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#12386729 - 08/15/17 10:08 AM Where do you buy fly tying materials?
SightCastFishing Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 06/16/17
Posts: 13
Hi guys, I see the sticky post about online fly tying material suppliers, but the comments are locked down and I'm interested in knowing what your experiences have been with some of the suppliers. I've tried a bunch of online stores and I'm still trying to find that one store that has everything you need in stock, has free shipping, and great customer service. If anyone has any recommendations or has found a good store with excellent customer service, I'd love to give them a try.

First off, I have to agree with supporting the local fly shop. That's always my first choice. But as we all know, no one store has everything you need...and that includes the online stores. You're forced to go online and shop around to search for the materials you need.

Here's my experience with a few:

J Stockard - Seems to have the most in stock and a big selection. I like how their website is setup and is easy to navigate. They offer incentives to frequent buyers and also to give product reviews. I love how almost every product has good quality reviews. The free shipping threshold is at $100. However, the orders seem to be processed and shipped out slowly. From placing the order to arriving at my house usually takes about 2 weeks. I've had one of my shipments delivered to the wrong address and in return I received someone else's shipment. I contacted them and they sent me a prepaid shipping label to return the wrong order and then they resent my order....except for the items out of stock that had to be backordered. Then I never received my backordered items, probably because of all the confusion of the returns and stuff. They need to overhaul their ordering system and get more organized.

AvidMax - Good selection of stuff, free shipping at $25, but I hate how their website is setup. It's very difficult to filter by categories and find the stuff you're looking for. I usually get frustrated after digging around for a few minutes and then leave to try another online store. The orders I have ended up placing usually arrive pretty fast though.

Bob Marriott's - This is probably my favorite store. They started out as a small family-owned fly shop in California and still operate that way even though they've expanded. They have a great selection of stuff and usually have everything I'm looking for. The website could be a little easier to navigate, but it's not too bad. The free shipping is at a $100, which I wish was lower. The customer service is great and my orders get shipped out and arrive fast. When items need to be backordered (which is almost always the case), they will give you a call and let you know. So far, they have a good track record of keeping up with the backordered items and have a good system in place to handle it all.

Caddis Fly Shop - Another small fly shop going big, this one is in Oregon. This is usually where I end up when I just need a few things because the shipping is free at $25. They don't have the biggest selection but most stuff seems to be in stock all the time. Everything I've ordered is shipped out fast.

Fly Tyer's Dungeon - Can't say enough good things about this place. The guy is like a mad scientist creating his own line of quality fly tying materials out of his house. When you need EP Fibers go here and order the Congo Hair for a fraction of the price, it's very close to the same material. They also have a great selection of flash and dubbing too. The price of everything is super cheap, so cheap that you can afford to get every color he offers. The shipping cost is fair and is shipped out very fast. I've had orders delivered to my house in 3 days.

RD Fly Fishing - This is a sister company of Renzetti. They have a bunch of hard-to-find fibers, brushes, and flash. Selection is limited to a few types of items, but you can't find this stuff at most fly shops. Only drawback is they don't offer any free shipping.
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#12386764 - 08/15/17 10:28 AM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
karstopo Online   content
Angler

Registered: 05/22/16
Posts: 320
Loc: Brazoria County
It's been a while since I bought anything. But I used to order quite a bit and these are my top 4 suppliers:

saltwaterflies.com. Flat $6.95 shipping, but they are quick, the website makes sense to me, and they don't charge state sales tax as they are in Massachusetts so that helps offset shipping.

Hook and Hackle, I really can't remember their shipping policy or the ease of the website

J. Stockard.

All vary on pricing, on some items they are close, some there's a substantial difference, and none have everything I might be looking for.

Hobby Lobby. The only in town supplier, right down the road. I'm not going to drive an hour or more to buy supplies when I can buy with a click or two. Good for beads, yarn, ribbing, foam and that's about it.

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#12387250 - 08/15/17 04:21 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
Riverdog Offline
Angler

Registered: 12/13/05
Posts: 406
Loc: Red Oak
Well since I am sitting her on terminal hold with Cabelas...
#1 When it comes to DFW and fly tying supplies...There are no "local" stores that stock anything worth mentioning. Tailwaters is a very nice fly shop, I shop there and I really like the guys. However, fly tying materials is not their thing. Bass Pro adn Cabelas have some stuff, but.... there are national chains and their choices are limited and not consistent. Orvis Dallas as with most Orvis stores I have been is a good place for "posers" and "brand snobs" who want to look pretty and talk a lot. The fishing manager at the Dallas store is a good guy, knowledgeable and a real fisherman. He will wind up at Tailwaters like the two fishing managers at Orvis before him if he is lucky. As for Orvis itself what a joke. I needed a chartruese bucktail about month ago and went in, what a waste of time. End of Rant

Since I am simpleton...

J Stockard - some hair,threads,wire, hooks Maribou, etc.
Fly Tyers Dungeon - Synthetics,in particular Flash and UV stuff, great service and he ocassionaly has hair a incredible prices. He will soon have a basic selection of hooks. Just a Montana fisherman - making some very good stuff - I have talked with twice and asked a special favor once, hooked.
Hook and Hackle - Feathers
Charlie's Fly Shop - just cause I like him and he has good stuff
Chicago Fly Fishing Outfitters - Killer Bucktail and other hairs
Hobby Lobby - Foam

Price - we all look at price, but if you have what I want, in the quality I expect, if shipping is reasonable, and service is good, then within reason I don't give a rats bony hind leg how much you charge. My money has its limits and so does my time so I am not gonna forever shopping for the "best" deal.


Edited by Riverdog (08/15/17 04:22 PM)
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#12387370 - 08/15/17 06:06 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
RexW Offline
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 09/24/02
Posts: 3003
Loc: Sherman, TX

I tend to order from whoever has the most difficult to find item on my list. As mentioned, nobody has everything. smile

I'll add a couple of places to the list that haven't been mentioned already.

In Dallas, Barlow's tends to have the best on hand selection in the area. I usually start there to see what they have before looking elsewhere. Of course, it doesn't hurt that they are located basically across the street from where I work.

Jann's Netcraft has a smaller variety of materials, but if they have then it, then it is usually at a good price. It can be a good place to find 100 packs of 3366 hooks on sale.

Stone River Outfitters in NH. I visited this shop in February and I was impressed. They carry an excellent selection of harder to find feathers and other materials. They also stock a "select" grade of higher quality materials. For general fishing flies, it may not be as important, but material quality is critical for some of the more elaborate patterns. This shop carries items that I have had trouble finding. The website is easy enough to navigate, but I have not placed a mail order from them yet since I stocked up while I was there. But, I need/want a couple of items and plan to order soon. This shop is worth looking at if you're looking for some thing specific. Probably not the best prices, but they have a higher quality stuff in house and an excellent selection of harder to find materials. I liked this place.

For high quality feathers and materials, feathersmc.com is hard to beat. They specialize in salmon fly type materials that are difficult to find. Definitely, a limited audience.
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#12388542 - 08/16/17 03:26 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
KurtActual Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 07/25/16
Posts: 133
Loc: Cypress, TX
FishUSA has the cheapest lead eyes I can find. Sadly, they dont have a great selection of other materials I like, such as Rabbit Zonkers (Wapsi is horrible quality, and FishUSA doesnt stock Hareline)
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#12389215 - 08/16/17 10:17 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
McKinneyLonghorn Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 05/31/13
Posts: 801
Loc: McKinney
I have had good experiences with J. Stockard and Caddis, and I love Fly Tyers Dungeon. In addition to the Congo Hair, the variety of dubbing he makes are excellent.

I try and buy materials locally whenever possible and Barlow's is the best place I have found. It is near my work and with the exception of dry fly hackle, it has a very nice selection of almost all other materials.

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#12431810 - 09/18/17 04:19 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
SightCastFishing Offline
Green Horn

Registered: 06/16/17
Posts: 13
Since posting this thread, I've ordered a few times from Ole Florida Fly Shop and have had good luck. They offer Free Shipping (no minimum purchase amount) anywhere in the US and have a great selection of saltwater materials. They specialize in the materials that center around the Florida saltwater scene, so if you tie freshwater trout flies this store isn't for you. The price seems to be a little bit higher than other stores, but the free shipping makes up for that if you want to place a small order. The shipping was fast on both of my orders and was shipped out the next day, and none of the items I ordered had to be back ordered (maybe I got lucky). I will definitely keep this store on my list of preferred vendors.
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Sight Cast Fishing

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#12432147 - 09/18/17 09:07 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
pearow Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 12/15/02
Posts: 1840
Loc: Murchison, TX, USA
fly shack-p-

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#12439482 - 09/24/17 11:14 AM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
kaboboom Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 08/31/08
Posts: 135
Seems like a good thread to offer that most fabric stores carry Organza...used for wedding veils and such, but what it really is is thin strips of crystal flash with a cross weave of some brittle web that is easily pulled or brushed away. Tying some midges for a trip, and it's easy to pull away a few CF strands to add wings to size 24s, etc. I'm still working off a quarter yard Hobby Lobby gave me as a sample. The CF strips may not be big enough for larger flies, but wider strips of Organza can be used as wings formayfly spinners, etc.

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#12439567 - 09/24/17 12:29 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
Mckinneycrappiecatcher Online   content
TFF Team Angler

Registered: 12/20/10
Posts: 3413
Loc: mckinney, tx
Barlows tackle in Richardson texas, they have a store front and a huge online selection, I shop in store, but they have great mail order service as well.
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TCU class of 2019

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#12452046 - 10/03/17 05:54 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
YAKnIT Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 08/26/12
Posts: 187
I've had good experience with Feathercraft, but haven't ordered a ton of stuff.

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#12452210 - 10/03/17 08:01 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
txww Offline
Outdoorsman

Registered: 03/25/03
Posts: 121
Barlows first and then Whitetail fly tieing supply. Good people and service. Chris helms old shop.

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#12454548 - 10/05/17 04:19 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
mickfly Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 02/23/08
Posts: 1717
Loc: Fairview, TX
I've been tying for 20 years now (!) and always seem to find new materials I need to try or items I don't have for new flies I want to tie. I started tying in St. Louis, so for years my go-to shop was Feather-Craft. I still use them, especially for anything hackle-related, since they seem to get great stuff and will let me specify particular characteristics I want them to look for. Bob Marriott's has probably gotten most of my business over the last ten years, in large part due to a large selection, free shipping over $100, and consistently backordering and shipping out of stock items with no additional shipping charge. J. Stockard has gotten a lot of my recent business due to a large selection and a website that allows me to order multiple colors of a particular item at one time without going through the dreaded "continue shopping" do loop. Locally, I seldom get there, but always am glad I took the time to visit Barlow's. Never walk out empty handed. Finally, I've done more business recently with Dette Flies in Roscoe, NY. Joe Fox, the owner and direct descendant of the famous Dette family of fly tyers, is a low key, knowledgeable and persistent purveyor of high quality materials who will doggedly follow a back order for months to get you just what you asked for. I had the pleasure of meeting Joe at last week's Trout Unlimited Annual Meeting and can also attest that he's a really nice guy.

If I'm after just one or two items and don't want to place a big order, I'll often first check eBay. That's especially true on hooks, where I can often find both discounted prices and free or nominal shipping.
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Fish Friendly -- Life's too short to do it any other way

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#12457103 - 10/07/17 07:27 PM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: SightCastFishing]
WillieRip Offline
Pro Angler

Registered: 01/05/15
Posts: 530
Fly Tyer's Dungeon
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Black Warrior Lures
Slip floats that get'em in the boat!
blackwarriorlures.com

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#12462919 - 10/12/17 09:21 AM Re: Where do you buy fly tying materials? [Re: WillieRip]
BigDave1 Offline
Extreme Angler

Registered: 01/07/08
Posts: 1514
Loc: Allen, TX
J-Mac Jures has the best prices I have found and they ship fast.
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www.bigcountrybarbecue.com

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