Dealing with the $$$ question

Discussion in 'Fly Tying' started by stratocaster, May 30, 2009.

  1. Agree on this one. I keep what I call the "big boy toy fund" which is a cache of cash whose soul purpose is for purchasing fly fishing stuff whether it be tying material or a new rod. Latest purchase was not fly tying stuff but was indeed a new rod which depleted the fund to nothing but within a few months it will be replinished to the point where more purchases can be made. Wifey is none the wiser.
  2. I am in the same boat as Jeremy and Kerry. As soon as I got married (w/ joint bank accounts) the debit card got put away and the stock pile of cash money came out :thumb:
  3. I totaled up what I had invested in this art form one time and then I looked at all the crappy flies that I tied up and swore off tying for the rest of my life. I now just spend a little at the fly shop when I go to see what they are hitting on.

    It saves on my frayed nerves from trying to tie up a small fly.

  4. "Arts and Crafts", according to my wife who picked it up from her brother's wife.
    It's a conspiracy.
  5. You don't have to be a good mechanic to be a good race car driver, but all the best ones are.

    You don't have to tie your own flies to be a good fly fisherman, but the best ones do. It gets you that much closer to understanding the behavior of the bug and the behavior of the fish.
  6. I'd look into getting some of your materials outside the fly shop too. You can find a lot of the same stuff at a local craft store or in bulk online. Choose you patterns wisely. Simple patterns might not be as fun but can stock your fly boxes for a while thus saving you money. Some patterns are too obnoxious to invest money into tying. Buy those at your local shop.

    I tie patterns like the Pat's stone, generic beadheads, etc in bulk (assembly line style). You can bang out a ton and definitely save a lot of money. These patterns don't require fine hackle or any equisite material.

    Back in MA it was a no brainer tying striper flies for yourself. The flies were also a lot more expensive (3-8 dollars). You would save a lot of money esp since stripers would destroy any fly that crosses their path.

    After all this is typed out I realized that tying flies will ultimately lose you money. If you think about the alcohol consumption involved during your time at the bench you're gonna be way way way way way in the negative. I suggest going to home depot, hiring some illegals, teaching them how to tie, and sitting back while with glass of whiskey to enjoy your new fly tying operation.
  7. I go back and forth on this all the time -- this weird addiction of ours will always be a money drain -- but here are my thoughts:

    If you fish a lot -- and fearlessly cast flies into tight spots and boulder-studded bottoms, tying flies will save you money in the long run -- if you can steer clear of jungle cock necks and the top-grade dry-fly necks. It is very possible to tie fish-fooling dry flies without any hackle at all. Comparaduns, Sparkle duns, X-caddis, the Canoe Fly and others come to mind.

    Tying your own also lets you carry a greater variety of flies, and you can match at the vise what you see on the stream -- or lake or saltwater inlet. Having the ability to do this is fantastic and will lead to more fish. It may just mean changing the color of an existing fly, tying a sparkly shuck onto a dry fly or whatever, but little changes can make a lot of difference.

    It is painful to pay $2 for a Woolly Bugger that you can tie in five minutes.

    It is amazing to catch a fish on a fly you tied yourself. I believe that doing this elevates fly fishing from a hobby into something much greater.

    If you are a poverty stricken college student -- as I was -- tying flies can make you enough money to keep Top Ramen and pasta on the table.

    If you are careful, you can tie lots of different flies with a fairly small selection of materials -- not that I've been able to do this. For example, a good chunk of deer hair -- shorter black tips on the hairs are best -- some hackle fibers and several different colors of good dubbing to tie comparadun dry flies -- and Sparkle Duns -- to match Blue Winged Olives, Pale Morning Duns, March Browns, Tricos, etc.... Of course you also need hooks, tools and thread. This is really the way to save money.

    Finally, tying flies is something you can do at home. It's a pleasure to sit at the vise -- perhaps listening to baseball or jazz on the radio -- and make something with your own hands. And even raggedy flies catch fish.
  8. I've been tying for almost 30 years now (I started when I was under 10) but I can still remember catching that first 18" trout on my own fly or my largest fish ever at 27.5". I still have "experimental" flies that I carry 2-3 of in my boxes that have saved the day on many occasions. There's the ones I have code words for between my brother and father so that we can yell "It was candy!" and no one knows what were using. So many great memories about tying my own flies. I'll admit that it's very difficult to leave a fly shop without some more materials, although I could probably start my own fly shop with everything I have. My wife is pretty good about it. Although it is difficult to explain to people why you have a $100 neck from a rooster that was genetically grown by a PhD for what??? Uh...yeah.
  9. so i do not want to post a new thread so i will just ask on this one:You guys keep talking about all the money you have spent and what not, for a newbie like me who wants to get into tying, how much should I save up to make my initial investment? I want to be able to die about 15-20 flies to use on the yakima next year.
  10. i'll throw out a figure that to some may be high and to some it may be low but $300-$350 sounds good to me. that should get you a decent stationary vise and a good set of dr slick tying tools. then the process will be what flies you want to tie for the area you are going to fish and then buying the materials to tie.
  11. I've sold all my tying tools and materials and re-acquired them all three seperate times. The last time I sold all my stuff I told my wife that if I ever decide to start tying flies again that she is to take out my .357 Mag and shoot me in the head! Well, I just bought another set of tools and a few materials, and I didn't get shot for doing it! I'm gonna get this tying thing down yet! For me it is sometimes, no, most times, an exercise in frustration but I persevere. Stay tuned everybody...all this crap may be for sale again soon!
  12. My wife encourages my Man Sewing.
  13. I would start with an inexpensive kit, you can get one from a number of different places, cabellas for one, then if you find its something you enjoy you can invest in more expensive tools and materials, there really isn't any reason to go out and spend 300 bucks on something you might not even get into, when I first started tying I was given a knoll kit that was very old it came with a practically worthless potmetal vice that soon broke but before it did I had caught a fish on a fly (a total fluke) that I had tied and from there I was lost addiction, obsession, compulsive behavior call it what you will but its not a hobby, the fly shop is the man I copp and then I go home and fix up. There is really no need to spend alot on tools most you can make yourself and as far as vices go its all personal choice I still tie on a 30.00 knockoff I was given as a gift almost 20 years ago.
  14. Tying rocks and it sucks at the same time. I hate thinking about the money aspect of it. Just dont do it. Tying will make you a much better fisherman, and the pure satisfaction of catching a fish on your own tie is amazing. Everyone thought i was crazy, hopping up and down in the stream with a 7 inch brownie in my hand, giggling like a madman. But thats all it takes and well over a thousand bucks later im still tying. Though its funny when you start going into craft stores with your girlfriend and she's making fun of you for dragging her with you for the sake of legitimacy.
  15. more like this should be dealing with the $wife$ question!

    I am lucky my woman encourages me, then says..... TALK TO ME before you spend!

    at least it is good ..... i have no problem with money ...I SPEND IT WELL!

    either way she knows it is a good hobbie!
  16. I tie better flies for cheaper than I can get in stores. Last time I bought flies I couldn't even fish with them because they broke when I tried to clean the gunk out of their eyes
  17. Stratocaster,
    I'm 55 and have been tying since I was 9. My wife of 25 years, bless her heart, married into it. I shudder at the cost of start up these days, but will offer a couple of words of advise. Tools-Buy good stuff. It'll basically last forever, as long as you don't lose it (moving sucks!).
    Materials-Buy good stuff. You can't make a silk purse out of a sows ear. I see a lot of posts about going to the crafts store. That works if you know what your looking for, but until you get educated about materials, let someone who knows guide you. Craft store feathers are usually crap, and come in goofy colors. Not to say that there aren't some finds there, but that it takes experience to know what's a buy and what's not.
    Storage- Secure your materials. And put them away when you're not tying. A rubbermaid sweater box will keep kids, dogs, cats and bugs out of your stuff. You really don't want to tell the missus that you need another Whiting Grizzly cape 'cuz the dog ate it.
    All that said, enjoy your new hobby. I haven't fished with a fly tied by someone else in a really long time, but I still can see that rainbow eat my grey hackle yellow when I was 12 like it was yesterday.
    Greg Asbury,
    Helena, MT
  18. I think the joke goes as such....
    150 bucks on fly tying vise
    25 buck on fly hooks
    25 bucks on fly tying material
    Catching a fish on your own tyed fly......Priceless
  19. Thats pretty funny. I think we all know we don't fly tie to save a ton of money. :thumb:

  20. "How much did all this cost?"

    I probably have (at least) a thousand dollars worth of hooks alone.
    Saving money isn't what it's all about.

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