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Fly Tying


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Everything posted by Si_

  1. I am not actually looking to purchase a LAW vice, but the access to the hook on the standard Renzetti Master is somewhat hampered by the large blunt jaws. Now I find I can buy a set of midge jaws for it, that might well solve the problemAs a observation the CAE vice is very close to the LAW and would be a excellent lower cost alternative if it wasn't for its reputation of poor quality. My other choice of the J Vice is hampered by the lack of a metal base. Why don't you get the Jvice without a base? The money you save on not shipping a base could go towards having a metal one made. Alternatively, I am pretty sure that Snowbee will sell the base for their "Waldron vice" separately if you contact them. I agree that the pictures of the CAE vice look beautiful, but I have read a few too many bad reviews on it. If you buy the Jvice I can assure that you will not be taking any chances on shoddy workmanship.
  2. The illustration in Chris Mann's book has the body hackle taper from its shortest (about 3/4 of hook gape) at the back, to barely longer then a hook gape at he front. However, If I was you I would not be chasing a yellow genetic cape just to meet that requirement! The feather you have on looks like nice quality and has a good strong colour. I doubt anyone will ever look in your box and say "nice flees, shame about the hackle on the Beltra!" Remember also that most people tie up a few variants of the same fly with heavier/lighter dressings, longer/shorter wings etc. to suit different water conditions. To my eye the fly you have started looks better than the one in the book anyhow. Make sure you post a pic when it's finished.
  3. JSzymczyk, your understanding is a wee bit flawed. In Scotland probably the majority of salmon fishing takes place by members of local clubs, many of which can be joined for an annual fee of less than £100. A good proportion of members use lower end rods, reels etc. and most certainly have to consider the cost of their consumables. Of course there are beats on the major rivers costing many thousands per week and those that fish them are in the "if you have to ask....." brigade. I think the argument may be a bit of a moot point however as I doubt there are more than a handful of fishers using the type of flies being discussed here. As Crackaig says, we are all using bucktail patterns. To spend days tying a fly which might get lost on the first cast is a bit eccentric even if you are a millionaire! Those flies are tied now to show off tying skills and for presentation cases.
  4. Would love a Damaseal, but as a guide it's out of my price bracket. I hate to say it, but the CAE vise, which is a Law Copy, looks very interesting But his web site leaves a lot to be desired. Mhhh, thinks, my is not all that great! Bazzer, I came across the CAE vice when trying in vain to find a really good tube fly vice. I agree that it looks very nice and is appealing now that the LAW is no longer available (unless you want to part with £2000 ($3300) for a second hand one as someone did last week on ebay). However, when I did a few searches I found that it got an absolute hammering on the uk forums with regard to finish and quality. I did notice though that a lot of the critics appeared to be LAW vice owners and friends/acquaintances of the LAW vice maker. I agree that the website leaves a lot to be desired and suspect it may be rather costly since the prices are not even declared on the site. Incidentally, I own a Jvice and love it. It may look a bit over engineered in pictures but in the flesh it just feels very robust and well made. I find it very user friendly and enjoy owning it. The maker is a real gent to deal with and will help you out in any way he can. There have been a few threads now on the Jvice and so far I have it seems to me the only critics are those who have never actually seen/bought/used one. All the owners are positive in their comments.
  5. I tied a couple for my brothers wedding. To be honest I did not find it too hard. There are some lumps and bumps in funny places and the proportions are a bit funny. It pays to plan a wee bit in advance how you are going to deal with them. The tip about bending the pin out is definitely a good one although I still managed to spike myself a few times! A good thing to remember is that the rear side is more or less irrelevant as it can't be seen, so no need to knock your pan in trying to keep it perfect. The cheapest supplier I could find at the time was http://www.flytyingshop.co.uk/category-s/140.htm Unfortunately they only have gold ones now. I wish I had bought a few more silver ones at the time as this was the only place I could find them. I will have to strip mine back and re-tie it (a good old Scottish wedding over in Oz gave it a bit of a battering). I have seen one belonging to a friend that was much better made with the pin on a hinge and a roll clasp to close it. I searched high and low for these but could not find any. If you come across some I would love to know. Cheers
  6. Piker, you can find it in Hobbycraft.
  7. Si_


    The price just keeps going up! http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/231017865854?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1423.l2649&autorefresh=true
  8. Si_


    Pete, I think Rolsen is referring to the small knob on the end of the crank shaft being fixed in place. I also have a jvice and have often thought it would be nice if the knob rotated. It would make the rotary function that little bit smoother. It's not so important for fine adjustments but when winding materials onto the shaft of the hook it would be a nice feature. What is the J-line spooler? Any chance of a pic? Thanks.
  9. Si_


    There is a knock-off, but I don't believe the guy bought the rights. I think it is a straight up copy. I could be wrong and may be corrected by someone here. http://www.caeengineeringservices.com/ It has taken a hammering on some of the UK fly dressing sites. Does not seem to be well received. There used to be prices on the website but can't seem to find them any more. From memory it was about £300-£400. If I were going to be spending that kind of money I would buy a Jvice if I were you.
  10. Steiner, I think you might have a dodgy vice there. I don't ever remember having a problem with the jaws coming loose on my apex. I used to rotate it all the time and they were always rock solid. I suggest you take it back where it came from or send it to anvil. I think it has a lifetime warranty?
  11. Almost 5 days to go! http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/281063497342?ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT&_trksid=p3984.m1423.l2649
  12. Yes, I agree the tail is too long. It got the chop not long after this photo was taken! Best vice on the market (as you know )
  13. Try tying a really big trout "Gurgler" on a 5/0 hook. It's a bit of a bugger to cast but causes quite a disturbance in the water!
  14. I find that my Dr. Slick bobbin makes an annoying squeaky noise. Anyone else find this? Changed to TMC heavy duty ceramics and think they are great. I also have a J-bobbin which is brilliant, if a little heavy on the engineering!
  15. Hi buckybrews, not sure where you are located, but in the UK the most common thread is UNI-Thread. It is mainly used in 6/0 and 8/0. When I started out I assumed that thicker thread would be easier to tie with and opted for 6/0. It wasn't until I bought a spool of 8/0 by accident that I discovered that it was actually better for me. It is not particularly easy to snap but ties a much neater fly in my opinion. I use it for small trout flies up to number 16 as well as large salmon flies/tubes and it does the job well. I have never found the need to use a thicker thread. If tying smaller than number 16 then I use Gordon Griffths Sheer which is 14/0. If you watch Davie McPhail's excellent videos on you tube, you will notice that he uses 8/0 UNI-Thread more often than not. If it's good enough for him..........
  16. I see, that makes good sense! I was lucky enough to get the last jvice from the UK dealer before they stopped stocking them. Thankfully shipping wasn't an issue.
  17. Piker, just curious as to why you don't just us the base that came with the vice? Apart from the dimensions you just described the base I got with my jvice.
  18. You can only change the head on the HMH "Premium" tube vice which appears to be a Spartan with the tube vice head instead of the normal tying jaws. The "Spinner" is a dedicated tube vice and is much cheaper.
  19. I have just been through this dilemma. There are only a few which clamp the tube directly. The renzetti, dynaking and most of the retrofit attachments use the collet and pin system and do not clamp onto the tube. The Peak, HMH, "off the hook" and the Grays of Kilsyth needle tube vice all clamp directly. The Peak one looks good but is much dearer over here in the UK. I tried contacting the guy from "Off the Hook" and he never responded, so that got ruled out! The Grays of Kilsyth one looks brilliant for the money but I wanted to be able to rotate the fly without undoing a screw and turning it by hand. I ended up buying the HMH spinner. I am reasonably pleased with it. It clamps the tubes well and they don't spin. On the down side, it is not as robust as I would have liked. The drag is a bit cheap and tacky and rotation is not terribly smooth. The stem is too short and the jaws don't open as widely as I would like either. It is no where near as well built as my non-tube tying vice. After I bought the HMH I discovered one from "Future Fly". I have never seen one or heard anything about them but I think I wish I had bought it instead! http://www.futurefly.dk/products/products.php?type=32 You can buy it from Foxy Tails. (a good company) http://www.foxy-tails.co.uk/category-34/FFTFV101.html
  20. Try Glasgow Angling Centre. They sell something called stack packs. They started a £4 a stack but I think they bought too many (they were giving them away with orders at one point) and they are now a pound a stack. I find them great for hooks. There are big ones which are handy for dubbing and salmon doubles/trebles etc, and wee ones for trout hooks. I stick labels on the sides to id the hooks. You can easily add two stacks together so they don't take up much room. I also bought a revolving carousel along the same idea from Hobbycraft which is also pretty good.
  21. I suppose it depends what type of person you are. Personally I take pleasure from owning/using nice gear and don't mind paying for it. On the other hand I have friends who think I should be commited to an institution for spending what I do on fly tying gizmos! For them a vice is purely something to hold a hook in one place. Would I pay $4000 dollars for that vice? Aye, I would, if I had it spare and it wasn't going to be the only thing I had left after the divorce! I would like to think I have another 20 or 30 years tying left in me and would not mind paying up to $200 dollars a year for the pleasure of owbwership of that vice. As for using it, I would happily use it every day. The last car I bought was considerably more and I use it every day. Every day it goes down in value. With a vice like that you can only add value (unless you break it!). Good luck to the new owner. I wish it was me....
  22. Try H2O slinky fibre. It has bigger volume then ep fibres. You can make really big flies that weigh very little.
  23. Try using EP fibres or Slinky Fibres for winging your fly to keep the weight down. Also I would recommend tying them on bigger hooks (like a 5/0). Here is my copy of a pike fly designed by a famous UK pike fly fisherman. It uses "Slinky Fibres" for the wing. Even though it is about 7 inches long it weighs next to nothing and sheds water really easily.
  24. Try using CDC. Either a feather wound round the shank or in a dubbing loop.
  25. No problem. I am bursting with curiosity as to what you are looking for in a hook that is not covered by all the usual (and less usual) suppliers? This must be the pinnacle of fly tying/fishing when you need to have your own hook designed!
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