What is UV Cure Resin and How Do We Use It?

Picture yourself out on the river. The fish are hungry and biting like crazy. You’ve found the hot fly only to look down and see that it is beginning to fall apart from the abuse it has been taking. This can be very frustrating for fly-anglers alike, especially if that is the last of that pattern in your box. Having well tied, secure flies can be a game changer out on the water. This is where UV Cure Resin comes into effect. UV Cure Resins are viscous bonding agents used to securely coat thread wraps, build up glossy heads, or coat the bodies of flies. The advantage of using resins over head cement is drying time. There is no rush when using UV Cure Resins. Apply as much or as little as you need and when you’re ready, zap it with the UV torch and you’re set. In this tips and tricks video of the week, Tim Flagler of Tightline Productions and the Orvis Company demonstrates and explains the benefits to using UV Cure Resins.

How to Effectively Use UV Cure Resins

  1. Select your resin of choice for the fly you are tying.
  2. Apply a small amount of resin on a notepad or similar surface.
  3. Using your bodkin, apply a small amount of resin to your fly.
  4. Add as much or as little as you’d like to the fly before torching it.
  5. Select the appropriate UV torch based on the resin being used and apply the light for 20-30 seconds or until hardened and dry.

What UV Resin Should I Use?

Loon UV Clear Fly Finish

Image Courtesy of Trident Fly Fishing

Available in three options:

UV Flow is the same viscosity as water and locks in threads as a head cement and provides a super-thin coating to heads, bodies or midges.

UV Thin is viscous enough to build heads or wing cases, but thin enough to coat bodies on small, low-profile flies.

UV Thick is perfect for building big heads, bodies, and wing cases.

Features Include:

  • New UV Blocking application needles
  • New Taper-Tip needle prevents clogs
  • Build fly heads and bodies
  • Instantly cures with sunlight or UV light
  • Brush applicator included
  • Needle tip included for precision tying
  • Available in 1/2 oz and 2 oz

Solarez Thin Hard UV Cure Resin

Image Courtesy of Trident Fly Fishing

Features Include:

Thin – Hard  is approximately the same viscosity as 30 wt. motor oil. It is easy to apply a thin, shellac-like clear coat that will cure in seconds when irradiated with sunlight or our UV flashlight. This product is a very durable aliphatic urethane which characteristically does not yellow with age.

How to Use:

Apply in shade. Irradiate with intense UV light for ONE SECOND. Wait 15 seconds. Irradiate again for one second. Wait. Complete with 30 full seconds of UV light. This technique will reduce heat & shrinkage.

While these are only two options on the market, resins come in all viscosities and colors. Do some trial and error to determine which resin suits your needs the best. It is very important to have the correct UV torch as well. Read up on the resin you choose and then select the torch appropriate for that resin. You want to get the most out of your flies after spending hours at the vise. UV Cure Resin is a great way to do that. Happy tying!

For more tying tips, check out Tightline Productions on Youtube by clicking here.

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