FlyStream Tested – Stonfo Kaiman Vise

Over the years I’ve owned several fly tying vises. My initial one was a cheapy made in India, and as an impoverished student, it was the best I could afford. And yes, it performed poorly.

My second vise was a ripper. Called a Dingo, it was Australian-made and did a wonderful job until I simply wore it out after tying thousands of flies. Unfortunately, Dingo vises are no longer made. The next was an expensive USA-made vise – so you can imagine how disappointed I was to watch the insides wear out and rust away within a couple of years. While my fourth vise was nice to use, the jaws bent after 12 months. They were replaced, which was something.

You could say I’ve been unlucky in vises, until my current unit, the Stonfo Kaiman. Very simply, I believe I will never have to purchase another vise again. I just love using it.

What’s to like about my Stonfo? To begin with, it’s very simple to operate, with the lever action being decisive and quick to use. (This is convertible for southpaws.) It securely holds hooks from size 20 to size 2: they never slip… at all! The centering notch in the jaws is excellent for positioning larger hooks. Then there’s the heavy pedestal base which is complimented by synthetic legs, meaning the vise does not move and is very solid to tie on. (For travel, Stonfo make a lighter vice which I use regularly and is well worth considering.)

The main shaft has an adjustable knuckle, allowing the tyer to set their preferred tying angle. Meanwhile, a smooth rotary allows a simple 360-degree rotation with a 180-degree notched stopper. (I tie traditionally but do like a rotary action for viewing the other side of flies and inverting them).

Lastly, the spring material clip is useful for controlling your thread whilst tying.

This is a vise with no unnecessary adjustments or gadgets that break and or get in the way (but there is a full range of useful accessories available should you require them). Overall, this is a serious piece of equipment that will suit anyone from the novice who needs a reliable, simple and sturdy vise; to the expert tyer who requires precision and hard-wearing equipment. You won’t regret purchasing this vise and you’ll never have to purchase another.

Available at The Flyfisher $369.95 BUY NOW