A line winder for Tenkara rods

Erik from Utah Tenkara Guides gave me the idea to try making a line winder, I designed and 3D printed this winder and so far I really like it. I measured the base of the rod and cap to ensure a good fit. It works especially well on my short rods like the Tenryu and Anglo Kowasa since they can’t use some of the other winding systems you find. I like how it works on the TB40 as well since it creates a long distance for capturing line. Winding line is much faster. Anyway, love to know everyone’s thoughts on it.


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It likely wouldn’t work for me, as I tend to hold the butt of the rod when casting. But I love to see various ideas for tenkara accessories.

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This is pretty creative, and I like the subtly of the design. I’m not sure if I’m into having the line stored on the handle though.

I’ve always meant to 3D print some kind of hand crank device the help me spool up my foam line holders. For some reason I never liked the task of hand winding.

what holds the line towards the tip? looks interesting.

Near the tip of the rod it’s one of these:

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ahhh. that makes sense.

That is pretty cool and really clever. I usually just spin them back up on the disks or walk with the rod extended. I totally see the usefulness of this, and why guys wind there lines on the rods. For me I always fumble and take a lot of time spinning the line back on the disks, so I often just keep the rod extended until its time to pack it up for the day.

I really like how you leveraged off of the cap. Another option would be to use another fuji keeper but re-rig it with a much larger o-ring. The fuji seems to use a 1.5 mm round o-ring, one would just have to get one that might be between 30-40 mm OD I think. Putting a fuji at the end, would not be as nice or as low profile as your solution but may be more accessible to other anglers. Unless of course you start printing these out and sell them. I hold the rod at the very end a lot. Like with the butt end in my palm, but your design would support that as the holder can just be on the opposite side of the palm. Pretty thoughtful and very cool innovation!

This is a great idea, Chris. I love seeing people invent, create, and build new things.

By the way, Zen Tenkara also has an new interesting line winder that looks really cool. There is a small winder and a large winder offered on her website. I think the small winder would fit the average rod. I got a chance to meet Karin Miller at the Virginia Fly Fishing and Wine Festival this past weekend (1/15 - 1/16). She had a booth set up and was also giving casting demos. A number of people were very interested in learning tenkara. This is a great way to grow our sport. Kudos to Ms. Miller.

Here is a new addition that has some advantages over previous products:

Ultimate Tenkara Line Keepers from DRAGONtail Tenkara