Fly line backing knotted to Lillian - newbie question

Discussion of tenkara lines, tippets, etc...

Fly line backing knotted to Lillian - newbie question

Postby Coasterbrookie » Wed Apr 03, 2013 7:33 pm

Hey guys -

This may make no sense. Just learning my way through the Tenkara process. It's seems that the danger in breaking the rod tip comes when initially connecting the leader to the Lillian. I thought I'd give myself a bit more elbow room and add a short piece of 20lb backing to it. So what knot do I use?... "Albright". I can trim it off if the braid becomes damaged and not compromise the lillian. It all seems to fit very well inside the butt-end of the rod. I tied a Perfection Loop on the leader-side. Also, I shaved a bit of the plug so I could keep it in-place while attaching the leader. Am I way off the deep end here? I don't know anyone that fishes Tenkara style around here. I watch You Tube vids but that's it for my exposure. Interestingly enough, my local "purist" fly shop "doesn't believe" in the ways and means of Tenkara. Please don't hesitate in questioning my insanity. I'm very open to gaining knowledge in any way it is achieved!

Andy
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Re: Fly line backing knotted to Lillian - newbie question

Postby GregM » Wed Apr 03, 2013 8:20 pm

Coasterbrookie wrote:Hey guys -
It's seems that the danger in breaking the rod tip comes when initially connecting the leader to the Lillian. I thought I'd give myself a bit more elbow room and add a short piece of 20lb backing to it. So what knot do I use?...

Also, I shaved a bit of the plug so I could keep it in-place while attaching the leader.

I don't know anyone that fishes Tenkara style around here.

Andy


If you are connecting a level line use the Slip Knot approach.
If you are connecting a traditional line use a Girth Hitch.
Both of these, and much more can be found in About Tenkara http://www.tenkarausa.com/about.php. (Look for it under the TenkaraUSA logo, above and left.)

When I started, I used a loop of backing to attach my level line and used a girth hitch on each end.

Shaving the plug is fine. Watch the lillian though, to make sure it doesn't start to fray at the edge.
There are many "hackers" here. "Nothing is perfect out of the box."

This forum and TenkaraBum.com are two excellent resources.
Keep reading. Keep poking. Keep asking those questions.
Attachments
line_to_rod_revised.gif
Traditonal - Girth Hitch
levelline_to_rodtip.jpg
Level Line - Slip Knot
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Re: Fly line backing knotted to Lillian - newbie question

Postby Karl Klavon » Thu Apr 04, 2013 8:39 am

Andy, since you already have a Perfect Loop tied in the end of the Dacron backing line extension, why not give the loop-to-loop connection a try on your T-rod. I have glued braided loops to the lillians on all of my fixed line rods because I prefer using the loop-to-loop connection over introducing the third element of a girth hitch, but I also have been recently thinking of doing it your way lately as well. And you are right about being able to do the line connection with the tip of the rod safely nestled within the rod with either of our two extension methods as being a good thing, which I really like.

With FC level lines I am also using the Perfect Loop, tied big enough that I can get a finger in the loop for stretching the line to remove line coil set more easily. I stretch the line first, then place the loop over the collapsed rod, pull out the lillian loop if it is not all ready visible, and put the tippet or tippet loop end of the line through the lillian loop, pull the line through and tighten the loops together, then extend the rod. Taking the line off is just a reversal of the line mounting procedure.

I also prefer the loop-to-loop connection for the tippet to line connection as well. An easy and fast way to change tippets when the old one is shot is to cut the tippet loop above the knot. Then grab one leg of the loop and pull it out of the line loop. Tie a Triple Surgeon's Loop Knot in one end of the new tippet section, loop on the new tippet, tie on a fly and fish. The line loop can be the loop knot of your choice.

While none of these connections or knots are traditional Tenkara knots or connection methods, they are more familiar to Western fly fishermen, equally effective, more straight line, and possibly more tidy connection methods as you do not have tag ends sticking out at several locations for the line, tippet or fly to catch on.
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Re: Fly line backing knotted to Lillian - newbie question

Postby Coasterbrookie » Thu Apr 04, 2013 6:02 pm

Karl - You've got, a lot more experience than me so thanks for your encouraging words. It just seems to me that the "awareness" of the broken tip issue is what drove me to think beyond the lilian. I don't want to fracture the fragile structure of the tip and it seems to me to be the focus of so many posts. If you protect the tip during this phase, you're much better-off. The biggest deal with Tenkara is protecting the rod from breakage.... Or so it seems from my prospective. I could be totally wrong. You have to admit though, the rods are pretty fragile.. I've got two TUsa rods now and I'm overly careful when expanding the tip section. Maybe it will become less of a focal point as I gain experience. I'll give the current configuration a fair shot before determining if it's a permanent way of life for me. For thos that read this and think I'm way overboard, let me know your thoughts. I'd love more input...

Andy
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Re: Fly line backing knotted to Lillian - newbie question

Postby Karl Klavon » Fri Apr 05, 2013 3:19 pm

Andy, it never hurts to play it as safe as you can with your rod. With a short section of the tip sticking up above the lower rod sections, it does not take very much sideways pressure at all to break the tip against the sharp edges of the lower rod blank sections with a sideways pull. And the tips on T-rods are so delicate looking that that tends to undermine any confidence in the strength of these rods that most people have in the beginning of fishing with them.

But, as you gain more experience in fishing T-rods, you will come to worry less and less about rod breakage, especially while catching fish. A good practice and confidence builder is to tie the tippet to an unmovable object and intentionally break the tippet with rod pressure. Doing this will quickly show you how the stress of a big fish is spread out over the whole rod, as long as you do not try to fight the fish only on the tip of the rod, by raising the rod to a 90 degree or greater angle, and just how hard it is to break a 5X tippet on a Tenkara rod. Fight your fish with the butt of the rod by not raising the tip of the rod above a 45 degree angle. You will also learn just how much pressure you can safely apply with out breaking your tippet, and you will build much more faith and confidence in the rod's power and strength to handle fish and or snags. Since the fish's spine is not made to bend in an upward direction, and pulling up on the fish fights gravity and the weight of the water above it, side pressure in the opposite direction that the water is flowing will bring the fish to hand much faster and with the least amount of rod strain.

If you examine the tips of these rods closely, you will notice that the tip's taper is pretty uniform along its whole length until the last few inches, where there is a pretty significant (more or less parallel) diameter reduction. This is necessary to allow the added diameter of the glued on lillian to slide down inside of the rod blank located immediately below the tip section when the rod is collapsed. This is the most fragile part of the rod, partly because the glued on lillian forms one stiff spot as well as the lower rod sections forming a secondary possible breakage fulcrum point if the tip has sideways pressure applied to it in between the two stiff points, so keeping as much of the tip in the rod (where it is safely supported by the other rod sections) as you can will make it just about impossible to break the rod tip. A lillian extension makes keeping the tip in the rod much easier to do and greatly helps in preventing tip breaking accidents in my view.
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Re: Fly line backing knotted to Lillian - newbie question

Postby Coasterbrookie » Fri Apr 05, 2013 8:16 pm

I'm impressed with your common sense approach to playing a fish. I've seen guys that automatically set the hook like they're trying to rip the lips off an elephant! Then proceed to hold their rod as high over their head as far as their arms can stretch. I just shake my head. Keep the rod low and use the whole rod. Everyone's got their process though. So the confidence is a bit low on rod tips. As you say, it will build as I use the rod. I'm looking forward to getting out and using it. Right now my home waters (Whitewater River) is a mud hole. Field run-off has trashed it for next next month. Looks like ill be heading over to WI to break it in.

Andy
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