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Lotech Joe

Partridge Feathers

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I've got a buddy who shoots grouse and he sent me some feathers from around the neck and body. They're good for all flies in a variety of sizes. I have a partridge skin and there are a lot of too-large feathers, but then a number of appropriate-size ones for spiders.

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Flyby ... you could start a side business. Mike's Roadkill Fly Tying Materials, lowest prices off the road !!!

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Buy the skin. Depending on how many flies you tie, you have hundreds of flies worth and much more selection of sizes an colors than in a loose bag. Trust me on this. Maybe you can find someone to go in half with you on a skin...

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Buy a full skin.

 

You can't convince me that hairline or any other distributor has professional feather pluckers packing the pristine feathers into tiny zip lock bags 😁

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Not every one can afford to buy whole skins ... especially with the knowledge of only using a small percentage of the material.

 

Perhaps, Joe, you can go in with someone, buy a skin and split it?

 

What is a bag of partridge feathers, $3-4? You can buy a full skin for $30. That full skin has virtually no waste. Those bags are 80% or more waste. You can buy 8-10 bags of feathers and I'm willing to bet you won't get as much usable material as you get from one skin. It's not that much of an expense when you look at it that way, especially if you use a lot of partridge. If you don't use a lot of partridge, you might not know the frustration and struggle of digging through a bag of fluff looking for a couple of good feathers.

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I am just playing devil's advocate here, Cream. The recommendation to buy a whole $30 skin, just to save the frustration of getting something usable from a $3 bag ... comes from you people who have tons of stuff in storage you may never use. I see it written on this site all the time. "I've got Rubbermaid boxes full of skins. I don't even know what all of them are anymore!"

 

Some people are only interested in trying a pattern. Maybe tying a dozen to fish and then move on to something else.

 

I would rather buy a $3 bag and get a dozen flies from it, than to buy a skin, tie a dozen flies and then leave the skin in a ziplock baggie for the next 20 years 'til I die and Wife sells it.

 

Just a point of view from a non-hoarding and miserly old man.

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I am just playing devil's advocate here, Cream. The recommendation to buy a whole $30 skin, just to save the frustration of getting something usable from a $3 bag ... comes from you people who have tons of stuff in storage you may never use. I see it written on this site all the time. "I've got Rubbermaid boxes full of skins. I don't even know what all of them are anymore!"

 

Some people are only interested in trying a pattern. Maybe tying a dozen to fish and then move on to something else.

 

I would rather buy a $3 bag and get a dozen flies from it, than to buy a skin, tie a dozen flies and then leave the skin in a ziplock baggie for the next 20 years 'til I die and Wife sells it.

 

Just a point of view from a non-hoarding and miserly old man.

 

I think you missed the line in each of my posts where I said "if you use a lot of partridge." :)

 

If you use a lot of partridge, the bags are the waste.

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Those too large feathers can be used on very small patterns with a trick used by European tyers for years. Barry Ord Clark has a video on how to do it but it is essentially done by cutting off the barbs at the stem, bunching them to size at the tie-in point, and trimming away the excess. Works like a charm.

 

You can also use the bigger feathers with distinctive markings as hackle features on mini intruders for trout and steelhead.

 

Rocco

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Just stumbled onto an even better use for larger feathers -- in composite loops for trout size wet flies! Check this out on youtube.

 

 

Composite Soft Hackle, Size 14 - OPST

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