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Zebco Cardinal 4 (salt)
Post 16 Jun 2020, 13:06 • #1 
Guide
Joined: 12/05/18
Posts: 111
Location: US-MN






Interested in any feedback regarding these reels. Particularly if an original spool could be found for one of them. The small button spool functions fine, but there is a click when reeling.
Just had them serviced and they work well.
May consider selling these, but first a bit of information.


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Post 16 Jun 2020, 16:00 • #2 
Piscator
Joined: 08/10/05
Posts: 16287
Location: downtown Bulverde, Texas
the reel we don't talk about often enough - great design and quality manufacturing - they have a fan club that needs to stand up on FFR.
Their design roots came from the Swiss Thommen reel, which was bought by Abu, and Zebco eventually bought the design.


The only reel I ever owned from this line (except that Thommen Record half-bail) was the Lew's version of the '90s, which suffered from graphite-filled plastic frame without the rigidity of an equivalent Penn - that specific reel wasn't up to par with Penn 4x00SS, but the older metal frame reels like yours are famous for their smooth function.


Last edited by bulldog1935 on 16 Jun 2020, 16:04, edited 1 time in total.

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Post 16 Jun 2020, 16:02 • #3 
Guide
Joined: 12/05/18
Posts: 111
Location: US-MN
Thank you Bulldog. The one with the replacement spool I found in a dumpster (1972 I think).
My Dad liked it enough to purchase the second. Both have been fished a lot, but not at all in the last 20 years.


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Post 16 Jun 2020, 16:05 • #4 
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Joined: 08/10/05
Posts: 16287
Location: downtown Bulverde, Texas
btw, I sold that Thommen when I was paring my half-bails, and a guy took it fishing.


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Post 16 Jun 2020, 16:12 • #5 
Glass Fanatic
Joined: 07/11/14
Posts: 1199
Location: US-CO
terrific reels, the Cardinal 3 has a tremendous following and they sell for more than the original price..
Cardinal 4s unfortunately aren't worth as much, though there are some very ambitious pricings on ebay..
I was looking for a 3 for a while until I realized they were all going to be in the hundreds, more than I'm willing to pay. The 4s seemed to sell at lower prices, when I was watching earlier this year.

Spools are readily available there too, though pricey.
According to Mikesreelrepair dot com, part number for the spool is 11526, can also use -- 970515, 11526, 1047274. None in stock unfortunately.
A trot through the webs googling for these numbers and 'spool' might turn up something.

That small button spool looks like an original, though. Here's a 1970 ad which shows that same spool -



I'm a Mitchell enthusiast, even I agree with them the Cardinal 4 is a better reel than the 300..
But the 3 isn't better than the Mitchell 308 with upgraded line roller ;-)


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Post 16 Jun 2020, 17:22 • #6 
Piscator
Joined: 08/10/05
Posts: 16287
Location: downtown Bulverde, Texas
The Japanese sell a lot of aftermarket upgrades and pimp parts for these reels, though admittedly mostly for the 3 and 33.
https://www.hedgehog-studio.co.jp/produ ... mit=Search
which also explains the elevated market - whenever the Japanese want something, prices go up
https://www.hedgehog-studio.com/page/254


Last edited by bulldog1935 on 19 Jun 2020, 21:55, edited 2 times in total.

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Post 17 Jun 2020, 00:20 • #7 
Sport
Joined: 10/17/14
Posts: 33
Location: US-PA
I have a Cardinal 6 that makes a very light clicking sound, a plastic bail system part inside the rotor just barely ticks the release post. The Cardinal 4 has a different setup, but the release mechanism might be your problem, does it click with the spools exchanged or removed?

If they were mine, I'd at least keep one, they're first class reels. But I would invest in spare bail nut, and considering they're at least 40 years old, spare bail springs.

Tim


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Post 17 Jun 2020, 09:30 • #8 
Guide
Joined: 12/05/18
Posts: 111
Location: US-MN
Really appreciate the feedback. The advertisement is wonderful.
And there is no clicking with the spool removed.
I’ll investigate a bit further on the clicking noise. Recently had the reels serviced and that man is the one who suggested the spool was not the original and the source of the clicking.
He may be wrong.

I’m pretty committed to selling them. The collection of tackle and gear my Dad accumulated was extensive. He took large groups of customers fishing, up to 25 on some walleye outings. One of six bankers boxes I’ve depleted over the years was full of just Rapalas!

Getting a few of the more unique items into use or I to the hands of those that really appreciate it makes me happy. I’ve enjoyed this stuff for years.


Last edited by Swedish_Fish218 on 17 Jun 2020, 09:47, edited 1 time in total.

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Post 17 Jun 2020, 09:33 • #9 
Sport
Joined: 01/13/12
Posts: 40
Location: US-NC
zebco and abu garcia cardinals-3, 4, 4x,5 and 6- are my favorite spinning reels for -let's see- over 40 years. nothing has eclipsed them. my first one is still going strong over 40 years of service. never had a problem with it. i did change the rotor around 1979 due to paint loss. dual bail springs have never broken on any of mine. i've got shimano stradics that just gather dust.

you can find spools on the big auction site. i would look for a new one instead of used but that's just me since i have a few. your mileage may vary.


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