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Fly Tying
WWKimba

Weighted VS. Unweighted Flies

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Their are many patterns that can catch fish year round (the Wooly family -Bugger and Worm come to mind).  The problem is that fish (especially warm water pond/lake fish) move around in the water column and to have the best chance to catch them is to keep your fly in the fishes water column as long as possible.  Fish may move because of the season of the year, light conditions and weather conditions.

Here's the challenge - you have two IDENTICAL patterns one weighted and one unweighted.  How can you easily tell which is which?  I guess you could drop each one and see which lands hook first vs. eye first.  The problem with that is 1) I'm just too old to bend over a find the flies and trust getting back up! and 2) I would probably lose the flies in the grass and find them with my feet and not my hands!  Luckily the first thing I do before I tie is debarb the hook!

Here's a solution - tie each fly with a different color head.  Here's what I do.  If a pattern calls for black thread I use it on all the WEIGHTED flies.  For the UNWEIGHTED flies I'll either use brown tying thread throughout or tie with the black and finish with an under finished head then anchor on the brown thread and finish the head.  This way you can tell at a glance which is weighted and which is not.  This works for other color threads as well.  Just remember that the LIGHTER color is the Unweighted(lighter) version and the dark color is the weighted version.  As an extra reminder (due to a senior moment or two!) I put "W" and "U" on the end of my spools.  You could also write something like "Dark = Weighted" on your flybox (luckily I'm not QUITE that old yet!)

I hope this helps and have fun tying and fishing.  Remember there are always two things you can do if if you tie a fly you think is ugly 1) Take off your glasses and it'll look better or, 2) Go out fishing on an ugly day and catch an ugly fish!  See you on the waters!

Oh, and by the way the "WW" in my name is for Warm Water!

(Note: a copy of this post is also located in the Beginners section as well.)

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yup I Just use a red or orange thread head for weighted flies

ive been doing that since I learned fly tying in 1980

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I do the same with trout flies.  Weighted flies get a red head or red band on the head. 

👍👍🎣🎣😎😎  Can someone tell me wtf this means?

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26 minutes ago, WJG said:

I do the same with trout flies.  Weighted flies get a red head or red band on the head. 

👍👍🎣🎣😎😎  Can someone tell me wtf this means?

It means he really likes it. You're 51, so back in your day he would have said something like "Totally rad man"

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1 hour ago, WWKimba said:

drop each one and see which lands hook first vs. eye first

Won't work... Newton's law of gravity -- any small object will fall to earth at the same speed.... 

1 hour ago, flytire said:

Just use a red or orange thread head for weighted flies

Red also happens to be the first color that disappears (turns toward black) underwater... So you can tell the difference but the fish might not.

Sorry if that's me being a smart-ass.... It does happen occasionally. (Sometimes not so smart and just an ass...) I've had the same problem without a good answer, and I really like the red / orange thread solution. Maybe I'll go with red for black and orange for brown.

Bitchin

(55, San Fernando Valley)

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yes you were a smart ass but i dont care if the fish can tell the difference as long as the fly is in the corner of its mouth 😄

to my eyes using brown thread is too close to black thread when wet so i dont use brown for weighted flies

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47 minutes ago, chugbug27 said:

Won't work... Newton's law of gravity -- any small object will fall to earth at the same speed.... 

 

Yes, but that is assuming identical density. Because of the differential in air resistance, a streamer weighted at the head will hit head first.

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Ah, grasshopper. It's not the density. Gravity works the same on a ball of lead as a ball of plastic. It's wind resistance. And is there really enough of that to turn a nymph dropping from one hand to the other?...

Maybe there is... I'm proved wrong yet again...

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👍👍🎣🎣😎😎 is just my salute = like like fish fish smile smile

If it is nice do it twice

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2 hours ago, Mark Knapp said:

It means he really likes it. You're 51, so back in your day he would have said something like "Totally rad man"

Yep in my day it would have been “Far F...ing Out,” do not think I need to revert to that day,  so I made up other sh..... stuff😉😉

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I weight flies with bead heads. Having started using different color beads for each size.

copper smalles. 1.5 mm  silver for 2.3 mm   gold 2.8 mm.  black 3 mm  all in brass.

 

Rick

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When I first started tying,  I used different color threads to differentiate weighted and unweighted flies.  Orange and black were the threads suggested by the instructor for the tying class I was in.   Plus I only had one or two fly boxes and they just got put in.  Once I started using bead heads for my nymphs the color code fell to the wayside.  I'm not quite as meticulous as Rick.  I base the color of the bead head on the type and color of the fly I'm tying.    

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guy I know ties tungsten beads w/ the small hole towards the eye, brass the opposite. If you're using lead wire or tape, just hold the two in your hand, you should be able to tell which is heavier

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