Free Fly Tying Materials

Do you know where you can get free fly tying materials? Probably the biggest complaint I hear from fly tying beginners is the cost of materials and fly tying tools. They read the books, watch the videos and are given a list items that they must have to start tying flies.

Fly tying has been done for hundreds of years, do you think the first person to create his own flies went down to the local fly shop and bought everything he needed to tie that perfect nymph, caddis or wolly bugger? No, the first fisherman had to rely on nature to provide many of the materials needed to tie his flies. He didn’t go buy a brand new rotary vice or flashy box set of fly tying tools. He made the tools he needed and improvised with what he had on hand.

Nothing has changed in the world of fly tying. You can still do this today. Have you looked at how basic most of the fly tying tools are made? Many if not all of them can be produced with a little thinking outside of the box for far less than the highly expensive name brand fly tying tools sold in most shops and magazines.

Now back to the original question. Do you know where to get free fly tying materials? Guess what its hunting season. If you’re not an avid hunter yourself go to your local pub and hook up with someone who is. Most hunters will be happy to give you squirrel tails, deer tails and feathers from all types of game birds. Hmm, maybe that’s how the fishermen got started tying flies in the first place. There was a time in history where sportsmen didn’t want to waste any part of a kill so they found ways to utilized fur, feathers, and antlers. Fly tiers wanting free fly tying materials should take this same approach and utilize what is already wasted in many cases.

Ok, the hair, fur, feathers and other materials might not be an exact match to what the fly tying book tells you to use, but with a little dye, trimming and creative thinking you can make them work fairly easily. So next time you head out to the store to buy an expensive pack of fly tying materials think twice, because there are plenty of free alternatives lying around being wasted.