Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Bamboo Tenkara Line Holder

The other day I was fishing with Jason of Tenkara Talk and as always, we chatted about new tenkara "stuff" while gearing up. Often times, Jason brings some new cool gear he bought or received for review and this time he brought a bamboo tenkara line holder of the Tenkara Fly Shop.

The Tenkara Fly Shop is a pretty new website of Jim Wright in NY State who specializes in "simple tools for the tenkara angler". Jim has constructed some unique rustic tenkara fly boxes, line holders and his signature bamboo fly box (Jason posted reviews here and here). I understand Jim is also working on his own tamo design (sweet looking pictures on the the Tenkara Fly Shops facebook page!) and a bamboo tenkara rod.

Back to the bamboo line holder: I always loved the "old fashioned" line holders and what Jason showed me before hitting the water was just that. In the past, I always thought it would be nice to use this type of line holder but it found most of them too long and not really ideal "on-stream". While I was fishing that day, I just couldn't let go of pondering what attributes a line holder should have to be attractive to me. First, it should be fairly short. I don't worry about line kink since I made it a habit to straighten out every line before rigging it to the lilian. Second, holding two lines is not quite enough. What I was looking for  was a system I could transport 4 or 5 lines, rigged with flies, that would not take as much space as 5 individual spools. Why not design a line holder that holds 4 or 5 lines instead of 2, right? Size matters so I thought that the ideal dimensions should be around 4.5" long and about 3" wide. This size fits any smaller bag like a chest pack or even my shirt pocket. 

I reached out to Jim through the Tenkara Fly Shops facebook site and started a conversation about such design. Jim was very open and within a day, he had a prototype developed which I received today in the mail. I have to say, I was blown away by the beauty and simplicity of this new accessory. Simple, easy, effective:

4.5" long, 3" wide, holds 5 lines
hook the fly to one of the cross bars, wedge the end of the line between the line compartments
fully loaded with, from the top, a TUSA Level Line, TUSA Traditional Line, RIGS Nymphing Line, Tenkarabum Level Line and RIGS Floating Line
compact and easy to transport
It is worthwhile to mention that I will be using the bamboo line holder to transport lines I intend or might be using that day. Once on the water, I store the line in use on the rod with a Fuji EZ Keeper system and will put the line back on the bamboo line holder once I am done fishing with the line.

I am very much looking forward using this new accessory on my next outing!!

Thank so much, Jim!!

Tight Lines y'all, -K

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