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ScotttMay 15th, 2007
crested butte

Posts: 5
hey all, any recommendations or thoughts about some of the tying kits that are out there? i'd like to start getting into tying some basic patterns but don't have a bunch of money to spend or any tying oriented shops around my area. seems like theres some comprehensive kits on ebay and other online places, what do you think?

thanks, scott
MartinlfMay 15th, 2007, 5:23 am
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
Wait for the opinion of more experienced tyers, to see what they say, but I'd think it's better to get materials for one fly at a time to avoid getting a lot of stuff you'll never use. (Though that will probably happen anyway, if you're like most of the tyers I know.) They do sell Tie-a-fly kits for specific flies such as Adams, Hare's Ear, etc. These kits might be worthwhile. I started tying by taking lessons, and the instructor would sell the materials for the specific fly we were tying. If you do get a kit, just make sure that most of the materials in it are things that you will use, and that it doesn't have a lot of teal craft fur, or things such as that. My two cents.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
TroutnutMay 15th, 2007, 6:11 am
Bellevue, WA

Posts: 2737
I started out tying with a beginner's kit from Orvis and I think it was a good way to go. You get all the tools you need plus enough materials to tie several different flies and experiment a bit on your own. I guess it depends on your personality, but if you're like me you'll get very bored tying more than about 3 of the same fly in a sitting. It's nice to have some other options right off the bat.
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
GONZOMay 15th, 2007, 9:16 am
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
Hi Scott,

I was a little surprised to hear that CB doesn't have a well-stocked fly shop (especially in a place that shuttles visitors around in a "trout bus"), but I suppose that's just a function of a tourist-town economy.

One catch to starting with a basic tying kit is that most of the materials tend to be pretty traditional (geared to older, more traditional patterns). There's nothing wrong with that if you're just looking to get your feet wet and learn some standards. However, if you have some favorite flies that work well locally, you may want to just buy a tool kit and order materials specifically for those patterns. If you're not sure what those materials are, I'm sure you can get some help with that here. Many modern patterns (even some very simple ones) incorporate materials that would not be found in most "standard" tying kits.
CaseyPMay 15th, 2007, 10:51 am
Arlington, VA/ Mercersburg, PA

Posts: 653
as the LEAST experienced tyer on the forum, i'll give you my two cents about kits since i've just been through it.

the "Tie-A-Fly" kits were disappointing as my skill and knowledge increased. the materials weren't very good so it was hard to get really pleasing results; the thread was a joke. however, they were a place to start when I had no materials at all.

Glenn River Fly Company sells really exceptional kits, and the price is only a little higher than Tie-A-Fly. you can buy them individually or have someone gift you Fly of the Month. the materials were top-notch and generous--you only get 11 hooks, but the rest of the stuff would be enough to tie a bunch more.

a suggestion: buy two or three kits of flies you're going to use, like Pheasant Tail Nymphs or Adams. take your time and enjoy the process; there is nothing quite like tying your own Small Thing of Great Beauty and then fooling a trout with it.

"You can observe a lot by watching." Yogi Berra
GONZOMay 15th, 2007, 11:11 am
Site Editor
"Bear Swamp," PA

Posts: 1681
as the LEAST experienced tyer on the forum....

Sorry, Casey, but I think you're going to have to pass that title along to Scott. And I'm sure he'd love to learn your favorite beetle pattern as soon as his tying stuff arrives.
MartinlfMay 15th, 2007, 4:54 pm
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
Casey, your advice sounds very sound to me. I'm glad you weighed in.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Shawnny3May 15th, 2007, 5:31 pm
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
As usual, good advice on here - you've come to the right place, Scott. By the way, I jeeped through Crested Butte many years ago before I was a flyfisherman - beautiful, beautiful place.

I would refer you to this thread, in which a lot of beginner tying stuff is discussed:

Best wishes,
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
CaseyPMay 15th, 2007, 6:42 pm
Arlington, VA/ Mercersburg, PA

Posts: 653
Gonzo, i took my beetles to Montana. first, the guides said they were "cute", and said the fish wouldn't recognise them. then, the fish confirmed their opinon. i was devastated.

Scottt, if the fish in CB are a little more cosmopolitan, which given the number of restaurants in your lovely town, they might be, follow this link to a discussion of favorite flies, one of which is the beetle.

Blue Ribbon Flies has the striped foam. they call it Tiger Strips and they sell it and a Tiger Beetle fly. here in VA, i use the yellow stripe.
"You can observe a lot by watching." Yogi Berra
ScotttMay 15th, 2007, 10:46 pm
crested butte

Posts: 5
thanks for all the input. CB has 2 decent shops, just not greatly stocked with tying stuff, and expensive. there is a gene taylor's in gunnison though, they do stock some tying stuff. thanks again!
WbranchAugust 27th, 2007, 3:38 am
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2733
I guess it all depends on how much you want to spend and do you want to tie all kinds of flies or just dries and nymphs. I'd suggest spending the most one is able for a good vise and good scissors with large finger holes. Then get a couple of good bobbins and a basic color selection of 6/0 thread. I suggest 6/0 thread as it provides more strength for a beginner who will likely be pulling harder than necessary on the thread.

Then I'd buy a good fly tying instructional book and check out the Cabela's Premium material kit for $100.00.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
MartinlfNovember 7th, 2009, 11:22 am
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
And here are some more posts on beginning fly tying.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell

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