The Best Penn Spinning Reel For Saltwater (Top 3 With Reviews)

Fishing Skillz is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no additional cost to you.

The Best Penn Spinning Reel For Saltwater (Top 3 With Reviews)

Let the battle begin! That’s the slogan for Penn, one of the world's most renowned manufacturers of saltwater spinning reels.

And they’ve chosen that slogan for a reason. It’s because they know beyond a doubt that Penn reels are designed and built to be ready for the epic battles that take place every day out on the open saltwater.

As you may already know, Penn makes many different reels, all of which are the best at something. They make large conventional reels like the International VIS series which are designed to pull in massive deep water game fish. But they also are excellent at making saltwater spinning reels too. 

So, which is the best Penn spinning reel for saltwater? That’s exactly what I’m going to cover in this post. 

So keep on reading to find out...and “Let the battle begin!”

Penn Spinning Reels Mentioned in This Article

The Best Penn Spinning Reel For Saltwater (Reviews)


1. Penn Slammer III

Penn Slammer III Saltwater Spinning Reel
  • Full metal body, sideplate, and rotor
  • Cnc gear technology
  • IPX6 sealed body and spool design
  • Retrieve Rate 40 Inches| 102cm
  • Sealed Slammer drag system with Dura Drag

Prices and images pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the respective Amazon site that you are redirected to at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.


A combination of quality, durability, dependability and affordability is why I’ve chosen the Slammer 3 as the best Penn spinning reel for saltwater. 

Saltwater fishing presents a world of situations and the Penn Slammer III is ready for any of them. It comes in multiple different sizes to choose from, ranging from a 3500 model all the way up to a 10500  for the really big boys. This is different from some of the other Penn spinning reel models who sometimes only offer several sizes to select from.

This choice that you’re given in reel size is one of the reasons it made the top of this llist, because what one saltwater fisherman fishing for sea trout might need is totally different for the angler fishing for Dorado or Rooster Fish in the Baja.

7+1 stainless steel bearing system

The Penn Slammer 3 features a 7+1 stainless steel bearing system combined with a CNC gear design which together makes for an silky smooth saltwater fishing reel that is more than capable to catch anything from greenling to sharks.

Sealed Drag System

The Slammer comes with a full-metal body, with a sealed drag system, making it virtually waterproof. There are plenty of videos online that demostrate anglers submerging these reels in the saltwater and report that they are still going strong.

The one complaint that seems to be consistent is that this reel has a little too much drag. If this is a potential issue, you may want to consider the Spinfisher VI.

Penn Slammer 3 Features

  • Full Metal Body, sideplate, and rotor
  • CNC Gear technology
  • IPX6 Sealed body and spool design
  • Sealed Slammer drag system with Dura-Drag
  • 7+1 stainless steel bearings plus 1 anti-reverse
  • Sizes 3500-5500 have automatic bail trip
  • Sizes 6500-10500 have manual bail trip

Pros:

1. Multiple sizes to choose from from 3500-10500

2. Water resistant design to prevent internal corrosion

3. Heavy duty construction compared to other Penn spinning reels for saltwater

Cons:

1. Drag is reported to be a little on the heavy side.

My Thoughts

The Penn Slammer 3 is undoubtedly one of the best Penn spinning reels for saltwater. Especially when compared to other quality saltwater spinning reels on the market. When you consider the affordable price point on the Penn Slammer 3 combined with the quality and backing of the Penn reputation, it’s an excellent saltwater spinning reel to go with.


2. Penn Spinfisher VI Spinning Reel

Penn Spinfisher VI Saltwater Spinning Reel
  • IPX5 sealed body and spool design
  • Cnc gear technology
  • Ht 100 carbon fiber drag washers

Prices and images pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the respective Amazon site that you are redirected to at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.


The Penn Spinfisher VI is a reel that’s going to let you handle pretty much any fish or condition that you’ll come across while saltwater fishing, whether it be inshore or offshore. 

With integrated full sealing rubber gaskets strategically installed in every location that saltwater could possibly enter the inside of the reel, this saltwater spinning reel has pretty much been built as waterproof. 

Penn Spinfisher VI Features

  • IPX5 Sealed body and spool design
  • CNC Gear™ technology
  • HT-100™ carbon fiber drag washers
  • 5+1 sealed stainless steel ball bearing system
  • Full Metal Body
  • Superline Spool
  • Line Capacity Rings
  • Sizes 2500-5500 have automatic bail trip
  • Sizes 6500-10500 have manual bail trip

Pros:

1. Multiple sizes to choose from

2. Sealed spool and body design

3. Super even line lay

Cons:

1. A little heavier than expected

2. Users have reported that the bail arm can loosen over time

Braid Ready Spool

A fully balanced and well protected braid-ready spool ensures the smoothest and most comfortable operation compared to other brands of surf fishing reels. You can expect an even line lay when retrieving your line from the waves minimizing tangles and ultimately wasted time fishing. This feature gives the same smoothness and functionality of a much more expensive reel, but for nearly less than half the price.

If there’s anything about this reel that might be on the negative side, it would be that this Penn reel is a tad bit heavy. With that said, the weight of this Penn surf fishing reel isn’t a deal breaker, and it still currently remains on the top of my list of the best Penn surf fishing reels. 

The Perfect Upgrade Reel

The Penn Spinfisher VI is the ideal choice for serious saltwater fishermen who are ready to step up their game. If you’re spinning reel that you’re currently using is getting tired, the this is an excellent upgrade option. 

Easy Maintenance

What’s nice is that even if you’re not the best at detailed cleaning of your reels after every saltwater use, this Penn reel should last you a long time with only basic cleaning and maintenance. 

My Thoughts

The Penn Spinfisher VI is an excellent saltwater spinning reel when you combine the quality, craftsmanship and affordability. I like the reel so much it’s featured as my top pick in my post of the best Penn surf fishing spinning reels.  

In your hand this Penn spinning reel feels like a high-end reel that comes at a mid-level price. Its features make it sturdy, reliable, and smooth.

Whether you’re looking for a starter saltwater spinning reel that feels like a high dollar option, or finally wanting to upgrade to a quality Penn, you’ll want to consider the Penn Spinfisher VI series of reels.


3. Penn Clash Spinning Reel

Penn Clash Saltwater Spinning Reel
  • Saltwater spinning reel delivers durability, smoothness, and precision for technical anglers
  • Durable construction with fully machined CNC gear train, full metal body, and heavy-duty aluminum bail wire
  • HT-100 carbon fiber drag washers and wave spring provide smooth drag that doesnt bottom out
  • Smooth line lay and effortless retrieve with Leveline oscillation system and Techno-Balanced rotor
  • Ensures flawless operation with 8 sealed stainless steel ball bearings and instant anti-reverse bearing

Prices and images pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the respective Amazon site that you are redirected to at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

 A small step up from the Spinfisher V, you can expect the same functionality and usability out of the Penn Clash saltwater spinning reel. In addition, it also features an upgraded bearing system and a very eye-catching paint job. Ultimately,  the Penn Clash was designed to be a smoother and stronger spinning reel but in a smaller package.

Penn Clash Features:

  • Full Metal Body
  • Graphite Rotor
  • Sealed Stainless Steel Bearings
  • Anti Reverse Bearing
  • Dura-Gear Technology
  • Leveline Oscillation
  • Line Capacity Rings
  • Braid Ready Spool

Lightweight But Tough

This reel is meant to handle larger fish in a lighter package. While a lot of the features seem a little strange, they do allow the Clash to handle more weight than what would be expected of such a small and inexpensive reel.

Even Line Lay

The Penn Clash is known for its incredibly even line lay on the spool during retrieval. This is thanks to the Leveline system that uses a reduction gear to regulate the oscillation gears speed. This keeps your spool moving smoothly and allows for a better lay.

It lays the line beautifully on the spool, and with a sophisticated spool shape and bail, wind knots are all but eliminated. With proper care, this fully sealed reel will not only last you forever, but it also seems to get better with time as some of the strangely placed bearings loosen up.

Sophisticated Machined Gear System

The Clash comes with a super sophisticated machined gear system that has fewer imperfections than cast or forged gears, meaning less wear on each gear tooth as they travel across each other more smoothly. This means a longer lasting reel.

Pros:

1. Surprisingly strong reel frame and body

2. Smooth retrieve

3. Powerful drag system

Cons:

1. Users report that after extended use, the knob can become loose and fall apart

My Thoughts

With that being said, this without a doubt one of the best saltwater spinning reels made by Penn for the money and definitely deserves its place on our list of the best saltwater spinning reels.


Final Thoughts

Ultimately, you’re looking for the best Penn saltwater spinning reel. The fact is, every one of these reels mentioned in this post are excellent reels. And I’m confident in recommending any one of them to you. 

But the one Penn spinning reel I recommend the most for you to use in saltwater is the Penn Slammer III. 

It’s a proven product that has accomplished some valuable upgrades.  It is a proven saltwater reel that is strong and effective for all fishing scenarios and is available at an affordable price.  

Penn Slammer III Saltwater Spinning Reel
  • Full metal body, sideplate, and rotor
  • Cnc gear technology
  • IPX6 sealed body and spool design
  • Retrieve Rate 40 Inches| 102cm
  • Sealed Slammer drag system with Dura Drag

Prices and images pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

Product prices and availability are accurate as of the date/time indicated and are subject to change. Any price and availability information displayed on the respective Amazon site that you are redirected to at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.

Penn Slammer III Saltwater Spinning Reel (VIDEO)

About the Author

When I'm not bass fishing or looking for steelhead in my home state of Oregon I can be found working on house projects dreaming of my next fishing adventure. I started this website to share just some of the things I've learned along my fishing journey, and the many things I'm still learning. Enjoy!

Leave a Reply 0 comments

Leave a Reply: