Shimano Vanquish FA fishing reel review

posted in: Shimano reels | 2

Vanquish is a high-end reel from Shimano which has very light weight and lots of great features like magnesium Hagane body, core protect, micromodule gears, G Free body, Magnumlite rotor, carbon handle and many more. But these are the details what you can find in the catalogue, let’s see what is inside.

The Shimano Vanquish C3000 FA

This time our subject is the Vanquish FA which was introduced in 2016. The exact reel is size 3000. We can see on the label that the Vanquish is made in Japan just like other high-end Shimano reels.

Shimano Vanquish C3000 FA
1. Shimano Vanquish C3000 FA

If we remove the spool you will find the drag click ratchet (2.1.) and the spool washers (2.2.). The rotor nut plate (2.3.) also appears with its two screws.

Shimano Vanquish - drag click rachet
2. Shimano Vanquish FA – drag click rachet

After removing the spool washers, we can find the set screw (3.1.) in the bearing bushing (3.2.). We must remove the screw before the next step.

Shimano Vanquish FA - shaft bearing bushing
3. Shimano Vanquish FA – shaft bearing bushing

On the next picture we can see the removed Magnumlite rotor and in the first line, the spool washers (4.1.). In the second line there are the drag click ratchet (4.2.), the spool support (4.3.), the ratchet spring (4.4.), the spool bearing (4.5.) and the bearing bushing (4.6.) with its set screw (4.7.). We can also see the rotor nut lock plate (4.8.) with its screws. Under the plate there is a water proof rubber sealing (4.9.). This is responsible for sealing the main shaft and the pinion gear. The rotor is connected to the pinion with a rotor nut (4.10.).

Shimano Vanquish - rotor shaft washers
4. Shimano Vanquish FA – rotor shaft washers

The bail arm (5.1.) is removed. On the line roller’s side under the bail arm there are the click pin (5.2.) and spring (5.3.). The bail spring (5.4.) and its guide (5.5.) is on the other side. The bail spring is in a synthetic bail spring seat (5.6.). The bail trip lever (5.7.) is also in this side.

Shimano Vanquish - bail assembly
5. Shimano Vanquish FA – bail assembly

The bail spring with the bail spring guide is placed in the seat. The bail trip lever lays under the spring. A little amount of waterproof grease is always helpful here to prevent wearing.

Shimano Vanquish - bail spring
6. Shimano Vanquish FA – bail spring

The bail support guard (7.1.) is fixed with a screw. Bail spring guide has a bush (7.2.) in the bail arm.

Shimano Vanquish - bail assembly, rotor
7. Shimano Vanquish FA – bail assembly, rotor

The click spring and pin are in their place.

Shimano Vanquish - click pin
8. Shimano Vanquish FA – click pin

The line roller (9.1.) (power roller) is supported with a built-in ball bearing. It has two bearing spacers (9.2.) on both sides and a line roller plate (9.3.) in the bail arm (9.4.). The line roller support (9.5.) has a washer (9.6.), do not forget to put it on the support before inserting it into the bail arm.

Shimano Vanquish - line roller
9. Shimano Vanquish FA – line roller

Under the rotor there is the roller clutch assembly. The roller clutch (10.1.) and it’s reinforce (10.2.) are fixed with 3 screws. Under the roller clutch inner (10.3.) there is a metal spacer (10.4.).

Shimano Vanquish - roller clutch
10. Shimano Vanquish FA- roller clutch

Under the roller clutch there is a rubber O-ring (11.1.). There are 6 rollers in the holder (11.2.) with 6 springs to hold them in the right position. In the clutch there is a water proof set which contains a rotor ring (11.3.) and a sealing (11.4.).

Shimano Vanquish - roller clutch assembly
11. Shimano Vanquish FA – roller clutch assembly

Under the clutch assembly there is the bearing retainer (12.1.) fixed with 3 screws. We can see the place of the rubber O-ring (12.2.) and the friction ring (12.3.).

Shimano Vanquish - bearing retainer
12. Shimano Vanquish FA – bearing retainer

The bail trip strike (13.1.) holds the friction ring (13.2.) in its position. The bail trip strike is fixed with a little screw (13.3.).

Shimano Vanquish - friction-ring, bail trip strike
13. Shimano Vanquish FA – friction-ring, bail trip strike

Under the retainer there is the bearing (14.1.) of the pinion gear. If we remove the friction ring we will find a hole (14.2.). This is where we can unscrew the rear protector with a long screwdriver. This hole is under the bail trip strike which has a plug on its bottom.

Shimano Vanquish - pinion ball bearing
14. Shimano Vanquish FA – pinion ball bearing

To remove the rear protector (15.1.), we must remove two screws. One mentioned above and one under the protector. Between the body and the rear protector there is a rear shield (15.2.).

Shimano Vanquish - rear protector
15. Shimano Vanquish FA – rear protector

And there is the hidden screw (16.1.) what we must remove from the other side of the body, just like in a Stella.

Shimano Vanquish - rear protector screw
16. Shimano Vanquish FA- rear protector screw

Before opening the side cover we must remove the friction ring spacer (17.1.). There are two screws we need to unscrew.

Shimano Vanquish - friction ring spacer
17. Shimano Vanquish FA – friction ring spacer

The side plate is fixed with 3 screws. One of them in the end of the body has a screw washer (18.1.) too. The ball bearing (18.2.) of the drive gear is fixed to the side cover with 3 screws.

Shimano Vanquish - gears greased
18. Shimano Vanquish FA – gears greased

When removing the drive gear (19.1.), we can see the worm shaft (19.2.) and the main shaft assembly (19.3.). The Micromodule idle gears (19.4.) are made of metal.

Shimano Vanquish - body drive gear oscillation assembly
19. Shimano Vanquish FA – body drive gear oscillation assembly

In the first line there are the roller clutch inner (20.1.), a metal spacer (20.2.), a bearing (20.3.), a washer (20.4.) and the pinion gear (20.5.). The latter one runs on another bearing (20.6.) in the body. The main shaft assembly (20.7.) rides on two oscillating guides (20.7-8.). These guides are sealed with O-rings.

Shimano Vanquish - main shaft assembly
20. Shimano Vanquish FA – main shaft assembly

The pinion gear is worth a closer look, as well as the rubber O-ring (21.1.) on it.

Shimano Vanquish - pinion gear
21. Shimano Vanquish FA – pinion gear

The oscillating pawl cover (22.1.) is fixed by two screws to the main shaft assembly. The oscillating pawl (22.2.) runs on a bearing (22.3.) and a slider bushing (22.4.). This is a technical feature which can be found only in the high-end reels in the Shimano lineup.

Shimano Vanquish - oscillating pawl
22. Shimano Vanquish FA – oscillating pawl

On the right side of the worm shaft there is the only bushing (23.1.) you can find in the Vanquish instead of a bearing.

Shimano Vanquish - worm shaft bushing
23. Shimano Vanquish FA – worm shaft bushing

On the left side the worm shaft (24.1.) runs on a small ball bearing (24.2.). The idle gear (24.3.) of the worm shaft is a Micromodule gear which reduces oscillation vibration. On the right side of the worm shaft you can see the synthetic bushing (24.4.) and the worm shaft retainer (24.5.) with its screw. The other two idle gears (24.6.) are supported with the idle gear shaft (24.7.).

Shimano Vanquish - worm shaft idle gears
24. Shimano Vanquish FA – worm shaft idle gears

The mentioned synthetic bushing can be changed to a ball bearing (25.1.). The thickness of the bushing was 2.46 mm just like the ball bearing on the picture. If we want to change the bushing to a bearing, a washer (25.2.) must be added to the outside of the bearing. The outer diameter of the washer must be the same length as the outer diameter of the bearing if we want to apply it correctly in a technical point of view.

Shimano Vanquish - worm bushing upgrade
25. Shimano Vanquish FA – worm bushing upgrade

The reason is if you push the bearing to the worm shaft retainer it won’t be able to spin properly and / or the worm shaft is going to have some play. The worm shaft will rotate the inner ring of the bearing that is why we need a washer which fits the outer ring.

Shimano Vanquish - worm bushing upgrade 2
26. Shimano Vanquish FA – worm bushing upgrade 2

The gears are greased, ready to install the drive gear.

Shimano Vanquish - main gear greased
27. Shimano Vanquish FA – main gear greased

The washers are placed on the drive gear. The next step to screw the side cover with the three screws.

Shimano Vanquish - gears greased
28. Shimano Vanquish FA – gears greased

On the picture below, we can see the rotor fixed with the nut (29.1.). The waterproof sealing (29.2.) is on the nut, under the lock plate. If you have ever seen a Stella FI in parts you can have the feeling that the seen parts and solutions are very similar. The most significant technical difference is around the rotor nut. There is no bearing or main shaft spacer in the nut within Vanquish while Stella has one.

Shimano Vanquish - main shaft sealing
29. Shimano Vanquish FA – main shaft sealing

The cold forged aluminium spool (30.1.) is supported with a ball bearing (30.2.) which is placed under the drag with a bearing retainer (30.3.). The drag itself contains three felt washers (30.4.) and three key washers (30.5.). The maximum drag power is 9 kg in the Vanquish C3000 FA. The drag washers are fixed with a retainer (30.6.) in the spool.

Shimano Vanquish FA - drag
30. Shimano Vanquish FA – drag

The drag knob (31.1.) has a rubber sealing which makes the drag waterproof. On the bottom of the spool there is the drag click (31.2.).

Shimano Vanquish - spool, drag click
31. Shimano Vanquish FA – spool, drag click

The Vanquish has the first carbon handle among the Shimano reels and this makes it very light and good looking. The rubber T knob (32.1.) runs on two ball bearings (32.2-3.).

Shimano Vanquish FA - handle
32. Shimano Vanquish FA – handle

If you hold the Vanquish you will feel that it is a very lightweight reel. It weighs 195 gr spooled with braid. The factory data is 185 gr.

Shimano Vanquish - weight
33. Shimano Vanquish FA – weight

Shimano Vanquish FA (2016) summary

The Vanquish C3000 FA is made with 11 S ARB ball bearing and one roller bearing. They are placed in the following places and sizes:

Spool: 6×10×3 mm

Spool shaft: 7×11×3 mm

Line roller: built-in ball bearing

Pinion gear: 7×13×4 mm and 5×8×2.5 mm

Main drive gear: 7×11×3 mm and 7×13×4 mm

Worm shaft: 2×5×2.5 mm and one synthetic bushing (can be upgraded to a 3×6×2.5 mm bearing)

Oscillating pawl: 2×5×2.5 mm

Handle knob: 4×7×2.5 mm, 2 pcs

There are several models like 2000 SFA, 4000 HGFA and 4000 XGFA with 12 +1 bearings. These are the ones where the worm shaft is already supported with 2 bearings. And there is a double handle version as well, called 3000 SDHFA with 13+1 bearings. The rest of the line-up has 11 + 1 bearings like the C3000 Fa.

Techniqal features used in Vanquish FA reels:

  • HAGANE Gear and Body
  • Coreprotect water protection
  • Micro Module Gear
  • New Magnumlite Rotor
  • S A-RB high corrosion, shielded bearings
  • Cold Forged Alu Spool
  • Waterproof drag
  • Rigid Support drag
  • Aero Wrap II worm gear oscillation system
  • Floating Shaft II
  • Super Stopper II
  • Lightweigh X G Free Body
  • Titanium One-Piece Bail
  • Magnesium Frame
  • Single Carbon Handle

During the Efftex 2016 Shimano won the award in the category “Best New Fixed Spool Reel” for Vanquish FA and we may say they deserved it. Shimano added the high-end features to this reel, the weight is feather-light and finally if you still haven’t fallen in love with the Vanquish I have to mention – again- the carbon handle. Hard to tell anything about durability because this particular reel was used only a few times, so maybe next season I will update this article.

In the beginning of 2018, when I am writing this article, the price of the Vanquish 3000 FA is around 350 Euro which is 25% cheaper than a Stella in the same size. Is it fair to compare it to the Stella? Definitely yes. The mechanism in both products is nearly the same. If you upgrade the worm gear’s bushing to a bearing you will have only one bearing less. Of course, it makes some difference and Stella always will be the Stella. But for 25% less the Vanquish could be a very good choice.

Thanks for reading my article. If you have any question or comment please feel free to contact me.

2 Responses

    • admin

      Thank you very much! I am very happy you liked it.

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