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Thread: Fountainhead or Tenkara USA

  1. #1
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    Default Fountainhead or Tenkara USA

    Doing a little reading and curious if anyone has had a chance to compare these two brands and how much diffrent or the same they are from one another. Also what would be the shortest rod made out there that could still effectively cast properly.Just want to get an idea of options before experimenting.
    "I was born to fish" Lee Wulff
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  2. #2

    Default Re: Fountainhead or Tenkara USA

    You can fish either brand effectively. I have used both. As far as length, I have fished a 9 foot rod but I have gone back to using my 11-footer for even the tightest stream fishing. I wouldn't recommend going any shorter than 9 foot.

    The difference between rods and companies are mostly individual preference and company support. Rods with a higher percent of fiberglass or epoxy are a bit heavier in the hand. I prefer a rod that is 98% or more carbon, but I might be giving up the smallest amount of durability. There is a definite difference in feel between rods, with higher-end rods tending to have a slightly better sensitivity and a lighter feel in the hand. As with most things, you get what you pay for, yet the difference between tenkara rods are perhaps not as critical.

    Daniel at Tenkara USA (disclaimer--no commercial ties but we are friends) runs a very good company, with speedy delivery and excellent turnaround on repairs, and donates "1% for the Planet." Two of my three regular use tenkara rods are from his company.

    With the two companies you mentioned, and with your desire for shorter rods, take a look at FH Caddis 330, and TUSA Iwana 11.

    Kevin

  3. Default Re: Fountainhead or Tenkara USA

    Quote Originally Posted by theboz View Post
    what would be the shortest rod made out there that could still effectively cast properly.
    Casting is not the problem. Nissin makes a 6'6" rod that casts beautifully. The problem is that with a shorter rod you pretty much have to fish a shorter line. Otherwise, more of your line will be on the water, subject to drag, and you will have to handline in fish that might not be ready to come in. To fish effectively with a short rod, you have to get closer to the fish, which greatly increases the chance of spooking them. That said, there are streams where you just won't have room to fish an 11' rod, and specific spots or lies in many streams that are too tight for a longer rod. You can collapse a section and choke up, but that is not an ideal solution. The rod rattles and you lose a lot of sensitivity, plus if you happen to hook a large fish you now have a hard spot in the bend, which increases the chance of breakage. Most people choose to just not fish those tight streams or walk past those tight lies. If you want to fish them anyway, and fish them effectively, you'll do better with a shorter rod. I've fished rods shorter than 9', and would put the lower limit shorter than Softtouch333 does, but not much shorter. I would put the shortest length effective for tenkara fishing at 2.4 meters (just under 8'), but only for the smallest, tightest streams. By the time you get to 2.7-3 meter rods (9-10') you have rods that will work for small brushy streams with overhead canopy. Understand also that neither the TenkaraUSA 11' Iwana or the Fountainhead 330 are actually 11'. Both are much closer to 10'6".
    Tenkara Bum

  4. #4

    Default Re: Fountainhead or Tenkara USA

    Quote Originally Posted by theboz View Post
    Doing a little reading and curious if anyone has had a chance to compare these two brands and how much diffrent or the same they are from one another. Also what would be the shortest rod made out there that could still effectively cast properly.Just want to get an idea of options before experimenting.
    I own both. If I just was interested in the thought of Tenkara, the Foutainhead would be my choice, and one I would be happy with.

    With that being said, the Tenkara USA offering is nicer. Both will get the job done, and meet expectations.

    Coming from a guy who has both offerings, I will admit that there is a difference in quality, that is also reflected in the price.

    The fountainhead is still a great buy that I often recommend......The Iwana, costs a bit more, and is bit nicer, but not in the same relationship to its cost.


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