noise vibration in High gear becomes unoticeable when the reel is under load with a fish on but I am not absolutely sure if it is because it is under load or because there is a fish on
     
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2016
  16. steelfish

    steelfish the BBB, Baja Bass Boy..

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    Thanks compadres, Just learned a lot on LD reels with you in this thread.

    Now its time to use it and kill some fish
     

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