He scrunched his nose, adjusted his reading glasses and peered at the lime-green fishing line as he twisted it around the pen-sized brass tool. Looping the line on the end, he pulled it taut and looked at the small knot.
"This is great," Lary said. "When you're trying to get the line through the hole and you've got 4-foot swells, it makes it very hard."
Lary plunked down a $20 bill and got $8 back along with his purchase -- a Cinch Tie.
Lary and a fishing pal were among those buying Cinch Ties recently at a recent Sports Show at State Fair Park.
Children lured by the novelty of the gadget, those whose eyesight is no longer 20/20 and anglers who figure the extra 10 to 20 seconds spent tying a knot by hand is time their hook is not in the water, have crowded around the booth to watch demonstrations.
If you fish, you tie knots.
A couple decades ago, Ken Koehler got fed up trying to tie his hooks, so he invented a tool to make it easier. It's about the size of a pocket screwdriver, brass, with a pocket clip.
For a few dollars extra, anglers can buy a Cinch Tie with a retractable nail clipper they can cinch to their belts and use to cut fishing line.
"It's fun when the young kids come up, they're like 11 or 12, and we show them how it works," said Bob Burton, Koehler's nephew. "They go, 'Sweet' and their friend goes, 'Cool.'"
The Cinch Tie can cinch-tie 14 different knots, including a basic knot, also known as the fisherman's knot because it's the most common. Other knots: Rapala, Trilene, double clinch, bobber stopper and hook snell.