Ron's Tackle Tips — Using paraffin on Rods and Reels

Ken Jones

Staff member
Using Paraffin on Rods and Reels

By Ron Crandall of Ron's Reel Repair ( Sept. 1997)

In July's column on Rod Maintenance we recommended applying paraffin on glass or graphite ferrules and on reel seats.TW asks: Won't paraffin cause dirt, sand or anything else to cling to it and cause a worse problem?

Paraffin is a dry wax not a sticky wax. Sand and dirt don't stick to paraffin as they would on a sticky wax, but instead, fall off. Paraffin is used as an industrial lubricant because it is neutral in its reactivity. It allows the surfaces of the male and female ferrule to be tightly in contact without abrading each other.

Paraffin allows the ferrules to be separated as needed, and not stick together as they would if a lubricant was not applied. Not using a lubricant would eventually cause the ferrules to wear against each other and loosen over time. Naturally, if there is dirt or sand on the ferrules, clean them before putting them together.

Paraffin prevents the build up of corrosion on metal based ferrules and reel seats. These are the rods that you can't separate and the reel seats that won't unscrew.

Paraffin prevents crossthreading of graphite reel seats which is a common problem if the reel seat and ring get dirt or sand in them. When the ring or the seat is dirty the ring can crossthread on the seat and in turn damage the seat threads. This will cause the ring not to tighten properly and cause the reel to be loose.

Where do you get paraffin? First look in the kitchen cupboard. If you or a member of your family makes jam, or cans fruits and vegetables, there is probably a blue and white box of paraffin already there. If not, paraffin is available in the canning supply sections of most grocery and hardware stores.