The Essential Fly Recommends!

Essential Tools!

Essential Fly Recommendations!
We get asked all the time for recomendations on tools & vices. We have put together a selection of our recomended fly tying tools for you for all experience levels.
Perhaps the most important piece of kit for fly tying is a vice, which firmly holds hooks in place for us to actually tie a fly.  Like most other tools, there’s plenty to choose from, but in essence, you do get what you pay for.

More expensive vices are precision machined then hardened for longevity

If you’re starting out a vice at the cheaper end of the market will tide you over.  And once you know the type / style of vice you prefer then it’s worth investing. 

Whatever you choose, try to get a vice with rotating jaws.

Wolff Indiana Atlas

The Atlas Fly Tying Vice is a genuine full rotary fly tying vice and has full adjustment capability. This vice will suit hook sizes from 32 - 7/0 in its hardened steel jaws.

Computer machined from stainless steel with hardened steel jaws. Stable large format pedestal base which does not slide about when tying flies. Some vices are too light and move about the desk when tying, not this Atlas vice.

Atlas Vice Features

  • Full rotary function vice - the hook shank does not move in a full 360 degree rotation
  • Smooth rotation on precision bearings making it simple to operate
  • Hook sizes 32 – 7/0 making this ideal for micro drives, nymphs through to predator and saltwater flies
  • Stainless steel construction
  • Supplied with pedestal base
  • Comes with a limited lifetime warranty

Stonfo Elite No. 653

High quality in-line 360 degree rotary action vice for tying flies and streamers. The stainless steel shaft rotates on precision ball bearings. The shank of the hook rotates on axis thanks to the adjustable shaft. The new steady pedestal base has a useful integrated tool rack.

Other accessories included: rounded shape bobbin cradle, parachute plier, adjustable spring material clip, pivot thread cradle.

Stonfo Elite No. 653 Features:

Scissors are essential when it comes to fly tying.  There are many types out their though a decent all round pair should have straight blades with a serrated edge.

At the end of the day this is a personal choice as to brand and price as there are so many options on the market.
With a serrated edge the Anvil Ultimate 4” scissors are superb.
The Petitjean medium scissors will last forever
Bobbin Holder
A bobbin holder houses our chosen spool of thread when tying flies.  It’s as well to arm yourself with several of these, so you can have them loaded up with your favourite threads. 

We do recommend a bobbin holder with a ceramic tip / nozzle as these prevent wear when using gel spun threads.
Hackle Plier
Hackle pliers are needed to grip small, or more precisely, short hackles, so they can be neatly wound around the hook. 
The Essential Fly recommend the Loon Ergo Hackle Pliers. Smooth jaws designed with versatility at heart, add in the round shape which allows for palmering.

Loon Outdoors Ergo Hackle Plier in action!

Whip Finish
The whip finish tool makes short work of completing a fly using a self-closing knot known as the ‘whip finish.

There are several to choose from, here’s our top 3 models of whip finish
Dubbing Needle
Traditionally, a dubbing needle is used for teasing out dubbing for a buggy looking fly.

However, they’re handy for applying varnish to the head of finished flies, or for coating heavy bugs with epoxy / UV resin.
There are many brands available and like the scissors the decision comes down to personal choice depending on brand and price.
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