Melt glue gun for fly tying

Tying flies with a gun

Tying with melt glue does require a little more practice and patience than most regular materials. But the results can be rewarding! 

Virtual Minnow streamer
Virtual Minnow realistic bait fish patterns are quick and easy to achieve with melt glue.

Melt glue is a material that one has to get used to using. Once its mastered, it can be put to use not only in developing new patterns but also as a substitute in existing ones. Melt glue guns come in various sizes from hobby to industrial, I find the hobby size not only the cheapest but also the easiest to employ. Another advantage with the hobby gun is the amount of different glue that is available.

Glue sticks for fly tying

Although I do use coloured glue, in most patterns I use the transparent or “regular” glue that can also be coloured with waterproof felt markers. The regular glue is also much easier to handle and shape than the coloured. In most cases, It has a lower melting temperature and a shorter drying time than the glues with added colour and glitter.

Molding bait fish bodies takes a little practice but the results are perfect every time.

Ant bodies take only a few seconds!

After fly tying with melt glue for over a decade and a half, nowadays I use my gun most to apply the glue, for patterns where a large amount of glue is required. Otherwise I melt the glue direct from the “glue stick” with a lighter, or I first cut the required amount of glue from the stick with scissors, hold one end of the glue fragment with needle nose tweezers and warm the other end with the lighter and apply it to the hook. I then continue to melt and form the glue with the lighter on the hook. The clear glue can also be coloured by applying a foundation of coloured tying thread over the hook shank before you apply the glue.

Transparent caddis pupa with olive melt glue.

Grayling Heroe trout egg is a combo of melt glue and Bug Bond.

Video tutorial how to tie Melt Glue Gammarus 

Order My new book

new book

2 thoughts on “Tying flies with a gun

  1. Thanks Barry, i am glad i have found your page for these great examples !
    The glue gun and sticks are now allways on my tying desk, and the resuslts are getting better everytime, still need some practice and time but with your explanation it works out well.