The Daiwa Tatula is one of the most popular bass fishing reels on the market. Anglers love the Tatula for its smooth drag, lightweight design, and reasonable price point. However, like any fishing reel that sees a lot of use, Tatula handles and grips can become worn out and degraded over time. Replacing your Tatula handle is an easy and affordable way to upgrade and improve the comfort and performance of your reel.
Why Replace Your Tatula Handle?
The handle of your reel sees constant contact with your hand and fingers while fishing. Over time, handles can become smooth, slippery, and uncomfortable to crank and palm. Replacing a worn Tatula handle with a new one can provide some key benefits:
- Improved grip and comfort: A new handle will have much more tactile grip, allowing you to turn the handle with less hand fatigue. New grips stay "tacky" and prevent slippage.
- Better cranking control: Worn smooth handles can lead to ineffective cranking and reduced leverage. A fresh handle gives you the leverage needed to bring in fish quickly.
- Aesthetic upgrade: A new handle and grip simply makes your Tatula look newer and more appealing. You'll feel proud showing off your upgraded reel on the water.
- Protects your reel investment: Getting more years out of your Tatula by replacing parts like the handle is cheaper than buying a whole new reel.
Handling Handle Replacements
Thankfully, replacing a Daiwa Tatula handle is straightforward and can be done in just a few steps with the right replacement handle. Here is what you need to know:
Selecting a New Tatula Handle
There are a handful of aftermarket companies that produce replacement Tatula handles. Make sure to select a handle specifically designed to fit the Tatula. Models like the Tatula CT, Tatula SV TW, and Tatula Elite will all use the same handles. Most handles cost between $25 and $50.
Popular options include:
- Tatula Knob Upgrade Kit: Comes with a new lightweight handle grip and oversized custom Tatula knob. Available in different colors.
- Cork Tatula Replacement Handle: Features comfortable cork construction with a rear reel seat collar.
- Winn Tatula Split Grip: The split grip allows you to perfectly position your hand placement.
- Tatula Carbon Handle: Incredibly lightweight carbon fiber and EVA handle upgrades.
Removing the Old Tatula Handle
Once you've selected a new Daiwa Tatula replacement handle, you'll need to remove the old worn out grip. This requires just a few steps:
- Use a screwdriver to detach the handle nut bolt from the main gear shaft. This releases the handle.
- Slide the old handle and grip off the rod blank. This may take some wiggling if it's been on for a long time.
- Clean the exposed reel seat collar area with a cloth. Remove any grime buildup.
- Also clean the inner threads of the handle nut bolt to ensure easy installation.
Installing the New Handle
Installation takes just minutes:
- Apply the new handle onto the rod blank, aligning it correctly with the reel seat collar.
- Tighten down the handle nut bolt using your screwdriver. Make sure the handle feels securely attached.
- Consider adding a small drop of blue threadlocker to the handle nut threads. This prevents loosening over time.
- Turn the handle several times to ensure smooth spinning without wobble.
That's it! With a few simple steps and a compatible Daiwa Tatula replacement handle, you've given new life to your reel.
Maintaining Your Tatula After Upgrades
While a new handle and grip will improve the look, feel, and performance of your Tatula, you'll also need to practice ongoing maintenance to get the most life out of your reel. Here are some key tips:
The gears, bearings, and drag washers inside your Tatula should be lubricated once or twice per year. Use light reel oil and carefully apply 2-4 drops into any openings. Turn the handle to distribute evenly. This prevents corrosion and keeps everything operating smoothly.
Rinse After Use
After every fishing trip, use a damp cloth to wipe down the exterior of your reel and handle. Then rinse the whole reel with fresh water, turning the handle to flush the interior. This cleans away debris, salt, and dirt that can cause issues over time.
Inspect and Replace Drag Washers
The drag washers are vital to providing smooth consistent pressure on hooked fish. Inspect the drag clicker for cracks or damage. Replace the washers once they become too thin or fail to engage properly.
Make sure the handle and spool turn smoothly without grinding or uneven resistance, indicating worn out bearings. Replace immediately if damage is found, using compatible Tatula bearing kits.
Consider Upgrading Drag Grease
For even smoother maximum drag, upgrade the stock grease with high-performance greases like Cal's Drag Grease. This enhances the sealed drag system.
Tatula Handle Upgrades for Specific Models
While most replacement Tatula handles are universally compatible, there are some tailored options to consider for certain reel models:
Daiwa Tatula CT Handles
- Tatula CT 90 - Upgrade to a lighter, more ergonomic carbon handle for this ultra-light reel. The Winn Carbontex Split Grip is a top option.
- Tatula CT 100/Type-R - A full cork handle replacement provides maximum grip and comfort for palms when fishing all day.
Daiwa Tatula Elite Handles
- Replace the composite handle with a thinner, more responsive Winn Pro Elite grip made of aircraft-grade aluminum. Reduces weight and improves sensitivity.
- The Tatula Elite Knob Upgrade kit with oversized knob gives added leverage and customized style.
Daiwa Tatula SV TW Handles
- Foam handles on this reel tend to compress and smooth over time. Upgrade to a durable high quality EVA foam grip.
- The Tatula SV TW Carbon Handle reduces weight while improving grip - great for twitching applications.
No matter which specific Tatula reel model you own, a handle replacement is a quick and worthwhile upgrade. Investing in a quality aftermarket Tatula handle ensures you'll get the absolute most out of your Daiwa reel for many seasons to come. With a more comfortable and functional handle, you can focus on landing those big bass on the water.