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Penn Slammer 3 Spinning Reel Review – Charter Fisherman’s Favorite

The Penn Slammer 3 is one of the most popular spinning reels manufactured by Penn. It is built for heavy duty fisherman, either by boat or shore.

The Penn Slammer III is a workhorse reel - it's metal construction makes it almost bulletproof. It is a favorite of charter fisherman as it will just keep working, not matter what you through at it. This also prevents it from warping or getting damaged from either a big fish or getting dropped.

It also has an IP67 sealed gearing system to make sure your reel internals stay dry and lasts for a lifetime. Just give it a quick rinse in freshwater at the end of the day and it will be clean and ready for tomorrow.

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Penn 1403983 Slammer III Spinning
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Penn 1403983 Slammer III Spinning
  • Full metal body, sideplate, and rotor
  • Cnc gear technology
  • IPX6 sealed body and spool design

Have a read through some of the key features of the Penn Slammer 3:

  • Retrieve rate of 40 inches per crank
  • High Speed Model at 48 inches per crank
  • Full metal body, sideplates, and rotor
  • IP67 sealed gearing system
  • Dura drag sealed drag system
  • CNC gear technology

Dura-Drag System

The Slammer has Penn's proprietary Dura-Drag system - this is another example of Penn developing the future of fishing reels. 

It has a very heavy duty drag from 30 pounds up to 60 pounds depending on which model is selected.

If you need a high drag then the Slammer is a great option - it is ideal for large offshore saltwater big game fish.

Dura-Drag washers contain a Phenolic bonding agent - this provides a water barrier and prevents the premature breakdown of the material.

Dura-drag is also pre-treated with a special formula developed by Penn engineers which improves the drag performance and gives it a silky, smooth feeling for the the entire drag run.

Adding fishing reel grease can even inhibit the performance of the Dura-Drag washers!. 


There are a wide variety of models and reel sizes available, so this is the most difficult decision you will need to make. Below is a list of specifications of the Penn Slammer III from the 3500 to the 10500. The difference in line capacity (both mono and braid) is very different, as is the maximum drag they can apply.

The 3500 is perfectly suited for inshore fishing and the 8500 and above is ideal for blue water fish species.

There are also 2 x high speed models (HS) that I have not included in the list below for the 6500 and 8500 sizes. These are designed for anglers who need to retrieve their lures at high speeds, such as when fishing for tuna or wahoo. They have a higher 48 inch retrieve per crank.

The smaller 3500 reel is also only 13.9 oz compared with the 43.1 oz 10500 model.

You really need to know what your requirements are, based on the size of fish you will be targeting.


Mono Capacity

Braid Capacity


Max Drag

Penn Slammer III 3500

480 yds of 4 lbs

310 yds of 10 lbs


30 lbs

Penn Slammer III 4500

325 yds of 8 lbs

390 yds of 15 lbs


30 lbs

Penn Slammer III 5500

320 yds of 10 lbs

500 yds of 20 lbs


40 lbs

Penn Slammer III 6500

390 yds of 12 lbs

485 yds of 30 lbs


40 lbs

Penn Slammer III 7500

490 yds of 15 lbs

530 yds of 40 lbs


50 lbs

Penn Slammer III 8500

455 yds of 20 lbs

730 yds of 40 lbs


50 lbs

Penn Slammer III 9500

350 yds of 30 lbs

730 yds of 50 lbs


60 lbs

Penn Slammer III 10500

435 yds of 30 lbs

845 yds of 50 lbs


60 lbs

Penn Slammer 3 Review Video

If you want to see this reel in use, then have a look at this video review below:


Frequently Asked Questions

What is the max drag on a Penn Slammer?

It depends on the model, but goes from 30 lbs in the Slammer 3500 to 60 lbs in the Slammer 10500.

What is the weight of a Penn Slammer?

It depends on the model, but goes from 13.9 oz in the Slammer 3500 to 43.1 oz in the Slammer 10500.

What is the retrieve rate of a Penn Slammer?

The standard Penn Slammer retrieve rate is 40 inches per crank, and goes up to 48 inches per crank in the High Speed (HS) models.


The Penn Slammer 3 is one of Penn's premier spinning reels. It is designed to be heavy duty and its metal construction will last a lifetime. It also has a very powerful drag that won't fail even when being tested against big offshore game fishing.

The Slammer is a favorite of charter fisherman and experienced anglers. If you are looking for a bulletproof reel and don't get scared away by the price tag, then definitely check this reel out.

If you have a Slammer III of your own and have your own opinion and experiences then please share in the comments below so that all fisherman can learn from your wisdom.

Happy fishing!

Russ Egan

Russ is an avid angler. He has fished all over the world, primarily for Saltwater game fish but also for local prize fish. Russ writes reviews for all of his fishing gear to help others achieve their own fishing goals. His favorite reel is a Shimano Tyrnos for an overhead reel or a Shimano Curado for a baitcaster. His dream is to catch a Black Marlin.

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