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Got my heavy trolling rod ready

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  • #16
    Originally posted by pineywoods View Post
    Do be careful with that reel. I have seen a couple of people get badly mashed fingers from the level wind when a big fish was taking out line. Nothing major, but painful. And it gets blood all over your nice, clean reel. Tight lines.
    It was never a problem with my Penn reels. When fish is running out line, one hand is hanging onto the rod and the other is cranking the reel handle. Fingers are nowhere near the line leveler. I suppose a fool who didn't know what he's doing might stick his hand in the reel pulling it out of rod holder.

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    • #17
      Originally posted by Ontario Honker Hunter View Post
      I agree with pineywoods. That is an ocean shark fishing outfit maybe. Or sturgeon if you actually had some good fishing for them. That rod will give you a lot of problems fishing anything less in freshwater. I have caught a ton of salmon in my cruiser and DEFINITELY do not want a rod that stiff. They shake on it too easily and tear loose the hooks. Also when the slack pops out after the line lets go of downrigger, you want something with more action to it to absorb the shock gently. A rod that stiff will either tear out the hook or break the line. Pick up a salt water jigging pole. They are stiff enough but sufficient action in the tips to keep the fish on. You'll never set the hook on a walleye with anything that stiff. They are too nibbly. Those old roller guide poles were meant mostly for steel line trolled with lots of lead in the old days before downriggers were perfected. Pretty much a dinosaur for freshwater these days.

      The Penn 309 is not a bad choice at all. I have two of them I use on Shimano jigging rods. You need a lot of backing to fill up the spool. Doesn't matter if you never use it. It's there as filler. To fill up that spool with expensive braided line would break the bank! Best to have the spool full or nearly full for fast retrieve.

      P.S. Go ahead and make your reel photos Top Answer so they pop up below your other photos. We won't hold it against you. :-)
      Honk, This is considered light salt water gear.

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      • #18
        Originally posted by Ontario Honker Hunter View Post
        I agree with pineywoods. That is an ocean shark fishing outfit maybe. Or sturgeon if you actually had some good fishing for them. That rod will give you a lot of problems fishing anything less in freshwater. I have caught a ton of salmon in my cruiser and DEFINITELY do not want a rod that stiff. They shake on it too easily and tear loose the hooks. Also when the slack pops out after the line lets go of downrigger, you want something with more action to it to absorb the shock gently. A rod that stiff will either tear out the hook or break the line. Pick up a salt water jigging pole. They are stiff enough but sufficient action in the tips to keep the fish on. You'll never set the hook on a walleye with anything that stiff. They are too nibbly. Those old roller guide poles were meant mostly for steel line trolled with lots of lead in the old days before downriggers were perfected. Pretty much a dinosaur for freshwater these days.

        The Penn 309 is not a bad choice at all. I have two of them I use on Shimano jigging rods. You need a lot of backing to fill up the spool. Doesn't matter if you never use it. It's there as filler. To fill up that spool with expensive braided line would break the bank! Best to have the spool full or nearly full for fast retrieve.

        P.S. Go ahead and make your reel photos Top Answer so they pop up below your other photos. We won't hold it against you. :-)
        Some guys might fish halibut with something that heavy but not salmon or steelhead. Those are the species I consider "light salt water" fish. I'd say that's a light heavyweight rod at best. Sailfish, tarpon, and shark outfits are super heavyweight in my book. Given the short rod length and roller guides, I'd say almost for certain this is one is an old pre-downrigger steel line outfit for lunker lake trout. The reel would not have been used for that though. Steel line reels were large flat spooled things (looked somewhat like oversized fly reels) with no level line (steel would eat those up). Those reels were real high maintenance and prone to birds nest unless the line was reeled in tightly and let out carefully. A birds nest with steel line was pretty much impossible to untangle.

        Back when I was a kid, Flathead Lake in Montana had lunker lakers up to 45 lbs. They ran very deep and required steel line to get lures down to them. I saw a LOT of roller rods like this one when I was growing up. Didn't mess with those lakers myself as they were greaseballs that smelled like catfood gone bad. Today the antique stores around Lake Superior a full of those steel line dinosaurs.

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        • #19
          Originally posted by pineywoods View Post
          In my never humble opinion, you are over-gunned for most fresh water fish. What kind of fish is likely to run off 600 yards of 20# line?
          I had a good bit of experience with the 309 Penn back when I was chartering, and while it is a good reel, it tends not to hold up well after repeated encounters with heavy fish and the level wind has to be babied so that it won't be destroyed by the hostile salt environment. The newer Penn Squall seems to be a much better reel at a reasonable price.
          Whatever happens, I hope you find some fish willing to take you down into your backing---repeatedly. Have fun, get you some good eating, and keep those roller guides oiled up and spinning free. GET BENT!
          Yeah, you have to look after those Penn reels, especially in saltwater. I replaced the pawl in mine often twice a season. And I'd always hose down my reels and rods every time I came in. Just moving those rods around the other day and noticed there's still salmon scales stuck to a few of them. Haven't caught a salmon with them since my son was a youngster about five. He'd be 22 if still alive today. In spite of best efforts it's almost impossible to get it all cleaned off.

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          • #20
            This is an average Salmon we were catching - our limit.
            Attached Files

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