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Chinese "Tenkara"
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Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Chinese "Tenkara" on 05/23/2013 20:54:08 MDT Print View

$6.48 shipped.
Chinese Telescoping Rod
I'll believe it when it gets here.


It'll match my new fishing hat well.


You're either a Comrade or Enemy of the People.

Edited by xnomanx on 05/23/2013 20:55:50 MDT.

David W.
(Davidpcvsamoa) - MLife

Locale: East Bay, CA
Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 05/23/2013 21:37:11 MDT Print View

Welcome to the people's river brother. Just don't go back to bait fishing like a greedy capitalist or its off to a labor camp for you.

If you meet Manfred K. you will have to ask him about catching the Queen's salmon in Scotland. The imperialist crown even owns the fish in the river!

James Cahill

Locale: Suthern Carl
Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 05/23/2013 23:17:32 MDT Print View

when/if it does get there, and if it is real, can you report back with impressions? I'll be your Comrade for $6.48

Pete Staehling
(staehpj1) - F
Probably not much like a tenkara, but... on 05/25/2013 05:06:36 MDT Print View

Last time I looked at them, there were poles designed for crappie fishing that are under $10 even at places like Dicks Sporting Goods. They are really easy to find in the under $20 range. I suspect that the Chinese rod is like those. They are good for what they are designed to do, but that isn't fly fishing. I tried one and couldn't cast a fly with it.

There is no reason one couldn't have an action more like a fly rod and still be cheap though.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 06/09/2013 20:48:06 MDT Print View

Is it on the slow boat or what?

Dustin Short
(upalachango) - MLife
Re: Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 06/10/2013 18:53:37 MDT Print View

The followup:

It was positive enough that I ordered some as a ridiculously cheap way to get into tenkara stye fishing.

From the blog it does not appear to be a crappie stick but an actual fly-fishing style rod (probably a "tanago" style for the pedantic)

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 06/10/2013 19:06:24 MDT Print View


Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 06/10/2013 19:57:26 MDT Print View

Thanks for the follow up link there, you beat me to it.

I actually just received three more in the mail today.

No, they're not that great.

But they are good enough that I figured I'd pick up a spare and one for each of my kids. $25.92 total for 4 rods...why not?

I think it would be more accurately termed a Chinese "tanago" style rod; it will certainly limit the size of the water and fish you can go for. I have cast a TenkaraUSA 11' rod. This rod certainly isn't one.

My buddy Adan is a solid fly fisherman; we were discussing the rod this weekend. I have no doubt that I can catch fish with it- I can accurately cast about 16' of line with it, for a total effective reach of maybe around 22' or so, plenty for many spots I've fished in the High Sierra in summer. But we certainly agreed it's the type of rod you have to find the right water for; I view it as a pretty specific tool for small water and small fish- but that's what a "tanago" style rod is anyway.

I'm not believer in buying junk, which I'm sure many will argue is what these rods are. But I will argue that tenkara is pretty cost prohibitive for a lot of people, even with the $50 rods out there. For a person that is new to it, barely fishes, or has no idea if this style of fishing is suitable for them, $50+ for a rod, not including line, is a lot. If I find that I end up wanting to do more of this style of fishing, which at this point is questionable, I'll certainly be looking at getting a Daiwa.

Edited by xnomanx on 06/10/2013 20:17:59 MDT.

Dustin Short
(upalachango) - MLife
Re: Re: Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 06/10/2013 20:28:41 MDT Print View

That's good to hear Craig.

I've been looking to get into tenkara (really fishing in general) for a long time but had other outdoor hobbies that demanded more time and investment from me. So I figured for the price, even if it only works for dapping, it'd be a nice light toy to bring along on more leisurely trips into the backcountry.

I used to spincast with my dad in the midwest (where a shoestring and bent nail could likely net you a greedy bass or monster bluegill) but I know he used to fly fish in college but hasn't for years. So I grabbed one hoping it'd be a cheap and simple way to reinvigorate his fly-fishing passion. I can get him a proper rod down the road if he accepts the lack of a reel.

Ken T.
(kthompson) - MLife

Locale: All up in there
Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 06/10/2013 20:38:13 MDT Print View

After 20 years in San Diego I am in a place surrounded by water of all types. Fishing once again has piqued my interest. Use to fish all the time as a youngster in NJ. Ethical quandary exist like it does wIth Craig. But I do like to eat fish. I'm into simple. I've got flies, and tackle. For the price It's worth a try.

Edit: spelling

Edited by kthompson on 06/10/2013 20:42:14 MDT.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: Re: Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 06/10/2013 20:40:32 MDT Print View

"...even if it only works for dapping..."

Hey, most western fly fishermen argue that's all tenkara is anyway: glorified dapping.
Two weekends ago when I was at the local casting club's pools I certainly ruffled a few feathers by breaking out the Chinese rod.

Funny, because when I use my Sage SLT there, everyone wants to talk.

Fishermen are crazy.

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 06/10/2013 20:44:57 MDT Print View

Ken, just keep in mind that this is a really short and light rod. I question how well it would handle anything over 10" and faster water. Don't know what sort of fishing you have access to...

Craig W.
(xnomanx) - F - M
Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 07/08/2013 10:29:16 MDT Print View

Just came back from a week in the Sierra...had a chance to fish this rod.

It catches fish as proficiently as anything else I've used in the backcountry.

The only drawback comes from the homemade line; a little hard to keep straight, but it still did the job.

The largest trout taken with it was in the 10" range and the rod handled it well while still being soft enough to have fun with 5" fish.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 07/08/2013 11:30:23 MDT Print View

Ripped from the TenkaraBum site -


... on a rod 7'10" long, weighing 1 ounce.

And somewhere I saw a 24" brown laid out against a 9' 1.5 ounce rod.

Don't underestimate the capabilities of a (good) small rod.

Justin Baker
(justin_baker) - F

Locale: Santa Rosa, CA
Re: Re: Chinese "Tenkara" on 07/08/2013 11:41:05 MDT Print View

"Two weekends ago when I was at the local casting club's pools I certainly ruffled a few feathers by breaking out the Chinese rod."

Why does every sport/hobby have elitist douchebags?

Thank you for the overview Craig. I might pick one of these up.

Yuri R
(Yazon) - F

In for one on 07/12/2013 15:38:54 MDT Print View

Also ordered one, maybe will use on a trip later in august in Sieras.

Any recommendation for cheap line and flies? Would be fun to make a whole set for under $20! Is there any difference between special tenkara lines and something i can get from walmart,big5, etc?

Drew Jay

Locale: Central Coast
3 meter rods on 07/13/2013 00:24:29 MDT Print View

They offer a couple of 3 meter rods too, I ordered one of each to try out. They have longer lengths as well but they seemed really heavy so I passed on those.

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: 3 meter rods on 07/13/2013 07:15:31 MDT Print View

Not diss'en these rods.

But as a comparison, a good 12'/13' -Tenkara- rod will weight around 3 to 3.5 ounces and be >95% carbon fiber. A good 9' -Keiryu- rod will be about 1 to 1.5 ounces.

Edited by greg23 on 07/13/2013 07:45:09 MDT.

John Vogel

Locale: East Bay
Western line on 07/13/2013 11:07:07 MDT Print View

What do think about using some 5wt western fly line with a leader? Do you think it would cast it?

Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Western line on 07/13/2013 12:21:30 MDT Print View

It will cast. But it would probably overload a true tenkara rod.

Some of the magic of tenkara is "fly first, and line off the water". In terms of tenkara, "line" means the 10# fluoro connected at one end to the rod, and at the other end to the tippet.

A fly line (and leader) on the water spooks fish, drags the fly, and creates all the problems that requires a western fly fisher to "mend".

Edited by greg23 on 07/13/2013 14:37:19 MDT.