Whip Finisher [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Whip Finisher

09-19-2005, 06:17 PM
Hey, ya know that 20 plus, dollar tool ya get
stuck with?
Well; if you take a 6 inch piece of monofilament
line, fold it in half, pinch the loop on top of the
fly you'r tying, make you'r wraps and run the
cut end of you'r finished fly up through the mono
Pinch the mono line with you'r working hand and
pull the tying thread back through and under the
line but only to a firmness.
Heres' the trick, pull the mono loop out and you'll
have a whipped head pulled back and away from
the eye of the fly.

Give me a shot if you try it.

09-19-2005, 07:09 PM

The mono loop is only one of many ways to make a whip finish. A loop can be made of thread or small diameter piano wire to do the whip finish exactly the same way. You can also tie a whip finish completely with your fingers with two different methods. And you can tie a whip finish by using your bodkin, a nail, or a tube to produce one in the exact same manner a nail knot is tied; for believe it or not, a nail knot is nothing more than a whip finish.

However, after having tied several million flies over the years, I've found that the Materelli Whip Finisher tool is the easiest, fastest, and most precise way to tie a whip finish. Yes, it costs about $20.00; but it will last the average tyer a lifetime.

09-19-2005, 08:04 PM
I've tried whip finishing tools ,I have found nothing as easy or cheaper than my index and middle finger,a 3 or 4 wrap finish 1 or 2 seconds ,done.What it really comes down to is I have a habit of misplacing tools ,the day I can't find my fingers I'll be in big trouble. :chuckle:

09-19-2005, 08:08 PM
Neat suggestion Pap - and BTW welcome to the flyfishing forum.

I also do the finger whip, but when it comes to finishing the head of a salmon or steelhead fly or a trout fly I prefer the matarelli for ease of use and the ability to ease that final loop with precision on the hook end.

I do like the loop idea, and will give it a try!

09-19-2005, 08:47 PM
Be carefull...... using a mono loop might not work if you put to many turns of thread over it. Mono tends to be a thicker diameter line than wire. This takes up more space under the wraps and leaves play in the windings. Sometimes it is impossible to take all the play out of the entire windings when pulling on the thread.

A whip finishing tool will make sure all wraps are tight when tension is applied. The only play under the windings is a strand of thread that your using. Using a finishing tool will put the wraps exactly where you want them. Any other way using your fingers takes lots of practice.

Important Note: Always whip finish going up the taper and not toward the hook eye. This will keep all windings in place. Do it the other way and the windings will slip down the taper and destroy the shape of the fly head. I've never read anything about finishing a fly head toward the taper in any form of directions for any tool. You've heard it first on the Forum and from a Polish person.

09-20-2005, 10:59 AM
Give me a shot if you try it.

That's how I've always done it! I built a couple rods before I ever tied flies and that is how I finished the guide wraps. Seemed natural to do the same to flies when I started. Sometimes I get fancy and put a little masking tape on the tag ends of the mono so I don't lose my "tool".

Works great.



09-20-2005, 11:25 AM
Or just use zap-a-gap and do not bother whipping at all :)


Dble Haul
09-20-2005, 12:10 PM
Ah yes, better living though chemistry. :cool:

09-21-2005, 10:08 AM
Ray, ...
Always whip finish going up the taper
Wow, ... never thought about it, ... thanx ! Nice tip

09-21-2005, 10:08 AM
Ray, ...
... Always whip finish going up the taper ...
Wow, ... never thought about it, ... thanx ! Nice tip

09-21-2005, 02:44 PM
Chris.... thanks! It's one of those tying problems you never really give it any consideration. We all just rewind and do it again. Never give it any thought that there is a solution to the problem. Hah!... so simple..... Why didn't I think of this before? :Eyecrazy:

09-21-2005, 04:21 PM
His name was Stan Czekanski and it was his first well intentioned attempt at "free hand whipping"...
...he inadvertently whip finished seveal fingers of both hands to the fly securely mounted on his DynaKing... :whoa:
...after several days of not being able to eat or attend to basic bodily functions he dialed 911 with his nose and was finally set free by Yarmouth Fire & Rescue armed with the "Jaws of Life"... :D

This winter Stan is planning on mastering "SOFTEX"... :eek: