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feathers5

Damsel Fly Adult Pattern

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I'm looking for a damsel dry fly pattern to use for smallmouth bass. I never tied one and I'm not sure of the size. I googled, but I'm not finding what I want. Thanks if you can help.

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The only one that I tied was using clear braided monofilament leader butt material for the extended body colored with sharpie's (blue or green with black barred segments) melt the end so it does not unravel but I have also used old floating fly line or round foam cylinders (1/8th" or less) short sparse poly wings angled rearward, foam abdomen and folded over for wing case and head.  with short sparse grizzly hackle legs tied in front of the wings. Saw one tied  similar but without the poly wings, he tied in the extended body then the foam abdomen when he parachute hackled the upper foam tab prior to folding for the wing case and head. Sorry I don't have a picture at the moment. 

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This is one I tied up a couple of weeks ago.   The body is some sort of weird dental floss my dentist gave me.  Never did use it on my teeth, but it had potential for mayfly and damsel fly bodies.  Colored it with a blue marker, the wing is some sort of material not sure what, but it looked wingie, so I used it.  Thorax is fine black crystal chenille  and the head is a black foam cylinder turned into dumbbell eyes.   I usually tie a pattern similar to the one cphubert described.  I cut a thin strip of blue foam which I've folded over a needle and wrapped to give me a segmented body.  It's a hot humid day and I was planning to tie some flies.  I'll put a couple of patterns together and take some pictures. 

P6280653 (2).JPG

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I tied a couple of foam ones up this afternoon.  Definitely need a new bulb for the lamp I use to take pictures.  They are blue.  Might have to dig out a brighter blue piece of foam.

Materials.

Hook:  Gamakatsu B10S Stinger hook, Size 8

Thread:  Black

Body/Upper Thorax:  Segmented craft foam strip

Head: Foam cylinder

Thorax: Fine Peacock sparkle chenille 

Wings:  I have know idea, pulled out of my artificial hair drawer.  

If you have any questions let me know.

P8020716 (2).JPG

P8020718 (2).JPG

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12 hours ago, Philly said:

I tied a couple of foam ones up this afternoon.  Definitely need a new bulb for the lamp I use to take pictures.  They are blue.  Might have to dig out a brighter blue piece of foam.

Materials.

Hook:  Gamakatsu B10S Stinger hook, Size 8

Thread:  Black

Body/Upper Thorax:  Segmented craft foam strip

Head: Foam cylinder

Thorax: Fine Peacock sparkle chenille 

Wings:  I have know idea, pulled out of my artificial hair drawer.  

If you have any questions let me know.

P8020716 (2).JPG

P8020718 (2).JPG

Nice flies, Philly. How long is the fly? Do you make those segments with thread? That's what I'm looking to tie. Thanks.

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Look for shelf liner foam in white and color it blue. Also check the kitchen utensil section as there are blue potholder, the same material, at times.

 

Rick 

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1 hour ago, feathers5 said:

Nice flies, Philly. How long is the fly? Do you make those segments with thread? That's what I'm looking to tie. Thanks.

They're about 1 1/2 inches long.  Never measured a damsel fly, but that should be close enough.   I use thread to make the segments.   Let me see if I can describe how I do it.  The body is a 3 mm wide strip of foam.  I cut it off sheet of 2 mm craft foam.   I put a thin sewing needle in the vise.   I make a few wraps of thread on the straight part of the needle just behind where it starts to slope to the point.   Fold the foam strip in half and try to center it on the needle.  The needle point usually sticks out through the foam.  I lay the top piece of foam on the needle and make a couple of wraps, not too tight.  Then I wrap the bottom piece in place.  After I finish the wrap I bring the thread under the top piece and make a wrap on the needle, against the first segment, then a couple of wraps forward.  I don't measure the segments, just eye ball them.   Make a wrap to hold the top piece on the needle.  Bring the bottom piece against the needle and make a couple of wraps to form the segment.   Just repeat the process, till you reach the tip of the vise.  What I've been doing is after I make the wrap to hold the last segment, is put a small drop of super glue, on top of the thread in the foam.  Then I bring up the bottom piece and make a couple of wraps to finish the last segment, then another small drop of super glue on the wrap in the top piece.  Let dry.  Cut the thread.  Then slide the body off the needle.  That's why the wraps shouldn't be to tight.

I find it easier to make the bodies at one time.  If I'm going to tie up 6 damsel or dragon flies, I'll make the six bodies,  six heads and  six wings.  That's one thing I picked up  with this batch.  The first one I tied straight through.  Took a piece the wing material and when I was wrapping it in place it got wrapped up with the thorax and generally made a mess.  The fish won't care, but it bothered me.  What I did, after I made a couple of wraps on the needle with clear thread, was take the wing material and lay it on the needle another half dozen wraps, a drop of super glue on top of the wrap and slid the wing off.  Much easier to tie in, should make it easier to do a double wing on a dragon fly, not to mention mayfly spinners. 

 

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He does it the opposite way that I do forming the segmented body.   It makes more sense to do it that way.  I'll give it a try, maybe to tomorrow, keep me occupied when the tropical storm comes through.  I probably need to make my wings sparser, though I refuse to count the number of material strands.  I like the loco foam.  I first was introduced to it in the early 2000's when talking to Harry Steeves at the NJ Fly Tying Symposium.  He was using it to tie one of his foam beetle patterns.  I knew Harry from the [email protected] list and I was hoping he'd share the secret of how to make it, but he wouldn't.   It took me about 6 months to figure it out and I've been making my own ever since.  It adds extra sparkle and flash to any foam fly.  

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12 hours ago, Philly said:

He does it the opposite way that I do forming the segmented body.   It makes more sense to do it that way.  I'll give it a try, maybe to tomorrow, keep me occupied when the tropical storm comes through.  I probably need to make my wings sparser, though I refuse to count the number of material strands.  I like the loco foam.  I first was introduced to it in the early 2000's when talking to Harry Steeves at the NJ Fly Tying Symposium.  He was using it to tie one of his foam beetle patterns.  I knew Harry from the [email protected] list and I was hoping he'd share the secret of how to make it, but he wouldn't.   It took me about 6 months to figure it out and I've been making my own ever since.  It adds extra sparkle and flash to any foam fly.  

Are you seeing photos with Charlie Craven's Damsel Fly? If so, they're not showing on my computer. I'd love to see how he make it.

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I checked his video out and I could see any pictures either.  Nice tye.  That will work. 

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Philly, your first post on your damsel fly kind of cracked me up. I used this stuff from the dentist, the wings are some sort of things I found on my table. Great step by step there. JK All in fun.

Was watching a show on Curiosity Channel and they said back in the early day of heavier oxygen content in the air Dragonflies reached up to 12" or more. Man, that would be a son of a gun to throw on a 6wt. Reason they are smaller today is they breath through holes in their bodies and today's oxygen level does not allow for greater size. 

 

 

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When I was tying the foam ones, I couldn't find the material I used for the wings in the first picture.  For the foam ones  I ended up using material from a bait fish wrap.  I did get the material at the dentist's office and it was some sort of dental floss.  I going to try it for some mayfly spinner bodies.  He's also given me out of date material they use for fillings these days.  It's cured with a UV light.  I've used it to round the bellies on my Crease flies and cover the seams on my popper bodies.  I keep dropping hints that the next time he replaces the UV tool he uses for curing fillings, I would be glad to give the old one a new home.  

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