Re: Time To Talk About Some New Fly Swaps;
Deanmt, I appreciate your thoughtful criticism. Mudbug, sorry if I offended. True, I have done one swap, and it seemed to be a bit of a clusterfrig.
I do believe that the individual swaps could be more labor specific ie 'big fancy hoppers' or 'guide midges, 3 steps and less'. I think this would avoid feelings of being slightly jilted when receiving flies that are just so simple it hurts [ie, why did I spend so much darn time?! I could have tied something simple!]. But then the whole thing gets dumbed down to the most played out simple ties because people realize that is what they will get!
I guess my argument is that if people come to expect receiving flies that are so simple that they are not learning anything, they will not be inclined to produce flies that are any more involved that what they have received in the past. This produces a sort of 'tragedy of the commons' as the incentive is to not waste too much time producing anything special, due to the fact that very likely nothing special will be received.
"Hey can I trade this beautiful colorful ornate foam cicada for 2 wraps of dubbing and hackle on a hook?" Answer, "NO!" It just makes people feel a little ripped off by the whole swap process.
Once again, not a bad fly found in the swap I received. They are ALL great flies and will produce fish somewhere. I just felt that some people put in way more effort than others. There were 3-4 flies that were phenomenal; 3-4 that were good and kind of standard; 3-4 that were so simple that I wondered why they needed to be shipped across the continent... Yes some of my favorite ties are nothing but thread and hackle, 2 simple steps, but I would not try to trade them for something much greater. Just people taking advantage of a good situation and the fact that some people will put in a lot of time.
I would rather make this argument, offend a few, and send in some really cool flies next time than not make the argument and just send in something that takes 30 seconds. Thanks for reading, TB