Covid-19 Announcement

Some shipments are still delayed. If you are planning a trip, please order well in advance.

TenkaraBum 40

by Luke B.
(Harrisburg Pa)

Well, I purchased this rod from Chris a little while ago and wanted to wait till I actually got to fish it more then once to write a review.

Fishing in PA on places like the Letort, Big Springs, Penns Creek and Spring Creek are not the easiest as anyone who has fished them knows. You can’t just fish wets and be consistent, you at times have to do a little of everything.

Let me say I didn’t get the TB40 for it’s wet fly abilities (which it does wonderfully). I got it for nymphing and throwing some streamers. Let me also say I could care less about this “tenkara fad” that some do, I’m here to catch fish and tenkara rods do it best. So for what I was looking for, this rod does it.

I have landed some nice fish (15 inch plus range) in fast water and it handles them just fine. Now let me say you still need to get them to slow water but you have the backbone needed to do so. It fishes double rigs with weighted flies and split shot just fine. It fishes light line wets just fine, and even on smaller fish (8 inch range) they feel great because of that softer tip. Hook sets are nice and crisp, because of that stiffer midsection. I have lost one fish and that was due to me having a late hook set.

Fishing a 400 sized rod can wear you out if not properly balanced. This rod has no tip heaviness whatsoever and is balanced perfectly. I've stopped fishing my Royal Stage 400 because my TB40 feels like it’s not even there compared the that rod.

My Oni Type 1, which is beautifully balanced, is no better balanced than the TB40. Although two totally different rods, the TB40 will still cast light line and is an all-day fisher just as the Oni. I love the fuller flex of the Oni but it’s more of a specialized rod. The TB40 will do everything the Type 1 will do and then A LOT more.

Suntech definitely hit the mark on this rod, it does everything a tenkara rod should do but can be fished in so many different ways. I love to nymph, dry fly, throw wets and streamers as do most American tenkara fishermen and this rod will do it all. But if you're a one fly guy and only want to fish wets you're still covered. Now If you are looking for a specialized headwater rod this isn’t it, I mean it could and would still be fun!

If you're looking for a monster trout rod, I wouldn’t say this is it either, even though it will handle them. BUT, if you're looking for an all-around rod this IS it. It will make the little guys feel good and will put the brakes on the big ones. Price point, balance, weight, and fishablity - this is definitely the most you will get out of any tenkara rod available here in the US. You will not be disappointed with this rod! So what are you waiting for, just get one!

Comments for TenkaraBum 40

Click here to add your own comments

Feb 05, 2018
Go to Rod
by: Les Albjerg

Luke, I love your review. I bought my TenkaraBum 40 to entice my son to give me back my TenkaraBum Traveler 44. I fell in love with the TenkaraBum 40. It works well fishing worms as well. I fish it using the "ulta-light worm fishing" method that Chris advocates. I have caught trout, sunfish, and smallmouth bass with mine.

I agree with everything Luke has shared in his review. Today a number of people asked me what rod I would recommend as I was able to visit with several interested people when I was fishing today. I wrote the "TenkaraBum 40" on 4 of the 6 business cards from Chris that I handed out today. It is the ideal all round rod for this area. It is my go to rod. I didn't fish it today. I was experimenting with a couple of my other rod. I would have been just as happy catching the three rainbow trout with the TenkarBum 40 as with the two I fished with today. It is an awesome rod.

Feb 05, 2018
by: Luke B

Les, thank you. I appreciate that you enjoyed the review! And yes, I agree with you it is the best all around rod someone could get. We see so many rods for a specialized purpose. I mean the masters in Japan create rods to fit the waters THEY fish. And don’t get me wrong, I love specialized rods, but I've wanted a rod for a while that when I go to a stream where I might be throwing nymphs, drys, or streamers I don’t need multiple rods. This rod fits that role perfectly.

Feb 05, 2018
by: Terry Farmer

I have to agree with the above assessments. I have two rods that handle, and handle quite well, 90% of my fixed line fishing. One is the TB40. The other is the Suntech Kurenai HM39R. I have others but these two are my "go to" rods.

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Your Gear Reviews.

“The bitterness of poor quality remains long after the sweetness of low price is forgotten” - Benjamin Franklin

"Be sure in casting, that your fly fall first into the water, for if the line fall first, it scares or frightens the fish..." -
Col. Robert Venables 1662

As age slows my pace, I will become more like the heron.


The hooks are sharp.
The coffee's hot.
The fish are slippery when wet.

Beware of the Dogma

Currently processing orders that were received Sep 29.

Back in Stock Notification

To be notified when a specific item is back in stock, please use the Back in Stock Notification form.

To be notified when new items are added to the shop and when out-of-stock items are back in stock please use the
This Just In... Signup