Tippet is the thin clear fishing line that goes between your main tenkara line (which is necessary for casting) and your fly. We carry standard fly-fishing tippet, which can be used for tenkara and fly-fishing in general
How much tippet should be used for tenkara?
In tenkara, we typically add 4 feet (1.2 meters) of tippet to the end of our main tenkara line. But, anywhere from 3 to 6 feet (1 to 2 meters) is acceptable. The shorter length tippet is handy in smaller and tighter streams. When you cut tippet off you can keep using it even if it is a bit on the short side like 3 feet. Something like 5feet (1.7m) can be handy in places with very clear and calmer water to give additional distance between the line and the fly.
What diameter / strength tippet?
5X, which is equivalent to roughly 5lb (2.5kg) in test strength is the recommended rating of tippet for tenkara. This allows you to break off the tippet if caught in deep snags or high trees, with a lower chance of breaking the rod. We currently only carry 5X tippet, which is what we use. 4X tippet can be used if specifically targeting larger fish. We do not recommend using tippet stronger than 4x (roughly 6lbs /3KG) as anything stronger is very difficult to break off with the rod if needed. And, due to the great presentation tenkara allows, we do not believe thinner tippet (<5x) is necessary.
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I've caught different size bluegill and smallmouth on this, headed for trout this weekend. It works just like it should, a nice fuse to open up before your tip breaks.
Great tippet line at a good price
Tippet works as it should. Good quality.
5x tippet works very well with tenkara fishing
When I swing by a fly shop for local knowledge, I'll always purchase something. Often enough, that's a spool of 5x tippet, as it's the tippet I fish the vast majority of the time. After lots of use, the Tenkara USA is still my favorite among all my options, not only for the line quality, but for the small and compact spool, as well!
Here's hoping Tenkara USA's tippet becomes popular enough to warrant 4X and 6X versions someday!