Jan 23, 2014

Homage à Marc Petitjean tools

I would like to present my favourite fly tying vise. Some years before, with little after I started fly tying, I decided to obtain a good vise.
Friends, acquaintances showed their tool kit, I obtained some from chance purchase, finally one of my friends offered his Petitjean vise to try it and let me decide after.
I heard about this vise, I knew it already from several pictures, but it appeared expensive.

I noticed that I am involved in top quality promptly as I took it in my hand. Yet before altogether fly I would have been tying with it, it has been thoroughly examined.
Perfect shaping, surface finishing, surface treatment. We checked the material qualities in a lab with my engineer colleague.
Perfect tool steel, tough, aesthetic surface treatment, a perfectly face-hardened, resistant steel.

Aesthetic packaging:

Precise, Swiss clock accuracy, nowhere a bad joint, below-, or overscaling. Beautiful coloration, elaborated surfaces, the vise is provided with a serial number.

With special, unique planning, to say brilliant mechanisms, simply and quickly decomposable, with one single tool, what is not other actually, than a steel stift, no screws no plastic handle screws, that scrapes the bars.

Everything stands to a hand easily, unique, original, real engineering record output which can be handled with one single move.

The technical one is this part till now!

If we consider it as an aim tool, then maybe even more my positive experience. Let's see it nicely into a row:

1. Different Bases
Heavy base sytem, extremly stable, aprox 1 kg, perfect for home use. There are four pockets for storage of hooks, beads, cones, etc.

Master version, having regular C-clamp (up to 100 mm table thickness), the stem and the special locking nut allow for highly flexible extension arm positions.

If required, the Master can also be used as a pedestal table vise, doing some simple moves.

Each version has two inner threaded bores, into which whetted procession axis can be screwed. According to me this is a big idea, because it is possible to install the indispensable accessories on these accessories supports.

2. Vise stem, forged steel, having distinguished quality and 8 mm diam. Can be easily demonted from the base with the mounting stick.

3. Vise body
True rotary axis. On the one end can be found the the chuck with easy parallel grips with lever, the rotation brake regulator is on the other side.
As opposed to many vises, where the statement of the torque is solved by a clamper, here the bearing axis can be screwed with a star-wheel which can be set up easily. There is no scratch, the statement is linear.
On this side can be mounted the tube fly mandel, tool used for tying tube flies.

A removable indexed handle facilitates the true rotary function of this vise.
The vise is equally suitable for right and left handed usage.

The delicate setting of the chuck (altitude, angle) can be done with the key stick.
On two of the sides of the chuck a double material clip is mounted.

The chuck can firmly fix 9/0 and #30 size hooks without a trouble.

The delicate squeeze of the hook can be made with a screw, the tightening with a simple lever. In addition to this the two cheeks are pushed mildly together with a spring placed intermediarily. When the lever is loosen, the hook does not fall, only if we compress the posterior half of the chuck with a hand.

The fixing of the hook is performed exceptionally punctually and quickly with this solution.
To say neither is needed, that the steel quality is excellent. There is no sign of abrasion after the tying of one or two thousand flies.
I do not press the barb of the hooks with the cheeks.

4. Accessories
Profile plate (background disk). Onto the rear procession axis can be mounted.
Light grey colour, adjustable up and down, back and forth, in an angle, horizontally and vertically.

Onto this axis can be mounted the bobbin rest, if there is not need for it, can moved back given it a shove. Good, practical solution!

Trush bin. Gets to the other procession axis.

In the same manner can be turned away, and if it’s needed it is possible to shove it under the hook with a move. It is possible also to disarm it with the key (with a move).

Tool rack with LED lamp.
Accessory drawn up very gently which can be fixed onto the vise stem.
Into the bores can be put the scissors, the twister, the feather pliers, the tube needles, the finisher tool.

Other tools.
Bobbin holder, many people like it, personally I don’t like it. I use it with thicker threads only, one single of his benefit, that very easy the threading of the thread.
Magic tool, very useful tool set, I use it every day quasi.

Whip-finisher. This tool is brilliant.
I hear it many times, it is said that this vise, these tools are expensive.

Doubtless, that compared to the „field” category these tools costs 50-100 times more, the middle category costs five-ten times more though.
This tool is an upper category device.
I proposed to my engineer colleague, to prepare a rough calculation about manufacturing costs of a similar quality fly tying vise.

On what I counted came in: the selling costs would be higher, than the present price.
In this Swiss quality, Petitjean vise is not expensive.
If a lasting and beautiful, high quality vise is needed, you have to sacrifice only seven fuel tank gasoline price to it.

It worths the money!

Merci, Monsieur Petitjean!


  1. What is the cost

  2. The cost is depending on the shop. You can find it on the web (ebay etc.) but not so often.
    This one, my Petitjean vise, is not for sale! :)