Wednesday, March 30, 2011

A Dedicated Vise for Tube Flies

This past winter found me taking a fly tying class on tube flies.Yes after my start of commercial tying in 1994 I was taking a class again.Having a new found excitement for tube flies for swinging.While in class I was using a Eumer tube fly adapter for my vise.Yes Eumer is a good company but there is always better.Being one who Tye's with thread control it seemed that when cranking down with thread on the tube the tube would spin on the mandrel.It really didn't set well with me.
Well after that class I was in search of a dedicated vise for tying tube flies.After a very short search of the internet I found what I was looking for.A product from Bob's tube fly vise has some features that any tyer will like.First off the head of the vise moves out away from your tying table for relaxing while tying,sitting in an office chair.Like some other vises the head rotates 360 degress horizontaly but one thing unique is that it rotates 360 degress veritcally.This feature allows the tyer to melt tube liner to tubes with out having to hold the fly.
Another feature of Bob's vice is the jaws' strength. The jaws will take and hold micro tube liner. I mean really hold the liner. I inserted micro tube liner into the jaws and was able to take and pick up the vice and shake it like a puppy with a new toy. Not quite as fierce, but hopefully you get the idea of how strong this vice is. I also got a tapered mandrel from Bob. So far I have not had any problems with this vice, and have been greatly satisfied with this Michigan made product. I feel that you will also be satisfied with this vice.For more info visit Bob Braendle's website http://www.offthehooktube.

Monday, March 28, 2011

My Fit of the Month

Sorry folks for not blogging as much as I should be.I have been really busy as of lately.But I would like to tell you a little bit about a couple of companies I've been dealing with.First of we'll start will "don't care a-gonia". A couple of years ago while working in a fly shop I purchased a great divide boat bag.Thought it would be great for in the boat.It looked water proof until one night when it rained and was left in the boat.I had three inches of water in the boat and Three inches in the bag that was zipped up.Hmmmm not right I thought to myself.So I contacted the company and they said to return it but right now they were out of stock.So I wait because I am in the middle of fishing season to return this bag.Please bear in mind I keep all my flies,tippet,leaders,etc. in this bag.It's like a brief case for a guide when in the boat. So I ship the product back to "don't care a-gonia" in December.Well to day I call them up and find out That I will not be getting a replacement bag until Mid-May that's right Mid-May.My thoughts are like what the &^%$.So I asked if I could get a refund And because I didn't have the receipt for it I could only get a gift card for their products.Now this leaves me with two problems one I don't like gear all over in my boat boxes.Second is that general trout season opens in less than a month and I need to be organized.
So here's where company two comes to play.After ranting my honest opinion to company one I call company two "Simms" I ask for the cost of a large boat bag and they give me the price and also say their in stock.I ask how long it will take to arrive to my home in Michigan.The customer rep. tells me you should have it with in a week.Bet right now you can hear what I said to them.That's right ship it!Now here's another story about company two.I had a guide buddy who returned a pair of Simms waders he had.They were leaking badly after several years of use and Simms rebuilt his waders.Now that's customer service my fellow fishers.

Monday, February 28, 2011

End of February

Ah the last day of February;Thank God.Its been a long month around Northern Michigan.Been working with the Mason Grifith Chapter of Trout Unlimited with fly tying classes.which has been a fun thing to do by giving back something to the sport of fly fishing.I was also demonstrating/teaching at the Miller/Van Winkle chapter of Trout Unlimited in Petosky.I did more traveling this month than what I should have been doing.
I did get to go for driftboat parts to Tracey's boats in Newaygo one day.Figured the driftboat needs some tender loving care this year.It will soon be set up with a pedestal seat up front.Figured why not while I am at it add a second seat to the bench seat in front for those days that we have a family outing with the kids.
I look forward to this summer with Hendrickson's and Black Caddis dry fly action on the Au Sable.Its only 2 months away and I can't wait!

Friday, February 18, 2011

Finally I got a 1/2 day of Fishing

Well Folks I finally got a 1/2 day of fishing in on the Big Man. It wasn't my best day out on the river,but fun in everyway.The game plan for the day was to chase after steelhead looking in deep holes and runs.With the recent warm up that we,ve had here in Michiganthoughts of steelhead were in my mind.When we arrived at the put in spot I quickly set up the boat and rods.Motoring up stream I noticed nobody were in the favorite holes on the streach we were fishing which made me fell lucky to be out for the day.During this trip we would be hitting the holes using the chuck and duck method and indicator fishing.Our first hole produce no strikes from any fish on this cloudy dizzly day.Knowing the next two hles should produce a fish we motored the boat to a hole that has produced fish.There we ran into our first strke of the day.Using the chuck and duck method might be because of the long down time from fishing that my partner has had this winter.Thinking to myself this should be the mother of all days to be steelheading and hooking fish we motored up into the next hole.With the weather getting what felt like colder and the drizzle turning into more like rain my guest finally hooked into a frist fish on the day.This fiesty brown took a green caddis.It was a much need warm up for both me and Peter and a nice way to end the day as we had to leave so that Peter could be at a Trout unlimited board meeting.It won't belong and I will be heading back to chase Steel again and I will be looking forward from taking a break from the tying bench and fishing again with friends and clients.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

It's not a bobber;Its a strike indicator

It's not a bobber;It's a strike indicator is what Steve Vorkapich tells me when i see him.I met Steve a few years back while I was working at the Fly Factory in Grayling,Michigan.Steve is the owner of Float Master Products and trust me this is a product that works.I was never a really big fan of indicators until recently.Yes I've used the old pinch on type.I've tried Loon outdoors Bio Strike which always seemed to me to leave a sticky residue on my leader.There are others like fish pimp and thill which I had problems with because of using hand tied leaders and not being able to get a blood knot through the hole.But after seeing Steve's product I found these to be my liking.Steve's indicators have a large enough hole so blood knot will go through and are simple to use and adjust.

The type I like best is his Tear Drop which comes in 3/8 to 1 inch size with different color schemes.He also has a round version which I have yet to try.Using this product is as simple as pie.Double your leader up,moisten the latex tube and insert it in the loop of your doubled leader,pull down on leader till you get about 1/4 inch of tubing sticking up and your set.Resetting is just pulling out the tubing and adjusting your leader.

For more info on Floatmaster products go to there you can find all color schemes and styles of Steve products or you can E-mail him at

Monday, January 10, 2011

New Year New Adventures

Well folk's alot has been going on here so far in 2011.Tying flies,getting rid of some unused stuff.All makes for a hecktick day.In all reality there just not enough time in the day.Today my wife Dorothy filed the paper work to do business as Lovells Fly Tyer.Hopefully by summers end we will have our website up and running.Tomorrow we look forward to saying goodbye to an old friend.Thats right tomorrow my old fly tying vise will be up for sale.I have made the switch from Renzetti vises to Dyna King vises.I look forward to doing more business with Dyna King in the near future.I also felt the need for a new dog to go with me on unguided floats.I like having this crazy pup.You will later find out what kind of a dog she is but she has been spending time at the vise with me lately which is good.
January we have a tying table at the 6th annual Huron River Fly Tier's Symposium
in Canton Michigan ( which I'am looking forward to doing again.Its nice to see the many faces that come to these events.If your new to flyfishing or tying these are the events to attend.Tyers and guides that attend these events are willing to answer any of your questions.Everyone can learn something at these events thats how I got alot of help in my younger days.If your able to make it please stop by and say Hello.