Bobbin and thread spools are the two halves that
when combined makes the tool we use to wrap thread
onto a fly hook. It is important to have the wire
legs on the bobbin adjusted to the proper thread
tension, so the thread will not break while tying
flies. Different threads have different breaking
strengths, either because of the thread material
and/or because of the thread weight. Different thread
spools have different spool widths that can also effect
the tension setting on the bobbin.
I only use two brands of thread spools for most of
my different brands and weight of thread. For my heavy
threads (3/0, Kevlar, ect.) I use thread spools that
Gudebrod Nylon "A" thread is sold on. I have two bobbins
set for the proper tension of the two different breaking
points of the various threads I use on the Gudebrod spools.
I have the bobbins set for 6-lb/2.7-kg tension,
and 2.5-lb/1.1-kg tension.
For 6/0 and 8/0 thread I use Waspi thread spools and
have one bobbin for each weight of thread according
the breaking strength.
I have the bobbins set for 2-lb/0.9-kg tension, and
I also have a bobbin just for use with my Pearsall Silk
thread. The bobbins are miniature spools that require a
completely different set up on the shape of the wire legs
than with the larger spools. Silk thread has the lowest
breaking strength of all my threads 0.5-lb/0.2-kg.
Nothing is as bothersome as a bobbin with the tension set
too tight, breaking thread when trying to tie a fly, or
having a hanging bobbin spooling thread because the
tension is set too loose. Small annoyances become big
annoyances, especially when it happen repeatedly and
there is a way for them to be corrected. ~Parnelli
Please check out the Fly Tying Section, on the Bulletin Board, here at FAOL too.
If you have any questions, tips, or techniques; send them to