Thank you!

To all our customers, family who support us and friends that encourage us, thank you!  2017 was truly a great year for us here at  We want to wish everyone a happy and safe holiday season!  Good luck in 2018 finding that fish of a lifetime!



Fishing Reel Service and Repair

Whether you are preparing for salmon, steelhead, bass or saltwater trophies we are your one stop shop for fishing reel service and repair in the Pacific Northwest.  Located on Mercer Island, one block off off of I90 we are your local,  fast turn around solution to fishing reel repair, annual service and upgrades.  We specialize in service, repair, upgrades and custom reel building.  We are happy to take your call and walk you through the process and provide a realistic timeline for completion.  Expedited service is available if needed.  Don’t let poor performing equipment stand between you and a fish of a lifetime. Give us a call today!

Newell 646-3 Reel

Newell’s still amaze me on their strength and weight.  Even this big 646-3 weighs only a fraction of what a comparable Penn weighs.  Got a couple of 300’s and 200’s in with a big 646-3.  I will put some upgrades into the 646-3 to bring it up to speed.

Build List:

  • Bryan Youngs Ultimate Drag Upgrade 7+1 System
  • New Bearings from Boca Bearings
  • Cortez Conversions SS 10 Tooth Drag Sleeve
  • Cortez Conversions Clicker Kit





Black Senators

9/0, 6/0, 4/0, 3/0, 2/0, 1/0 Black Penn Senators.  This has been fun!  Started with a stock 1/0  and went through the whole upgrade process.  I was so impressed with what these old reels are capable of I kept going slowly finding used reels at very reasonable prices.  Here are some of the upgrades available:

  • Handles and Knobs
  • Stainless steel gear sleeves
  • Steel or stainless steel gears and pinions, yokes etc.
  • Drag inserts and multi drag washer upgrades
  • Stainless steel dogs
  • Custom aluminum frames
  • Aluminum Spools
  • Aluminum cross bars
  • Stainless steel cross bars
  • Custom eccentric levers

All in you can invest a considerable amount in a reel that is 30+ years old.  Most parts are still available for most models.  Considering the vast number of upgrades available it really speaks to the engineering and reliability of these iconic reels.


Tanked Penn 115 9/0 Fishing Reel

Picked up a used, good condition black side plate Penn 115L 9/0 from a friend, Robert Ciminieri.  Straight stock inside and out.  But I have bigger plans for this reel.  Enter “Beast Mode”.


How does 30lb of smooth drag with a top end around 50lb sound?  Yes,  you are reading it right.  With the upgrades listed you can easily get the 30lb all the way up to water skiing.  Better strap in, hold on and pray.  I will be spooling it with 80lb monofilament for a land based sharking reel use it to troll.

She was in pretty good shape to start.  Some elbow grease and patience and she cleaned up better than I had hoped!  Thanks again Robert Ciminieri!

The hardest part of any  build are acquiring all the custom parts.  As the word custom suggests, each part listed above comes with a different lead time and some you just have to wait for the next small run to get completed which could be weeks or months.

Case in point.  The drag inserts are in between runs.  Nothing you can really do but wait for the next run and get your name in soon.  Full frame from Tom at Cortez Conversions, same challenge.  However, these upgrades are what takes this reel from average to powerhouse!  Well worth the wait.  In the meantime, I will source all the other parts needed and wait!

I started by double dogging the reel.  Which requires some additional patience and a steady slow hand with a Dremel carbide bit.  This reel comes standard with a single bronze dog.  Since we are changing out the gear sleeve to stainless steel, we need to change the dogs to stainless steel.  We need to add the space in the head plate to for the second dog and spring.


Next I needed to make sure the dog spring did not move laterally once installed.  I used the dremel with a cut off bit and cut the cross above in the plate the thickness of the spring.  Next I bent the end of the spring in the shape below.  Once installed in the groove and under the bridge it will be trapped and unable to move.



The second dog is ready to go in alternating sequence with the 10 tooth drag sleeve will give very little back play in the handle and be twice as strong and reliable.


Pro Challenger Stainless steel gear and pinion working with the Cortez Conversions SS gear sleeve.  These gears are really smooth and tough!

Received a drag insert from a friend and went about some light grinding and sanding to make it fit snug in the main gear.  This was the last step on upgrading the business end of the reel.

Next up is the one piece frame from with integrated foot and new Stainless steel top bar.  I like the black as it has a nice look with the black side plates and and chrome rings.

Lastly I need to order a 5/0 knob from Alan on and the appropriate SS handle from Adam at Motive Fab.



Little Blue…Penn 501 Reel

Build list:

  • side plates
  • SS gears, pinion, aluminum spool and knob
  • Motive Fabrications SS counter balanced handle
  • Tank Top Eccentric Lever
  • Tiburon Frame
  • A few Penn parts

This is a retirement gift that will spend its days chasing fish in the Andaman Sea and the Gulf of Thailand.

Contact us!



Feeling Narrow Minded…



Narrow models from Penn and Newell


Top to bottom:

Penn Senator 1/0 – 3:1 Gears

Newell 220 – 5:1 Gears

Penn Jigmaster 501 – 4:1 Gears

Penn Squidder 146 – 3.3:1 Gears

Penn 4/0 T4N – 4:1 Gears

Yellowtail Special

  • Pro Challenger Heat Treated Main Gear with Octagon Drag 113HX 4:1
  • Pro Challenger SS Gear Sleeve
  • Pro Challenger Eva Knob/ 6/0 knob
  • Motive Fab two position SS off set handle and SS star
  • Cortez Conversions Side Plates
  • Randy Pauly Tiburon T4N Frame and Spool

Custom Penn Narrow 4/0


Fit and finish are getting better and better.  Component are getting stronger and more corrosion resistant.  Handle is from Motive Fabrication Knob options:

Large Round knob from Pro Challenger and the large knob on the right is 6/0 knob.  He has several sizes.  Both are bullet proof and fit comfortably in my hand.


Pro Challenger stainless steel bridge with two dogs, 4:1 gear,pinion, 10 tooth gear sleeve.  Most notable is the new carbon Hex Drag system.

Stainless steel star is from Motive Fabrications

Narrow,  aluminum frame, head and end plates, offset two position handle with large 6/0 knob, all stainless internals, upgraded drags, fully adjustable spool bearing caps, (2) SS spool bearings,  aluminum spool, bring em on.

New Aluminum Side Plates for Newell 300 Series Fishing Reels

I had the pleasure of building a Newell reel for a customer today that included the new Cortez Conversions aluminum side plates offered by Bryan Young.  They are everything that we have come to expect from Cortez Conversions.  Fit was perfect, craftsmanship outstanding and finish is superb.

This reel started life as a Newell 338 J.  We installed the new 5+1 drags from Bryan and his plates on a new Tiburon frame.  We also upgraded the handle and knob.  This off set handle and knob came from Ulua Junkies and is a retrofitted Shimano.  This all black beauty is going to scream!  If you want to add strength without a lot more weight this upgrade is the ticket!


Newell Aluminum Side Plates (Cortez Conversions)