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Horse Hair


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24 replies to this topic

#1 Gregg A

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Posted 24 October 2005 - 09:19 PM

I used to have several older (1903-1905) flies tied with horse hair. They were pretty cool looking and some had braided bodies. I'm thinking about trying some horse hair. especially for braided bodies. Has anyone here ever used horse hair? Or even tried braiding bodies?
The only Zen you'll find at the top of a mountain is the Zen you take up there with you.

#2 WYKnot

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Posted 25 October 2005 - 08:32 AM

Gregg A

When I was stationed at West Point, we got hair from the Army mascot (mule). I generally use it to spiral wrap the body of a fly, similar to wrapping a quill body. Tied both dries with an Adams wing/hackle and small nymphs. I have seen articles over the years that presented patterns tied with horse hair; I recall a pattern named "Mr. Ed" in a book by Ed Engle "Tying Small Flies" (an excellent book, by the way). Also, look in the Benchside Flytyer's Reference, several "how to" techniques for weaving and braiding.

Al Campbell shows a technique call the Pott's Weave to weave hair; check it out on http://www.flyanglersonline.com, advanced fly tying: woven hackle flies. Well-illustrated and written.

Have fun.
Russ Forney

#3 pallagust

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Posted 25 October 2005 - 08:52 AM

Hi

I use horsehair in lot of flies and there are flies that I use only horse hair. These are Icelandic flies, streamers, special salmonflies and I use icelandic horsehair called Arctic Runner You can buy this hair on the web;http://www.thefriendlyfisherman.co.uk/acatalog/copy_of_HAIR_FUR.html, http://www.sportfish...id=1233&plist=1 and propably other places too.

This hair is great for streamers!
"Well, this is called patience by those who don't know. But it is nothing at all like patience. It is hope, undying, unquenchable, the heart and soul of salmon fishing".
A.H.Chaytor
Letters to a Salmon Fisher's Sons

#4 Gregg A

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Posted 25 October 2005 - 10:33 AM

Thanks for the links guys. I'm going to try some of those. I have a bag of horse hair in my garage my brother left. he uses it to make hat bands. But I think I'll still order some from Iceland.

Pallagust, do you have any photos of your flies?

I'll try some weaving this evening. If I can get the hang of it, maybe I'll do one for the safety pin swap.
The only Zen you'll find at the top of a mountain is the Zen you take up there with you.

#5 Graham

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Posted 25 October 2005 - 11:03 AM

Where do you guys get horse hair? None of my local fly shops sell it, and I dont know what part of the horse has the best hair for tying? There are horse stables close by but I've never gone over there with scissors asking if a horse needs a trim.

Looking for horse hair,
Graham

#6 Gregg A

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Posted 25 October 2005 - 11:44 AM

Graham, that is exactly what you do, ask somebody if their horse needs a trim. hysterical.gif You dont usually need a lot, so you can cut some from the tail or mane, and make it look like they didnt even get a hair cut. I wouldnt reccomend going to the petting zoo with your scissors in your hand and trimming the poney, but you could probably yank out a few hairs.

I never have seen it in fly shops either. But living in Wyoming, this is the Cowboy State after all. If you can find a street corner, there is probably a horse on it. Pallagust posted a link from Iceland. I might order some just to have differant colors. My brother left some in the garage. I'm going going to go dig it out this afternoon and try using it tonight. I'll let ya know if it works. If it is in decent shape, I can mail you some. I think it is brown and black.
The only Zen you'll find at the top of a mountain is the Zen you take up there with you.

#7 Graham

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Posted 25 October 2005 - 04:41 PM

Hi Gregg A,

Thank for the info and the offer. I have seen some incredible looking flies with horse hair for legs and one of these days I just have to give it a try.

Cheers,
Graham

#8 pallagust

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Posted 25 October 2005 - 06:48 PM

Hi guys

Well I dont know if Arctic Runner is sold in the states but you can buy it from some webshops both in Iceland and in UK. I think that Arctic Runner hair is high quality hair to use in streamers, its soft(but not to soft) thin and strong. Love working with this material. I use it alot in Black ghost and other streamers that I like to be more alive in water.

This are some websites I found that contains some more info about arctic runner hair;

http://calflyfisher....c9bcce44d4ab2cf
http://www.striperso...pic/12/435.html
http://www.boatingli...int.jsp?ID=5535

Hope you can get your hands on this stuff! I could maybe send you some samples if you like, just PM me.

Cheers
palli

"Well, this is called patience by those who don't know. But it is nothing at all like patience. It is hope, undying, unquenchable, the heart and soul of salmon fishing".
A.H.Chaytor
Letters to a Salmon Fisher's Sons

#9 Gregg A

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Posted 26 October 2005 - 11:07 AM

I tried a little weaving last night. I can understand why there aint too many folks doing it anymore. I figured out that you have to keep just the right amount of tension on your materials, or it may slip, then your kids run upstairs and tell mommy the dirty words daddy just said. I didnt try this yet, but I will tonight, if you are wanting the pretty braided part to look good, turn your hook to the side you want it to be on, top or bottom. That way you can see what your screwing up. You also have to remember to progress your material foreward as you go. That is a given, but I found I was weaving over what I had just done because I was trying to pay attention to one step at a time and got tunnel vision. It will take lots of practice, but I think I'll get the hang of it. It really looks cool in the pictures anyways. The link that Wyknot posted has some really good, simple instruction, complete with really good pictures.

I havent noticed any Artic Runner here. But I think I will order some and try it out. I have some more hair coming in a week or two from a couple horses east of town.

Graham, pm or email me your address and I'll send you some, I got a grocery bag full.
The only Zen you'll find at the top of a mountain is the Zen you take up there with you.

#10 nindja

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Posted 26 October 2005 - 04:03 PM

I get horsehair from a breeder. Just drive up to a farm where they board horses and ask if they can supply you with hair when they trim their hair. It works for me. I also have a damn good article on braiding and a DVD showing a fast way to do it from an Englishman. Supper fast but the key is constant pressure. I'll try to find the article and send it to you if you wish.

How about posting some flies with horsehair so everyone can see some? Like the idea about using them (hair) for legs.

Peace man!
Nindja

ph34r.gif

#11 WYKnot

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Posted 26 October 2005 - 09:21 PM

Graham,

I echo Gregg A's offer to send horse hair. He is absolutely right; Wyoming has more horses than people. My son feeds the neighbor's horses every evening after school, there is no shortage of horse hair in Crook County, Wyoming.

If you are interested, I will dig through the tying stuff I have not unpacked yet, might be able to find some mule hair from Gen. Scott II, the current Army mule mascot. Not outwardly different from horse hair, just smells worst when it gets wet. Nothing like the aroma from a mule's hind end. biggrin.gif
Russ Forney

#12 Graham

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Posted 26 October 2005 - 09:42 PM

Hey WYknot,

Thanks for the offer, very much appreciated. I contacted Gregg A and hes going to send me some horse hair, thanks Gregg. Being a ravenous material junkie makes me want to accept your offer, for horse and stinky mule hair. I bet they all have different coloring, thicknesses and waviness and it will be fun to tye with.
Thanks,

Graham


#13 Gregg A

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Posted 27 October 2005 - 12:33 AM

Nindja, that would be great, I'd like to read the article. Right now I dont have any way to post pictures. I'm barely able to figure this computer stuff out. I put my request into the fat man for a digital camera for Christmas. But rumor has it I may get it for my burthday before then. Then after I get it figured out, I'll be a picture posting fool. Besides, it may take me that long to tie a decent looking fly with horse hair.

Wyknot, I wonder what the horse population is in Wyoming? If we have somewheres around 450,000 people, I bet horses out number us 5 to 1. I should be talking to the Department of Livestock next week, I see if anyone there knows how many horses there are.
The only Zen you'll find at the top of a mountain is the Zen you take up there with you.

#14 Gregg A

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Posted 27 October 2005 - 11:21 AM

Graham, your hair is in the mail. You should have it the middle of next week, or when you get back from your trip. Good luck.
The only Zen you'll find at the top of a mountain is the Zen you take up there with you.

#15 Graham

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Posted 27 October 2005 - 11:27 AM

Hi Gregg,

Thank you, this is very much appreciated.

Have a great day,
Cheers,
Graham