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Today’s review is brought to you by the letter “A” for Ardent! Ardent makes some pretty snazzy reels over at http://www.ardentoutdoors.com but if you need to keep your reels clean you might want to check out their Reel Kleen, reel cleaning kit. For a mere $18.28 (on sale via the Amazon link below) you can pick up an effective and compact cleaning kit with just about everything you’ll need for reel maintenance.
To call this an objective review is a little bit of a stretch. I purchased this reel cleaning kit to replace the $2 bottle of orange cleaner I was attempting to abuse my reels with. Although anything would have been better than what I was using this kit had everything I needed and more!
So what does the Ardent Reel Kleen, reel cleaning kit contain?
- 2 oz Reel Kleen cleaning solution in a handy squirt bottle
- 1 oz Reel Butter reel oil in an easy to manage bottle with an applicator tip
- 1 oz Reel Butter reel grease in a toothpaste like tube
- 4 sponge tipped cleaning pads
- 1 small toothbrush
- 1 cleaning cloth
- 1 good quality Phillips/slotted screw driver
- 1 convenient foam lined plastic shell to hold it all
Just to show you fine readers that I put this kit through the paces here are the pieces…
This is a baitcaster I got from a friend earlier this winter. I’ve never used it but its also never been cleaned. As you can see from the dirty toothbrush on the side I made an attempt to clean this reel with orange cleaner but the parts still remained quite dirty.
The back of the Ardent Reel Kleen cleaner says it contains a hydrocarbon solvent and citrus solvent. All I know is it cut through the grease and grime a lot better than my run of the mill orange cleaner. I found that spraying the parts and then letting them soak for a few seconds really helped loosen the dirt.
WARNING: I would discourage any beer drinking while using the cleaner in this kit. I noticed an orange like taste on the lip of the beer bottle I had sitting near my work area. Not sure what hydrocarbon solvents do to the human digestive system but I decided to err on the side of caution and save the beer until after the reels were done.
Here is a shot of my spinning reel in pieces. I only removed the gears to the extent you can see here. Using the foam tipped pads I was able to clean the old grease out of the nooks and crannies and make this reel’s insides shine.
I apologize for not showing the application of the grease and oil during this process. Most of the time I use my cell phone as a camera and solvents, grease and oil don’t mix well with smart phones. The grease went on rather easily. My strategy was to use the grease liberally between all of the moving gears in both reels. This strategy should help to lubricate and protect the metal of the gears from wearing against each other while prolonging the life of the reel. I used the Reel oil everywhere where there were sliding or fast moving parts. Ardent makes another kind of oil for bearings but since I like to keep things simple I used the reel oil to lube my bearings as well.
One thing to keep in mind when you are doing reel maintenance is to have a part diagram handy. You can find lots of reel assembly diagrams online if you search for the make and model of your reel. Unless you are extremely handy and take lots of good pictures I would not suggest taking your reel apart without a diagram. If you are not good with mechanical things you may just want to remove the cover of your reel and clean and grease what you can see without taking the whole reel apart.
This kit should last for a few seasons. I only cleaned and lubed two of my reels but I barely made a dent in the amount of cleaner and grease/oil that was included. The only thing I didn’t like was the cloth that was included as it seemed to have a good deal of lint. I used paper towels for cleaning my reels and saved the included cloth for final polishing of my reels which it did quite well.
All in all the Ardent Reel Kleen, reel cleaning kit is a great buy. I purchased my kit for $24.99 a few months back but if you are interested check out my affiliate link below and this awesome kit can be yours for $18.28.
Have you used the Ardent Reel Kleen, real cleaning kit? Do you have any special tips for cleaning your reels? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below!