Lbifisherman429

Fly Tying Tools

13 posts in this topic

I think your post would make more sense if you had a specific function you were trying to preform. Like a hackle guard or something similar.

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There are two types of fly tying tools, personal and commercial. For commercial tyers, the objective is speed and production. I look for helpful tools like big handle scissors that I never put down, racks that hold materials in a uniform manner, jigs that hold bugs for fast uniform drilling and similar devices. My popping bugs have 17 unique steps but only three are classical fly tying steps. So I mostly look for tools that aid the painting, sanding, woodworking steps. In the commercial arena I find many times that there are tools that will do the job - the challange is finding the specific tool that will do the job quicker, faster and more accurately!

I don't know how you tie, but I usually tie in lots of 100, sometimes 1,000 and used to regularly do lots of 10,000. To do this I stage all the necessary material including hooks, corks, hackle, rubber legs, weed guard mono, flash, etc. and lay everything all out. Then I start gluing cork bodies to hump shank hooks, then dipping or spraying sanding sealer, then sanding smooth, then dipping or spraying the primer coat, then the top coat, then eyes, then scale, then top coat. Between each step there is a 100% physical QC inspection and rejects are sent back for re-work. This process continues until I get about a 90% yield ( at least 7 dozen out of the original 100 starts). I like to go into hackling, which has a much higher yield than painting, with around 90 bug bodies, all same color and same hackling requirement for speed. I may have as many as 5 or 6 lines going simultaneously.

For personal tying, I look for tools that make my job easier. I have a tool that pulls rubber legs through cork bodies, another tool that ties knots in pheasant tails and my Dad who was a welder made me a bobbin holder. For personal tying, new materials often force the tier to develop new tools, or, to find better tools than sold in stores.

Whenever I identify a need for a tool, I try to see if one already exists that meets my needs. For example, I started tying before there were any rotary vises and vises were all table clamp vs. pedestal stands. For years I fussed around with mirrors to see the other side of my fly while tying, plywood to clamp my vise to, and similar mickey mouse contraptions until rotary vises and pedestal vises became available.

Hope this helps.

Good luck!

John

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Dubbing tools is not my thing but there are several hand held tools on the market, just do a google search and see. Also You can make dubbing brushes using a rotary vise. Just tie-in the dubbing brush. There is more than one way to skin a cat.

Bobbins. Ahh... a subject near and dear to my heart! For commercial tyers, ALL bobbins NEVER hold enough thread and ALWAYS take too much time to adjust tension and even ceramic tubes ALWAYS cut the thread TOO MUCH!!!! Some commercial tiers avoid part of the problem by learning how to palm the thread spool and maintain tension themselves. I never could do this. I tried the cheesey Nor-Vise bobbin and vise and hated it and finally got my money back. So I went with the Rite bobbin and like it a lot. See Rite Bobbin from Merco - Bobbin Models or

Merco's Mag Fly Tying Bobbin Fly Tying Bobbin For Tying Large Flies

Hope this helps.

John

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Lbifisherman429

Have made dubbing tools before but have found store bought tools better serving (i.e. dubbing needle – a shaft with micro barbs all over it).

It’s pretty much the same for bobbins. Have found, in the long run, that high end ceramic bobbins are great to tie with but aren’t necessary. You can find inexpensive bobbins and kits on ebay. Most major tackle stores offer kits as well.

Sometimes you have to be creative, like bassrecord, and make a tool for a certain job.

A really good resource for home made fly tying tools is old issues of the Fly Tyer magazines. The fly tying tip section is awesome.

Edited by LedHed

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I have to say it is pretty easy to just spin the dubbing on the thread with your fingers. I have several dubbing tools and I cant tell you the last time I used one. Boy do I feel like a bonehead after seeing how easy it is to make Bruces Bobbins above though. Great idea Bruce. I think i will bend up about 30 of these toniight.

Edited by MTfishingrods

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The only thing I found is that you need to work a little to get that bend in the spool just right; to much of a bend and it doesn't stop from falling, to little bend and you can't get it to spool off correct. When it comes to making any tool, I have found that you have to have a clearly defined purpose in mind what it needs to do and a common sense approach to solving that need. One of the geniuses at filling that type of niche is Pete, aka: hazmail. Talk about looking outside the box to solve problems... I think he does it everyday without even realizing it.

Good luck and happy constructing.

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I have noticed that about Pete just by following the rotating jaws of death thread. There are some brilliant minds working on that one. Which is why I am waiting for the tutorial, I know when Im outmatched. :) But back to the Bobbin I was thinking that if I made one and had it adjusted the way I wanted the I could just set up my wireformer and use it as a pattern. Should be able to knock out a bunch real quick then and have them fairly accurate. Should know in a couple hours if I can get out of the gallery and get to work.

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