Assembling a materials kit...


Ugly, but happy.
Firstly, I tried looking through other threads, but if I missed any, feel free to link to them.

I have assembled a decent vise and tool kit, and am now looking for everything else, from the hooks and glue to the hackles and threads.

I know I can pick up some decent material kits from my local shops, as well as ebay and Cabela's. I have been gifted some of the soft stuff from people and have seen a few tasty grab bags around too.

My question revolves around getting the proper "hard stuff", sourcing good quality hooks, cement, wires and thread. Can you help a guy out?

By the way, this is for my girlfriend. We spent thanksgiving hunched over youtube with her begging me to show her more tying videos, and Joan Wulff casting clips. Not to brag, but hell. She wants to tie flies for me? Let her. :cool:

Ed Call

Well-Known Member
I would recommend you pull up the recipe for the patterns you want her to tie for you. What you will be fishing for may dictate what flies you need which in turn dictates what materials you will need. Build that shopping list and take it to the shop and you'll be on your way to build your kit. Sounds like you've got a keeper!
Getting into fly tying requires more than one source. The most usefull source will be your local flyshop. Get in there, intro yourself, and tell them what you're up to. Like Ed said the materials you will want will be "recipe specific" for each fly, over time you'll collect enough of a selection you won't have to buy materials for each fly design. You'll find your local flyshop and the relationship you build with them is your best resource for fishing and tying. If you already have a shop that knows you, you're well under way. Most of our puget sound shops carry the same or similiar tying basics like hooks, thread, feathers, fur, and etc. There's more than enough supplies in our good shops to get you off the ground and well into the stratosphere. Another great resource is your own library. Don't have one? Start one. There's lots of good suggestions on here and as your passion and skills grow you'll need/want the knowledge at hand. I've learned many a tying skill from other tyers and their publications.


New Member
I just got done with getting stuff for tying. I would like for deals in my local stores and also just buy when I visited them. Not the ebst way to go. Find a fly or two you want to tie and get the material for them along with the hooks and thread and tye them in different sizes. Then keep going and going until you have a nice fly box with flies to use and then you will see that you have more material building up and up.

just some thoughts.

Ed Call

Well-Known Member
I just got done with getting stuff for tying.
:rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:
Chef, you did not just get done with anything my friend, you have just committed to opening Pandora's box by starting!

My vote for "good guy making the understatement of the year" post right here!
I'm not sure what type of fishing you're interested in doing, so take this with a grain of salt. Go into your local fly shop and ask for the materials needed to tie the following flies.

- Gold ribbed hares ear
- Woolly Bugger
- Adams

Also pick up a good book on learning to tie. Tying Nymphs by Randall Kaufman is a good one, as are many others.

These are 3 tried and true trout flies that would start your material collection, straight forward to tie and will catch fish all across America. It also gives you and your wife a taste of tying a nymph, streamer and a dry fly. You'll be learning 3 classic flies and some basic, yet essential techniques. If the material are too expensive in one shot pick two and be on your way... The key is to just get started tying.

These are what I tied first, and also still tie to this day. Hope you two have a blast!

:rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:
Chef, you did not just get done with anything my friend, you have just committed to opening Pandora's box by starting!

My vote for "good guy making the understatement of the year" post right here!
Yes absolutely brilliant :rofl:


New Member
lol..... when my wife asks "are you done buying materials?" I say "yes honey... i am"

Of course I say that when I am headed to the fly shop! :)


Active Member
Hooks are easy, get good ones, not the cheapest ones. Any fly shop will have both good hooks and cheaper ones, so just go to your local shop and get the size and type of hooks you need for 2 to 4 flies that are easy to tie and effective fish getters.

Materials are equally easy. Just get the materials needed to tie the 2-4 east-to-tie flies you are going to tie.

Flies like a WOOLLY BUGGER, HARE'S EAR NYMPH, GREY HACKLE, BROWN HACKLE will get you started, and they are all among the easiest to tie flies.

A #4, #6, or #8 3xl or 4xl hook, some black marabou, black chenile, black strung saddle hackle (or a bugger patch or a saltwater/bass saddle dyed black-the strung saddle is cheapest) is all you need for a WOOLLY BUGGER. If you want to dress it up a bit, get some pearl Kystal Flash in order to add a few strands (like in 4 or 5) to the marabou tail). Plus, it becomes an EGG SUCKING LEECH with the simple addition of a florescent chenile head.

HARE'S EAR NYMPH requires a #12-16 standard shank, 1xl, or 2xl hook, a package of hare's ear dubbing, and a spool of fine oval gold tinsel. If you want to add to your color palette of nymphs, just get some different colors of Hareline Dubbing's Hare's Ear dubbing and you can cover most mayfly nymphs. Add some hen hackle in brown, grey, black, or grizzly (barred black and white feather) and use some fibers of it for a tail and wrap some as hackle at the front of the body and you have just expanded your ability to imitate nymphs.

The GREY HACKLE only requires #8-#20 hook in standard shank wet fly hook (it can also be tied as a dry with the use of dry fly hackle for tail and hackle) or 1xl a bit of red yarn for the tail (any yarn works), yellow chenile for the body, and soft grizzly hackle (hen neck works great for the hackle). Change to tail to any feather fibers you wish and the body to any color and you now have a plethora of imitative flies and attractors that are all proven fish getters. Change the body to peacock herl or to dubbing instead of chenile and you have expanded your ability to match the naturals by a huge amount.

The BROWN HACKLE requires the same hooks as the GREY HACKLE, tail can be red yarn or any brownish feather fibers, body is peacock herl or any darker or variegated chenile, hackle is brown (hen neck is great). Use dry fly hackle for tail and hackle, use dubbing for the body, and you have a good dry fly for brownish naturals. Change the hackle and tail to ginger, and use a ligher color dubbing and you can imitate light colored naturals.

Use the black marabou tied as a wing on a nickle-plated (silver) or stainless steel long-shank hook without a body (this is why a silver hook is used, it takes the place of the body), and you have a very effective baitfish imitation. Change to olive marabou, brown marabou, white marabou and you can imitate a rather large number of baitfish. Use a darker marabou over a lighter one i.e. black over white or brown over yellow or brown over light olive, etc. and you have just expanded what baitfish you can imitate. Use bright, florescent marabou, black, or purple (or a combination of them) and you now have very effective winter steelhead flies.

Notice, all this variation is possible with tying simple, easy-to-tie flies and simply adding materials and hooks as the need arises. Plus, all the materials are inexpensive.

You don't need floss, tinsel (except for some fine oval gold), exotic feathers, Hoffmann dry fly saddles, etc. to tie any of these flies. You will need to get some 6/0, 7/0, 8/0, or 70 denier thread (brand doesn't really matter) thread in black, brown, and tan to tie them. Don't fall into the trap of thinking you need to use a thicker thread when starting to tie flies, you don't. Remember, heavy thread is used for things like spinning deer body hair or lashing heavy lead wire to monstrous hooks (as in 1/0 and larger) and is not needed to tie the fly or hold the material in place. The best tyers and virtually all experienced and intermediate tyers use the 6/0, 7/0, 8/0, or 70 denier thread to tie any fly (except for spinning deer body hair) regardless of size.

So as can be easily seen, getting material to start tying flies is really very easy and doesn't cost very much either.

I wrote an article that is in the article section of the site on materials and how to go about getting them that goes into much more depth than here. I highly recommend you read it for it will help you avoid many pitfalls and keep you from buying materials you don't need and probably won't use.


Active Member
I really wanted to just buy one of those kits, but all of my friends said that they come with a lot of low quality stuff and that most of it was stuff noone would actually use to tie flies with. So I just bought stuff as I needed it. But materials aren't cheap, they add up FAST, I have spent over $200 in materials and hooks in the last three months and still want a lot more.

Do it because it's fun, not too save money, and buy high quality materials, otherwise you end up with a bunch of feathers that fall apart easily, which provides a huge pain in the ass and funky looking flies.

Hope you have fun.