The Difference Between Premium and Discount Fly Fishing Flies

The Difference Between Premium and Discount Fly Fishing Flies

How large of a distinction do premium fly fishing flies make to your day on the water? There are a lot of on the market promoting “High quality” or “Premium” fly fishing flies, however are removed from it. A premium dry fly will land right-side up, float correctly and persistently, and retain these properties even after catching 5,10, even 20 fish. Alternatively, improperly tied flies will typically land the wrong way up, on their aspect, and even on their head.

A premium trout fly in a fly store prices wherever from $1.50 to $3.00, bass and surf flies $3.00 – $5.00 however there are actually dozens of on-line retailers who supply related patterns for half that worth. You might pay extra for a premium fly at a fly store however analysis suggests the fly will final practically 10 occasions longer. It’s important to ask your self one query: Do I desire a 2 fish fly or a 20 fish fly? Let’s study among the variations:


The primary essential materials is the hackle. Nice strides have been revamped the previous 60 years with the hackles which are utilized by the premium business fly tiers. Flocks have been bread primarily based upon coloration, hackle size, and barb stiffness to create superior hackle.

It has been a course of starting with Harry Darbee within the 1940’s and 1950’s persevering with right now with the hackles produced by Dr. Tom Whiting of Whiting Farms and Buck Metz of Metz Hackles, amongst others. Premium fly producers resembling Idylwilde Flies, Umpqua Feather Retailers, and Wet flies use high-quality premium hackles

The second materials of serious significance is the standard of the hook. Tiemco has positioned itself because the World’s chief in premium grade fly fishing hooks with creativity and a spotlight to element within the purposeful designs of its premium fly tying hooks. From trout to tarpon, in freshwater or saltwater, for bass poppers or Micro Mayflies, high fly producers select Tiemco hooks over the opposite competitor’s finest efforts. They had been one of many first producers to chemically sharpen the factors and now’s normal all through the business. They carry a really broad line of flyfishing hooks with about 46 fashions to select from. On the finish of the hook designation, you would possibly see a “SP,” this stands for Specialty Level. The SP hooks have a hole curve level with triangulated edges for simpler sharpening. The hooks even have a gradual taper which assists in simpler hook units. An fascinating side of this hook is the basal finish of the purpose has a swelling that works very similar to a barb with out being a barb.

This can be of some benefit in holding hook units with the barbless hooks. One other designation you might even see is “TC” which stands for Tiemco Reduce. It is a reduce that Tiemco makes use of on sure moist and streamer flies for enhanced hooking penetration. “Its all about high quality, or higher mentioned lack thereof,” Bruce Olson from Umpqua Feather Retailers says. “The primary challenge is that low-cost imports at all times are tied on very low-cost hooks, with unusual sizing. I discover {that a} high quality fly needs to be tied on [name brand] hooks. This turns into crucial for giant recreation, resembling tarpon, the place sharpness and tensile power of the hook wire are important.”

A reduction fly firm’s failure to make use of top-notch supplies means the ultimate product does not measure up. As Shawn Brillon, the lead fly purchaser for Orvis says, “If it’s a must to tie with junk, typically the ultimate product is identical… junk.”

Low cost fly producers additionally take shortcuts to scale back prices and supplies. Bruce states, “As a way to produce flies that low-cost, these guys have gotten to take shortcuts.” The low cost fly firms use inferior hooks and supplies, skip essential tying steps (resembling laying down a glue base on the hook shank to maintain the supplies in place), and do not exhibit a lot high quality management.


A second essential high quality of premium fly fishing flies is the adherence to plain sample recipes. Bruce described one “Copper John” that he bought on-line as lacking the epoxy over the shellback and the lead underneath the thorax.

“So, you could have saved some huge cash on the fly, however it’s not a Copper John!” he says, and he notes that such an inferior model of the favored fly will not carry out on the water the way in which its designer supposed. With out the lead, it will not sink appropriately, and the dearth of epoxy makes the fly a lot much less sturdy.


Most fly manufacturing is finished in third world international locations due to worth but in addition as a result of they nonetheless work with their arms. Though they’re third world international locations the fly tiers are paid a great wage and earn center class earnings for his or her work. The dearer flies carried by the premium fly outlets resembling Blue River Fly Firm are tied in Thailand, the fly tying capital of the world. There are over a dozen main fly tying firms which have tying amenities there. Different areas of the world that do a big quantity of fly manufacturing embrace China, Sir Lanka, and Kenya. There’s some manufacturing in Central and South America, Mexico, and the Philippines. The fly manufacturing in the USA and Europe the place the most important variety of customers are is primarily by residence tiers or tiers that tie for particular fly outlets.

Many premium fly producers, together with Idylwilde have a powerful perception in company social duty and consider in truthful commerce. They take duty for the impression their actions have on prospects, staff, communities and the atmosphere. As Idylwilde describes on its web site: “If a fly’s price solely $.99 it not solely sucks, however it was probably tied in a third-world sweatshop and we might quite not have that unhealthy mojo hanging on our conscience. Idylwilde fly fishing flies are tied in Manila, Philippines underneath a markedly forward-thinking association with Sister Christine Tan, a Catholic nun who believed her individuals wanted greater than charity. They wanted good-paying, trustworthy jobs they might depend on as they constructed a life exterior the confines of poverty. Our promise to Sister Christine continues some 12 years later, now enabling over 150 tiers to raised present for his or her households. The flies you see listed here are the work of their arms and their hopes.”

Fly Fishing Fly Prices

The common value of products for a premium fly producer for the straightforward dry flies and nymphs equates to about $ 4.50 – $5.50 a dozen. Extra transport, obligation prices and a US excise tax add an extra $1.00 a dozen.
The fly firms which are importing the flies must make a revenue so the associated fee to the outlets are usually at keystone (50% markup) so the associated fee to the outlets is now at $ 12.00 per dozen. The fly store pays transport and marks up for his or her working prices and revenue, keystone once more, the associated fee to the patron is pushing that $2 -3 worth you pay at a brick and mortar fly store.

The big field shops, to be able to get the pricing right down to what they do are both getting enormous reductions for quantity shopping for or they’re getting flies which are tied someplace aside from Thailand, or each. Hopefully now if you get sticker shock if you go right into a fly store you possibly can perceive why the store is charging what it does.

Value per Fish

Bruce Olson argues that anglers ought to take a look at the price of a fly in relation to its sturdiness. If the 75-cent Stimulator falls aside after the second fish, however the $1.75 Umpqua Stimulator is nice for 10 fish, then the cost-effectiveness of the dearer fly is twice as excessive. (75 divided by 2 fish=37.5 cents per fish, 175 divided by 10 fish=17.5 cents per fish.) “You gotta do the mathematics,” says Olson.

Premium Fly Fishing Flies

You wouldn’t accept sub-standard rods, reels, fly traces, waders, and so forth. that disintegrate or break after a pair occasions fishing. Why then settle of substandard flies? Flies are an important a part of fly fishing. If the tip end result to all of that is to catch fish then why not spend extra time, cash, and power on the one ingredient the fish truly care about?”

Worth is a fairly good indicator to the general high quality of the flies you purchase. Low cost flies are virtually at all times cheaply tied. It doesn’t take a Rocket Scientist to do the mathematics. It’s also possible to take a look at them out by ensuring they do not simply spin, are designed properly for stability, are tied to the correct proportion, and so forth

Umpqua, Idylwilde, and Wet have considerably raised the requirements by which high-quality fishing flies are outlined with their use of premium supplies resembling Tiemco hooks, Metz and Whiting hackle, and by growing the consummate expertise of its manufacturing fly tyers.

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