Rite Bobbin: Adjustable Tension

Pictured above is the Half Hitch Rite Bobbin. (Photograph from www.ritebobbin.com)
Pictured above is the Half Hitch Rite Bobbin. (Photograph from http://www.ritebobbin.com)

Maybe I am a little behind the times, but as of recent I have been cranking out wraps at the fly tying bench with an adjustable tension bobbin. I frequently pop in to see Kevin Compton at Performance Flies in Spruce Creek as a good excuse to buy fly tying material and tools. One day while browsing the racks, my curiosity got the best of me and I decided to pick up a Rite Bobbin.

At first, it was very clumsy in my hand due to it only have one arm, and being a bit larger than the bobbins I was previously accustomed to. Having an adjustment period is typical for any new tool. Now, not only do I prefer adjustable tension, but the Rite Bobbin feels very comfortable in my hand. I have the standard model and the half hitch model, which are only two of the five different models that Rite Bobbin offers. I would recommend either one, although the o-ring grip on the half hitch has become my favorite. It is very nice to be able to adjust the tension to match thread strength with just a couple clicks on the brass wheel of the bobbin. Along with matching thread strength, it is nice to be able to match the tension to the material being used. For example, when tying with deer hair or cinching down Glo-Bugs Yarn, it is nice to being able to tighten up the tension of the bobbin with ease. On the other hand, it is also nice to be able to lighten up the tension to quickly move through thread while wrapping thread bodies. I am aware that it is possible to adjust the tension of a standard bobbin by bending the arms, but that is no where near as convenient.

Now that I am accustomed to tying with the Rite Bobbins that offer adjustable tension, tying on other types of bobbins just doesn’t feel the same. For me, it was well worth it to break outside of my comfort zone and try a very different type of bobbin. Do you use adjustable tension bobbins? If so, what are your thoughts or applications?


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