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Horseshoes

Calling all current and previous swapmeisters

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The issue of people who sign-up and take a spot then you never hear a word from them is more than aggravating. I think that the SM needs to have the power to remove people that do not reply by say 7 to 10 days before dead-line and see if any-one is interested in getting some done in that week or so to make the dead-line.

I have been late as a swapper and the reasons were varied but a couple were from health. Since i started this fight against lung cancer the beginning of 2011 i haven't hosted or joined any swaps because i just don't know if i will be able to make it. I REALLY regretted missing the Christmas swap last year...i think that was the last swap i was in for 2010 and never saw the sign-up last year because i was on the computer so seldom. That has been the most exciting swap i have seen. SANTA we need you!

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never hosted one myself but had been in several..always sent my flies in etc..but now it is getting enough time to sit and tie flies..jsut dont have enough time with the kids in sports and working .....really miss it

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never hosted one myself but had been in several..always sent my flies in etc..but now it is getting enough time to sit and tie flies..jsut dont have enough time with the kids in sports and working .....really miss it

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I stopped swapping and hosting swaps when I hosted my second swap. I had received some truly beautiful flies where you could see how the tier had put lots of effort into them. Then the last one or two sets came in (past the deadline) and to be honest, they were pretty bad. Now this may sound harsh at first, but I have seen pictures of flies posted by the tiers and it was obvious that they put no effort into the flies and were just swapping to get other peoples flies. It made me really annoyed at the whole swapping thing. You could tell that most of the people put lots of effort into their flies (even if they were a beginner tyer who tried their best), but there were those few who put no effort in. Now I just do "mini" swaps with smaller groups of people I know and know they will put effort into their flies.

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I started this topic because I had thought of starting one of my annual swaps and hesitated. Anyone who has swapped with me knows I was an avid swapper and host. It was a continuous joy to join or host such events where I recieved great pleasure sending out little packets of surprises to every one involved. Even got carried away with the themes, some annual. Then the hosting reached a point where my cost on the last swap was an extra $31.00 in postal shortages. dry.gif I understand not knowing the increases etc, I myself short changed my last host beacause of not being aware of the increases. Major increases, was quite surprised.

 

Anyways.. There is a difference in that, then being given the demensions and weight restrictions along with the prices or given a postal link. Then I wonder what a Host is supposed to do? I reckon that if you don't have anything to accomadate the restrictions or don't want to pay the extra price in postage then the swapper shouldn't join. I believe in communication. That said , I am not perfect and have lacked that from time to time.

 

So I figure I will write up a regulation paragraph of rules for joining my swaps and with it will be consequences for not following them. That way it is very clear. I would go into a swap with that and totally accept the consequences of my actions. OR........

 

Have closed swaps, with invite only. That would be sad because then a lot of good newbies will miss out on the fun.

 

Since the rules etc are confusing on the forum and hard to maintain, I must say. Constant postal changes in every country. I believe it should be up to the host to stipulate their personal preferences, then it is clear to everyone and they have a choice in whether they can fulfill the expectations. Otherwise it is unsaid and the host will have to be willing to take the responsibility of everything, quietly and graciously as we have all done so elequently in the past. LOL :blink:

 

I hope when I join swaps that there is communication and they will make me aware of any shortages etc. I as a host will try to keep the communications open and do the same.

 

One other thing... I really appreciate everyone who joins in this discussion. It is sorely needed and is better if it is on one thread.

 

If quality of flies is wanted then maybe we should stipulate on the posting of the swaps the skill level needed to join. You wouldn't want to deter people from joining swaps, it does take a bit of courage for a newbie in that fly catagory to send out the flies. I know, I feel it everytime I do a new fly.

 

Well blahblah.... Thanks for listening LOL :lol:

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I agree with some of the ideas. Not a fan of defining a tying level for swaps because who is to judge when a beginner becomes an intermediate? Especially with the yearly swaps. I have found some months a breeze and others a challenge. There are some who are obvious experts with deerhair or poppers, you only have to look at the flies posted here. But there are flies I have recieved in swaps which have been great but the folk never post on here any examples. Would we put these people off taking part?

As an international swapper the return postage is an issue but good manners and a simple PM normally sorts out a way around it for me and the relevant SMs.

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Yes that was a lesson. I also agree with the no skill rating. But as I have read not all are so this was presented as a solution to some who want a better quality in there flies. Me? I know nothing and have everything to learn in flytying. So I always welcome every level.

 

Have to ask though, what do you mean by "relevant SMs"?

 

As an international swapper the return postage is an issue but good manners and a simple PM normally sorts out a way around it for me and the relevant SMs.

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Have to ask though, what do you mean by "relevant SMs"?

 

The swap master. i.e. i always arrange with them the best way to credit the return postage. Most folk are happy with a few extra flies thrown in for their trouble. Its awkward when you can only get dollars in $10s or higher.

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It has been quite a while now since I participated as a host or swapper, and it has been been long enough since I visited the site, that I had to sign in (didn't "remember"me). I stopped swapping because I had to drop a few swaps due to health issues in my home and lack of time to complete. I just wanted to comment on the skill issue. When I first did a swap here, I thought I was a pretty good tier. After receiving flies back, I realized I wanted to become a pretty good tier. After a year of two of tying for these swaps, and trying to get myself to the level of the other participants, I have improved vastly (a great ego boost when out on the water with my fishing companions), something I might not have accomplished had I been kept off a swap because my skill set didn't match the rest of the tiers. My commitment was always to supply the best flies I was capable of tying to the members of the swap. Ones that didn't measure up to swap quality have still caught me lots of fish (I keep those in active use).

I do think a swapmeister outlining his or her expectations and rules of engagement would be a great idea. Maybe even a PM to a new swapper outlining the regs, and asking for a reply within a certain number of days as a condition of being fully admitted to the swap?

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Let me hop back in here to comment on the "Skills Level" issues as well. This is not a reaction to what anyone else has written. I agree with what has been said.

 

I have been swapping here almost from the beginning of the forum. Back when the number was given of the order in which you joined, mine was 747. I used to think "747, just like the passenger jet," and that's why I can remember it. But during all of that time, I have participated in 2 kinds of swaps here. One is the open swap and I see those as being open to anyone. As I see it, that's the main reason this site exists, so that anyone regardless of skill level can participate. In almost every one of those open swaps that I've been a part of there were a few flies that I saw as the work of beginners, and some that were on or above my skill level. Some of those have challenged me and I've learned some new techniques and new patterns. At times I have been, and still am, challenged by the flies I get back in swaps to "step it up" in my own skill sets. The other type of swap that I have participated in is the "Invitational Swap." And I see those as being swaps for the better tyers. When I've hosted invitational swaps, I've stated that that is the purpose. To have the best swappers participate so that you are REALLY challenged to improve your skills. It's been a little while since I've seen an invitational swap here and perhaps it's time for someone to put one of those together. But by and large, I see swaps as a kind of recreational thing where you just tie and swap for the joy of doing so. And those swaps should be open to everyone. I guess it all comes down to the expectations each swapper has going in. I expect an open swap to be made up of some beginner swappers and some intermediate and even advanced swappers. Going in with that set of expectations, I've rarely if ever been disappointed.

 

Take care

 

BB

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Thanks shoes.... I like the discussion.

 

I feel similarly about tying trout patterns, whether wet or dry, because I tie them so irregularly, and rarely fish them. But the skills required to tie them have helped me with my larger saltwater patterns.

 

I would still very much classify myself beginner for the trout patterns, but am now getting there with the estuarine and open water patterns now.

 

I often will look at a swap, and think, 'that would be cool' but hesitate and often do not join because of the quality of ties I feel are required to do justice to the other tiers in the swap.

 

As another international swapper I also have issues at times with postage, and particularly now that we can't get the international reply paid coupons here anymore. I will often put in cash for postage, but as Rich will attest this time, I can't always find USD.

 

I love the Concept of the invite only swaps, and one day I hope to be considered good enough to find an invite in my inbox. Until then I will trawl for the ones I think I can contribute well too, and host my own, like the Snook swap. (which seems to be going really well so far).

 

I think I mentioned it before, but I am so grateful for this forum and the improvements in my tying that have resulted.

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I don't think quallity of flies is an issue I think its more the thought put into a fly to be swapped I mean this there isn't a swap out there that a wooly buggar or a mudler minnow couldn't cover but if I joined every swap and only tied them 2 flies I'm sure people would get upset does this mean I don't want muddlers or buggars no but I think if your a begginer they are fine but say someone like breambuster or professori which I have swapped with and know the quality they can and do produce time after time I would feel they took an easy way out

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I tied some Zug Bugs for the first swap I entered. I thought I was a pretty good tyer, but I am a better tyer now because of the Forum. Those first flies were the best I could tie at the time, but I would not send them to a swapmeister today. I was never too concerned when I was tying for myself, just tying enough to go fishing. It was only when I started tying for the members of this Forum, and seeing their flies, that I really became concerned with the quality of what I tied. Now, not only are my swap flies better, so are the ones for my own fly box. I have hosted a lot of swaps, I see lots of different quality flies. Nobody gets better reading about fly tying, you have to spend time at the vise. Tying enough to get a dozen of the same pattern for someone else is a great way to improve. B)

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Tying enough to get a dozen of the same pattern for someone else is a great way to improve. B)

 

Yes, most definitely. "Tying enough to get a dozen" means I also end up with lots of the rejects but I still fish them. Most of the time the fish don't seem to care - never heard a complaint.

 

But I absolutely agree - I love the swaps because they help me tie better. And I get see what type of tying is possible when I receive some really nice ties.

 

Back to the question: why have I quit swapping or hosting? I really haven't quit hosting, just haven't gotten around to doing it again. And sure, sometimes the postage shortage can hurt, but in my experience, the swap meister usually gets some extra flies and doesn't have to pay postage to send his/her own, so a little postage shortage is OK.

 

Jimboha!

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