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Penn Live Liner reels

Craig

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Has anyone used any of the Penn Live Liner range of reels?
What's your opinion of them and are they worth the money?

I'm looking at the Fierce 3 4000 Live Liner and the Spinfisher VI 4500 Live Liner.
As far as I can see, there's not alot of difference between them apart from one extra bearing, 5lb of drag and a few grams of weight.

It will be used mainly for drifting for Pollack with 30lb braid.
This is where the Live Liner function would come in handy as it's a pain to feather 100+ft of line off a reel every drift.
 

snagfinder

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yes i have been using the 8500 live liner reels for about a year i mainly bought them for fishing for smoothounds and rays off the rough ground beaches. I do like them and are perfect for what i use them for. The 8500 reel holds a stupid amount of line but are not made for making long casts off the beach which is a good job as i only need to fish 70/90 yrds out they would be perfect for what you want to use them for they are strong as ever and will not let you down... If i have 1 small moan about them is they weight a ton but do the job i want them to with ease...
 

Craig

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Thanks for that, I really appreciate the reply. I'm glad you get on well with them and can vouch for them being good reels.
They don't seem to be the most popular reels but are such a great concept, I'm surprised they aren't more popular.
 

snagfinder

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the only reason i can see why they aren`t more popular is down to the weight as i said they weigh a ton not made for long casting and we don`t get many fish that take line off the reel on the take hence the reason i use them for Smoothounds and Rays which do take line.

they are very popular in America, New Zealand Australia etc but that has to do with all the big game fishing they do.
 

Craig

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That's a good point really. Hadn't thought of it like that.

What model reels are you using?

I'm seriously considering the Spinfisher from my choices but really struggling to make my mind up as I'd be paying the extra money for the extra drag capacity in reality. Plus a more water tight reel, which being fished on a boat could come in handy, but also worries me if any water gets in, it could then be trapped in.
 

snagfinder

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mine are the spinfisher 8500 live liner i reckon i could of gone for the next size down the 6500 and they still would of done the same job it just would of been less line and slightly less drag and don`t worry about any sea water getting in to them they are fully sealed you could put them on the back of your boat and tow them underwater for miles you won`t be getting any seawater inside....
 

Craig

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That's the sort of thing I wanted to hear!
I think the Spinfisher will probably be what I go for then.
They do sound the best option that we have over here, shame they don't do a bigger range of them really as other countries seem to be able to get other models with the live liner function on them.
 

bacon

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Spinfisher is a excellent reel, very heavy duty, and very salt water resistant/waterproof.

The live liner models are rated to ipx5 levels of waterproofing, well all of the spinfisher models are "rated" the same, but the standard models have the same waterproofing as the slammer 3, which is ipx6.
The long cast model is probably not as waterproof as the standard but a little better than the live liner given it has a reverse level that could let in water compared to the standard.
The live liner has the frrespool mechanism so will be the least waterproof but still better than most other reels on the market I'm sure.

But if you take a look at Henry Gilbys website you will see how he dunked a slammer and a spinfisher under sea water and turned the handle plenty of times. He continued to use them long after and they still work great.

I have a 2500, 3500 and a 7500, all standard reels and they are great bits of kit. Heavier than an equivalent diawa or Shimano and they aren't as smooth as a Shimano/daiwa. But they can take a dunk in sea water, are all metal in construction and will last a long time without doubt.

Line lay is not so bad either. Not Shimano quality but as good as my Daiwa Fuego LT and Ninjas/LT, if not slightly better.

I personally think the 7500 is too big for braid and beach fishing. I should have gone for the 6500, maybe the long cast. So I may well sell it and do just that for my rough ground fishing.
 

Craig

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Cheers for that bacon, sounds like they definitely have a good track record then.
I'm think pretty settled on the Spinfisher vi4500 live liner now.
Will try to update this when I get one and get out using it.
 

Craig

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Just a quick update.
Had the liveliner for a few months now, seems a solid little reel but the handle was very short and made reeling any weight in very difficult, but that's about the only downside so far. Used it for a few sessions on the beach and boat, held up perfectly well so far, nothing big caught yet though.

Now, I have tried the standard handle for a while and enquired about a longer handle with little success so today I decided to make one that will hopefully work better for me.
I have been advised against it as it may wear the hears faster die to the longer handle creating more stress, but that's a risk I'm willing to take to be able to enjoy using the reel.
I had an old akios reel spare so took the handle and black shaft from that, then drilled/tapper the hole to suit the Penn shaft (that screws into the reel body) and the Penn handle retaining screw (little silver slotted screw at the handle joint). The result feels alot nicer than the standard handle, if anything it may be a little longer than I wanted but certainly feels better so far. I may be able to get out later in the week to try it out and see how it performs.

I'll try to upload a picture later.
 

Craig

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Update as promised.
Just got back from a couple of days down Brixham on spot on charters, used this reel on a 150g spinning rod for wrecking. What a fun little setup, nice and light, plenty of power and has the ability to drop down on the live liner function, the clicker would have to go though as the noise does get abit irritating after the first few drops.
The longer handle worked incredibly well, alot better than expected actually.
It didn't get a hard test as the biggest thing I caught on it was only a 12.5 lb Pollack, but it performed faultlessly.
 

Tournamag

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Update as promised.
Just got back from a couple of days down Brixham on spot on charters, used this reel on a 150g spinning rod for wrecking. What a fun little setup, nice and light, plenty of power and has the ability to drop down on the live liner function, the clicker would have to go though as the noise does get abit irritating after the first few drops.
The longer handle worked incredibly well, alot better than expected actually.
It didn't get a hard test as the biggest thing I caught on it was only a 12.5 lb Pollack, but it performed faultlessly.
Make sure clean/lube mech around rear as they corrode up a bit if left plus turn drag right out when left or get's "Stuck"!
Quite a fine mech free spool which don't like salty crap! good douse in VP90/ACF50.
 

Craig

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Cheers for the heads up mate, will see about getting some of that.
Any recommendations where to buy it from?
 

Topwater

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Another vote for ACF50 - it's worth every penny in my book. A 12.5lb polly is not to be sniffed at! No sign of line twist using the BR to drop down?
 

Craig

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No sign of line twist at all, was in about 70m of water, was using a Portland rig which may have helped with the swivels maybe? I must admit, I only used the bait runner to drop down about 30% of the time as the noise was really irritating in that depth, but I works, so I may consider taking the clicker out of the bait runner and using that way in future. Just a shame you can't turn the clicker off as the second day we were fishing, I used the same rod and reel for bait fishing at anchor and used the bait runner for what it's there for.
As I said above, I'm really impressed with the little reel, it handled everything thrown at it and didn't miss a beat.
The handle has completely transformed the reel for me, it's a mod I would recommend to anyone with this reel.
 
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