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tctrout

5 Things You DON'T Need in Fly Tying

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So I decided to take a look at fly tying and a side not often taken...things you DON'T need. In my video, I list 5 things I don't need (keyword: Need), including a whip finishing tool. I use it for about 5% of my patterns, instead opting for a hand whip finish with head cement or super glue.

After watching the video, I'd love to hear your thoughts, and more importantly, your 5 things that you don't need.

Tim

 

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Two other things you don't "need" 

1) A vise.  Flies were tied i hand for thousands of years before vises were introduced.  I once watched Lee Wuff tie a size 28 Royal Wulff in hand (no vise.)

2) A bobbin holder. I learned to tie from Helen Shaw's book, where tension on the thread was maintained by wrapping it around a thumb tack in the edge of the bench.  I tied for close to a decade before I even owned a bobbin holder.

Do I use a vise and bobbin holder today?  Of course I do.  "Need" and "makes sense to use" are not the same thing.

And I was tying for almost 30 years before I learned to use a whip finisher.  Now I use one on every single fly I tie.  Since I'm left handed but tie right handed, the whip finisher makes a far neater head than anything I can do by hand.

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Not everyone has the manual dexterity of Lee Wulff. Saw him tie a Royal Wulff once on a TV show. I don't have a ton of $$$$ in tools and get along fine with what I have.

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I have a small box of tools I don't need and told my wife I was boxing up to sell on eBay. That was over a year ago. Have I posted any of them? No.

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First, great podcast on emergers with Tom Rosenbauer on December 10. I really enjoyed it and learned a lot from it.  Let’s see, I don’t have a 500 dollar vise, I have 3 vises that I have paid 30 bucks for all three. Actually only bought 2 the 3rd was inherited but 3 for30 sounds better then 2.  I don’t have a tension bobbin, a thread splitter or a social media platform. I consider a whip finisher a must. Not because it’s difficult since it’s really just a snell knot that any worm fisherman worth his salt can tie, but because the thread frays on my hand and I don’t want to use hand softener. 

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For me I agree on 3 items you mentioned, social media, I use a bodkin for splitting the thread and I never owned a whip finisher. I own a few expensive vise, do I need it? no, would I get rid of it? no. Do I need a tension bobbin? no but its all I use  and the rest are in a drawer. I guess in a way I agree with all 5.

its like saying you don't need a chainsaw for cutting down a tree, you can use an axe. Ill pick the chainsaw all the time.

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My kit had a needle and a handle with a taper and a hole in the end. Half hitch around the end, put the hook eye in the hole and slide the thread off.

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I never knew there was a tool for splitting thread before watching this, LOL.  My eyes aren't that bad yet.  

Social media is a pretty generic, all encompassing phrase.  I could do without some aspects of social media, namely videos, I much prefer a written step by step with photos or diagrams, online or in my hand. I would miss forums like this, which I assume is included in the phrase, but don't need them.   

I need a vice, I would not tie without one.  Same goes for a bobbin holder, though I have no tension bobbin holders and don't feel the need for one.    

I don't  need a whip finisher, but use one.  Though I can whip finish by hand, my fingers are so rough I would need a manicure every time I sat down to tie if I was hand finishing heads. I can and sometimes do use a bodkin or half hitch tool, even an empty pen tube, but if I'm picking up a tool it might as well be the right one.  

 

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