Penn Fathom Star Drag-Product Review

Author: Captain Jot Owens | Posted: 02/16/2012

It's really amazing how fishing tackle has come so far in so little time; super small braided line, yet stronger than steel, fish finders that show you clear high-definition photo like image and fishing reels that come in a super small size yet produce huge drag powers. These are just a few examples of what the fishing industry is coming out with these days and guess what; it's only going to get better in time. With that said, now you the angler has got to make the decision on how much you spend and what you get for your money on fishing tackle. Let me introduce a reel that is a power house in a small and yet affordable package; it's the Penn Fathom Star Drag series.

Here are some of the great features that the Penn Fathom has to offer:

  • Full metal body and sideplates
  • Lightweight aluminum spool
  • Machine-cut marine grade bronze main gear with hardened stainless steel pinion.
  • Live spindle with free floating spool
  • Patented Versa-Drag system with HT-100 washers
  • 5+1 Shielded stainless steal bearing system
  • Instant anti-reverse bearing with silent back up ratchet
  • Line Capacity Rings
  • Internally adjustable centrifugal braking system

The revolutionary Live Spindle design is the reason the new Fathom star Drag is the most castable reel in the market place. The improved configuration allows the spool to spin independently of the spindle and pinion gear, which significantly reduces friction experienced from the extreme acceleration of the spool when casting. Other reels using a "fixed spindle" design slow the rotation of the spool and reduce casting distance. Additionally the Live Spindle improves the retrieve of the reel because the spindle and pinion do not need to turn relative to each other during heavy loads unlike "fixed spindle" reels that result in a difficult retrieve and erratic drag.

Line Capacity Rings are another new feature of the Fathom Star Drag. These rings eliminate the question of how much line you have left when casting or fighting a fish. The three lines on the spool flange let you know when you have 1/3rd, 2/3rd or a full spool of line. Also if you re-spool often these lines give you benchmarks for backing or topping your super lines with monofilament which will help eliminate wasted time and line.

I was one of a handful to test these reels in the design phase of this reel and I was impressed with the Fathom Star Drag form the beginning. I looked forward to fishing them every chance I got, they are so smooth and you can cast them a country mile! I as well as my customers caught some very nice fish on the Fathom Star Drag reels. We caught a Tarpon on the FTH25N that weighted an est. eighty-five pounds as well as a lot of very nice Bull Redfish over thirty-five inches on the FTH12 reel. I feel that these reels will be a good fit for the surf fisherman to the offshore jiggers and the live bait boat fishermen too; you can do so much with these reels due to there variety of features and sizes.

Please take a look at all the new fishing products from Penn at If you have any questions about any Penn product please let me know, I'll be happy to answer them.

Thanks for reading and good luck fishing,

Capt. Jot Owens

Penn Reels Elite Staff

Ranger Boats Pro Staff


About The Author: Captain Jot Owens

Company: Jot It Down Fishing Charters LLC

Area Reporting: Southeast NC Wrightsville Beach/Wilmington

Bio: Captain Jot Owens, IV, born and raised in Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, has been fishing the waters of the Cape Fear, Masonboro Sound and the North Atlantic Ocean for thirteen years. He began his career at the age of 15 commercial fishing for Grouper and King Mackerel. After the experience in commercial fishing, he began working as a Mate on a charter boat that specialized in offshore fishing for King Mackerel, Mahi Mahi, tuna, Wahoo and billfish. During this time he made offshore rigs and prepared baits for the charters. In 2000, Jot began work as a Mate on The Fortune Hunter. During the six years Jot worked as a Mate, he was working towards his Captain�s license. In February 2002, he achieved his goal of obtaining his Captain�s license. Since this time, Jot has been the Master and Captain of the Fortune Hunter Too, fishing for trout, Red Drum, Flounder, Cobia, Tarpon and many other species. Today Captain Jot runs his own boat; the (Jot It down). Captain Jot enjoys everyday he is on the water and brings his passion for fishing to his customers by teaching new techniques and providing knowledge about the many different species of fish found on the East Coast. He looks forward to sharing with you the many fishing techniques that he is so passionate about.

Click Here For Past Fishing Reports and Articles by Captain Jot Owens