Okuma Okuma Komodo 364: Service Tutorial and Maintenance Tips

johndtuttle

Angler/Client
Mar 20, 2008
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Carmel, CA
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john
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not crazy enough yet
Well fellas, this one has been a long time coming. Some of the first photos were on a laptop that took a header and took awhile to recover and other photos were added more recently to cover needed details but here it is at last! ;D

The Okuma Komodo 350/364 represents their entry into a very exciting category of large baitcasting reels for the salt or freshwater. These reels with advanced cast controls and level line-winders make casting straight braid a breeze. Combine that with a capacity in this "350" size of over 200 yards of 50# braid and 10-12#'s of smooth drag (lock down over 20#) and you have an offshore capable light tackle reel that only weighs 11 oz...When you consider the very smallest star drag reels like the Trinidad 12 or Torque 15 weigh 14-17 oz and a standard 3/0 size reel is closer to 20 oz+...this class of large baitcaster gives you the smallest and lightest reels for big fish made that can really get it done.

We'll see that Okuma has packed a ton of value into this reel with an all Stainless drive train and made it every bit the equal or more of anything in this class that would include the Abu Garcia Revo Toro S, Daiwa Lexa 3-400 or Shimano Curado 300EJ.

Meet the Okuma Komodo 364:











A Clicker, a very useful feature and one of the few of the large baitcasters that has one. Great for drifting a squid for WSB:



Nice and large flanges on the edges of the thumb button to help limit saltwater intrusion:



Next to a Revo Toro NaCl for size comparison. The Komodo is a little taller and narrower but does have about the same capacity:



Next to a Shimano Tranx:



And then a real Rogue's Gallery of Komodo, Revo Toro Beast and Tranx:



I think we got it covered! Feeshes beware! :).

Getting into the reel is via a standard method. Start by loosening the Thumb Screw (6). It may need some help when the reel is brand new:





Then giving the left side plate a clockwise twist:



Exposing the adjustable centrifugal cast control on the Spool (4) and the Spool Cover Assembly (51) inside the Palm Side Cover (58):



Cast control on the Komodo is done by rotating the dial with a thumb nail. "0" being none and "6" being max.

The spool Ball Bearing (46) underneath the Spool Pinion (47) is held by an e-clip Retainer (45) and we want that off to properly service the bearing. Prepare your landing zone and carefully pop it off. We don't want to lose any bits.



A second Retainer (48) supports this assembly but we'll leave that in place. The Spool Pinion is needed to "sync" the spool to the line guide so whenever the spool turns the line guide turns with it.

The Palm Side Plate houses the Spool Cover Assembly (50) held by three Screws (51):



We'll remove that to service the Click Claw (61) held by a Retainer (59). Careful and don't lose the small washer (60) if you remove it (not shown):



The back of the Spool Cover Assembly is the white nylon Gear (53) that drives the Worm and we will oil the Collar (52) that it spins on:





Its hard to photograph and show well but you will need a thin probe to get the Click Claw properly seated in the Click Leaf Spring (56) to button it back up:



Back to the spool the Bearing itself has useless shields on them that will only trap saltwater inside them if it gets that far so we will remove them:



And replace it "open":



This allows us to more easily clean it, allows the regular application of a drop of our favorite speed lube and lets any saltwater that gets in dry, or get out again. Salt Crystals (dry) are more desirable than salt soup (salt + water = more rapid corrosion). :)

On the right side the Spool has the traditional Pin that retains that bearing. To remove the shields it has to come out with a pair of custom or purchased Spool Pin Pliers. I have one of the Hedgehog Studio tools for the job:







Off those shields will come as above and then a drop of oil:





When you are ready to replace the spool be sure to lube the spool shaft. This rotates inside the Pinion Gear and we want that to be smooth and fast:



To open the main body of the reel the spool has to be left out so that we can access two Screws (22) and (38) that help keep the Gear Side Cover Assembly (8 ) in place. Note that (22) on the left is smaller than (38) on the right when it is time for them to go back:



Then on the outside there is another bigger Screw (38):



And then another smaller Screw (22):



Hopefully this will help guide you when it is time to close the reel. Otherwise it is a pit of a puzzle and the smaller ones like to get stuck in the bigger one's slots. :(

To proceed off must come the Handle Arm Assembly (83):



All very standard stuff laid out in order:



From R to L above the Nut, Retainer and Screw (89, 90, 91). The Handle Arm Assembly (83). The hard to see Washer (82) between the Handle and Star Drag Assembly (81). Then a "fibrous" Du-Washer (80) and two Spring Washers (79 that sit inside the Leaf Spring Assembly (78). Finally two small but important spacing Washers (77).

Once inside we get a look at the stainless steel drive train. The Pinion (12) is hardened SS is my understanding. This leads to the "brass-like" appearance:



It should be noted that this was an image taken during re-assembly and in fact the reel was quite dry of grease, not that SS would need much.

The Carbon Fiber drag stack was dry so it got some Cal's:



The SS Drive Gear (71) well greased:



Under the Drive Gear we have the fibrous Washer (70) and Ratchet (69) with it's single Stopper Assembly (20) that is an Abu style eared Dog:



A view from the other side for reference:





With the Ratchet off we can get to the Bearing Plate (66) and two screws (27, removed) which really holds the "Holy Grail" of this service. Note the positioning of it next to the Plate (98) and Screw (99) which is required to get them to fit together:



The Holy Grail is the shaft Ball Bearing (65) held on by a Retainer (64). Nearly all modern star drag reels use this system of support for the main shaft, and it is a good system, but this is one of the most likely bearings in the reel to be destroyed by salt as it sits in a "sump", or really a salt water bathtub if any saltwater gets inside. This is a low spot in the right side where saltwater inevitably collects and a proper pre-service of this bearing will save long term hassles. If you open any one of the reels that use this method (Abu, Daiwa, Penn, Shimano et al) and see any corrosion anywhere this bearing is usually a victim too and must be checked.



I remove the shield, it had a clip but really too small to mess with:



Pack with Grease:





Then well grease the receptacle:



This grease will still protect the bearing when saturated with saltwater for a very long time (up to months). And I would much rather have a puddle of soggy grease to clean out later than a bearing frozen in the reel, locked up from corrosion, and pits in the frame from it's sitting in a salt bath. :(

And then plug it back in looking like this:



Now we can get at the bearings on the worm by removing the Plate (98) and Screw (99):



That comes off with a small Washer (25) and Bushing (25) and Retainer (26) really an e-clip:



And then the group minus the Bushing



We should remove the "Lever" (level) Wind Pin (27) keeping an eye peeled for the Washer (28) under the "Lever" (level) Wind Cap (29):



The Worm Shaft Assembly (35) actually is now free to slip out the Palm Side so that we can service the Bearing (32) positioned by a Retainer (34):





What I am not showing is the other Bearing (30) on the right side that supports the Worm. I hope the gentle reader will forgive a lack of an image. Somehow I neglected to photograph it when in there and, shall we say, not so motivated to go back in at the present time. ;)

The way I am currently taking care of these worm bearings is with oil as I feel grease attracts too much dirt. Keeping your worm well oiled is key and it will "feed" either oil or salt towards these bearings as a natural consequence of the action of the pawl.

Take extra care getting the last Retainer (26) on when done. Its a tight fit so don't wreck your e-clip.

Ok, we can take a look at the back side at the the Gear Side Cover Assembly (8 ). The one way clutch there is pressed in so a light oil or light grease is all we can do unless in extremis. By applying some Corrosion-x to the Sleeve (76) we can spin it around in there and get out most dirt and old lube. Corrosion-X cuts old grease and rust very well and if your sleeve looks clean after spinning it in there generally the clutch is good to go:



The Ball Bearing (10) that supports the Pinion and retained by a Ring (11) should only be approached from this side. In this case I oil from the outside because the shields protect the bearing from contamination with grease from the outside of the pinion. We want this bearing to spin freely as it may affect casting. Remember however, the spool shaft runs inside the pinion (does not actually touch the bearing) and you want the inside of the pinion oiled for best casting:



On the other side we have the clicker assembly beneath the Tension Knob (1, removed). DO NOT PROCEED AND REMOVE THAT RING (97) UNLESS YOU HAVE NO FEAR LOL. ;D



You can easily get some oil of your choice onto the bearing from this side and note the end of the Pinion with the Spool Shaft poking through it. They like oil too.

Seriously, if you now remove that Retainer spring clip you get into territory where Angels Fear to Tread and there are some tiny bits in there *GUARANTEED* to get lost and with a tricky re-assembly. Proceed only if absolutely needed:



I won't even tell you what I really called them other than they remind me of Little Nicky (son of Satan/coil spring) and Lucifer (Satan/clicker) >:(! Pray that heaven answers your prayers and that you have been diligent in oiling these parts and have no need to proceed. A little grease on the threads of the Tension Knob (1) and it should be well protected by the O-Ring (5).

If you must be sure to get some nice tacky grease to hold the Coil Spring in place before you try to get the Clicker nubbin inside. Then the Click Plate (94) must be positioned "just so" to nest and the Retainer (95) replaced. Screw up and parts go SPROING into the nether. So tiny they get lost in the towel in front of you...

Ask me how I know this >:(.

;D

Ok, getting the reel back together is mostly a reversal of the above steps with one key pitfall: With grease on the Drag Washers you run into a little tolerance issue with the fit of the stack inside the Drive Gear:



The Stack fits, but can be easily bumped out of position like shown in the image above ruining the performance of your drag. This can also occur when the Star is backed all the way out and the reel gets a knock. Remember, I said there were two very important Washers (77) and when you go to put the handle back on they are shims to take up a little space to prevent this by keeping the stack under a little pressure. You will find that getting all your ducks in a row and then carefully closing the reel with a minimum of jostling and fuss with the reel on it's palm side will keep your Stack in place.

Ok, back we go.



Cap your clutch like so to prevent salt intrusion:





The two washers (77) with the Sleeve (75) poking out of the clutch:



Make sure your Spring Washers (79) go like so ():



Plenty of grease:








To service the Handle Arm Assembly (83) we have 2 Bearings (85) for *each* knob with a Washer (84) under the bottom Bearing. This one on the bottom is notorious for failing due to corrosion in any reel that uses bearings. What I do is liberally flood them with oil (the shields are too small to remove):





Then grease over the outside (the bottom one needs even more). You knobs may not spin as fast as before but the grease is not noticeable when fishing:



Then the Screw (87) that needs a touch of Blue Loctite. I wish they would use a lock washer of some type however. Wishful thinking ;). The Factory Loctite is supposedly good for a few services:




Ok, that is what I have for the moment. Phew! ;)

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------


Ok, well these reels are exciting to me as they have opened up using conventional reels for many purposes casting lures where conventional reels fall short or are extremely challenging. With magnetic or centrifugal cast controls, levelwind line lay and powerful drags they are now ideal for casting straight braid 20-80#, depending on application from bassin' at the lake to schoolie tuna in a very light (11 oz) package that would have been severely limited by mono in the past.

Clearly there are decades of success casting mono in the SoCal bight using surface iron, Wahoo bombs and jigs and the like with standard conventional reels...but those relatively heavy and dense lures are more amenable to cast control with just an educated thumb and are still cast with straight mono topshots, generally. Introduce poppers, lipped hard baits, swim baits, spooks and such and suddenly casting them is more possible with advanced braid-friendly reels with line management tools.

Combine that with just enough capacity for the job, massively large gears (Komodo Drive Gear is 40mm) and you get remarkably powerful cranking power in a very small package even with a 6.4:1 retrieval rate. Those large gears enable the use of power handles, or paddles as the need may be, and the gears are strong enough to withstand some heavy cranking.

There is a reason why the Bass Pros use this style of reel. The small spool is very light weight making the casting of very light baits to heavy artificials a breeze and the cranking power is second to none for their size and weight.

As compared to other large baitcasters in this size we have to give the Komodo props for a tough SS gear train at the expense of a little more maintenance worry with a worm and line guide synced to the spool and the bearings required (10 plus roller bearing in total for this reel). But all in all a totally worthy competitor in this segment that anyone should be proud to fish. :)

Oh yeah, they cast a live bait great too. Arguably among the most "do it all" of conventional reels for light tackle saltwater made.



Lexa 400, Revo Toro NaCl 60 and Komodo 364




Some feedback on BD Outdoors from guys fishing this reel:

http://www.bdoutdoors.com/forums/threads/any-first-hand-review-on-komodo-364p.584487/




best regards :)


ps Komodo 450 (on the left) will be released around ICAST 2016 in July (photo courtesy of Okuma):

 
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tanner.s

Fish Slaughterer
Oct 18, 2012
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San Diego
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Tanner
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1997 Proline 23 W/A
Great tutorial!

I have a question related to bait casters in general: What do you do when the pawl repeatedly gets stuck on one side of the worm gear? Lateral pressure either direction makes it get moving again.
 
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johndtuttle

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Mar 20, 2008
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Carmel, CA
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john
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not crazy enough yet
Great tutorial!

I have a question related to bait casters in general: What do you do when the pawl repeatedly gets stuck on one side of the worm gear? Lateral pressure either direction makes it get moving again.

If it is getting hung up there is likely damage/wear to the pawl or worm or both. Sometimes there can be quirks in the linkages that might cause this (ie broken gear teeth causing a skip) perhaps.

But typically they'll have to come out and be replaced.

1. Easiest place to start is remove the pawl and inspect. If worn replace. This can restore function if the worm is still in good shape. If you are desperate or can't get parts adding more shimming washers underneath the pawl might fix it. Try to use Brass for it's low friction.

2. Replace the worm. If you have to for an old reel you can find parts on Flea Bay or buy an old parts reel.

Going in there you should see whether or not any other parts are in bad shape.



best
 
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tanner.s

Fish Slaughterer
Oct 18, 2012
1,896
599
San Diego
Name
Tanner
Boat
1997 Proline 23 W/A
If it is getting hung up there is likely damage/wear to the pawl or worm or both. Sometimes there can be quirks in the linkages that might cause this (ie broken gear teeth causing a skip) perhaps.

But typically they'll have to come out and be replaced.

1. Easiest place to start is remove the pawl and inspect. If worn replace. This can restore function if the worm is still in good shape. If you are desperate or can't get parts adding more shimming washers underneath the pawl might fix it. Try to use Brass for it's low friction.

2. Replace the worm. If you have to for an old reel you can find parts on Flea Bay or buy an old parts reel.

Going in there you should see whether or not any other parts are in bad shape.



best
It is a 3 year old Lew's. The worm gear doesn't have any noticeable wear so I will look for the pawl or whole assembly online. Just wanted to rule out any easy fixes.

I could put a dot of epoxy on the side of the pawl so it contacts the side plate before it gets far enough to get stuck. I'll try this before ordering a new assembly.


Thanks!
 
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johndtuttle

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Mar 20, 2008
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john
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not crazy enough yet
Might work!

Might mess yo line lay though. :)
 
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