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DIY 3D eyes

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6 replies to this topic

#1 Johnw1986


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Posted 21 November 2019 - 11:45 PM

Found this cool video on how to make 3D eyes for baitfish patterns

#2 vicente


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Posted 21 November 2019 - 11:58 PM

Eyes are so cheap from fly tyers dungeon I don't really understand why people spend time making them, unless it's just too do it.

#3 flytire


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Posted 22 November 2019 - 06:39 AM

interesting video but like vicente mentions, fly tyers dungeon eyes are cheap enough


no tools to buy

Respect someones else's ideas. We are all different people. Your way is not the only way.

Never argue with a self proclaimed expert

#4 Pyme Fisher

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Posted 22 November 2019 - 07:14 AM

Eyes are so cheap from fly tyers dungeon I don't really understand why people spend time making them, unless it's just too do it.


I like tinkering, and the satisfaction of making things from scratch, but in this case, the FTD eyes are too good and too cheap to justify sitting there making my own, unless I'm totally out of other projects (and that never happens).

I'll admit though that the video guys homemade eyes do look really good, though a bit large for anything I'd tie. So there's another advantage of FTD eyes, I can get them in very small sizes.

#5 The Mad Duck

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Posted 22 November 2019 - 08:13 AM

I expect you could use a .357 or.44 caliber shell casing to punch the eyes out and a .22 casing for the pupils. That would eliminate the need to buy a set of punches,if you didn't already have them. It would be a fun project to make them,but,as mentioned, eyes are pretty dang cheap.

We Are The People Our Parents Warned Us About

#6 Capt Bob LeMay

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Posted 22 November 2019 - 09:00 AM

Me... I long ago quit using holographic (3D) eyes since in my world they just don't last long in actual use...

I much prefer hard plastic doll eyes instead.  Here's a pic or two....



the feather mullet ( a Seaducer variation...)



finger mullet


Each doll eye comes with a plastic stem that you clip off flush - then glue them into place (one at a time after the tying is done...) and clamp until the glue cures out in about five minutes or so... I've learned to really like Fletch-Tite (a glue for those making arrows -readily available any place with archery components for sale) for this purpose.  The doll eyes come in millimeter sizes and different background colors as well.  I'm able to buy them by the thousand per size - and I've also noted that many craft/hobby/sewing materials shops stock them in smaller quantities... 


Hope this helps

Tight lines Bob LeMay (954) 435-5666

#7 Mark Knapp

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Posted 22 November 2019 - 02:27 PM

I like the video. He did some pretty cool things there. In most cases, I can buy flies a lot cheaper than I can tie them too, yet I continue to tie flies that I can buy.


The reason I tie and the reason I may make my own eyes is that, I can make stuff that isn't available. I can tie flies that I can't buy anywhere and I can make eyes that I can't find anywhere.


For instance, whenever I buy eyes, they have this adhesive on the back that doesn't stick very well. That adhesive creates a membrane, a barrier, that prevents my really good glue from adhering to the back of the eye. It makes it necessary for me to build a bigger head (with epoxy or similar) to encapsulate the eyes so that they don't come off so easily. The weakest part of flies with eyes is the attachment of the eyes. I really hate it when I have a perfectly good fly and one of the eyes comes off.


Now, I can make eye's with no stickyback and my really good glue will stick to them.


As a side note, I just got a 40 quart tote full of all kinds of holographic film, for literally the price of a cup of that fancy coffee, in every color and texture imaginable. Just think of the eyes I could make.


As for the hole punch, you can get a leather workers wheel punch to make all off the smaller size eyes. They're cheep. One of those handy paper punches would work for another size.


We can make foot ball shaped eyes for lizard or snake flies. (I know, some snake eyes are round)


But, the very best reason to make some of my own eyes is, I think it would be fun.