what has people's experience been with the Penn GTi reel series? I bottom fish for sea bass and blackfish and plan on bying the GTi 330 in particular. At 26 ounces, is this too heavy to be holding all day?
I've got two 320s I use for baitfishing for stripers and blackfish, had them about 15 years. They are the original ones with the graphite line guides. They have landed hundreds of fish and are still working fine. I do keep them well lubed and clean. We just got a new 321 as my son and I prefer left handed conventional reels. I think a 330 is a little large for what you are useing it for. I have used the 320 for reef fishing in Fla. and it handled Large grouper and amberjack in 200 ft of water just fine. I think they are a fine reel fot the money.
I have had a 310 GTI for at least 15 years. I have used it on countless fish, the largest being a 19 lb bluefish. It is my bluefish reel and has never failed me. If I'm bassin I use a Garcia 5500 with 15lb fireline and for ocean fluke or inlet bass I use a Penn 975. The GTI is a balls to the wall reel, nothing fancy but tough.
I have a 330 GTI. I never use it - it is just too big for that type of fishing. You can't go wrong with the 320 GTI. My only complaint is that when chunking, with the reel in free spool and the clicker on, if the current is really ripping it sometimes will pull line from the spool. And yes I have tightened the spool adjustment nob on the side of the reel. I believe that Penn has addressed this problem by putting a heavier clicker in the 320GTI"s that they are putting out this year.
I have a 330GTI that I've used for about 4 years for bottom fishing. Although it's been a good performer and I've had no trouble with it, it's really too heavy for this purpose. I just bought a pair of 310GTI's to do the same job this year.
I've had 2 310 GTI's that are going on their 4th season. Use them for everything from deep water fluke drifting, sea bassing, black fishing on the reefs and Cholera, chumming for blues, and stripers. They are holding up extremely well, still have not replaced the drag washers. Drags are smooth. Rinsed in fresh water after each trip and oiled lightly (paricularly the level wind) and they are good to go.
I can't see how anyone can criticize Penn reels. So they aren't sexy or glossy. But, parts are readily available and cheap. The reels are tough. Has anyone, except for Internationals, had a Penn GTi seize on them? I haven't. I just got back from a MA Cod trip and used a 113h for 2 days and must have caught 250lbs of cod. No problem with the reel. Internationals are a different story (30's 50's 80's) In that case I think the TLD Shimanos are the reel deal. The bottom line is that Penn reels allow you to fish without a hassle.
I use Penn's for saltwater action.
I have had one seize up on me. This was my fault as the reel wasn't rinsed or lubed and was generaly neglected. I sent
it to Penn factory in PA and for under
$20 it came back as good as new.
So they're dependable and cheap to have serviced. Best bet for the money.
Also the level wind feature makes for a
convenient way to keep track of how much line you've paid out.
Have you considered a Penn 140 L if you are not familiar with it I have them on 4 of my poles for tog, seabass, blues, cod, stripers etc. I even use spectra line on one though you need mucho backing because these reels hold 350 yards of 20lb test. I like Yozuri 20 pound smoke, started last year with it, pretty thin diameter, no memory to sapeak of and tough.
They weigh in at 18 oz and have a respecatble retrieve 3.3 to 1. : very wide spools if you like that type of thing. My absolute favorite for most species, I also use it for jigging and casting. For casting you need to control the spool and the speed of it it takes some time. I find these babies very reasonably priced $75.00 and without any working problems.
Trust me on the 140 L they are just great and I use them approximately 30 times a season, in waters approaching 100' regards Gary.
Poles/smoles/holes/ rods all the same to me try a 140 L they also make a left handed version for the lefties or the fishing impaired. Try this reel once and you will be hooked, don't know why so few people use it other than to jig regards Gary.
Hi Gary, you are talking about the Penn Squidder 140? If I remmber right isn't it a surf casting reel up class from the 200 surfmaster, please correct me if i'm wrong, I have a Penn Squidder 140 and found with the large spool it is a pain to thumb the line on, that is where the level winds have it made, well any way you like it, you can't go wrong with Penn just my Opinion, just have fun
Yes, Absoultely right you are, on the reel they show a guy surf casting. Before I got into the boat fishing I was a surfcasting junkie so maybe this reel was in the back of my mind.
I use it for that sticky bottom fishing in 80-120 feet of water with 1/2 pound of lead. I like it because the guts seem incapable of wearing out to good size tog, blues, double header dog fish, occasional small cod. Plus so often I am wrapped around the mess below and the big handle and beefiness( although_only 18 or so ounces of reel weight)and a medium to heavy pole gets me out of many jams. I load it with 20 lb test or the specialty braids/lines every thing seems to work. Plus I like to jig and cast with it with the right situations. As you said is does take some getting used to it but by far my all around favorite-they never wear out, regards, Gary.
A great Reel from Penn and my personal favorite is the JIGMASTER 500 or 500L as they are now called has a 4:1 ratio and about the same line capacity as 140L, so when you fish in deep water it don?t where you out, and I have used it for Blues, Bass, Blacks, Ling, Cod, I always went for the faster ratios, If you miss and have to reel in to rebait it could be a long day of reeling with 8 or 12 oz. of lead, I have both of the reels mentioned for over 30 years, and they both still work like new, it?s the old story if you take care of it, it will take care of you, Ok Gary I stand corrected the Penn Squider is now the 140L and the Jigmaster is 500L, I?m still old school.
Note: My Garcia Mitchell 302 is made in France, sorry my 306 and 300 is not around
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