Boy Scout Merrit Badge

I have been asked to teach a Boy Scout troop the fly fishing merit badge. Part of the requirements is to tie a couple of flies. I am going to need more than my one vise to get the boys through this.

Like most of the merit badges, it is more of an introduction. I am sure that most of the boys will try it, think that it is cool and never tie another fly again. One or two might get into it and end up buying their own stuff, but it is a lot to ask of the boys to buy everything before they even know if they will like it.

Now, the shameless plea. Does anybody have an old vise that they have upgraded from that would be willing to sell for cheap, or possibly loan to us for a couple of weeks? I don’t have a date set up yet, I want to get my ducks in a row before I get on their calendar.

Tom G
I'll donate a vise and a whole bunch of feathers and materials collected over the years. Just reinverst for the postage. Have fun teaching .

Give me a pm


Bill Douglas

blue collar dirtbag
I have three thompson (maybe four, I'd have to look) style vises that I would be willing to send. I'd be willing to ship to if you'd pony up for the return.
This community is amazing. It looks like you guys are going to make it possible to introduce my Troop to this fine sport.

I will try to do the WFF’s proud by emphasizing C&R, fish mortality and fish handling as well as the other aspects of fly fishing.

And I may even have a new excuse to go fishing more often!

Tom G

Tim Cottage

Formerly tbc1415
I have an old Thompson style that you can borrow. Just supply an address via PM and I will be happy to ship or arrange a drop off point in Monroe if that is more convenient.

I have a thompson style vise as well. It's boxed up right now though, so if you can wait a couple weeks when I get moved and unpacked, I can swing by and drop it off as a loner. I also have another vise that came with my first fly tying kit, but the clamp has broken. I'd be willing to give that one away if someone else has a clamp that can go with it!

Shawn Seeger

(aka. wabowhunter)
Hey Tom... I also will be in your boat soon, as a Scoutmaster I have been asked to start teaching that merit badge by some of my scouts and parents. I will look to see what old vise might be laying around.

And I always look at any chance to teach our future something I love as an opertunity... just a word of how important it is... My lifelong best friend and hunting and fishing partner, was in boy scouts (actually the same troop I am now with) and he was taught fly fishing by one of the adults as part of the fishing merit badge (didn't have a fly fishing badge 30yrs ago) but it lit a fire in him and he is a hell of a fisherman, great fly tyer and outdoors man because of what he was exposed to in scouts.

So as a fellow scouter and fly flinger/tyer... THANKS and please let me know how it goes...! :thumb:

Also... something to keep in mind about the fishing part... you may want to look into Camp Pigott up your way has a small lake that might be fishable!

(aka Shawn - T360)
Shawn (aka Wabowhunter) I will let you know how it goes. I am trying to organize a lesson plan and resources before I commit to a date. I am torn between starting fairly soon or to wait until late spring where we could do some wet wading. Maybe we can start now with the fly tying, knots, equipment and casting practice and schedule the fishing part later in the spring.

With all of the offers to help coming in I am getting excited to get started. This will be an adventure for me. I am a beginner at fly fishing but can manage to get most of the tying techniques down. I have taught both of my kids to tie and have gotten one of the Scouts started when I brought my tying stuff to entertain myself when the troop was having a “game night” overnighter.

The camps may be a good resource also. I know that Fire Mountain has a trout stocked pond available for the scouts. I do have mixed feelings about that one though as they do not allow C&R. It kind of makes sense as almost all of the boys fish with bait and there are a lot of boys going through that camp every summer. They impose a two fish per week limit on the boys and if they allowed C&R most of the fish (if not all) caught on bait would not survive and the pond would be fished out after the first couple of weeks. I really want to stress conservation and C&R and I will not be able to do it at Fire Mountain.

I guess I will probably start them off with a wolly bugger. Fairly simple, effective and a bit of a confidence builder. Some type of nymph and GRHE or pheasant/prince would probably be doable. I don’t know which dry fly would be best to attempt. An Adams would probably be easier than a caddis. I know it took me a while to get the hair wing down. We can forget about the Wulff style dries as I still have trouble with those split hair wings. Yeah I’m starting to look forward to this…… On the other hand, maybe I should pre pinch all of the hook barbs before hand…..

Thanks everyone for your support….I will call on you when I get this adventure rolling!

Tom G

Old Man

Just an Old Man
I see that you are from Snohomish. Where could one be dropped off so you could get it. I have two that are not being used at the moment. A little old but still in working order..


Or you could just PM me where to drop them off at.

Jim again
When I teach the flyfishing merit badge I invited a couple of my fishing buddies and they each brought at least one vise and tying materials to help with the instruction, this made it much easier as it allowed for some personal help for the boys as they tied their flies. It also helped when it came time to teach casting.
Checkout the FFF website. They have a lesson plan for the merit badge as well as the merit badge requirements. It's a pretty comprehensive program involving casting, tying, entomology. The merit badge handbook was particularly well done. Thanks for caring and good luck.
I had the experience of teaching a first-fly to students in an outdoor rec class. I learned a thing or two from that experience, if you want tips, please don't hesitate to drop me a PM and we can visit.

Also, the suggestion to get a couple helpers (depending on how large your group is) is an excellent one.

Best of luck - cool project!

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