Starter Fly Tying Kit

A starter or beginner fly tying kit makes fly tying fun and easy to learn. With just a few basic tools and materials, you can start tying your own flies to use on your fly fishing adventures. Just think of how rewarding it would be to catch a trout or a bass on a fly that you tied yourself.

Basic Fly Tying Kit Tools

You don't need a lot of tools in a basic fly tying kit. There are pre-packaged fly tying kits that you can buy, or you can assemble your own starter kit by including a few essential fly tying tools.

  • Vise

    Vise

    The primary purpose of a fly tying vise is to hold the hook securely while you tie the fly. Standard or traditional vises are a good choice for beginners because they will give you more control over the amount of tension as you tie.

  • Bobbin

    Bobbin

    The bobbin is the spool that holds the fly tying thread while you tie. This is a simple tool that has two wire "legs" which hold the thread spool under tension while feeding the thread through a narrow tube.

  • Bobbin Threader

    Bobbin Threader

    A bobbin threader is a narrow wire loop with a handle that is used to pull your fly tying thread through the narrow tube of your bobbin.

  • Scissors

    Scissors

    Any basic fly tying kit has to include a pair of small steel scissors that are smooth, tight, and sharp. Scissors are used for cutting your fly tying thread or when trimming feathers, hair, and tinsel.

  • Bodkin

    Bodkin

    A bodkin is a small metal rod with a thin, pointed tip that is most often used to apply cement to a fly.

  • Hackle Pliers

    Hackle Pliers

    Hackle pliers are tools used for wrapping hackle feathers around your fly hook.

Materials For Fly Tying Kits

There are many different types of tying supplies and materials that can be used to create flies. From shiny pieces of tinsel that mimic the reflection of baitfish scales to multi-colored feathers of different sizes, you can tie a number of different flies to include in your first fly fishing kit or fly box.

  • Thread

    Thread

    You will need a few different colors of fly tying thread for tying feathers or hair to your hooks. Nylon and polyester fly tying threads are thinner and stronger than silk or cotton.

  • Tinsel

    Tinsel

    Tinsel is often incorporated into minnow fly patterns to add shine and sparkle.

  • Hooks

    Hooks

    Once you know which species you plan to catch when fly fishing, you can determine what size hook to use for your flies. If you plan to go fly fishing with small species in mind, you should use a small hook. For large species, use a larger hook.

  • Feathers

    Feathers

    Feathers are one of the most popular fly tying materials. They can be purchased in a number of different colors.

  • Hair

    Hair

    The hair from animals such as deer or elk is often used when tying different fly patterns such as a caddis pattern or mouse pattern.

  • Eyes

    Eyes

    Metal beads, holographic decals, and pre-painted fly eyes are all options you can choose from when tying your own flies. The type of eyes you use will depend on the fly pattern you decide to tie.

With the number of fly tying tools and materials that are available, fly tying can be as easy or complex as you want to make it. Start tying your own flies with these simple tools, and then cast one into a local river or stream near you to see what you might catch.

Learn more about different types of fly fishing flies, started fishing flies, and aquatic insects in our next section.