Chris Stewart has compiled a very useful list of tenkara rod characteristics and Tom Davis has built on that by presenting some of the the data in a more comparative form.
As a newbie to the tenkara technique I wonder if any attempt has been made to correlate some of rod parameters such as CCS or RFI to the weight of fly that can be accurately cast using proper tenkara technique?
I wonder because of significant differences in weight between my unweighted kabari flies and beaded nymphs.
Using a normal weight #12 scud hook my sakasa kebari flies weigh in the order of .06 to .08 grams while brass beaded nymphs are about .18 grams. Tungsten beaded nymphs come in at a whopping .32 to .34 grams.
Depending upon how much you enjoy practicing casting, weight can be a big issue or not. It’s just like casting in a bit of wind. Until I started practicing casting intentionally in the wind I really sucked at it. But I figured out what worked for me, and it was just a matter of practice, not some sort of magic bullet.
Weighted flies are the same. There are times when I just have to use a tungsten bead when the water is really high and fast, but with nothing more than some practice at the park I found a casting technique that worked for me. Normally I tie on extra fine wire hooks, but just a small casting adjustment and a slotted tungsten beadhead is landing right where I want.
Finding what works best FOR YOU is a fun part of learning tenkara!
Don’t get hung up on anything that tells you that “you must adhere to this specific technique”. I’ve seen a lot of people casting a little strangely but with incredible, repeatable accuracy.
Practice is the answer. Don’t overthink this.
Having some rods that cast accurately and some that do not makes me feel that there are some attributes that matter, but also know the CCS and RFI have nothing to do with it.
I own a rod that is really accurate where the rest I own are pretty sloppy, but as James notes we can overcome a any rod with practice. Some may take more practice than others.
Oddly enough I do not fish much with the accurate rod, but use the sloppier ones because I like the durability and fish fighting aspects of them
Weighed and unweighed kebari
Casting line and rod factor into accurate casting of differnt kebari.
A heavier line will help deliver a heavy kebari easier. A stiffer rod may help with a heavier line and also function as a benefit with deeper presentations and hook sets common with heavier kebari.
A heavier line might be necessary in wind as with a stiffer rod.
A heavier line can affect lighter presentations and flies. I like a lighter line with lighter files and a lighter action rod. Not all for accuracy, but line and rod and fly are bundled together in a lot of ways. Casting and manipulation control.
practice @jamezu notes that we can become more accurate with practice. This is true. I also feel we can overcome or accept the handicap that our system cannot do everything perfectly. I have adopted a two rod quiver even though I own many rods. The benefit of this is really knowing those systems intimately. I have about 7 years on them. I definitely can do things with them that i couldn’t when I started.
In terms of accuracy. I am ok with a little slop in my fly touch down. It is all a part of an improvisation and part of the fun is working with what happens. I will mostly want accurate in really technical water with tons of obstacles, but also find that accurate casts rarely makes a huge difference in the fishing as what really matters is what we do with a fly. Fish have fins and will swim to your fly if it is enticing enough. Dont get me wrong it is fun to drop a fly in the exact 2" spot you are aiming. I am rarely that good, but when it happens it is awesome especially if it is technical water and there is an immediate fish.