September 23, 2014

Nissin Fine Mode Kosansui 270 -- review

When I fish a small stream (defined as 1-10 feet wide) I usually use a Shimotsuke Kiyotaki 240 or 270 or a Daiwa Soyokaze 270. These have been my go to rods for the streams that tumble out of the mountains heavily covered in trees and bushes. They work great.

Recently I got ahold of another rod that is just as good, and better in some aspects than the rods that I have used. It is the Nissin Fine Mode Kosansui 270.  Since the Soyokaze is off production it is difficult to get. The Kiyotaki is readily available, but it is a bare bones work horse that is not as pretty as other rods. Because of these issues, Chris Stewart has chosen to carry the Nissin Fine Mode Kosansui 270 as his main offering for small, brushy streams.

The K-270 (I'll call it this for short) comes in a standard Japanese rod carton. This is typical for Japanese rods. The rod is black in coloration and glossy in finish with deep, rich blue accents on the handle section. The deep blue paint has small metal speckles making the finish beautifully aesthetic. The other segments are glossy black with a tastefully executed silver band on all but the tip two sections.

The handle is the lower part of the handle segment; no cork. There is a very effective non-slip coating that works very well whether your hands are wet or dry. This coating is black. This "handle" is 15.5 cm long.

Since there is no cork, there is no winding check. The tip plug is black rubber and is larger than the opening of the tip of the handle section. It fits very snugly if you rotate the tip plug as you push it into the opening. The tip plug is fluted. The butt cap is black plastic, has a rubber bumper on the inside and a small drainage hole. Fine knurling makes it easy to remove.

The lilian is fine red material and is attached to the tip section via a very small glue joint The glue joint is perfect. The tip section will come through the second section allowing the rod to be fully disassembled for cleaning and drying.

Rod specifications:  Collapsed, the rod is 52 cm. Fully extended it is 271 cm. It weighs a mere 37.5 g. The Common Cents System measurement is 19 pennies. This gives it a Rod Flex Index score of 7.0.

Rod Flex Index comparison chart

Casting the rod is simple easy. It has a wonderful action that propels #2.3-3.5 level lines through the air with accuracy and ease. The action is modestly crisp, similar to my Soyokaze 270. It is such a joy to use.

I fished the K-270 on a favorite mountain stream of mine. It is the same stream that I use to test other 240-270 cm rods, so I can tell if the rod is a good fit for the stream or not. The fish are rainbows and cutthroat trout ranging from 6-12 inches. A 14 incher is not impossible, but rare in the moving waters of the stream. I used the K-270 on some beaver ponds as well besides the heavily overgrown moving portions of the stream.

The rod was perfect. I used a 7 foot #3 line with 24 inches of 5X tippet. I default most all of my fishing to 5X tippet, but I believe that Chris would desire you to use 6X. This combination allowed me to take over a dozen wild trout in less than an hour -- I fished until I was chased off the water by lightning!

Conclusion: I really like this rod! It casts equally well as my Soyokaze 270, but weighs almost 10 g less! Its tip section is just a little stiffer than the Soyokaze. It is much nicer in aesthetics than the Kiyotaki 270 and is just as capable. It is such a pleasure to use that I think that if you are looking for a nice small stream rod, you should seriously consider this one. You can get one from Tenkara Bum.

Here is a short video of me using the rod and catching some of the fish with it.


  1. That's great news that there is something comparable to the Soyokaze.
    I may need to pick one up as a spare small stream rod for friends.

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  3. One thing i like short rods over longer ones is versatility. You can easily fish a larger stream/pond with a shorter rod using a longer line. Fishing a much smaller stream with a long rod and a shorter line is also possible but will not be as easy acomplished. Thanks Tom, another great contribution to the tenkara world.