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JohnP

Floatant

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albolene at cvs

$12 for a lifetime supply

 

I second that suggestion. Floats deer hair better than a cork - I think it would even float your boat anchor. I've never tried heating it to melt and dip flies in, but heard that works.

 

Kirk

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I have looked into the "home Spinning and Tackle made floatants, and have found them mentioned by Ray Bergman in Trout, and by George Leonard Herter in Fly Tying, Spinning and Tackle Making. Herter's formula is to dissolve 3/8 or 1/2 ounce of paraffin in a half pint of carbontetrachloride. Herter also states "paraffin will do but harder, stronger waxes are much better; these can be bought at a low price from Herter's." Carbontetrachloride was used in those days (1950-1975) as dry cleaning fluid. George advises to dip the fly in the solution, and then quickly air dry (in front of a fan.) He then says that this solution will float a fly tied with poor hackle. He also warns not to use this solutino on flies with artificial veined wings. I would test this type of floatant on synthetic materials before use.

 

Ray Bergman started writing about floatant made from white gas and wax in 1929. The formula is included in Trout. Bergman also mentions that carbon tet., ether, or benzine may also be used as the solvent. He says that one advantage to this floatant is that it will clean and re-float a fly "after a trout has taken a fly deep."

 

I remember learning to make and using this kind of floatant back in the mid 1950s. I am only including these reference for informational purposes. Any of these solvents are flammable, and should be used with caution if at all.

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I have looked into the "home Spinning and Tackle made floatants, and have found them mentioned by Ray Bergman in Trout, and by George Leonard Herter in Fly Tying, Spinning and Tackle Making. Herter's formula is to dissolve 3/8 or 1/2 ounce of paraffin in a half pint of carbontetrachloride. Herter also states "paraffin will do but harder, stronger waxes are much better; these can be bought at a low price from Herter's." Carbontetrachloride was used in those days (1950-1975) as dry cleaning fluid. George advises to dip the fly in the solution, and then quickly air dry (in front of a fan.) He then says that this solution will float a fly tied with poor hackle. He also warns not to use this solutino on flies with artificial veined wings. I would test this type of floatant on synthetic materials before use.

 

Ray Bergman started writing about floatant made from white gas and wax in 1929. The formula is included in Trout. Bergman also mentions that carbon tet., ether, or benzine may also be used as the solvent. He says that one advantage to this floatant is that it will clean and re-float a fly "after a trout has taken a fly deep."

 

I remember learning to make and using this kind of floatant back in the mid 1950s. I am only including these reference for informational purposes. Any of these solvents are flammable, and should be used with caution if at all.

 

Just to reinforce your last statement, these solvents are not only flammable but are pretty toxic with prolonged exposure. Carbon tet is a great solvent but has some particularly nasty toxicity: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbon_tetrachloride

And when it burns, you get phosogene gas!

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I'm all about making my own stuff... but I've drawn the line at Bergman's paraffin-and-gasoline floatant. There are so many good floatants available today, and here is the big secret:

 

they all work.

 

 

Some folks prefer powder, some folks prefer goo, etc.

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Yes, today, there is a very large array of very workable floatants. In the early 1980s, I was off on a trip to Idaho, and forgot or lost my floatant. It was a Sunday, and the only store open in Rexburg was a drug store. That is when I started using Abolene cream, works find for most flies, but it won't dry out a fish slimed fly. There are fumed silica powders used as fly floatants that can be applied to a drowned fly, and will float it. One for the commercial products is Froggs Fanny (I think there are others.) Fumed Silica is pretty much the same thing, and sold as an epoxie additive for about ten dollars a quart.

 

The Bergman/Herter's formula was common about 40 or 50 years ago, and at the time was as good as you could get. I agree with Perchjerker, and Frequent Tyer, that there are too many down sides (the solvents used on the paraffin are flammable and toxic.) NOT WORTH the trouble to make when there are either very good commercial floatants, and other alternatives like Abolene cream and fumed silica available.

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It's interesting to see Albolene brought up as a floatant... I've used it for many things but never thought of it for fly fishing! I know it is not always available in drug stores, it seems to be a regional thing.

 

It works good as a case lubricant for resizing rifle cases and it wipes off the resized cases very easily, among other things.

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It's interesting to see Albolene brought up as a floatant... I've used it for many things but never thought of it for fly fishing! I know it is not always available in drug stores, it seems to be a regional thing.

 

It works good as a case lubricant for resizing rifle cases and it wipes off the resized cases very easily, among other things.

 

Whoa- I never thought to use it for my reloading! Fishing, shooting, babies' bottoms- will wonders never cease?

 

Chuck

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Handed down for generations in my family, rendered deer tallow from base of the tail of fall buck. actually dont even need to render it, just scrape it off and place it in small container. Never goes bad.

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