Tungsten beads

morayfisher

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Hi all,

I’m looking to start tying some bead headed nymphs but haven’t bought any beads before so a couple of questions.

What difference does it make whether slotted or just drilled and countersunk?

VFM, Maxcatch (on Amazon) appear a lot cheaper than some others. Are they worth a punt?
 

wobbly face

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Slotted are for use with jig hooks as they were designed to sit on the knuckle/angle behind the eye.
Drilled/countersunk for all others. That doesn't mean you can't mix and match. There are also OFF beads, again for use with standard and curved hooks.
Price of tungsten beads, beware of chancers!!!! The more tungsten in the mix, the heavier and better the quality and higher the price. It's difficult to know or test how much tungsten is in a mix. I have read that tungsten isn't attracted to magnets. So the more tungsten, the less attracted to a magnet. However, there are several types of tungsten, some attracted to magnets and some not.
Also, painted beads are lighter than plain or adonised for size.
I've never bought or even seen the Maxcatch beads to comment.
 

morayfisher

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Slotted are for use with jig hooks as they were designed to sit on the knuckle/angle behind the eye.
Drilled/countersunk for all others. That doesn't mean you can't mix and match. There are also OFF beads, again for use with standard and curved hooks.
Price of tungsten beads, beware of chancers!!!! The more tungsten in the mix, the heavier and better the quality and higher the price. It's difficult to know or test how much tungsten is in a mix. I have read that tungsten isn't attracted to magnets. So the more tungsten, the less attracted to a magnet. However, there are several types of tungsten, some attracted to magnets and some not.
Also, painted beads are lighter than plain or adonised for size.
I've never bought or even seen the Maxcatch beads to comment.
Maxcatch seem to offer a range of sizes and colours on Amazon around £10-£12 per hundred beads but no mixed packs. In the details it says 97% tungsten.
 

baca157

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Hi John,

I second wobblyface’s warning. Beware of where to buy. Another thing about slotted beads is that a lot of cheapo beads have massive slots drilled into them meaning they are much lighter for their size.

I get all my beads from one of two sources:

Tungsten Beads Plus - can’t fault Joel’s products. His small slot beads are the real deal.

Bogdan Gawlik in Poland - again top quality although slots are slightly larger than in Tungsten Beads Plus. He has a massive selection though. The only problem with Bogdan Gawlik is that I am not sure if he still ships to the UK due to Brexit/VAT fiasco.

Cheers,
Sebastian
 

pati

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Hi John,

I second wobblyface’s warning. Beware of where to buy. Another thing about slotted beads is that a lot of cheapo beads have massive slots drilled into them meaning they are much lighter for their size.

I get all my beads from one of two sources:

Tungsten Beads Plus - can’t fault Joel’s products. His small slot beads are the real deal.

Bogdan Gawlik in Poland - again top quality although slots are slightly larger than in Tungsten Beads Plus. He has a massive selection though. The only problem with Bogdan Gawlik is that I am not sure if he still ships to the UK due to Brexit/VAT fiasco.

Cheers,
Sebastian


Have to agree on tungsten beads plus, good choice of colour too.

Tungsten is heavier and more expensive than brass. I generally don’t use euro nymphing techniques so I find brass more than heavy enough for 80% of my fishing. The right size brass bead goes to the depth and drifts, I find tungsten beads to always sink and never really drift unless the current is very strong
 
Last edited:

morayfisher

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Hi John,

I second wobblyface’s warning. Beware of where to buy. Another thing about slotted beads is that a lot of cheapo beads have massive slots drilled into them meaning they are much lighter for their size.

I get all my beads from one of two sources:

Tungsten Beads Plus - can’t fault Joel’s products. His small slot beads are the real deal.

Bogdan Gawlik in Poland - again top quality although slots are slightly larger than in Tungsten Beads Plus. He has a massive selection though. The only problem with Bogdan Gawlik is that I am not sure if he still ships to the UK due to Brexit/VAT fiasco.

Cheers,
Sebastian
Thanks Sebastian,

Your help and encouragement when I started tying was invaluable but my efforts have been sporadic for various reasons not least when my hamfisted attempts have disheartened me somewhat.
However I’m now at home more than I have been in 20 years and have a space where I don’t have to pack everything away all the time.
I have put in a few hours practice over consecutive days more recently. This seems to be paying off, in so much as I like the look of a few of the latest ones.
It looks like Tungsten Beads Plus is the place to go but I’ll also try some Maxcatch ones for a tenner just out of interest.

All the best

John
 

david barnes

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Maxcatch is a Chinese company who use aliexpress as their main platform. Try using aliexpress and type in tungsten beads maxcatch into the search facility, you’ll find they’re much cheaper to buy from there.
 

BobP

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Funky Fly Tying and Fulling Mill also do reliable quality beads. I do a lot of nymphs using beads and these are two that I use. I also use Bogdan for the Off beads which means you can get a jig effect with a normal hook. I've been meaning to email them to see what they will be ding re orders from the UK. I ordered a few from a place in Eire and they arrived OK with no issues other than it took a few days longer than I expected. They seem OK and were not expensive. The postage was 5 Euros.
 

mackiia1

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Nov 2, 2011
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Waterford - Ireland
Hi all,

I’m looking to start tying some bead headed nymphs but haven’t bought any beads before so a couple of questions.

What difference does it make whether slotted or just drilled and countersunk?

VFM, Maxcatch (on Amazon) appear a lot cheaper than some others. Are they worth a punt?
Have a look at Peter Driver's webshop.
Tungsten beads (piscari-fly.com)

Nice guy to deal with. If you email him he will advise on what you need.
 

BobP

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That's the guy I was referring to. Took a few days longer than I thought, but I did order just after the new year so things may have got sorted out by now.
 

mackiia1

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That's the guy I was referring to. Took a few days longer than I thought, but I did order just after the new year so things may have got sorted out by now.
International postal services are all over the place at the moment Bob.
I have been buying bits and pieces over the last few weeks and some stuff has taken over 2 weeks.
I had my stuff from Peter in 2 days.
 

pentlandflyman

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Mid Lothian
Avoid cheap beads and stick to sellers that have been around and well used for a good while. I was given some cheap beads from China and the holes were all different and some wouldn't go on a hook and others slipped off over the eye. Paint finishes were also patchy and uneven and metallic finishes tarnished easily. I use Joel at tungsten beads plus and I've never had an issue and I've bought thousands over many years from him. If I need a colour he doesn't sell I have used get slotted or bogdan gwalik but I doubt they will supply to the UK just now.
 

Spider

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I had my stuff from Peter Driver in a day. Also got a 2wt rod from him that's v good. He's one of the good guys.
 

shortcircuit

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Apr 18, 2016
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Peter Driver all the way. Great selection and posts out almost as soon as he gets the order. Quality is top class. I heard him interviewed and he set up the company because he was sick of bad quality tungsten beads and he wanted to buy direct off the factory. Of course the minimum order was tens of thousands of beads, so he set up the company in order to sell the excess beads to other anglers
 

bluezulu49

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Dublin, Ireland
Peter Driver all the way. Great selection and posts out almost as soon as he gets the order. Quality is top class. I heard him interviewed and he set up the company because he was sick of bad quality tungsten beads and he wanted to buy direct off the factory. Of course the minimum order was tens of thousands of beads, so he set up the company in order to sell the excess beads to other anglers
I second this. Ordered beads on Sunday, posted yesterday, arrived this morning. Unbeatable service for Ireland. Delivery might be longer to UK.
 

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