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Fly Tying


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Everything posted by Alex_F

  1. Cheers NJF. The thing I was after was a nymph that only reflected on the back and belly. If you look at a real midge pupae you'll see that there's no gas bubbles along the centre line, only in the upper and lower segments. I achieved what I set out to and it certainly hammers fish but it only comes into its own on days when they're being reeeaaally picky. Usually a standard, simple buzzer imitation will do perfectly well. ATB Alex
  2. Hi Travis, here's a basic dyeing step by step that I did a while ago, you might find it useful. For a medium olive I use a mix Veniard's brown olive and dark olive. For golden olive I use Jacquard sun yellow over dyed with Veniard grey. In the SBS I was using Veniard's dyes but it works equally well with Jacquard. The only real difference with the SBS and now is that I got some glacial acetic acid and diluted it to a 15% solution which is a bit stronger than your average vinegar. Other than that I use pretty much the same procedure. I mention the importance of keeping a note of time and quantities, this only holds true if you want consistency of results over a number of capes dyed the same colour. If it's just a one off then there's no need. I can't comment on RIT as I've not used it myself. Even so, AK Best's book is a good read with lots of handy hints. Hope this helps. ATB Alex
  3. If you're interested, you'll find a full SBS for the above pattern here. Have fun.
  4. A new addition to the fly pattern database has been submitted by Alex_F: Electro-static Buzzer
  5. Do these look anything like them Arkle? An old friend of mine went to some extraordinary lengths years ago to dye his Seals fur and other bits and pieces using natural dyes and mordants. He even used Horses (not Ass) urine to get Rogan's famous fiery brown. Now me, I'm a considerably less obsessive but I tried to emulate the shades he attained by using normal acid dyes. The yellow is pretty straight forward, bright yellow with an over dye of very weak insect green. The fiery brown is a blend of shades but gives the warm golden brown glow of the original when seen by transmitted light whilst looking bracken orange/brown by reflected light. That took some experimentation. I ask as he may have been copying Rogan's colours as he was certainly tying in the 70's. The picture makes them look a bit drab but it's the best I could get without setting up a decent light source.
  6. Not a bad attempt TS. The use of "Straddlebug" dressings as they are known is pretty much isolated to the big loughs of Ireland and to some extent Scotland so it's unlikely you'll get much of a response to your dressing on a board that's heavily US based. It's not a reflection of your tying, it's just that most folks won't know what it is. If I might give you a little constructive criticism. Try using a different coloured thread, say olive or yellow. The thread colour makes all the difference to the shade of a dubbed body. Try getting hold of some real Seals fur, it's miles better than Antron IMO. The ribbing really wants to be a bit thinner with slightly closer turns and the head's a bit big. Having said all that your fly will still catch fish. As Jon says, it's a fly for a brighter day. I occasionally use a different version of the Gosling that has a golden olive/ golden brown Seal body and the hackles are Golden Pheasant red body feather and palest bronze mallard (see attachment). My favourite Straddlebug dressing has to be one of the many French Partridge variations. A large Golden Olive Dabbler is something I often use these days. Keep up the good work. Best wishes. Alex
  7. Edit: Double post. Sorry
  8. Or Formaldehyde. If this pelt in question is the Golden Pheasant skin you've recently bought then I'd leave it alone and pluck individual feathers and wash them. The reason is that a dry GP skin can be very thin and is liable to turn to mush in water. If the skin in question is robust enough then by all means wash it. For drying skins and capes place a few layers of newspaper topped by a few layers of kitchen towel on a flat surface. Place your skin on top then repeat with layers of kitchen towel and news paper to form a sandwich then place some heavy books on top to create a press. This will help flatten the skin and soak up excess water. After a day remove the skin and allow to air dry or blow dry at a low heat setting.
  9. Alex_F

    Seal Fur

    I get mine from Canada in bulk and dye my own but if you want to try ordering from the UK the best place would be from Steve at Cookshill who has a range of 22 shades. Seals fur, accept no imitations. :headbang:
  10. Glad to see you're back in action John and just as good as ever. :thumbsup:
  11. All four of your recent flies are just spot on. I can tell you're tying up for the Duck Fly. With any luck I'll be over on Corrib / Mask in the middle of April for a bit of Duck Fly and Olive shenanigans.
  12. Arkle is correct, the closest pic was in Twofingerz' post http://www.fliesonline.co.uk/erol.html#1558x2330. The dressing I use these days is: Hook: 8 - 12 L/S. Silk: Red. Tag: Globrite floss shade 4. (fluoro red). Body: as tag. Rib: Flat gold tinsel. Hackle: Three turns of long hot orange hen. Wing: Hot orange Calf tail, Arctic Fox or Marabou. It's a very effective lure from August to October when the fish are seriously on daphnia.
  13. I don't usually comment on the Salmon forum as there's only so many times you can say "that's bloody marvellous" and sound genuine but with this fly I'd refer back to the recent thread here Your fly looks great to me pilot not because it's a work of art but because it actually looks more authentic and fishy than many of the supremely manicured patterns I see here. Not to say that they aren't brilliant examples of technique but your fly has that certain something that others seem to lose in the attainment of perfection.
  14. I use a very similar process to this with the exception of using 40% volume peroxide and Wella products as opposed to Clairol simply because Wella is the easiest to obtain where I am. Depending on what feathers you wish to bleach you may have to be very careful as the bleaching solution may cause some damage to the barbules and hooks used to marry the barbs together. If it's capes then you should be fine. Also, make sure you wash them thoroughly before and after bleaching. Normal dish washing detergent is ok but I prefer Venpol or Synthrapol as they're considerably less "sudsy". :dunno: As far as dyes go I mainly use Veniard dyes but have started to use Jacquard acid dyes too and had very good results with them. There is a product in the US called Fly Dye but I'm afraid I've no experience with it.
  15. Just look at it as your time to have your feet up and let others take the strain for a while. Best of luck John for a speedy recovery. :thumbsup:
  16. That sounds very familiar! But in Ayrshire we used to fish the upstream worm as well, perfectly legally. It's a great primer for fishing upstream wets later.
  17. The above method is by far the best but as Ashley says get white belly hair, it pretty much pure white to start with and is the #1 stuff for dying bright primary or secondary colours.
  18. Alex_F

    Hook poll

    Partridge because of their quality and the fact that they're the only ones who make anything like the YMM2A which is the closest you'll get to the discontinued CS7, the perfect hook profile for wets IMO.
  19. Nice one there Sparce. The Hen Pheasant may seem a bit light as the original dressing is HP centre tail rather than HP primary but don't let that little detail worry you, plenty of people use HP primary as it's a damn sight easier to work with than the tail fibres and still catches fish. The ribbing is a little close for my liking, you might find slightly wider oval and fewer turns looks better. As with many things, personal choice affects the way a pattern looks and there's probably a different amber for every tier but you've made a good amber there. The palmer looks good and is a great red game shade, it might help if you add a two turn collar of hen to bulk it out a little at the throat but that's just my personal preference for my waters. The red head looks great and I'm going to incorporate that into a few of my tyings. As Bob says the tail's a smidgen too long but I'm sure the fish aren't going to mind. Please give my best wishes to your wife and rest assured you'll both be in my thoughts and prayers. Kindest regards. Alex
  20. Originally Bumbles were probably a Derbyshire (English midlands) style of dry fly, mainly used for Grayling and dressed with the hackle tied "buzz" fashion. We know it more commonly these days as a palmered hackle. Palmers were fished both dry and damp, ie on, in or just below the surface. Nowadays we consider it as mainly a wet pattern which can be ginked up to sit on the surface. Traditionally Bumbles had a Grouse shoulder hackle where as Palmers had a Cock or Hen shoulder hackle. Traditional Palmers would include: Black Palmer, Red Palmer, Bibio, Zulu, Blue Zulu and Soldier Palmer. T.C. Kingsmill-Moore created his Bumble patterns by combining the ideas and colour schemes of killer patterns such as the Mallard and Claret, Golden Olive and the Invicta with the "Buzz" style of tying. As the name implies, the Buzz style of tying, using a palmered hackle was designed to give the fly the illusion of movement and life. This is achieved because of transmitted light. The importance of transmitted light cannot be stressed enough when it comes to Irish and to an extent Scottish wet patterns. The silhouette of the fly is important but the over all impression of the fly is paramount. The use of different coloured Seals Fur blends, the loose dubbing and the reflective rib look scruffy by reflected light but like church windows they positively glow with translucence when viewed by transmitted light. Add to that the scintillating halo created by light coming through the mixed hackle and you have a killer recipe for a loch style bob fly. The most well known Bumbles these days are the Claret, Golden Olive and Fiery Brown Bumbles although the Bruiser is also well worth a throw. They are usually fished on the bob and drawn just under the surface and dibbled in the surface film at the end of the retrieve.
  21. One of my all time favourite spiders. Really useful all season, not just when there's Olives about. Great stuff!
  22. Nice fly there FF, bring out the old favourites! Just a bit of constructive criticism, try to get the tippets even so that the black barring shows up evenly. Also, try a full swept back collar hackle with the wing tied after, it makes for a better looking hackle than a false/beard hackle IMO. Keep up the good work. :thumbsup:
  23. Spot on Roy, I've also seen it with green Teal Primary which a beautiful looking fly, a green Butcher I suppose. I prefer a tail of shade 5 glo-brite floss to the red Goose/ Ibis sub, the local Rainbows seem to like it. I've recently been reading R.C. Bridgett's "Loch Fishing in Theory and Practice"(1924) and he reckons the Butcher's best as a split Crow wing semi Clyde style bob fly which surprised me so I'll have to give it a pop this coming season.
  24. Firstly let me say I know absolutely nothing about Catskill flies but... I did a google search on "catskill messenger" and found it was a newspaper. My guess is that either someone working for the newspaper or contributing to it, named the fly. Could it be worth trying to find old copies of the catskill messenger and seeing if there was a regular fishing column? Just an idea.
  25. Very simple and guaranteed effective Buzzer/Chironomid patterns There's few more in on-site pattern database. Try searching the db for Buzzers too as that's a common name for Chironomid nymphs in the UK.
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