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Gene L

Fly tying history

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15 hours ago, Gene L said:

I'm not interested in 2022 tools or techniques as I'm pretty up to date on those. I like the history and books about the history of techniques.  Fly Tying is all about 1970s methods, although they're dated if looked at in modern terms.

The Founding Flies has nothing about 2022 tools and techniques. It's all about history. Valla later came out with a different book about tying the founding flies.

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Up until the mid 70s, I used two hackle to do dry flies.  There were growers even then that raised their own chickens and bred them for longer feathers.  The Henry Darbee was one, who raised hackle and And Andy Minor was another.  It wasn't only the longer feathers they were after, but many colors had become very scarce or gone altogether.  My first "good hackles came from Metts in PA, and since I was tying a lot of custom orders, I used those up quickly.    

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Here is a good summary of the history of genetic hackle. It mentions Buck Metz and Andy Miner and other early hackle breeders.

https://flyfishingthesierra.com/genhack.htm

I used to tie dry fly hackle wound with the dull (concave) side facing forward. The reason was that, then the hackle fibers were slanted forward and resisted being pushed back by the aerodynamic drag of the cast.

If you wound them with the shiny side forward, they began to slant toward the back of the fly.

 

 

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Metz #2 saddles in grizzly (and other colors) have been my mainstay since the early eighties... In fact I still have a few of those in hand un-used - all these years later.  Mostly though, like many other saltwater tyers - the chicken feathers I prefer would be discarded out of hand by freshwater tyers... 

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