jjdbike

VR vs Penn Slammer 4?

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57 posts in this topic

1 hour ago, Tagman said:

As for the VR, the very first time I handled one it felt like cheap, tinny aluminum crap. I have limited time fishing them, some of my friends own them and swear by them, but when I did fish the reel, it felt like a cheap knockoff to the real VS. Not only that, they were riddled with problems. A quick search on SOL is all you need. One of the biggies was water intrusion.

We have mixed feelings about the VR reel that's OK, when l was in the market for a VS200 size reel l was interested in the VR175 a store in Sea Side had one l played with it and l didn't like the feel of it feel so l just keep using my 704 w/mpu, l was fishing the outflow and a fishman can down and he had VR125 w/mpu installed l asked to try it and he gave me his outfit, the reel worked great smooth had power like the VS, so while l still had the money l made a call to Betty & Nicks he had some in stock, to make a long story short he pulled reel from the shelf l cranked the handle the reel was flawless just like my VSs, that was about 4 or 5 years ago. That reel will be my last big reel.

 

My VR like my 2 VS reels are half full of 10-30 weight oil, there are pictures of the VR reel on SOL showing the oil in the reel, the oil is staying in the reel no leaks.

 

l was eyeing VR75 but holding back my 25 year old VS100 is flawless.

 

There is a group in North Jersey that fishes the Hodson River plugging and dunking bait for bass there called the river rats there is a member here on SOL Recoil who uses VR175, quite a few fishermen are using VR on the Hudson River the reels only complaint is the line roller wear out, gets a grove, l made a shoulder spacer washer for Recoil that would let him mount a VS line roller his idea, his and mine VR are sporting VS line roller.

 

l could tell you stories about VS reel from the 90s l know l had my share of problems with them but that's water under the bridge.

 

 

 

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4 hours ago, Tagman said:

 

Im also a believer of getting what you pay for, and always felt the VR is way to overpriced for the quality received.  Please understand, i’m not a person who worries  about price when it comes to things I buy. Yes, I see value in $700.00 reels and $1000.00 rods. Others may feel different, but I don’t care. I have several VS, Stella’s, Certates, and of course several 1st and 2nd. generation Torques. Yes, if you bump into me on the beach, I’m one of the few you might see fishing a Torque. Actually, the Torque is probably my favorite all around reel of all time.  I also believe the Torque is a high quality product, and worth its asking price. Guess that’s why I own 6 of them. I especially love the fact they are American made products. Unfortunately, Penn discontinued them, But I’ll keep fishing mine. I also feel the newer Penn Slammer IV DX is 95% of the more expensive Torque. Possibly even better. For the price, the IV DX is a bargain. I wouldn’t feel more confident  dunking a VR than I would dunking a Slammer IV. 

 

As for the VR, the very first time I handled one it felt like cheap, tinny aluminum crap. I have limited time fishing them, some of my friends own them and swear by them, but when I did fish the reel, it felt like a cheap knockoff to the real VS. Not only that, they were riddled with problems. A quick search on SOL is all you need. One of the biggies was water intrusion.  My older VS reels sometimes stay submerged under water for minutes at a time when i’m wading. My oldest 15 year old VSB never got a drop of water inside. How many threads have I read where a VR owner felt the need to crack his reel open after a long fishing session. Why should a Van Staal owner feel the need to open his reel up to see if it took on water?  Why do many wetsuit guys that swim  out to rocks choose their VSX over their VR? When I purchased My Van Staals, I purchased them with the confidence that they would stay dry. I don’t feel that confidence with the VR, and many of the threads I read from other fisherman say the same thing. 

 

I appreciate your response, LB. Honestly, you are probably one of the few members here on this site that I trust when I read your posts. Most of your posts are helpful, and you have a lot of knowledge of the innard workings of a fishing reel. Maybe I should keep an open mind, and revisit the VR gen 2. I always wanted a VR 50/75 sized waterproof reel. More than likely, I will wait for the new generation VSX model instead. Thank you for your feedback. It’s always appreciated. 

Nice post Tag........I own both a VSX150 as well as a 1st Gen VR50 and 2nd Gen VR75.  I can tell you i don't, and i believe Van Staal kind of suggests the same, treat my VR's like i do my VSX.  That said, my VR's have been a joy to fish with and have handled everything thrown at them.  I also have a Slammer 3 4500 and have used that prior to the VSX through thick and thin.  As long as i took care of that 4500 and did its' proper maintenance, that thing ran/runs like the first day i bought it.......and it's had its' share of waves and dunks.  I'm really gonna look hard at the smaller Slammer IV 3500 for smaller applications to compliment my VR's because i do belive this line of Penn rods are that good.  They have never let me down and i have had every generation of them.

 

I guess the real question comes down to how far are you willing to take your gear and at what conditions are you fishing.  Yeah, i believe both of these reels can take dunks and waves......but if 70 -90% of your fishing is going to be under those conditions, well i would expect the VSX to stand up as the much better reel.  Again, under those conditions, that's money well spent.  If you're on the sand 70-90% of that time with the occasional wave and/or dunk......IMO......that's not money well spent when there are other reels, like this Slammer, that can MORE than do the job.

 

 

just my take :howdy:

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6 hours ago, Tagman said:

 and of course several 1st and 2nd. generation Torques. Yes, if you bump into me on the beach, I’m one of the few you might see fishing a Torque. Actually, the Torque is probably my favorite all around reel of all time.  I also believe the Torque is a high quality product, and worth its asking price. Guess that’s why I own 6 of them. I especially love the fact they are American made products. Unfortunately, Penn discontinued them, But I’ll keep fishing mine. I

 

I like my first gen Torque's, not so much the second gen. I sold mine to a member. Are they officially dead? They're still listed on the website but, currently unavailable. I wish they would have made a smaller size.

 

 

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14 hours ago, yogiiiboy said:

I own both a VSX150 as well as a 1st Gen VR50 and 2nd Gen VR75.  I can tell you i don't, and i believe Van Staal kind of suggests the same, treat my VR's like i do my VSX. 

 

That was one of my points about the VR.  The Van Staal brand has always been synonymous with waterproof reels. If I wanted “almost” waterproof,  the Slammer 3/4, and probably a few other reels will do the job. The Slammers are tough reels. Other than weight,  I never saw any other advantages owning a VR would give me over a Slammer. And the VR has a $200.00 premium.  With the new DX model, with the stainless drivetrain, it’s pretty close for me as far as performance.  

 

LB made some great points.  Like I said, maybe I should give the second gen VR75 a shot and fish the hell out of it. I still don’t have a waterproof reel of that size.

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16 hours ago, LB said:

My VR like my 2 VS reels are half full of 10-30 weight oil, there are pictures of the VR reel on SOL showing the oil in the reel, the oil is staying in the reel no leaks.

 

I read many of your posts explaining this. never tried it but it’s very interesting.  Good stuff, LB!!

Edited by Tagman

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13 hours ago, Haycreekrambler said:

I like my first gen Torque's, not so much the second gen. I sold mine to a member. Are they officially dead? They're still listed on the website but, currently unavailable. I wish they would have made a smaller size.

 

 

 

Yup, the Torque is officially dead. I was a little bummed when I heard this. I too, was hoping for a smaller size.

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Thank you everyone for contributing here. Some really great responses. Unfortunately I must say, it's not made my decision any easier.

Here's the bottom line question:

Between the Slammer 4 DX and the second generation VR, which is more salt water and sand resistant?

The answer to this question, if there is a definitive answer, will make the decision for me.

Also, is there a baileys version and or conversion kit for the Slammer?

Respectfully,

JD

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5 hours ago, Tagman said:

 

That was one of my points about the VR.  The Van Staal brand has always been synonymous with waterproof reels. If I wanted “almost” waterproof,  the Slammer 3/4, and probably a few other reels will do the job. The Slammers are tough reels. Other than weight,  I never saw any other advantages owning a VR would give me over a Slammer. And the VR has a $200.00 premium.  With the new DX model, with the stainless drivetrain, it’s pretty close for me as far as performance.  

 

LB made some great points.  Like I said, maybe I should give the second gen VR75 a shot and fish the hell out of it. I still don’t have a waterproof reel of that size.

I would suggest you get one Tag as I just got one this year and it has taken a few waves and I have purposely dunked it a few times and I have not had any problems.  With all this said, the real advantage is the weight as I have it matched on a 9’ weapon jr for an absolute fantastic combination ….Although again, if it can’t take the dunks and water, the weight aspect then means nothing to me.  I still wanna get me a DX3500 though!!

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7 hours ago, jjdbike said:

Thank you everyone for contributing here. Some really great responses. Unfortunately I must say, it's not made my decision any easier.

Here's the bottom line question:

Between the Slammer 4 DX and the second generation VR, which is more salt water and sand resistant?

The answer to this question, if there is a definitive answer, will make the decision for me.

Also, is there a baileys version and or conversion kit for the Slammer?

Respectfully,

JD

I don't really know how to answer that question. The slammer 4's with stainless gears are so new, there is not enough time to intelligently answer that question. My views are solely based on mine/my fathers/and a couple close friends fishing slammer 3's and vr's. Penn never offered a bailless in 4500 3. I don't think they're offering it in the 4. Only 5500 and 6500, though I may be wrong.

My take on the the whole situation with penn is sad. Those are the reels that I grew up fishing. Even though I've owned vs's for a long time. I still fished penn reels alot. Now that they've done away with their flagship reel. I wonder even more about their ability to produce a high end quality product.

The main reason I switched to vr's is im lefthanded and last year was the first time in 7 or so years that they even offered L's. Still no complaints on the second gen. Vr's.

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The slammer bailess is only offered on the iv5500. Not the dx model. There was also talks on here that Penn is coming out with a fully sealed surf reel to bridge the gap to VS since the torque is gone. Maybe somebody else on the thread has more info on that 

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11 hours ago, RjcBrian said:

The slammer bailess is only offered on the iv5500. Not the dx model. There was also talks on here that Penn is coming out with a fully sealed surf reel to bridge the gap to VS since the torque is gone. Maybe somebody else on the thread has more info on that 

That would be cool, especially if it were bail less.

I absolutely do not want a bail. That would be a deal breaker for Penn.

JD

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On 6/15/2022 at 6:19 AM, jjdbike said:

Hey everyone,

This may sound like a really stupid question and in fact it may be. On the other hand, there's been several threads about the various Van Staal reels comparing durability and price. In several threads I read people saying how good the Penn Slammer 4 is and have even seen it compared to the VR. Recently a tackle shop owner called the new Slammer the poor man's VR. The Penn is roughly $280 and the VR is $520, a $240 difference. Obviously for nearly double the price, one would assume that the VR would have very significant advantages over the Penn. That being said, for the surf fisherman that is hard on their stuff, gets it sandy, splashed and occasionally dunked, how do they really compare?

 

For those of you who know, can you please compare - contrast the Penn Slammer 4 (3500 or 4500 size) to the Van Staal VR? I'd sure love to see a rubber hits the road comparison and I'm sure many others would to see this as well.

 

Thanks in advance.

JD

IMHO … the VS VR 150 reel is easier to work on / DIY maintenance. Is that worth twice as much? Dunno. But my first gen VR125 / 150 is lighter too when compared to similar Slammer reels. Weighs the same as a Shimano Saragossa SW 6K. From a pricing POV … you might look at the Tsunami Salt-X reels?

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23 hours ago, Tagman said:

 

Yup, the Torque is officially dead. I was a little bummed when I heard this. I too, was hoping for a smaller size.

I think the Tsunami Salt-X killed it. At least for me.

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