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A Guide to Choosing the Right Fly Box

Fly Boxes Guide

There are a huge range of fly boxes on the market today. These vary from more traditional designs such as the tried as trusted Wheatley range of alloy and wooden boxes to injection moulded plastic designs. Within these types you will find the inside of the box has been configured to accept a range of fly sizes and types. For example the dry fly angler will want a compartment box to prevent hackles from being crushed on closure of the box. Non compartment boxes are generally lined with foam – this can be flat, ridged or slotted. Slots allow you to reverse the bend of the hook into the slot, you can then take the fly in and out many times without damaging the foam.

Moulded boxes increasingly have a double sided construction lined with a gasket to waterproof the box should it be dipped into the water. Some also have clear sides so you can examine the contents without opening. The downside of this is it restricts storage capacity. There are specialist boxes for tubes flies in our range as it is not possible to successfully store tubes in a conventional fly box. Some of the brands that we stock are as follows - Richard Wheatley, C&F, Snowbee, Wychwood and many more.

Which Foam to Choose

Flat Foam : A general purpose foam which can be used for most flies but less good for hackled and larger spider flies.  As the foam is flat or level a huge number of flies can be accommodated in a box. 

Ripple Foam : Good for hackled and spider flies as the hook is supported leaving the hackle free.  Also suitable for nymphs, wets and lures or streamer flies.  Suitable for small and mid sized flies.  Found either with flat foam or on its own.  Ripple Foam with a high profile is good for large, dressed or salmon flies.  Needs to be in a 1.5in box.  Not suitable for smaller flies.

Slotted Foam : For small nymph and wet flies and can be used both sides of the slot so the box holds more.  For larger flies use just one side.  

Easy Slot Foam : Holds flies upright in lines and is better for the smaller flies.

Easy Grip Foam : Good for holding flies upright with more space between them.  Can be used with both smaller and larger flies.

Still need help?

For more help and information on purchasing your new fly box please contact Sportfish on 01544 327111 or email