AWJAM FLY THREADER
Frank Robinson finds an Australian gadget that does the job.
We have all experienced the frustration. The light is poor, the fish are rising. You know what they are taking but no matter how hard you try you cannot thread the line through the eye of the #14 or #16. In fact you cannot even see the eye!
I have tried all manner of approaches. For example, holding the fly up to the moon. Looking in the direction of east into the glow of the rising sun. Using a piece of white plastic and a headlight.
As we all know, sometimes you fluke it and the line goes through, but it is a hit and miss process usually taxing your patience. Using a bigger fly may work but we all know how selective trout can be.
Recently I found an Australian-made device called the AWJAM fly threader—named after developer Alan Wragg. I was somewhat sceptical when I first saw this black plastic cube measuring 37x14 mm with a groove and lip on it to magnetically hold the eye of the hook. But it works! The threader is attached to a lanyard which goes around the user’s neck, and comes with a card which contains the instructions.
All that needs to be done is to place the eye of the hook in the notch in the groove and slide the line up the groove until it protrudes beyond the end of the threader. Simply pull the line through, lift the line with the hook attached and tie it off.
I found that you do not have to see the eye of the hook to thread it, provided it is placed in the groove, as the magnet and the groove are aligned in such a way that the line can only go through the eye. I also found that even if the threader is dropped the fly stays in the groove. It is imperative that the eye of the hook is not blocked and the line is cut at an angle, although this should be a common practice when threading small flies. Occasionally the line may not go through the first time if the hook is not placed in the groove correctly or the line is kinked.
This device is so simple it surprises me that it has not been thought of before.