FlyDome - Flies: in domes
Ever wanted to have your flies displayed? To remember the fish you caught, the places you saw or just because the fly is so pretty?
Classic flies for display in your home or office.
“If you tie a line to your fly and cast it at a fish, it’s craft. If you put it under glass and admire it, it’s art”
I've been tying flies since 1990 – that’s 26 years now. During that time I’ve tied trout, saltwater, warmwater and full dressed salmon flies. I was previously the fly tying editor for Powerfibers magazine, and my flies were featured in "Tube flies 2: Evolution".
I'm not claiming to be an expert in everything tying related (far from it), but chances are if it flutters, flies, swims, dives or otherwise snuffs it near water and is eaten by fish (and even some things that aren't - yes the salmon flies) I've either tied it or looked into tying it. I’ve even got a modest collection of flies tied by famous tiers and/or famous fishermen.
During that time, I’ve tied flies that were horrible (but still caught fish), flies that were OK (but still caught fish) and some that were even quite pretty (and yes, still caught fish). I always thought that my better looking flies, my famous flies and my flies that had caught fish – especially those that caught memorable fish - deserved to be put somewhere they could be admired. The problem was always that small, furry, sharp things either got lost, collected dust or were in the way. I had enough trouble getting some of them back from the river (sheep skin fly patches – bah!, Tackyflyfishing’s Tube – yay!)
I even have the fly that I caught my biggest fish on – a “Zonker” that hooked a 25lb salmon on the Muskegon River in Michigan back in 2004. I wanted to have this fly somewhere safe, but visible and on display so I could remember that day.
I've tried various ways over the years - Riker mounts, shadow boxes, flat mounts, they have all had their problems. They are expensive, bulky, one sided and impractical.
Recently, I found a solution. I’ve located a source of affordable glass domes, and have worked out a way to display my flies inside them in a way that keeps them safe, keeps them viewable from all sides and keeps them displayed in a way that they can be easily dusted and easily moved from place to place.
I’m so happy with the way they’ve turned out, that I’ve decided to offer my services to the fly fishing community at large. I know some of you will have flies that you want mounted, some will have a wish list of flies they’d like, and some would like a display of the quintessential trout flies. Some people will want these for themselves, and other people will want them to give as gifts or momentoes for clients.
1) Standard - The Super Six
Pick a fly from the 6 options below, and I will custom tie it, mount it under a dome and send it to you, with an engraved plaque noting the fly's name.
2) Your Fly (or Lure)
If you're a fly shop, a guide, a club, a fisherman or a fly tyer this is the one that will interest you.
As a fly shop or a guide most of your customers end their day with a photo of them with their fish, sometimes if they are lucky with the fly tucked away in their flybox. Imagine if you could now offer them the fly presented in a glass dome with a customised plaque commemorating the day. Not only does it give them a great memory, but you can put your own sticker underneath and generate repeat and referral business for yourself.
Supply me with a fly of your choice and I'll custom mount it under a dome, with an engraved name plaque (your choice of inscription – up to 3 lines). I‘ll even mount small lures or other small mementoes, provided they fit inside the dome.
3) The Twofer
Pick 2 flies from the 6 options below , and I will custom tie them, mount them under a dome each and send it to you, with an engraved plaque noting the fly's name. Save a little on each fly, and on postage with this option. Alternatively, select The Twofer and choose to have 2 "Your Flies" to save on postage.
4) The Six Pack
Choose a set of all of the Super 6 flies and take advantage of an earlybird discount. You will get 1 of each of the Super 6 including 2 Quill Midges (7 flies in total) inside 6 domes and you can also add on extra single flies to this for the single fly costs noted above. Alternatively, select The Six Pack and choose to have 6 "Your Flies" to save on postage. You can also choose any combination of the Super Six and Your Flies you might want - just note it when the campaign survey comes around at the end.
The Super 6 flies
I've selected my version of the desert island flies. If I was dropped anywhere on the planet with just 6 trout flies to choose, I know that these 6 would work (subject to my own shortcomings of course!)
Each of the flies used in this project will be tied by myself - to order, and will use materials sourced and dyed by myself where possible. They will be tied as close as reasonable to the original patterns (for example, the Parachute Adams uses muskrat fur for the body, not grey rabbit), whilst still making use of modern materials and methods to produce the best examples of flies that you will be proud to display under glass in your home or office.
Developed by the Dutch tyer Hans Weilmann following a trip to Montana in 1982, this pattern takes the extra high floating CDC feather and builds it into a dubbed style body with an elk hair wing over the top to give a classic caddis fly profile. The CDC & elk has become a favourite everywhere it is used around the world and is deadly in both fast and slow water.
First tied by famed Colorado tier John Barr during a 3 year development period beginning in 1993, the Copper John is durable, heavy and buggy. It forms the essential weight in Barr’s Hopper Copper Dropper system, but is equally deadly fished on its own.
One of the first and best known nymph patterns, the hare’s ear can also be tied as a wet fly or as a dry fly. Easy to tie well, but deadly on fish, it's both attractive and deadly.
The Adams is one of the best known dry flies in the trout world. So how do you improve on it? Change the barred wings for a highly visible wing post and a high floating parachute hackle. Deadly on trout in all sizes from #10 to #24, the Parachute Adams imitates everything from midges to stoneflies and deserves a place in anyone’s fly box.
In winter, trout switch from big meal tickets like mayflies, caddis and stoneflies, to the flies that are on all water all year – midges. The quill bodied pupa traces its ancestry to the same materials as classic flies like the Quill Gordon, but uses modern materials like dyed biots and super clear, super tough epoxy glues to make life like, virtually indestructible pieces of trout candy. Because these flies are small, 2 of them – each tied slightly differently – will be set in each dome.
Everyone's second favourite fly, the woolly bugger has its own cult following, as well a mass of derivatives and variations. The classic olive bugger with grizzly hackle and subtle pearlescent flash has caught more fish than most fishermen see in their lifetimes. Remember the advice of just about every trout guide at some point has been - if in doubt, tie on a bugger.
5) Gold Level
Because you might want a fly that's not listed. Within reason, I can custom tie any trout fly, basic saltwater fly, warmwater fly or hairwing salmon fly and mount it for you. To make it even more special, the gold level comes with a hand-drawn picture of your chosen fly in size A5. The Gold level is restricted to just 3 pledges. Feel free to contact me to find out more.
Approximately 10cm/4” high and 6.5cm/2.5”in diameter, the dome is made of smooth clear borosilicate glass, resting on a reconstructed cork base. It will protect yet enhance the fly within whilst allowing viewing from any angle.
The flies will be gently lifted into the centre of the display using a super fine wire, allowing the fly to be viewed from all angles, yet remain safe and protected. A black plaque engraved with the fly name is attached to the base. Pledgers who choose the "Your Fly" option can choose up to 3 lines of engraving (noting that the more you choose, the smaller the writing will be)
Postage is extra and will be prompted as part of the pledging process. One question I have been asked – why is the postage so high? The answer - Because I'm shipping delicate glass products worldwide. I've worked hard to find a way that the domes can be shipped assembled, but protected. Domes will be shipped either singly or in groups of 2 in heavy duty boxes and bubble wrap. The upside? Your dome and fly will arrive in the same condition I hand made it for you. The downside? The boxes cost more to post – but I think it’s worth it to protect your investment.
I've contributed to several Kickstarters as a pledger, and successfully completed one as a campaigner (FishPics). After my first few domes, the people I made them for told me I should go into business. In order for me to do that I'd need 2 things:
1) Minimum orders to see if there is market for them and to avail of the benefit of ordering materials in bulk; and
I've set the target intentionally low. I've pledged to a few niche KS campaigns that didn't meet the target and was really disappointed. The target is the minimum to order enough domes to complete the orders with the materials I already have. Once I get above that I will use the funds to order and make the domes and their contents.
If there is enough demand, I will use the funds to develop my website www.artandfishing.com properly so that I can offer these domes on an ongoing basis, and also more FishPics.
Please feel free to reach out with any questions or suggestions. I'm happy to help or advise.
Risks and challenges
Once the campaign is completed, the various components will be purchased. As i will be buying the domes in bulk these will take a few weeks to arrive. In the meantime a survey will be sent to all backers requesting that they advise me of what selection of flies they want. Flies will be tied and plaques also ordered.
The main risk is the amount of time for the domes to be made and shipped. As they are being made as part of a special order for me, their delivery to me for assembly and onward transmission is my main risk.
I have successfully completed a previous Kickstarter campaign (FishPics) where I kept all backers fully up to date and delivered all the pledges well in advance of the predicted timeframe.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)