Connect with us

Hunting

How to Get Started Fly Tying, for Anglers Who Never Thought They Would

https://www.wideopenspaces.com/how-to-get-started-fly-tying-for-anglers-who-never-thought-they-would/

Facebook

Here is how to get started in fly tying quickly and easily.

When it comes to angling, fly fishing is an art form. The grace, form, and technique required to get good at fly fishing can take years of practice.

Fly tying is an equally old and beautiful art form. There is a special kind of satisfaction one gets from catching a fish on a fly they’ve tied themselves.

If you’ve always wanted to try fly tying but have no idea where to begin, here is a quick guide to help get you started.

Basic supplies

How to Get Started Fly Tying
Facebook

There are some basic things you will need to get going on your fly tying journey. Don’t feel like you need to buy the most expensive, high-quality tools right off the bat, especially if you aren’t sure you will get serious about it. You can always buy better stuff later.

I got started with a simple $30 basic fly tying kit. At a minimum you’ll want to have the following fly tying tools:

  • Fly tying vise
  • Hackle pliers
  • Fly tying scissors
  • Bobbin (more than one is preferable)
  • Whip finish tool
  • Hair stacker
  • Head cement
  • Fly-tying thread
  • Various sized hooks
  • Bobbin threader
  • Various fly tying materials

These tools should be enough to get the beginning fly tier started. The vise is going to be your most important piece of equipment. You’ll get a lot of varied opinions on more traditional vises versus a rotary vice. Really, I think it’s a matter of personal preference and figuring out what works best for each fly tier.

The biggest thing I note is the jaws of the vise. They should hold all hooks secure without having to readjust anything. If the jaws are too large, it makes it next to impossible to work on especially small patterns.

Hackle pliers, scissors, bobbins, and whip finish tools are the next most important things to acquire. You can get by with one set of pliers for a time, but if you get serious, you’ll probably want several sizes. The same goes for bobbins. Serious fly tiers almost always keep several on hand with many different types of thread so they don’t have to keep changing spools.

The whip finish tool might be the most important tool in a fly tier’s arsenal because it helps you make the knot that keeps the whole thing together. Without learning to use this vital tool, you’ll likely experience a lot of frustration of flies falling apart, even with head cement on them.

Gathering materials

How to Get Started Fly Fishing
Facebook Marketplace

You can buy pretty much any materials you might need at your local fly shop, but there is no harm in gathering your own fly tying materials too.

With hunting season starting in many parts of the country, now is a great time to gather deer or elk hair. There are many creative ways to gather the different kinds of materials you might need. I used to gather peacock feathers near a snowmobile dealership where the neighbors across the street had some running free. Peacock herl makes for great fly bodies.

Have a taxidermist friend? See if he or she will give you their leftover deer hair and duck feather scraps. Planning a fall turkey hunt? Turkey quills are great material. Know someone with a poultry farm? It could be a great place to get some rooster feathers for next to nothing.

Some of the best capes of hackle can be $100 or more from fly-tying suppliers. You don’t want to use stuff like this when you’re just starting out and trying to learn basic techniques unless you’ve got money to burn.

You might also consider hitting up a crafts store for cheap crafts feathers. You won’t make any real award-winning fish catchers with this type of material, but it does give you license to screw up repeatedly and learn basic techniques without the worry of breaking your bank. The majority of the flies I first made never saw the water anyway, so don’t sweat it.

Hands-on learning

How to Get Started Fly Tying
Facebook

You can learn quite a bit about fly tying from YouTube videos these days. I learned a lot from books myself, but the simple fact of the matter is, nothing is better than hands-on learning.

A friend taught me the basics, but he didn’t show me how to use a whip finish tool, so my first flies ended up falling apart quite often.

At the end of the day, there is only so much you can learn from books, videos, and online articles, which is why I won’t talk too much about techniques. Many local fly shops offer fly tying classes to help people who are just getting started. Don’t be afraid to take them.

Some companies, like Orvis, offer free 101 classes that will really help you nail down the basics in just a few hours. Some even offer free use of equipment and supplies. Whatever you do, it will make a world of difference to have an experienced tier there to guide and give tips on your technique as you’re doing it.

Most fly tying basics are incredibly simple, but they’re also really hard to describe in writing. It is best to learn by seeing and doing. Oh, and by practicing. You won’t be tying tiny nymphs or intricate trout dry flies overnight. It just takes time to get the technique down.

Start large and don’t be afraid to experiment

How to Get Started Fly Tying
Facebook

Many flies are quite tiny and detailed. I really don’t recommend starting out trying to tie a size 24 hook pattern. I’ve seen some insane stuff on the internet, including guys who are tying stuff as small as size 32. Even with the best of tools, my mind is boggled by feats like that.

Personally, I’ve always been a bit too clumsy for that kind of intricate stuff. I learned most of the basics on large, simple patterns like streamers. They’re easy to tie, they catch fish, and they look great.

If you’re struggling while learning things, don’t be afraid to go extremely large and tie saltwater flies. Even if you don’t use them, perfecting larger designs will help you hone your technique. Eventually you can work your way down to smaller designs.

Another big tip is to not be afraid to experiment. Many of the things I learned I figured out from taking a hook and simply throwing some materials on it to see what happened. This was how I learned the best way to build bodies, create wings, and attach hackle.

Tying as an extension of fly fishing

How to Get Started Fly Tying
Facebook/Coldwater Fly Tying

Fly tying is an awesome way to save money and pass those long winter months where you’re stuck inside by snow and wind and can’t wet a line.

Even if you don’t fly fish, it can be a fun pastime and an art form all its own. In some cases, I found my creations worked better than the stuff they sell in stores. I also found there is nothing more satisfying than catching a bunch of fish on a fly you’ve constructed yourself.

NEXT: THE 10 MOST FAMOUS BIG GAME HUNTERS THAT EVER WERE

WATCH

oembed rumble video here

The post How to Get Started Fly Tying, for Anglers Who Never Thought They Would appeared first on Wide Open Spaces.

Follow us on Twitter @freaknhunting
Follow us on Instagram @freaknhunting

Published

on

https://www.wideopenspaces.com/how-to-get-started-fly-tying-for-anglers-who-never-thought-they-would/

Facebook

Here is how to get started in fly tying quickly and easily.

When it comes to angling, fly fishing is an art form. The grace, form, and technique required to get good at fly fishing can take years of practice.

Fly tying is an equally old and beautiful art form. There is a special kind of satisfaction one gets from catching a fish on a fly they’ve tied themselves.

If you’ve always wanted to try fly tying but have no idea where to begin, here is a quick guide to help get you started.

Basic supplies

How to Get Started Fly Tying
Facebook

There are some basic things you will need to get going on your fly tying journey. Don’t feel like you need to buy the most expensive, high-quality tools right off the bat, especially if you aren’t sure you will get serious about it. You can always buy better stuff later.

I got started with a simple $30 basic fly tying kit. At a minimum you’ll want to have the following fly tying tools:

  • Fly tying vise
  • Hackle pliers
  • Fly tying scissors
  • Bobbin (more than one is preferable)
  • Whip finish tool
  • Hair stacker
  • Head cement
  • Fly-tying thread
  • Various sized hooks
  • Bobbin threader
  • Various fly tying materials

These tools should be enough to get the beginning fly tier started. The vise is going to be your most important piece of equipment. You’ll get a lot of varied opinions on more traditional vises versus a rotary vice. Really, I think it’s a matter of personal preference and figuring out what works best for each fly tier.

The biggest thing I note is the jaws of the vise. They should hold all hooks secure without having to readjust anything. If the jaws are too large, it makes it next to impossible to work on especially small patterns.

Hackle pliers, scissors, bobbins, and whip finish tools are the next most important things to acquire. You can get by with one set of pliers for a time, but if you get serious, you’ll probably want several sizes. The same goes for bobbins. Serious fly tiers almost always keep several on hand with many different types of thread so they don’t have to keep changing spools.

The whip finish tool might be the most important tool in a fly tier’s arsenal because it helps you make the knot that keeps the whole thing together. Without learning to use this vital tool, you’ll likely experience a lot of frustration of flies falling apart, even with head cement on them.

Gathering materials

How to Get Started Fly Fishing
Facebook Marketplace

You can buy pretty much any materials you might need at your local fly shop, but there is no harm in gathering your own fly tying materials too.

With hunting season starting in many parts of the country, now is a great time to gather deer or elk hair. There are many creative ways to gather the different kinds of materials you might need. I used to gather peacock feathers near a snowmobile dealership where the neighbors across the street had some running free. Peacock herl makes for great fly bodies.

Have a taxidermist friend? See if he or she will give you their leftover deer hair and duck feather scraps. Planning a fall turkey hunt? Turkey quills are great material. Know someone with a poultry farm? It could be a great place to get some rooster feathers for next to nothing.

Some of the best capes of hackle can be $100 or more from fly-tying suppliers. You don’t want to use stuff like this when you’re just starting out and trying to learn basic techniques unless you’ve got money to burn.

You might also consider hitting up a crafts store for cheap crafts feathers. You won’t make any real award-winning fish catchers with this type of material, but it does give you license to screw up repeatedly and learn basic techniques without the worry of breaking your bank. The majority of the flies I first made never saw the water anyway, so don’t sweat it.

Hands-on learning

How to Get Started Fly Tying
Facebook

You can learn quite a bit about fly tying from YouTube videos these days. I learned a lot from books myself, but the simple fact of the matter is, nothing is better than hands-on learning.

A friend taught me the basics, but he didn’t show me how to use a whip finish tool, so my first flies ended up falling apart quite often.

At the end of the day, there is only so much you can learn from books, videos, and online articles, which is why I won’t talk too much about techniques. Many local fly shops offer fly tying classes to help people who are just getting started. Don’t be afraid to take them.

Some companies, like Orvis, offer free 101 classes that will really help you nail down the basics in just a few hours. Some even offer free use of equipment and supplies. Whatever you do, it will make a world of difference to have an experienced tier there to guide and give tips on your technique as you’re doing it.

Most fly tying basics are incredibly simple, but they’re also really hard to describe in writing. It is best to learn by seeing and doing. Oh, and by practicing. You won’t be tying tiny nymphs or intricate trout dry flies overnight. It just takes time to get the technique down.

Start large and don’t be afraid to experiment

How to Get Started Fly Tying
Facebook

Many flies are quite tiny and detailed. I really don’t recommend starting out trying to tie a size 24 hook pattern. I’ve seen some insane stuff on the internet, including guys who are tying stuff as small as size 32. Even with the best of tools, my mind is boggled by feats like that.

Personally, I’ve always been a bit too clumsy for that kind of intricate stuff. I learned most of the basics on large, simple patterns like streamers. They’re easy to tie, they catch fish, and they look great.

If you’re struggling while learning things, don’t be afraid to go extremely large and tie saltwater flies. Even if you don’t use them, perfecting larger designs will help you hone your technique. Eventually you can work your way down to smaller designs.

Another big tip is to not be afraid to experiment. Many of the things I learned I figured out from taking a hook and simply throwing some materials on it to see what happened. This was how I learned the best way to build bodies, create wings, and attach hackle.

Tying as an extension of fly fishing

How to Get Started Fly Tying
Facebook/Coldwater Fly Tying

Fly tying is an awesome way to save money and pass those long winter months where you’re stuck inside by snow and wind and can’t wet a line.

Even if you don’t fly fish, it can be a fun pastime and an art form all its own. In some cases, I found my creations worked better than the stuff they sell in stores. I also found there is nothing more satisfying than catching a bunch of fish on a fly you’ve constructed yourself.

NEXT: THE 10 MOST FAMOUS BIG GAME HUNTERS THAT EVER WERE

WATCH

oembed rumble video here

The post How to Get Started Fly Tying, for Anglers Who Never Thought They Would appeared first on Wide Open Spaces.

Follow us on Twitter @freaknhunting
Follow us on Instagram @freaknhunting

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Hunting

Nosler Introduces 115-Grain 6mm Reduced Drag Factor Bullet

https://www.wideopenspaces.com/nosler-introduces-115-grain-6mm-reduced-drag-factor-bullet/

Nosler
Nosler Introduces 115gr 6mm Reduced Drag Factor Bullet

Serious competition shooters will be pleased to hear about the new 6mm Reduced Drag Factor Bullet in 115-grain that Nosler just unveiled.

Just like the name states, the Nosler Reduced Drag Factor (RDF) Bullet is designed for match shooters who want high ballistic coefficient bullets with the flattest trajectory and the least wind drift possible at long range.

Well, shooters who use 6mm cartridges just got some great news when Nosler, Inc announced that a 115-grain 6mm Reduced Drag Factor Bullet is the newest addition to their RDF line.

Designed specifically for use in rifles with a barrel twist rate of 1:7.5″ or faster, the new 115-grain Reduced Drag Factor bullet has a ridiculously high BC of .634 (G1). This is a significant improvement over the only previous 6mm RDF option, which was a 105-grain and had a G1 BC of .571.

Like all the other Nosler RDF bullets, the new 6mm bullet incorporates several key design factors that result in a sleek form factor with one of the highest BCs available anywhere for a bullet of that size.

First, the bullet has a long, drag reducing boattail. It also has a compound ogive along with what Nosler advertises as the smallest and most consistent meplats of any hollow point match bullet line, which they claim eliminates the need to trim tips.

Add it all up and you’ve got a very sleek, accurate, and easy to load hollow point boat tail (HPBT) bullet that’s perfect for rifle tournaments, like Precision Rifle Series (PRS) matches.

With the introduction of this bullet, the entire RDF bullet line now includes 70-, 77-, and 85-grain bullets in .22 caliber, 105- and 115-grain bullets in 6mm (.243 caliber), 130- and 140-grain bullets in 6.5 mm (.264 caliber), 185 grain bullets in 7mm (.284 caliber), 168-, 175-, and 210-grain bullets in .30 caliber, and 300-grain bullets in .338 caliber.

Note that Nosler’s RDF bullets are designed for long range efficiency during competition rifle matches, not for big game hunting. If you want a good long range hunting bullet, then consider the Nosler AccuBond Long Range Series instead.

But if you want match grade accuracy, flat trajectories, and great resistance to wind drift when using your 6mm Creedmoor to bang steel or punch paper, then check out the Nosler 6mm 115 grain RDF bullet.

Like what you see here? You can read more great articles by John McAdams on The Big Game Hunting Blog. Follow him on FacebookYouTube, & Instagram.

NEXT: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT NOSLER E-TIP AMMUNITION

WATCH: THE BEST NEW PISTOLS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT

oembed rumble video here

The post Nosler Introduces 115-Grain 6mm Reduced Drag Factor Bullet appeared first on Wide Open Spaces.

Follow us on Twitter @freaknhunting
Follow us on Instagram @freaknhunting

Published

on

https://www.wideopenspaces.com/nosler-introduces-115-grain-6mm-reduced-drag-factor-bullet/

Nosler
Nosler Introduces 115gr 6mm Reduced Drag Factor Bullet

Serious competition shooters will be pleased to hear about the new 6mm Reduced Drag Factor Bullet in 115-grain that Nosler just unveiled.

Just like the name states, the Nosler Reduced Drag Factor (RDF) Bullet is designed for match shooters who want high ballistic coefficient bullets with the flattest trajectory and the least wind drift possible at long range.

Well, shooters who use 6mm cartridges just got some great news when Nosler, Inc announced that a 115-grain 6mm Reduced Drag Factor Bullet is the newest addition to their RDF line.

Designed specifically for use in rifles with a barrel twist rate of 1:7.5″ or faster, the new 115-grain Reduced Drag Factor bullet has a ridiculously high BC of .634 (G1). This is a significant improvement over the only previous 6mm RDF option, which was a 105-grain and had a G1 BC of .571.

Like all the other Nosler RDF bullets, the new 6mm bullet incorporates several key design factors that result in a sleek form factor with one of the highest BCs available anywhere for a bullet of that size.

First, the bullet has a long, drag reducing boattail. It also has a compound ogive along with what Nosler advertises as the smallest and most consistent meplats of any hollow point match bullet line, which they claim eliminates the need to trim tips.

Add it all up and you’ve got a very sleek, accurate, and easy to load hollow point boat tail (HPBT) bullet that’s perfect for rifle tournaments, like Precision Rifle Series (PRS) matches.

With the introduction of this bullet, the entire RDF bullet line now includes 70-, 77-, and 85-grain bullets in .22 caliber, 105- and 115-grain bullets in 6mm (.243 caliber), 130- and 140-grain bullets in 6.5 mm (.264 caliber), 185 grain bullets in 7mm (.284 caliber), 168-, 175-, and 210-grain bullets in .30 caliber, and 300-grain bullets in .338 caliber.

Note that Nosler’s RDF bullets are designed for long range efficiency during competition rifle matches, not for big game hunting. If you want a good long range hunting bullet, then consider the Nosler AccuBond Long Range Series instead.

But if you want match grade accuracy, flat trajectories, and great resistance to wind drift when using your 6mm Creedmoor to bang steel or punch paper, then check out the Nosler 6mm 115 grain RDF bullet.

Like what you see here? You can read more great articles by John McAdams on The Big Game Hunting Blog. Follow him on FacebookYouTube, & Instagram.

NEXT: EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT NOSLER E-TIP AMMUNITION

WATCH: THE BEST NEW PISTOLS YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT

oembed rumble video here

The post Nosler Introduces 115-Grain 6mm Reduced Drag Factor Bullet appeared first on Wide Open Spaces.

Follow us on Twitter @freaknhunting
Follow us on Instagram @freaknhunting

Continue Reading

Hunting

Keanu Reeves Shows Shooting Prowess Training for John Wick Movie

https://www.wideopenspaces.com/keanu-reeves-shows-shooting-prowess-training-for-john-wick-movie/

YouTube: Taran Tactical
john wick training

Who knew Keanu Reeves could shoot like this?

At this point, Keanu Reeves has already staked his claim as an American badass. After two heart-pounding action franchises in “John Wick” and “The Matrix” alone, he’s earned a spot on the Mount Rushmore of action movies.

However, who knew he could actually shoot? He’s not only capable with a firearm; he could shoot competitively!

You won’t believe your eyes when you see him wield a wide variety of firearms, which includes an AR-15, a shotgun and handguns.

Watch the video below:

If you haven’t already seen “John Wick 3: Parabellum,” chances are you probably want to after watching this, right? The franchise has gained somewhat of a cult-like following after its first two acts, which appear to correlate with how Reeves spends his free time.

Shooting competitively on a course like this is no easy task, as quick shooting scenarios challenge your instincts behind the sights of a rifle, and requires elite discipline from your trigger finger.

It’s clear after watching this tactical training video from Taran Tactical that Reeves has put in a ton of work to prepare for these movies, molding himself into an unbelievable shooter.

Another cool element to the new movie and Reeves’ shooting abilities is the clear lack of a stunt double. In a lot of action movies, Hollywood actors use stunt doubles to do some of the technical work, such as shooting.

It’s exciting to know you’ll actually be watching Reeves in action.

NEXT: SAVAGE ROLLS OUT GUNS WITH NRA’S OFFICIAL CAMOUFLAGE MOSSY OAK OVERWATCH

WATCH

oembed rumble video here

The post Keanu Reeves Shows Shooting Prowess Training for John Wick Movie appeared first on Wide Open Spaces.

Follow us on Twitter @freaknhunting
Follow us on Instagram @freaknhunting

Published

on

https://www.wideopenspaces.com/keanu-reeves-shows-shooting-prowess-training-for-john-wick-movie/

YouTube: Taran Tactical
john wick training

Who knew Keanu Reeves could shoot like this?

At this point, Keanu Reeves has already staked his claim as an American badass. After two heart-pounding action franchises in “John Wick” and “The Matrix” alone, he’s earned a spot on the Mount Rushmore of action movies.

However, who knew he could actually shoot? He’s not only capable with a firearm; he could shoot competitively!

You won’t believe your eyes when you see him wield a wide variety of firearms, which includes an AR-15, a shotgun and handguns.

Watch the video below:

If you haven’t already seen “John Wick 3: Parabellum,” chances are you probably want to after watching this, right? The franchise has gained somewhat of a cult-like following after its first two acts, which appear to correlate with how Reeves spends his free time.

Shooting competitively on a course like this is no easy task, as quick shooting scenarios challenge your instincts behind the sights of a rifle, and requires elite discipline from your trigger finger.

It’s clear after watching this tactical training video from Taran Tactical that Reeves has put in a ton of work to prepare for these movies, molding himself into an unbelievable shooter.

Another cool element to the new movie and Reeves’ shooting abilities is the clear lack of a stunt double. In a lot of action movies, Hollywood actors use stunt doubles to do some of the technical work, such as shooting.

It’s exciting to know you’ll actually be watching Reeves in action.

NEXT: SAVAGE ROLLS OUT GUNS WITH NRA’S OFFICIAL CAMOUFLAGE MOSSY OAK OVERWATCH

WATCH

oembed rumble video here

The post Keanu Reeves Shows Shooting Prowess Training for John Wick Movie appeared first on Wide Open Spaces.

Follow us on Twitter @freaknhunting
Follow us on Instagram @freaknhunting

Continue Reading

Hunting

Rifle Review: The Nosler Mountain Carbon, Part Two

https://www.fieldandstream.com/rifle-review-nosler-mountain-carbon-part-two?dom=rss-default&src=syn

Nosler M48 Mountain Carbon

There’s no doubt about how good this rifle is. Are you good enough to get the most from it?

If you want to you know whether a rifle is any good, look at the little stuff. When I get a test gun whose Weaver-style bases are not screwed tight, that means there was…

Follow us on Twitter @freaknhunting
Follow us on Instagram @freaknhunting

Published

on

https://www.fieldandstream.com/rifle-review-nosler-mountain-carbon-part-two?dom=rss-default&src=syn

Nosler M48 Mountain Carbon

There’s no doubt about how good this rifle is. Are you good enough to get the most from it?

If you want to you know whether a rifle is any good, look at the little stuff. When I get a test gun whose Weaver-style bases are not screwed tight, that means there was…

Follow us on Twitter @freaknhunting
Follow us on Instagram @freaknhunting

Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2018 FreaknHunting.com

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!