Fly tying course # 1 Getting started
This on line fly tying course will be dedicated to showing those of you who are new to fly tying all the correct moves and techniques for successful tying. Once learned, these techniques will not only make tying more fun, but you will also find with time and practice that each stage will become quicker and more natural for you, resulting in more and better flies.
The correct way to secure a hook in the vice.
This may sound like we are truly beginning at the basics, but all these small tips will help you to learn the right way. If you make a habit of following them every time you tie, you will succeed as a proficient fly tyer. I will be posting 4 or 5 new fly tying lessons each week, so try and practice so you are ready for the next one. If you hit a wall, dont give up! Try again and if you really get stuck, send me a message and I will try and help you out. GOOD LUCK!
Most modern fly tying vices have a tension screw and lever. Although some models have the tension screw mounted as a collar just in front of the lever or behind the jaws.
This is the correct way to insert and secure a hook.
If you would like to receive a message when the next stage of the course is published, just add your e mail address at the top right of this page. Thanks, The feather bender.
Firstly you must open the tension lever on the jaws and offer the hook being used, up into the open jaws. If the opening between the jaws is not wide enough, open the the jaws tension screw until the hook fits snugly.
Once you have positioned the hook correctly, at the base of the hook bend and just behind the barb in the vice jaws, adjust the jaw tension screw again but this time tightening it until it holds the hook firmly in position.
Now with your right hand carefully adjust the hook shank until horizontal. You can now apply full pressure to the jaws by tightening the tension lever.
You can check if the hook is secured correctly by plucking it, like a jews harp, with your thumb nail. If it makes a “ping” sound you have done everything right. If it moves in the jaws, start again until secure.
In many older fly tying books they recommend that you secure the hook so the point is hidden in the jaws. This was to avoid catching and damaging your tying thread, but this also restricts tying access to the rear of the hook shank. Once you have learned to avoid catching your thread on the hook point it’s not an issue.
If you have any questions about fly tying, techniques, hooks or materials please post them here and I will do my very best to answer them quickly.