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bing_tx

Thoughts on Griffin Vises

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Hello everyone. I’m a new to tying and the forum. I’ve been fly fishing for about 6 years. I recently went into a fly shop looking for a new reel and starting talking with a few guys in the shop as they were tying. I went home and went down a long YouTube rabbit hole on fly tying. I returned to the shop the next day and purchased some materials and tools suggested by the staff and a Griffin Montana Mongoose vise. 
I’ve heard conflicting opinions about this vise. Everything from “it’s an over-price piece of crap” to “it should last you a long time” to “it’s pretty advanced for someone just starting out.” 
I would appreciate any feedback or thoughts from those in the know. 
Thanks.  

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Welcome to the site! I don’t have that vise but I have a griffin superior. Vises are all preference. I don’t think any vise could be called advanced since they really don’t do much. The one thing they must do is hold a hook and my Griffin holds a hook as solid as any vise can. You purchased a fine vise that will serve you well for the next lifetime or two. 

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Thank you for the welcome and the reply. I tied my first one today. I had a lot of fun doing it but it’s comically bad. It made me appreciate all the flies I’ve purchased in the past 

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Welcome.  Nice new vise for a new vice.  

So what pattern did you choose as your first victim?

 

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3 hours ago, bing_tx said:

Elk Hair Caddis. The picture says it all. I’ll keep trying and will get it right eventually. 

Nice vise

Keep that fly, stick it somewhere you wont loose it, a few 100 flies tied, 5 years or 10 years after look back at you're first fly.

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I would try a much easier pattern like a Walt's Worm and get used to dubbing. Elk hair is a tough start.

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4 hours ago, upnorthtier said:

Nice vise

Keep that fly, stick it somewhere you wont loose it, a few 100 flies tied, 5 years or 10 years after look back at you're first fly.

I was supposed to go to my local shop for a class but my wife got the Covid (again. third time. Yes, she’s vaxed) and didn’t want to risk bringing anything into the shop. Figured I’d try to figure it out on my own. Turns out, fly tying is harder than I thought it would be. But it’s really enjoyable. 
My job is very stressful and I’m hoping this new hobby can serve as relief. 

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You need good materials to make good flies.

Manufactured materials are consistent. But materials like fur and elk or deer hair varies and what is good for a stimulator is not good for an EHC or a comparadun. I never by natural materials without examining the material. I take it out of the package and to see if it is what I need for the flies I am going to tie.

Here is a post on how to choose hair for EHK and comparduns.

 

Here is a post on the EHC

https://www.theflyfishingforum.com/forums/index.php?threads/tips-for-tying-the-elk-hair-caddis.906270/#post-1578963

 

 

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I find nymphs much easier to tie than dries.

I have a Regal which I love, but I bought a Mongoose for the "true rotary" functionality recently.  I wanted to go as cheap as I could yet still get a good vise.  It's nice, does what it's supposed to do without much fuss.  However, one time I don't know what I was doing and the jaws/head almost came apart.  Basically, it's just not as solidly built as some more expensive vises.  Expensive ones could probably withstand countless numbers of drops on the floor without being affected.  Cheaper ones might sustain some damage -- but could possibly be fixed.  That's probably true of expensive vs. less expensive products in general.

I think entry-level vises are far better than what they were 40 years ago when I first started tying. Your Mongoose would have been a dream back then.  If you take care of it, it could last a lifetime.  Along the way you might become a perfectionist and decide you want something heavier and more solid, even if it doesn't tie any better.  It could just be a matter of pride or curiosity at that point more than a "need" for something else.

My two cents.

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You have a good vice. I used to run a commercial tying business down in Mexico and over all the Griffin vices were the best for the money and they always took care of any problems no questions asked.

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You have a great vise! And, a great vice! Get some red micro chenille and red thread and tie a dozen San Juan Worms...these will start you on the right path to thread control (i.e. thread tension, number of wraps needed, etc.) Then graduate to something like a Hare's Ear nymph (thread, tail, dubbing)...dry flies can, and will come later...work on these fundamentals, as well as proportions and you'll do well. You have the first part down pat...a great attitude! THAT is everything!! Happy tying!

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I have one and was happy with it for five years or so, but it had a wobble I couldn’t fix. Tried replacing the washers, replaced the base with a heavier one, even used the clamp to secure the base to my desk. Finally figured out that the vise head had loosened from the aluminum post somehow. I never dropped it or anything, but chalked it up to something that I did wrong somehow. I saved up for a Peak rotary vise, and have been extremely pleased with it.

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