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WING SETTER


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61 replies to this topic

#21 Dave Carne

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 08:59 PM

One comment - if you don't HAVE to use a wing setter because you've problems with arthritis or the like then DON'T - LEARN HOW TO WING PROPERLY - you habitually end up with wings on the side of the hook (where they shouldn't be) using a wing setter - you get nice small heads but all the issues of sides popping out etc - I'm sure pretty much everyone's seen my notes on the Peter Dunne technique used by Nolte, Little, many of us lot etc by now (gelled from the old techniques used by Rogan etc) - 1,000,000x better.

 

Don't expect tying classics to be easy - it ISN'T, that's the whole point, you need to do A LOT of practice, that's how you learn to do good wings - no cheats, just technique and experience.

 

Dx



#22 dave08

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 09:20 PM

i agree-i think most if not all of us had problems tying on wings at the beginning they would fold,explode,twist,slide down the side etc... it's just part of the process of learning to tie these flies and the best tool is practice.


David Elzea

#23 SC Fly Tyer

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 10:10 PM

I understand and I am not trying to 'take the easy way out' as the last replies suggest. I am trying to give myself a 'helping hand' while I learn. With all due respect, I find the 'condemnation' (all CAPITAL LETTERS telling me to do things 'PROPERLY') to be endemic of the elitist attitude that has plagued the fly fishing community for too many years. I have started to teach myself to tie full dress flies, because I have a real appreciation for the craft. If I vary from the traditional techniques, I consider that part of the process. Unfortunately, I don't have the luxury of a mentor nearby nor do I have excessive free time. Please understand, I am not trying to be confrontational, and maybe I am being hypersensitive. I tie flies as stress relief from a very demanding job, if I can devise a way to eliminate some of the frustration while learning, that helps me. Sitting in my tying room frustrated that my wings won't mount right after a 12 hour day in the office is not therapy. If tools can help the process for beginners, think this helps bring more people to the craft. I'll probably never achieve 10% of the talent exhibited by members on this board, but I am trying.

#24 Isonychia

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    John McCoy, Huntington, West Virginia, USA

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 11:25 PM

The fellow who went by Swill Gordon on this site used to sell Chute wing setters. His last name is White, but I can't remember his first name. He made them using music wire, molten lead and brass from a .375 H&H Magnum cartridge.


Offending the sensibilities of discerning trout since 1955


#25 Dave Carne

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 11:26 PM

You will learn A LOT slower in the long run by trying to take the easy route and use of a wing setter will never form a stepping stone to mounting a wing properly - it's beating the hard bits that you really learn from.

 

I also object to being labelled elitist for explaining clearly why you don't want to use a wing setter (bearing in mind that like almost everything re-tying classics I have experimented with them and discarded them - so was saving you a wasted journey), especially by someone who then goes on to say they're not being confrontational - like many of the longer-term members on here I happily pass on the knowledge to newbies I have gained through extensive research, long experience and hard work, saving them the effort through the knowledge gained through the effort WE put in (and no I have never had a mentor OR lots of free time, you're not the only one who works hard for a living).

 

As I said the point is they are NOT easy, if they were what would be the point? I, like all the experienced tyers on here, am not some kind of sauvant - PRACTICE and dedication is what gets you there.

 

Had you simply asked for the information/assistance I would have immediately supplied it (as dozens on here will confirm) - not so sure as an 'elitist' that I'm prepared to 'dane to send it' now.

 

Dx



#26 SC Fly Tyer

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Posted 01 January 2013 - 11:36 PM

Not going to argue and didn't mean to label any individual. Not what I'm about. Just trying to make a point about being open to differing views. Based on what I have seen in a number of posts, I think it best for me to resign from this forum. Feel like I am back in high school trying to get a seat at the 'cool kids' table.

#27 keithciesla

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 04:27 PM

Hmmmm someone ruffled DC's feathers again and I missed it? ph34r.png



#28 phil j

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 04:45 PM

Hi everyone

 

                as some of you know i have  at times quite bad tremors and weakness in my left hand due to a neuro condition and somthing that helped me is putting the wings on in two goes

 

  if you want a full wing of 28 fibers ish make two slips of 14  get one on and then marry the next wing on top of that  then in time things do get easier  on my last fly the butcher i put 8 slips of 15 fibers  i tried charlies wing set thing but it just got in the way 

 

  it might help some that are struggelling 

 

     regards

 

      phil



#29 keithciesla

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 04:58 PM

Thanks Phil I have heard of that in the past didn't Ken Sawada set wings this way or some of the known tiers there?  For some reason this comes to mind.

 

Keith



#30 Dale A. Darling

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 06:25 PM

John, I hope you find what helps you to continue and to enjoy the process of tying classics. Great to hear it is relaxing for you; obviously not the case for some.

 

Happy new year and best wishes.

 

Dale


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#31 SC Fly Tyer

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Posted 02 January 2013 - 10:05 PM

Well, I am not sure anybody is interested, but attached is a series of pictures of my version of a wing setter.  I took some old Griffin bobbin threaders (Picture 1) and mounted them in burl wood that I cut from a block using a 1.25" hole saw.  I then put a small (1/32") hole in one end and a larger (1/2") hole end in the other (Pictures 2 and 3).  I sealed the bobbin wire in the hole with epoxy and melted some old lead weights (Picture 4) to fill the holes.  I wanted to make one heavier than the other so I overfilled one more than the other (Picture 5).  I sanded one down and took the lead residue and made an epoxy base (Picture 6) to add weight.  [Please note -- as a Materials Scientist, I don't recommend melting or sanding lead because of it's toxicity.  If you must, do so in a ventilated area (outside) while wearing appropriate protective gear.]  The resulting Wing Setters, with some Teak Oil applied, are shown in Photo 7.  They weigh about 2 and 4 ounces.  They came out OK, but I wasn't happy with the stiffness of the wire, so I made another using wire I use to tie trailing hooks on intruder style flies.  The wire I used was developed by Greg Senyo (a steelhead fly expert) and is very thin and flexible.  It also has a coating which should help hold materials in place.  That setter is shown in the last photo, but it's a little light.  I am as inept as a woodworker as I am a tier -- I don't think I'll ever win any contest for either (but my flies do catch fish!).  In any event, the setter gives me an extra hand and helps hold materials while I struggle with thread control, etc.  Clearly, wing setters have real limitations.  But, at this point, the wings I am marrying are so bad that I am not sure it matters.  You'll likely never see me post a fly here as I just don't measure up and, well ... you know the rest.

Attached Files



#32 Chris Knox

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 01:19 AM

Never used wing setters before, but interesting to see how you've made these. Remember seeing Charlie Chute using them a few years ago at the British Fly Fair.

Best


"Why fish for tinsel when you can fish for gold ?"- Frank Sawyer on the subject of Grayling

#33 Ephemerella

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 05:32 PM

SC Fly Tyer,

Please don't be put off by Mr. Carne. I'm sure he means well, both for you and for the art of tying the classic fly. Keep posting, etc. 

 

Nevertheless, whether one agrees with using the wing setter contraption or not, there are some interesting things to be learned from it. For example:

 

1) It works by compressing the wing fibers at the tie in point, using only vertical motion. If the vise is set up right, then the force is only in the downward direction. This is an important lesson, and one of the eye-hand-coordination things to be learned. So for the tyer that uses the traditional winging approach, we learn when compressing the wing fibers, first by holding the wing in the left hand with the "vulcan death grip", compressing the fibers at the butts with the right -apply only vertical motion and force - absolutely NO horizontal motion. Then when applying the thread wraps, one needs to pull the thread in the downward direction only, again absolutely no horizontal motion. Some people use the hook shank as a pully and pull the thread up from the near side of the shank, again - vertical forces only.

 

2) It works by having the wire loop be a tight U-shape. Why? this maintains the vertical alignment of the stacked married wing fibers at the tie in point. So when tying the wings using the more traditional method, the left (wing gripping) hand must not torque nor rotate, and the wing must maintain the vertical position. For those with small fingers, like myself, this is accomplished by gripping using the thumb and middle finger, rather than thumb and index finger. The middle finger and thimb are more equally opposed, and hence prevent the torquing or rotation.

 

Thinking about it, or even using the wing setter, just to observe, may result in even more lessons, which, we would appreciate being posted for the rest of us.   Oh, and I have never used one of these on any fly I have posted here.

-Peter



#34 Dale A. Darling

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 05:51 PM

John,

 

Good post; looks like you're a crafty fellow.

 

Peter's comment goes very well - thanks for that!

 

Everyone begins; there's probably not much value in never other than where virtue and morality are involved.

 

So press on, John; give the setter a go and do post the results. I've always thought there are others at about the same point in skill and emotional sensitivity; so post to encourage them, learn from instructive, objective, useful responses and ignore the rest.

 

Best wishes,

Dale


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#35 SC Fly Tyer

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 07:10 PM

Chris, Peter, and Dale -

Thanks for the comments and input. I clearly overreacted to some input ... I'll take responsibility for that.

I have already learned a lot by playing with the wing setter, but Peter's post is very helpful and makes perfect sense. I have an engineering background and the downward pressure comment very much improves my ability to visualize a good wing set ... horizontal pressure will tear the wing apart. Aha! I imagine that the wing setter will find its way into a drawer in pretty short order when I get a better handle on the nuances of thread control, wax application, etc.

As for crafty, I am a newbie there as well. When I converted our formal living room into my tying room last January, my lovely bride had only one restriction ... don't let it become workshop like. There's no door, so she didn't want stacks of plastic storage bins piled from floor to ceiling. So, I have made several pieces of 'furniture' for storage, etc. This includes lots of wood storage devices for tools, bobbins, glue, etc.

Thanks again for the input an encouragement. I will keep at it and show progress, but the talent exhibited on the Board is intimidating. People post flies they 'are not happy with' that look flawless to a newbie like me. Maybe, a new forum for us beginners?

John

#36 bobfly

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 08:18 PM

A small request for a couple of members with problems with their hands certainly created some interest and not all constructive unfortunately. Any way thanks for all the input  a couple of gents have something to work on

Cheers



#37 FranceFly

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Posted 03 January 2013 - 08:56 PM

Using or not a wing setter, the most important from all the comments is what Dave and Peter said : Practice and observe is the key to learn ...

And Bob, this post was really interesting !!!! (I know some tiers which have problem with their hands/fingers and will be happy to have this solution to continue tying classic salmon flies ...)

All the very best,

Bruno 



#38 JPS

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 06:54 AM

Just thought i would throw my hat into the ring I am as passionate about classic flyyting as any member here on this forum and can see both sides to this debate. However I do agree with DC if you learn this technique of collapsing the wing in hand as per Nolte, Little, DC and Peter Dunne  and others..It is using partly the same principle as the wing setter letting the weight of the bobbin aid in the collapse of the wing .  I myself, like many others struggled for a long time with setting the wing until Paul Little showed me this way. This technique is by far the best way to mount a wing if perfected.  No wing slip or rotation and that as we all know comes with a great deal of Practice. keep going, ask for help , its there when you want it . welcome to the forum John.

regards John



#39 keithciesla

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 06:03 PM

I agree John.

 

Keith



#40 SC Fly Tyer

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 10:42 PM

Well, I am big enough (figuratively and literally!) and have acquired enough of a 'taste for crow' over my lifetime, to admit when I am wrong. After a few days of playing around, I have found the wing setter to be helpful, but limited. Further, I can now see how it may ingrain some 'bad habits' that may be limiting (kind of like my use of the 'belly putter' on the golf course --- allows me to be mediocre without having to practice!). While it may be acceptable for my golf, it's not where I want to be. With my tying The wing setter has helped me in getting a handle on fly proportions by allowing me to put a wing somewhat in place and look at it. Beyond that, I haven't found it to be a panacea. I have spent a lot of time at the end of my vacation -- back at work now -- rereading Radencich and several other references (including a lot of posts on this forum). Further, I have received a lot of help from Forum members for which I am extremely grateful. As I posted on another thread, I am taking a step back to focus on bodies, tags, and tails while I await some additional winging materials. Thanks to all for input and dialog. This forum really is a unique place.