I like to keep the line rigged on my Tenkara Rod when I go fly fishing, so I wrap it around a pair of EZ Keepers that are attached to the outermost segment of the telescoping rod shaft. I wind the line in a figure eight pattern between the two plastic nubs so it stays untangled and hook the fly into my cork handle. This lets me carry a fully rigged rod in its protective case so it’s ready to fish without any setup hassles.
EZ Keepers are pretty inexpensive, but they’re a pain to transfer between rods. They also vary in quality, fit, and “snugness” unless you buy them from a trusted supplier like Tenkara Bum.
If you don’t want to buy EZ Keepers, or you don’t have time to wait for them to arrive in the post, you can rig up a simple line management system using two paperclips and a few strips of electrical tape. This is a hack I picked up from Yvon Chouinard’s book, Simple Fly Fishing: Techniques for Tenkara and Rod and Reel. I wouldn’t recommend buying this book because it’s not that great, but the EZ Keeper hack he describes in it is simple and remarkably effective.
- Two medium sized paper clips
- Electrical tape
Why electrical tape? It holds well and doesn’t leave a glue residue on your rod when you peel if off.
Bend the two paperclips up at the end and tape them to your rod, as shown above. Rig up your rod with line, tippet, and a fly and wrap the line around the paperclips in a figure 8, before hooking the fly (attached to your tippet) in your cork handle.
If your rod doesn’t have a cork handle, you can run a strip of electrical tape down the shaft and hook your fly into that instead.
I prefer using high visibility flourocarbon line with my Tenkara rods, but this line keeper hack also works well with the traditional braided line that’s often shipped with new rods from American-based Tenkara rod manufacturers.
That’s all there is to it, but it’s a neat little hack.
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