Saturday, February 6, 2016


FTG Projects


Getting Involved

Tiers often ask, "How can I become involved with the Fly Tying Group?" The answer: "Lots of ways!" It just depends on how involved you want to be. Look over our content and you'll get a good idea of who we are and what we are up to.

Read through our various projects, and if something interests you, contact us.

As a member of the Fly Tying Group, make sure you join us for the annual Tiers' and Liars' BBQ, which is held at the International Fly Fishing Fair. The purpose of the BBQ is to thank all the Fly Tying Group members and demonstration tiers, and to give everyone a chance to meet and talk about tying. You can also join us for the Board meeting, which is typically held just prior to the BBQ. It is open to all Fly Tying Group members. Anyone can help out with creating or soliciting items for the Bucket Raffle held during the BBQ. Tiers often will do up a collection of their flies or frame some of their flies or those of a tier or tiers in their club.

If you are looking for suggestions, here are just a few possibilities:

Communcations Committee: Helpers, Writers, Organizers

Buszek Winners: We have a section on our website with histories of many (but not all) of the Buszek Winners. We have some material on the others and just need someone to put it into a page. Also, if you surf the Internet, you can find out more about them and update our files. It would be great to have some photos of their patterns and some pattern recipes. These can often be found in books, on the net, or in collections of senior tiers. We just need a energetic person to hop on it! Contact David Nelson (below).

Tying At the International Fly Fishing Fair: We are always looking for good tiers. Also, if you are active within your Council, we need to know who is the Tying Chair for each Council. It sometimes changes on a yearly basis, and we may not know who is in charge--please keep us up to date. If there is a project that you feel needs to be done, are willing to do the work, but need a platform and organizational help, contact Carl Ronk, Fly Tying Group Chairman.


The Evergreen Hand

Fly tying was introduced at Madigan Army Medical Center, Fort Lewis, Washington, with donations and volunteers from several nearby fly fishing clubs. The benefactors were wounded soldiers being treated in the Occupational Therapy Clinic. One of them was Sergeant First Class Marvin Johnson, US Army. He had just returned from his second tour of duty in the Middle East. Although he was wounded during his first tour, he still went back to serve his country in its time of need, and was wounded again. His latest wound rendered his left arm immobile from the shoulder down. Jesse Scott and the Fly Tying Group thought it was obvious that we needed something for Marv and our other one-handed tiers. The solution they developed involved a fairly simple application of grass roots engineering. After several iterations, a simple, build-it-yourself device was developed. This information is designed to help you learn from their experience and to enable you to build your own.

The Evergreen Hand Instructional Video
Step by Step Instructions
Using the Deer Hair Tool

Build Your Own Evergreen Hand

The Evergreen Hand Committee of the FFF Fly Tying Group is in charge of the Evergreen Hand Project and is  developing a way to fund and distribute these as well. If you would like to help fund this effort, please send a tax-deductible check to the Evergreen Hand Project.

Museum-Grade Fly Plates

Steve Jensen has been producing fly plates as fund raisers for the Federation of Fly Fishers and selected councils of the Federation since 1996. The first project was the "International Fly Tyer" [sic] fly plate project, with Darwin Atkin. Steve did the framing and Darwin handled the paperwork until that project ended in 2000.

The next project was the “Legends of Fly Tying”. Although the project officially ended in 2007, Steve agreed to continue to provide fly plates for the purpose of fundraising for the FFF and some councils of the Federation. Because of time constraints (each fly plate takes approximately 20 hours to complete), Steve limits the number of plates that he will produce to no more than 12 per year. Councils commissioning the production of a fly plate are expected to provide the flies to be framed and pay for the cost of materials and shipping. He donates his  time for the design and construction of each fly plate.

Steve also provide workshops for organizations interested in the design and construction of fly plates. These workshops are appropriate to individuals who have access to professional level mat cutters or who are willing to invest in such cutters. Currently, he offers such a workshop every other year at the FFF International Fly Fishing Fair. At the council or club level, a few workshops are available each year provided the council/club is willing to pay actual travel expenses, as well as materials costs for the production of a fly plate. Because of the size and weight of the mat cutters, workshops are generally scheduled only at venues within one day’s drive of Springfield, Missouri, where Steve lives.

Many people have been unable to attend his workshops and have asked for instructions on how to do their own flyplate. Steve is in the process of developing an online guide to the design and construction of fly plates that will be available on this site. This guide is currently in draft form and awaiting digital photographs to accompany the text.


Inexpensive Ways to Frame Your Flies

According to Judy Lehmberg, there are many different techniques for framing flies. This method is one that she has evolved over the last 20 or so years of fly framing using relatively inexpensive equipment. If you are going to frame just a few flies, you may not wish to invest in everything recommended, such as the adhesive transfer tool and the Fletcher point driver, however they are both real time savers that she thinks are worth the money. Before you go out and buy all of your framing materials she suggests you read through the all steps and decide if you really want to do it.

Future Projects

  • Youth Fly Tying
  • International Fly Tiers at International Fly Fishing Fairs
  • The History of Famous Flies and Fly Tiers
  • Digital Archive



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