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I have two of them and they work fine.I spooled them with 30# big game and took the level wind off to get more distance.There are several reels more suited for surf fishing
but the 309 will work.
 

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PHINS ... I've used 309M's on 8 ft rods since '81 with 25-30 lb test and had been pretty satisfied for anything up to large drum or small shark. Casting distance is limited (me and the rods probably the biggest handicap ;)) but 20 years ago I had no problem going to the 3rd bar to get "out there".

I'm just now getting back into surf fishing and have bought 2 10' rods and am looking at getting some reels with more capacity (have been spooled or came close several times) thinking ... Penn 4/0 or 545/555. Also looking at used Pro gear 541 and Shimano 20/40.

Anyone out there casting a 4/0?
 

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They are fine for reds, drum and smaller sharks. Just take the levelwinds off. A buddy of mine had his lock up and he went skating across the sand before the line broke.
Pelican,
4/0's cast real good. If you can afford the extra $ I would suggest you get a wide 4/0 for hte extra line cappacity. I had a 400H sealine Daiwa and could cast it about as far as I do my 3/0 or 50hsd. The 555GS is also a great choice.
 

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IMO the 4/0wide is one of the best all around surf fishing reels made. they hold 600yds of 30#. You can upsize to 40# and still have 446yds. Now it will take a little getting used to in order to cast it well. As soon as my finances will allow I will be adding two to my arsenal. I have 3 12' Oceanmasters they will go great on.
 

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Just so you know, the line capacity of the 4/0 wide is understated. On mine, I have about 75 yards of 40# Big Game on bottom, 300 yards of 80# Powerpro backing, then 370 yards (1/4lb spool) of 40# Big Game.
 

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555gs

The 555GS is a great reel, I have one and am buying another next week. Great surf reel. 309 is good to have too for the money, if you can afford to keep it, it is not bad to have in the ole aresenal.
 

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Thanks for the reply, shrky, and eveyone's info on the reels. I think it was F.A.T. (maybe Krash) that also told me he had/has a Daiwa that can cast really well/far ... F.A.T. uses 555's as well. I may end up with one of each. ;) Later,
Bob
 

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A 4/0(not wide) will hold nearly twice the amount that a 555 will. The 309. the jigmaster 500 or 505, and the 555 all hold just about the same amount of line.
 

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A standard 4/0 is advertised @ 475yds of 30lb mono. A 555GS is advertised at 600yds 20lb mono wich converts to 393yds 30lb mono. the 309 holds 350yds 30lb and a 500L jigmaster hold 275yds 30lb. These are the advertised specs.
393 x 2 = 786yds
 

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Oh yeah Pelican,
I have a Daiwa Sealine 50HSD ( very comparable to a Penn GS), it holds 400yds 30lb mono, casts really well. I have mine on a 12' OceanMaster. It is a wonderful reel. They hold up great are sealed great. I have magged mine. It was the first reel I magged and the washer doesn't have a spec of rust on it unlike my 3/0 which the washer is rusted so bad it isn't funny. The big problem with them is they have been discontinued. Tackledirect still advertises them and so does Catfish. Hope I am not confusing you. Later.
 

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The 309 is a good reel. I prefer my Penn Long Beach 68 over my wide 4/0. Then again thats me. Plus you can get 2 for the price of a wide 4/0. Then again thats just me. I don't have them magged either.
 

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Yep BigJoe the 68's are **** good reels just a little slow on the retrieve. I had one and loved it.
 

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shrky2413 said:
Oh yeah Pelican,
...... Hope I am not confusing you. Later.
Nope, not at all, already been baffled by all the ad info I've read ... j/k

gundoctor, sorry we didn't get to meet ya at the BumRun, ended up in Surfside that weekend.

For starters, I'm "eBaying" for a 4/0 ... always liked Penns and the capacity and price/value ratio seems just right for the fishing I'm doing now (i.e. not yakking out big baits or looking for the monster shark).

Found an interesting reel summary on the net, probably old news for you guys ...
http://www.powerlink.co.nz/~graeme/Reelzone/vault07.htm
 

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shrky2413 said:
A standard 4/0 is advertised @ 475yds of 30lb mono. A 555GS is advertised at 600yds 20lb mono wich converts to 393yds 30lb mono. the 309 holds 350yds 30lb and a 500L jigmaster hold 275yds 30lb. These are the advertised specs.
393 x 2 = 786yds
Sharky, I/m going by what I have put on my reels, not what Penn puts in their advertisements. A 1/4# spool of 30# big game (440yds) is about what it takes to fill up a Jigmaster 500L/505L, a GS555 or a 309. It takes nearly all of two 1/4# spools to fill up a regular bronze spool 4/0. And yes A bronze spool 4/0 will hold over 700 yds(probably closer to 800 yds) of 30#, if the markings on 1/4# spools of Big Game are accurate. Since I have never filled a 113L or a 113 HLW, I won't guess on how much line they will hold.
I do know that Penn greatly under rates what their reels will actually hold.
BTW: I fill a reel until the line is almost dragging on the cross bars.
 

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hey gundoc

gundoctor said:
BTW: I fill a reel until the line is almost dragging on the cross bars.
have you ever had any problem with the line getting down around the spool spindle? i never fill mine over the spool edge.

i lost a really nice trout one time on an abu because of this.
 

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You must really be careful on the retreive with an "overfilled" reel to not get to close sides and get the line caught up, however, overfilling will help you to get more distance when casting.
 
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