Smaller Setup for Kings: Reel/Rod Question - Pensacola Fishing Forum

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Old 05-17-2017, 07:34 PM   #1
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Default Smaller Setup for Kings: Reel/Rod Question

Hey guys, it has been awhile, four-five years, but I am finally able to get back out to the water!! Been spending the past week making all my rigs.

I am currently looking for a smaller, compact king setup than what I have used in the past. I currently have a Penn 750ssm, 60lb braid (no clue how much is on it), and a nice Offshore Extreme Cobia Special 9ft rod. While this has landed plenty of fish, it is bulky as all get out. I am currently looking to see how small of a setup I can get away with, as I have landed some kings and sharks using one of my Shimano Socoro 4000.

Would a Penn Fierce/Battle (preferably the cheaper option) have enough line capacity to let a nice king run? I cannot remember what the ideal line capacity is. My family prefers to use braid.

Finally, I have some Shimano Scimitars 7' that would probably get the job done, but I am curious what your recommendations for a king rod are, preferably something thin to get a good grip on.

Can't wait to get back to the water again!
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Old 05-17-2017, 08:31 PM   #2
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I have a penn fierce 5000, and I can't really recommend it. The drag sticks like hell even after maintenance, and the finish is flaking off really bad, not to mention that somehow I managed to strip the main gear while reeling it in to check my bait. FWIW, I have a couple of spinfishers, a 3500 and a 7500LC, and love them. Haven't had any issues, and they are beasts. Even the 3500 has a 20lb drag, which is what you get on the 5000 and up Fierce or Battle reels.
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Old 05-17-2017, 09:31 PM   #3
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for king fishing, the drag is just about the most important piece of the puzzle. The Penn battle really shines in this department. Absolutely unmatched in its price range. The 4000 size would be plenty for most kings you'll encounter from the pier if you choose 15-20# braid. I've caught plenty of kings on 3000-4000 size reels with 10-15# braid.
The options for rods are virtually endless. All depends on if you want to throw artificials, natural bait, what size bait, etc. Also depends on how much you want to spend. I'd stick with something at least 7' and preferably 8' for the castability.
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Old 05-17-2017, 09:58 PM   #4
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Blair Wiggins 8ft Heavy/Fast. Casts a mile super sensitive and strong. Okuma Azores 4000. Super smooth 28lb drag. Holds 215yds 30lb braid. And the combo is purty which kings really appreciate. Do some shopping around. You can get the rods from 70-80 and the same for the reel.
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Old 05-17-2017, 10:11 PM   #5
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If the combo is mainly for kings I would also look at reels with live line functions. Best way to target kings when stationary for me. Gonna lose a little drag strength but it's worth it in my opinion. Okuma Coronado Baitfeeder has 20lb drag. Never used it but I've used 5 different okuma reels in the last 3 years and they are worth way more than what, luckily for us, they charge for 'em. I use the avenger Baitfeeder but it wouldn't have enough drag for your needs.
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Old 05-17-2017, 10:41 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CrabbyChas View Post
I have a penn fierce 5000, and I can't really recommend it. The drag sticks like hell even after maintenance, and the finish is flaking off really bad, not to mention that somehow I managed to strip the main gear while reeling it in to check my bait. FWIW, I have a couple of spinfishers, a 3500 and a 7500LC, and love them. Haven't had any issues, and they are beasts. Even the 3500 has a 20lb drag, which is what you get on the 5000 and up Fierce or Battle reels.
Interesting. I have two Fierce reels. One is a 5000 that use for a bottom dropping rig. My wife bought it for me when they first came out. It is now 3 or 4 years old and still looks like a new one except for a little rash on the very bottom when it gets moved around. I was pretty disappointed when she gave it to me. I was NOT a Penn fan due to all of the problems that I had with the GT series a few years earlier (first cast out of box failures). Anyway, they reel has renewed my faith in Penn. So much so that I bought a second one in the 4000 size to use as a light jigging reel for State waters sized AJ's. Both perform flawlessly and the drags are baby smooth with the application of some Cal's drag grease. The 4000 is now 3 years old and it too looks brand new. I had planned to replace them with carbon drags, but havent found the need so far. Oh, and I have them loaded with 80 and 65lb PowerPro for those that may ask.
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Old 05-17-2017, 10:48 PM   #7
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Thanks for the information guys. While I was torn between the battle and fierce, I found a brand new unopened battle ii 5000 for $75, so I went for that. I found some brand new fierces for about $50, but with a $20 difference, I figured I would treat myself. Now I just gotta get a rod, although I found the parts list of the rod I was looking to build. We'll see what happens with that. I'll probably end up just getting a cheap rod that feels comfortable for the time being.
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Old 05-17-2017, 11:09 PM   #8
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You don't need so much drag if you have a rod that will whip his ass. Get a stiff rod, and you'll need lots of heavy line plus drag as the fish will be fighting the line. Get a good strong limber rod, and the fish will fight the rod moreso than the line, and the rod will take the fight more than the line.
Case in point, I like to use a older Mitchell 300 reel, spooled with 12 lb mono, deep spool, using solid leader, and a old glass 9-12' Fly rod. I have caught and landed 25 lb kings with ease. Sure there's some doubters, and some loud mouths that say BS, but I bet they have never tried it. So, until you've tried it, don't bash it. Sure, I've been spooled a few times, but most likely from an AJ. I hooked a big Bonita once that almost spooled me, but was able to loose the anchor and chase my line back, but I did land it.
Want to have some fun, try it.
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Old 05-18-2017, 03:22 AM   #9
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Curdog...not saying I doubt you...okay I am saying I doubt you. I've been spooled several times using a 12/13 wt Redbone flyrod with a Teton LA 13 wt flyreel spooled with 320 yards of 30 pound backing, plus the flyline. A M8tchell 300 only holds 180 yards of 12 pound. For a light king rig, I use a med with a medium tip Star 8 foot surf rod with a 706Z spooled with 15 pound mono and had small (20-25 #) kings run out half a spool on the first run and almost that amount on the second run. I'll be at the pier Friday morning, come make a believ3r out of me. I'll even provide the bait.
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Old 05-18-2017, 03:29 AM   #10
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Fishy, you don't want to go with too light of a rod, because some days the bait you'll throw is larger. Thteadfins are deceptive in their weight or you might luck into some baby bobos. Using an 8 foot rod helps getting more distance.

When I lived in Panama City Beach, I built a lot of 7 foot king rods because with the deeper water and bait hanging right under the pier, longer throws were not as critical. Pensacola goes back and forth, some days the kings hit right at the pier, other days it takes a long throw to get their attention.
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