It's All In the Details
By Steven H. McGarthwaite
Bench Clutter: George E. Emanuel (muddler) wrote, "If there is one thing that will really slow down and reduce the quality of your time at the vice, it is clutter." Not only does it slow you down, it reduces your skills at the vice. Hard enough to remember the steps for the pattern you are tying, you also are trying to remember where you put the materials and tools you are using. It is better to have tool storage away from the vise and just pick the tools you need to tie the fly pattern. The only materials at the vise are those you are using. Clutter is the start of the slippery slope to chaos. After you are done tying return all the tools and materials to their proper place.
Lighting: Al Campbell wrote in his Field Editor Column, about the importance of "Good Lighting" for taking photos. A camera has a lens is it's eye, just as your eyes are your camera! If you have good lighting on the subject, your tying will be more accurate and easier. Lighting also includes a background so your sight is not distracted by clutter in you line of sight. The right color also helps to better highlight the subject.
Tools: Too many tools can defeat your fly tying and slow you down. If you are a beginner then Al Campbell's article in Beginning Fly Tying is for you.
If you are beyond the beginner level, Al has two more levels, Intermediate and Advanced or Ronn Lucas's articles on Atlantic Salmon Tying may be better suited for your needs.
Materials: Others have written many times on this site, that you should wherever possible, obtain the best material for fly tying. I have also stated that material that is inferior is not worth the money, time or effort. It is important to buy the best you can afford, and to insure that it remains that way when not being used. Have containers for your thread, floss, tinsel, and wire when they are not being used. And sealed containers for your capes, furs, herls, tail and wing material; and storage of hooks. On the front page of FAOL there is a Search Engine, type in the word "Storage" and see how many articles are on this site covering that topic alone.
Here is one article that is about Hook Storage.
This is one on Thread Storage.
Finally a series of articles that covers just about everything else that needs proper storage, Getting Organized.
Finally some E-Mail posts I received from various people, who encountered difficulties tying flies:
One person stated that they have difficulties when they first attempt tying a new pattern. That it takes about 6 to 8 attempts before they tie a fly that is acceptable to their expectations. My reply is I have the same problem, but I don't use those for fly swaps, and I do not throw them away. I use them when I am fishing alone...and they do catch fish.
Another wrote me saying that they have difficulties with a given pattern, they find it hard to visualize from the photos, how the fly should actually look, without an actual model in front of them. If the pattern is of a fly that is commonly available at most fly stores, then the answer is go to the store and buy one to use as a model. Once you get the perfect fly, whether you purchased it, received it in a fly swap, or it took you 8 tries to get it right; click here for what you should do with it.
I used the Search Engine on the Main Page of FAOL for all the links mentioned in this article. Please submit your "Tying Tips" ideas to the Publisher of FAOL. I would rather read your ideas than my own, I already know what I know, and would like to read something from you. ~Parnelli ~ Parnelli
Archive of Tying Tips
[ HOME ]
[ Search ] [ Contact FAOL ] [ Media Kit ]
FlyAnglersOnline.com © Notice