Great Gift Ideas for a Fly Tyer this Christmas

Previously, I talked about some great ideas for a Christmas gift for the fly fisher in your family. There’s a good chance that the fly angler in your family is also a fly tyer, is so here are some great gift ideas for the fly tyer on your Christmas list. It might be a good idea to take a look through his tying supplies and tools to get an idea of what he needs, If your unfamiliar with the hobby yourself, you could always ask them if you’re not sure!

Fly Tying Furniture

spool-organizer-fly-tying-furniture-christmas-gift

Many fly tyers have a problem with organising their large collection of fly tying materials, and fly tying furniture helps being some order to the chaos of feather, fur, and tinsel. You can get either a tabletop piece like the one pictured above, or a more elaborate standalone desk dedicated to fly tying. A select number of die hard fly tyers would love a portable fly tying desk to take to the riverbank with them.

Here is a nice starting piece of fly tying furniture from Bass Pro Shops.

Fly Cake

fly-cake-dry-fly-trout-christmas-gift-idea

No I don’t mean the edible kind. A fly cake is a specific type of fly furniture that provides a spot to place your flies while the head cement, epoxy, or nail polish dries. It’s something most fly tyers will make great use of, especially if they tie big streamers that use a generous amount of epoxy or head cement.

The fly cake pictures can be found at littleriveroutfitters.com.

A rotary fly drier is a similar gift that will allow epoxy flies to dry evenly on all sides.

Fly Tying Vice

A fly tying vice is perhaps the most essential of fly tying tools. If you are buying for a first time tyer, a fly tying kit with a vice included is the way to go. If you are buying for someone at a more intermediate level, consider buying them their first rotary vice, it will be a game changer in the way they tie flies. If you are buying for an experienced fly tyer, it’s probably best to ask them directly if, and what kind of vice they would like.

Griffin Collect All Tying Vice Basket

griffin-collect-all-basket-fly-tying-fishing-gift-ideas

The Griffin Collect All Basket attaches directly to the fly tying vice by Velcro straps, so requires no adaptor. Catches feathers, fur, tinsel, and other fly tying materials that are trimmed off the fly, keeping the fly tying area clean. Especially useful for fly tyers that use alot of deer hair to tie deer hair poppers, mouse patterns, or caddis flies.

The Griffin Collect All Basket can be purchased on Amazon.

Desk Lamp

If they don’t have one already, buy them a desk lamp. The flies we fly tyers are tying are often quite small, and a properly illuminated tying area helps a ton. The key here is to get a lamp with a flexible neck so we can move it to suite out needs. I’m fond of a flexible neck LED lamp from Staples my fiance got me for my birthday last year.

Fish-Skull Fish Heads

fish-skull-fish-heads-fly-tying-streamers

This gift is a bit specific to the type of flies your fly angler likes to tie. It’s a great gift idea for fly tyers that tie alot of streamers. If you’re not sure what a “streamer” is not worries, if your fly tyer ties flies for bass or pike, they’ll appreciate these fish heads. If they’re a trout fisherman ask them what kind of flies they tie, if they reply with streamers (as opposed to nymphs or dry flies) these fish skulls are a solid choice.

Fish skulls are a great gift idea because they’re something a fly tier might not splurge on and purchase for themselves, but will enjoy using if purchased for them.

They can be found at many retailers, the image above comes from flymenfishingcompany.com.

Storage

A fly tyer needs a place to store all of their fly tying materials. You can buy storage cabinets specifically built for fly tying material storage, but honestly I find a Master Craft storage cabinet or something simialar to have twice the room at half the price. Extra bonuse points if you have a few drawers of different sizes.

Stocking Stuffer Ideas

  • Whip Finisher – A whip finisher allows the fly tyer to tie the finishing knot on a fly easily. There are several different styles, the most common being the rotating whip finisher and the western style whip finisher. I myself prefer the rotating whip finisher.
  • Scissors – A quality, sharp pair of scissors is essestial to good fly tying. There are many varieties of fly tying scissors, but a good starting point is a quality set of all purposed fly tying scissors.
  • Hackle Pliers – Hackle pliers are used to grip the hackle (fly tying term for feather) while you wrap it around the hook shank. For a gift go a little fancier and get them either some rotating hackle pliers, or plunger style hackle pliers.
  • Bodkin – A must have all purpose tool that allows for fine modifications of the fly. Also commonly used to apply head cement to a fly.
  • Hackle Guards – Hackle guards are a great gift idea because it’s something not all fly tyers will have. They sit over the hook eye and hold the hackle (feather fibres) back so they don’t get caught while tying the finishing knot witha whip finisher.
  • Bobbin – Bobbin refers to the tool used to hold spools of thread for use while fly tying. When shopping try to buy one with an adjustable knob(The bobbins in the link are the ones I use 90% of the time, and I swear by them) on the side for adjusting the amount of drag on the spool of thread.
  • Bobbin Threader – Getting thread through the neck of a bobbin can be frustrating, especially when using thinner thread on smaller flies. Most fly tyers will appreciate this gift, especially fly tyers that tie very small flies.
  • Deer Hair Stacker – A must have tool for lining up the tips of deer or elk hair. Helpful if your fly tyer ties alot of caddis patterns.

As far as buying a fly tyer hair, feathers,  or any other fly tying material, most fly tying materials are probably best left the the fly tyer themselves to pick out. There are so many varieties of different materials, many with slight differences from each that makes shopping for these materials difficult for someone not familiar with the hobby.

3 Comments

  1. Pingback: Gift Ideas For A Fly Fisher This Christmas

  2. howard levett

    Some good ideas there Ben. I love fly tying furniture, especially the fly cake. They seem to be rather difficult to find out here so thanks for that.

    Reply
    1. bensmckinley@gmail.com (Post author)

      Thanks Howard,

      Fly cakes are extremely useful for letting those big streamers dry.

      Reply

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