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Old 08-05-2009, 09:50 PM
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Worrgamesguy Worrgamesguy is offline
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Default Me... Tying?! Get out! Need MUCHO help!

I'm sure most of you know, I buy and sell paintball guns to make money. I bought a gun for $140, fixed it up, and traded it for another gun that I just sold for $400. $260 profit. And I have another $100 profit coming in tomorrow.

So, I'm looking to buy my first fly tying setup. I probably will tie nothing more than midges, scuds, BHPTs, and wooly buggers, nothing too intricate. I may end up tying EHCs, but much later down the road.

What should I start out with? I don't want a piece of junk that's going to break in a couple years.

My goal is to save myself from $2 zebra midges...
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Old 08-05-2009, 10:48 PM
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Default yea-right

"I probably will tie nothing more than midges, scuds, BHPTs, and wooly buggers" Aaaa Yea right bruddah tats wat we all said! hahahaha If you are only first tying, take my advice, get a nice vise that will work on most anything, did I ever think i would tie over 200 hundred bonefish flies for the bahamas when I learned to tie 10 years ago? ANSWER heck no! there is something that will get into you, and when it comes to creating flies to chase fish with you will be surprised how broad your horizons become. I think you said you are in undergrad school, so you only have a zillions years to chase fish with da long rod, trust me get something nice enough for all sorts of stuff I mean heck bass flies are tied on hooks similar in size to salty patterns, so believe me you will start out looking at size 22 zebras in your vise and the next thing ya know...bam.....electric chicken clousers for trout in da IOP SC! HAHA welcome to the next addiction brother!
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Old 08-05-2009, 11:30 PM
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I would be doing this by myself... Teaching myself. So here's what I'm figuring for expenses:

~$200 vise
$50 tying tool kit (doubles as fly box)
$50 fly tying book (highly recommended by Grumpy)
$? materials
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Old 08-06-2009, 12:01 AM
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You should be able to get a good vise for a little under $200 and put more into materials... Decide which 6 or so flies you use the most and get the materials to tie them...also it wouldn't hurt to see what flies the tying book teaches you and get the materials for those. Most good tying books progress from easy to more difficult techiques and skills and incorporate patterns that require those techniques. For example, tying a Gold Ribbed Hares Ear nymph is good practice early on because you have to focus on proportions, learn how to dub and rib a body, and tie in a wingcase. I wouldn't start tying a parachute adams or stimulator until you've mastered some easier patterns... Zebra midges are pretty easy except that they are small so those would be good to learn on...
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Old 08-06-2009, 01:23 AM
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The Griffith Odessy Spider Vise works well for me and it's under $90. If you are really into tying, it wouldn't be enough, but I tie all kinds of stuff wth it and it is a rotary vise. Some place sell a combo pack of hackle these days (ask LRO if they do, if not check around). You can get three types of hackle in one pack and it's enough to tie several dozen flies. I would aslo recommend a dubbing dispenser (filled with dubbing of course). You don't get a lot of dubbing, but you get plenty to get you started and can buy the colors you use more of later (the dispenser plus about 12 colors of dubbing is around $15). After that, you just need a few tools, thread, etc (I recommend skipping the fly head cement and using Zap A Gap on everything...my midges stay together much longer with it). You can get a small tool kit cheap to and they have all the basic tools. My 2 cents.
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Old 08-06-2009, 07:57 AM
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Get the best vise you can afford. Get it with jaws that can handle midges to bass flies or at least has replaceable jaws to do so. Get with a base instead of the clamp to table type. Seems like every table you will try to clamp to puts the vise in a weird position. Dick Talleur has some good books on tying. There is a ton of tying instruction on the web. Oh yeah, you won't save a penny. But if you were in this for the money you would not be fly fishing anyway. Tying is a great hobby with a practical result.
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Old 08-06-2009, 08:07 AM
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MadisonBoats MadisonBoats is offline
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Lightbulb

You will want a desk light, maybe a magnifying light (staples), and make you a nice backdrop. To explain; you can get one of those plastic magazine holders at staples and just sit a nice piece of white paper on it. I like to put this behind my fly in the vice to help me see it better. Get a good vise-don't worry about attachments. You can make those very cheap and custom to hold spools, tools, etc...

Search this forum; there is a topic about tying stations that may help guide you too...

Oh, there are tons of fly tying videos on YouTube. I use it often and just pause it between steps...
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Old 08-06-2009, 09:14 AM
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Carolina Boy Carolina Boy is offline
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Yea I tell ya I took a class, cost me around 80 bucks and it was so worth it. I was lucky to learn from Roger Lowe who can sure wrap some bugs, but tis will really cut down on the learning curve. I bought a desk light where the light will move all over the place suspended by some metal looking arm from wal-mart for likle 9 bucks works great
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Old 08-06-2009, 10:02 AM
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Default Don't count on saving money...

First off, if you are paying $2 per ZM you aren't doing a good of price shopping. LRO has them for $1.65 and they ship them, for free...

Lets look at your break-even proposition. You've already decided that you will need to spend over $300 to get started. Your variable cost on zebra midges may be close to $.40 per fly when you factor in your hooks ($4+ for 25), beadheads ($2+ for 25), wire and thread. You might be able to get it down to $.25 per fly if you buy in larger quantities, but you get the point.

If you save $1.25 per fly (after factoring in your variable costs) you will need to tie approximately 240 Zebra Midges before you break even (and that doesn't include the countless hours tying them). If you lose 4 of them each time you fish, that means you will have make 60 trips before you use all of them up...and break even...

Don't tie flies just to save money, because you never will. I know it sounds tempting and that if you tie a select number of flies you can actually save money, but it will NEVER happen...You will either get frustrated at how long it will take you to tie your first 240 flies, or you will fall in lover with tying and will do it because you enjoy it (and then spend a bunch more money on materials you may never use....)

I think you will find the majority of us that have done it for more than a few years, do it because of the connection we feel to fishing, when we aren't fishing...I spent all of this past year tying flies for a trip to Colorado. Each time I sat down to tie, I wound up thinking about the streams I would fish and the Cutthroat Trout I would chase with the flies I was tying. It was like I went on a mini-vacation each time I sat down at the vise....

Don't turn it into a job...enjoy it and forget the cost savings idea...
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Old 08-06-2009, 01:39 PM
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Well Put PeteCz the only thing that is better than sitting at the vise thinking bout where you will fish your next creation, is being out there stickin a fish with what you made.
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