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rockworm

Protecting Feather Quill Bodies

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For myself, I am happy fishing with a fly that will only last a couple of good fish. But I am about to tye up some quill-bodied stoneflies for a friend and I would like to enhance their ruggedness without detracting from the appearance of the quill. I have tried head cement and Superglue, but both have deleterious effects akin to wrapping a piece of jewelry in Saran. Does anyone know of a cement that will disappear into the body without leaving a visible residue?

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Are you applying the glue on the body or under it? What kind of head cement? Is it the shine you're objecting to, or is the cement whitening? If the latter, try a lacquer-based head cement, SHHAN.

 

You can also counter-rib the body with a fine gold wire, or with mono.

 

When I do quill bodies, I usually put down a thread foundation, soak the thread with glue just prior to wrapping the quill (which has been soaked in water overnight, of course) and ribbing with fine wire.

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red and Mike

 

Thanks for the suggestions. I would be using them if I were tying larger flies. But these are #16 and 18 Brown Stones and I was hoping I could apply the cement after wrapping the hackle quill. But when I do, the segmentation effect is completely lost. (Plus the body becomes darkenned and very shiny.) These flies are very slender-bodied and look great with just the segmented quill body. I have tried applying laquer to the thread wraps- But its hit and miss. Sometimes the cement oozes out between the wraps. Plus I wonder how effective this strategy is. I may try Superglue underneath, but you know what happens when SG meets moisture!

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We use spar varnish, have been for ever. It will add some shine to the quills. We reinforce the quill with white thread that turns clear with the varnish. If you do not want to go the varnish route try to find a thread that is a close color, or take a marker to white and use that to counter wrap the quill. It is a small thing but can added quite a bit of life to a body.

 

Joe Fox

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Joe: I will try the spar varnish. With and without the thread.

 

Brian: Yes, I have considered coating the stems with epoxy, wrapping, and then wiping off the excess. What effect does the epoxy have on the overall appearance of the body? Is it possible you could you post a pic?

 

Thanks everyone for your input.

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