Rods Tenkara

Nissin Professional Kawashi 360 7:3 Tenkara Rod Review

Of the Japanese tenkara rod companies, Uzaki-Nissin is the best known. They have the most varieties of rods, and they tend to come out with newer tenkara rods more often than many of the other companies. Some of their tenkara rods, such as the Zerosum, Royal Stage, Pro-Spec, and Air Stage rods, are very well known and highly respected, but other rods are much less known, at least in the United States. These rods are the Pro Square Super Tenkara and Professional Kawashi.

While Pro Square rods have a few reviews on the internet, Professional Kawashi rods have only one, and that for the 320 cm version. In this review, I’ll introduce you to the Nissin Professional Kawashi 360 7:3 rod, a tenkara rod that really should be in the hands of more tenkara anglers.


The Nissin Professional Kawashi 360 7:3 comes in a classic Japanese rod plastic carton, along with a rod sleeve. The overall coloration is black, but it does have metallic speckled burgandy and subtle gold band accents on the larger segments. The finish is glossy. The rod designation portion of the handle section has visible carbon weave, which is a common feature on Nissin’s high end rods. Uzaki-Nissin rates the Professional Kawashi 360 7:3 for tippet 号 0.8-1.2 (which is approximately 5X-3.5X, 4.4-6.0 lb. test).

Nissin Professional Kawashi Tenkara - Tenkara Angler - Tom Davis
Nissin Professional Kawashi Tenkara - Tenkara Angler - Tom Davis - Weave

The handle is high quality cork which has a reverse half wells shape, instead of the more common hyotan gourd or double hump shape seen on most tenkara rods. The handle is 22.5 cm (8.9 inches) in length.

Nissin Professional Kawashi Tenkara - Tenkara Angler - Tom Davis - Grip

The tip plug is rubber and is fluted. The butt cap is metal. It’s knurled to aid removal, and it has a rubber bumper and a decompression hole.

Nissin Professional Kawashi Tenkara - Tenkara Angler - Tom Davis - Caps

The lilian is red, and is quite short at only 3 cm (1.2 inches). It is attached to the tip section with a perfectly executed glue joint, and the tip section can be fully removed through the second section (Japanese convention dictates the tip section to be section #1) so that the rod can be fully disassembled for cleaning and drying.

My Measurements

Fully Extended Length365 cm / 12 feet
Nested Length (with cap)56 cm / 22 inches
Cork Grip Length22.5 cm / 8.9 inches
Weight (without tip plug)67 g / 2.36 oz
CCS:18 pennies
RFI:4.9 / 6:4 Moderately Fast, Upper Mid-Flex
For more on CCS & RFI, watch our YouTube video on the subject


Casting the Nissin Professional Kawashi 360 7:3 is a joy. The rod is so light that there is hardly any startup inertia. The flex action is relaxed and forgiving, but it’s not so relaxed as to be unresponsive. Tip dampening is excellent, and there is no detectible end-of-cast tip oscillation. The importance of this is that end-of-cast tip oscillation robs the rod of level line casting accuracy. The rod’s balance is excellent, as well.

Like most of Nissin’s 7:3 rods, the Kawashi 360 7:3 feels and acts more like a 6:4. The measurable data bear that out. I’m not sure why most Nissin rods feel slower than the advertised flex action, that’s just the way they are. There are a few exceptions, however. Nissin Air Stage rods are exactly what they say they are, 5:5 and 6:4. But most Nissin 7:3 rods are not the same as Shimano or Daiwa 7:3 rods, so be aware.

I cast the Kawashi 360 7:3 with both #3 and #3.5 fluorocarbon level lines, each of about 5 meters in length. The rod cast these lines beautifully and it took surprisingly little effort to get a fly first presentation. I’m not a fan of the Kawashi’s handle shape. I prefer a hyotan gourd or double hump shaped handles, as I like to hold my rods near the butt of the handle. If you prefer to hold your rods higher up the handle, then I don’t think you would have any complaints.


The Nissin Professional Kawashi 360 7:3 is a wonderful rod, with the handle shape being the only thing I didn’t care for. The Kawashi’s lightweight and forgiving flex action make it a classic Japanese level line tenkara rod that is perfect for traditional Japanese tenkara techniques. It has excellent balance and dampening, which make casting the rod a true pleasure! It’s somewhat similar to its better known sibling, the Nissin Pro-Square Super Tenkara, but has higher quality materials and more refined tapers. If you’re looking for a classic Japanese tenkara rod, check out the Nissin Professional Kawashi 360 7:3. You won’t be disappointed!

Disclaimer: My opinion regarding this rod is just that, my opinion. Your opinion may differ.  Also, your rod may not have the same length, issues, or functionality as my rod. There are variations between rods, even in the same production run. No description can fully tell you how a rod feels or fishes. For this, you must personally hold, cast, and fish the rod, then make up your own mind.  I purchased this rod at retail price.

Share Your Experience: Have you fished with a Nissin Professional Kawashi tenkara rod? If so, what length and flex action? What are your thoughts on this rod? If not, are you interested in this rod? Did you find this review helpful?

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  1. It’s a real treat to have you in the Tenkara Angler lineup now. Your rod reviews on top of Tenkara Angler’s other content are like getting to the desert in a five star restaurant – an extra special treat on top of an already incredible experience.

    I’ve been on a search for a really good Japanese made, all-around rod (good for contact nymphing and dry/wet flies), but with a slightly higher emphasis on the dry/wet fly delivery. Right now, I’ve got a couple of rods that perform above average in the all-around area, but with a higher emphasis on contact nymphing performance (it seems like there are more, really good, all-around rods with an emphasis on contact nymphing out there right now). One rod that keeps coming to my attention is the Nissin Zerosum Oni Tenkara Honryu 395. Seems a lot of folks like this rod. But, I really prefer a rod length in the 360 to 380 range and they’ve been out of stock for quit a while.

    Any suggestions? Would the Nissin Professional Kawashi 360 7:3 fit the bill? Also, what’s the best avenue for ordering Nissin rods right now?

    Sorry for the long post.

  2. Thanks for the excellent review Tom. I recently acquired a Nissin Royal Stage 360 7:3 and I’ve completely fallen in love with it. I am blown away by the aesthetics, craftsmanship, attention to detail, and casting ease/accuracy even though it is not advertised as a “high end” rod. Other than the weight and handle shape differences I wonder how much additional “gain” the Kawashi 360 7:3 might provide. Like any fine piece of engineering, incrementally smaller improvements typically demand exponentially higher investments. It’s like one Ferrari that accelerates at 1.2 g and another at 1.1g. An average Joe like me might not be able to tell the difference.

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