Nothing beats experience and I’ll share mine in hopes that you only read about my Tenkara repair and not have to make your own.
I was on the Poudre River last week, and if you read the report on a previous post, you know I had a very nice three hours on the river. What I didn’t share with you is that I managed to break the tip off my 11’ Iwana Tenkara Rod.
How you might ask… Head up Arse(HUA)! I am in the Zen fishing zone and back cast with no awareness of my surroundings, mistake #1, and I snag. No sweat, I’ll get it untangled, mistake #2. I decide that I can wiggle the leader enough with the Tenkara to get enough slack in the tangle to get it to release. Mistake #3. Now I am sure you are asking yourself why I would do something like that…HUA! I really wanted to keep the rig I had set up and of course wanted more water time instead of developing patience and practicing my knots. Needless to say, I successfully tightened the tangle and ended up with more leader tangled then when I started the process. I had enough slack to break the leader just above the tippet material. EXCELLENT, the leader material broke, my Tenkara was in great shape, lost my flies; however, the rod was in good shape. I began the process of attaching a new leader. I collapsed the sections of the rod until I was at the last two sections, the tip. In my zeal to break the leader, I had tightened the top two sections of the rod. I gently (read fat fingers, impatient, and HUA) pushed the sections together and snap! The second section snapped in two pieces. If I had gently pushed the sections together and held both ends evenly I would not have had the problem.
Hats off to Tenkara USA! In less than one week, I had the replacement tip for the rod at my house. I broke the rod on 031513, completed a request form online with Tenkara USA on 031613, it shipped on 031913 and I received it at my house on 032113. I paid $8.50 for the repair kit. It should be noted that Tenkara USA has a no questions return policy; however, it was not their product that was the problem it was…..HUA! The customer service was exceptional throughout!
Replacing the tip of the rod was easy. The entire process takes 10 minutes. Make sure you have a good working space to prevent additional damage. You will need the damaged rod, and the repair kit which consists of the replacement pieces, in this case, three sections that comprise the tip section. Work slowly and keep all the rod sections together, especially the tip section because additional strength comes from each piece supporting the next. The Lillian, the string bonded to the tip section, has a knot in it to prevent the actual tip from slipping out of the other two sections.
REMOVE THE CENTER/TIP SECTION OF THE ROD: The Iwana has 7 sections and the grip. Gently invert the grip so the rod sections slide out of the bottom of the grip. Let the sections slowly slide out into the palm of your hand; however, do not let all the sections come out of the grip. Extend each section of the rod slightly from the outside section to the tip section. This provides strength and stability to the rod. Remove the center of the rod which will consist of three pieces.
REPLACE THE DAMAGED TIP SECTION: Insert the tip section starting with the Lillian. Make sure you start with the Lillian and guide the Lillian knot into the other rod sections.
SLIDE ALL SECTIONS TOGETHER: Using the palm of your hand, slide all of the sections into the grip. I held the rod cap on one end and my palm on the other end while I gently inverted the rod slightly up and down to make sure the sections were moving smoothly and the sections were not sticking.
CHECK THE ROD FUNCTION: Make sure you have room, read outside, and extend the rod and make sure the sections extend and collapse without any issues.
When setting up your knots always leave the fragile hard tip inside the main segment, exposing only the string at the tip of the rod as you set up,
Never exert any sideway pressure on the rod segments when closing the rod,
Always close rod segments by holding the thickest part of the segment you're closing (closest to next thickest segment),
Handle the first 3 tip segments very carefully,
I am glad I could share the experience with you in hopes that you do not have to replace any sections of your Tenkara Rod; however, if you end up with HUA remember the Tenkara USA customer service is responsive, professional, and hassle free. The process itself was extremely easy.