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Caddis Flies


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10 replies to this topic

#1 Homer35805

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 01:12 PM

Greetings to all,

I am having a problem tying Caddis flies. I cannot keep the hair for the upper wing from flaring and/or spinning around the hook. I have tried putting a loop of thread around the bundle before securing it to the hook, no luck. I have tried holding the hair until my fingers got tired, still no luck...I always either end up with hair that has flared to the point of being almost straight up and out, to hair that has fully encircled the hook and then I have to spend a lot of time with a dubbing needle and tweezers pulling out the unruly hair fibers. So, can anyone provide me with just one tip, or more, to prevent the hair from flaring out or from spinning around the hook shank? If so, I would be eternally grateful...and my friend who is going to Yellowstone and needs some caddis flies or he says his trip will be a bust (I seriously doubt that my flies are going to make or break his trip...lol...) :ph34r: will get the flies he wants, along with a whole group of other flies.

That reminds me, does anyone happen to know of a stone cold killer pattern for Yellowstone in early September? I've read that mayflies are a good bet all year around, but I was hoping some of you have either fished there or better yet, live there. I just want my buddy, who is new to fly fishing (I finally managed to get the spinning reel rig out of his hands..woohoo), to have a great trip and catch a lot of fish.

Thank any and all of you who might choose to respond, hopefully in the future I might be able to help one of you someday...stranger things have happened in my life... :blink:
"There is no greater fan of fly fishing than the worm."
                        – Patrick F. McManus
 
"The charm of fishing is that it is the pursuit of what is elusive but attainable,
    a perpetual series of occasions for hope."
                        – John Buchan
 
 

#2 troutguy

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 02:11 PM

What type of hair are you using? Elk and deer body hair flares a lot when you tie it down, that is what makes it great for spinning bodies. Elk and deer leg hair does not flare as much. Try using woodchuck guard hairs, badger guard hairs, coyote or calf tail. These are all non hollow hair. They all will stay in place better without flaring. I love woodchuck the best for caddis, the tails are so dark and the body guard hair is almost every other mottled shade.
Give a man a fish and you'll feed him for the day; Teach a man to tie flies and he'll pick up all the roadkill.

#3 Gene L

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 02:20 PM

I wrap a loop around the bundle, and then wind the bundle down to the hook on the thread and then run another loop around bundle and hook and tighten down gingerly. This has always worked for me. It's going to flair some, of course. Just make sure you don't use too much hair, tie it rather sparsely and give that a try.

Here is someone tying an elk hair caddis on a NorVise. The winging technique is the same, regardless of the vise. He uses two soft loops, and gets great results.



#4 flytire

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 02:48 PM

watch hans weilenmann tie the cdc & elk.


http://www.flytyingf...=1
Fly tiers sure have a way of making things complicated

#5 Piker20

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 03:41 PM

Have to agree with Gene L. Soft loops and sparse tying. Drop a tiny bit of varnish in the wrap to help hold it if you think your wraps aren't all tight enough.

Matthew 25: 35-36

 

"Out of every 100 men, 10 shouldn’t even be there, 80 are just targets, nine are the real fighters, and we are lucky to have them, for they make the battle. Ah, but the one, one is a warrior and he will bring the others back.”

 

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#6 rockworm

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 03:42 PM

First you need to have a sound foundation on which to mount your wing- Wrap thread to make a smooth, level surface. (I would use 6/0 or larger thread for tying in your wing.) Next you need to prepare your hair- Cut, remove underfur, and stack. Do not use too much hair! (If you do it will twist around the hook shank and flare all over the place no matter what you do.) Determine how long your wing should be, take a firm grasp of the bundle and cut the butts now. Make your first turns of thread over the hair near the front of the fly and wrap your thread tightly rearward. All this time you are still holding the hair bundle over the hook shank. As you approach your fingers, lighten up on the thread. These turns are not to attach the hair to the hook, but rather to "shepherd" the bundle in a neat wing. Reverse the process: wind toward the hook eye lightly for a couple of turns and then begin increasing tension. A few drops of head cement over the thread wraps will help ensure your wing stays put, but should not be necessary if you use enough thread tension.

#7 FrequentTyer

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Posted 28 March 2012 - 08:55 PM

Do, or at least try everything mentioned above. I also suggest pulling straight up on the thread as you tighten on the hair. This helps minimize thread torque and makes it easier to keep the wing from rolling.

#8 planettrout

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Posted 29 March 2012 - 09:07 AM

I would have to agree with all the excellent suggestions made here on tying in either deer or elk hair - in particular, building a good thread base and applying tension to the thread vertical and above the hook shank...

This is what the fish in the Yellowstone area are seeing in September:

Posted Image

Some of the hatches listed in this BRF chart are dependent on one's location. Do some sniffing around the Blue Ribbon Flies site:

http://www.blue-ribbon-flies.com/

...and the Park's Fly Shop site:

http://www.parksflyshop.com/

I ALWAYS have a selection of these in my boxes, in September:

http://www.danica.co...enegade_wet.htm

...I've had some interesting days, using that pattern, around here, once the first cold weather kicks in...

Posted Image


PT/TB ;)
Daughter to Father, " How Many arms do you have. How many fly rods do you need?"

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#9 Homer35805

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Posted 29 March 2012 - 09:58 AM

Thank you ALL for the excellent advice, I was using deer/elk hair mainly, but will have to investigate the other suggestions as well. No one mentioned Mink hair, would that do as well? Because I have a whole lot of mink tails I got in an auction on Ebay...more tails than I will ever use...mink tails that is...and using soft loops too is great because I think I was pulling a little too hard. I wish there was something I could do for all of those who gave great advice, but if you need any mink tails, let me know..lol...or RNP feathers....I have 14 full RNP Tail clumps if anyone needs those feathers, not to mention the body feathers for those 14 RNP....well, only about 9, but still a lot of RNP feathers...
"There is no greater fan of fly fishing than the worm."
                        – Patrick F. McManus
 
"The charm of fishing is that it is the pursuit of what is elusive but attainable,
    a perpetual series of occasions for hope."
                        – John Buchan
 
 

#10 utyer

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Posted 29 March 2012 - 10:42 AM

I have had very good success with the X Caddis for several years, and last year I tried the Opal X Caddis. It was also a very good pattern. In fact I fished nothing but these two patterns the last two weeks in September. The Opal X has the advantage in my book simply because the opal or pearl tinsel body works no matter what the natural. The best size for me was a 16, a 14 worked buy not well. I also tried a few size 18, but not often enough to know if it worked better or the same. Both the X and Opal X patterns represent emerging, or maybe crippled caddis. The tail is really the trailing shuck. Tail material in the origional patters was z-lon, antron is what I had and used in my flies.

I tie in the shuck and a very fine filament of nylon from an organza ribbon. The nylon will reinforce the mylar body. I then return the thread to the eye and tie in the mylar and wrap back to the bend, and return to the starting point. Rib with the nylon. Tie in your elk or deer hair. Keep the hair shorter than normal. The hair on mine is longer than it should be, but they worked just fine.

As for mink tail. I don't think it would be a great material for these. It won't flair like you need it to.

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#11 rockworm

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Posted 29 March 2012 - 12:31 PM

You can tye a respectable caddis adult using mink tail. Just extend the dubbed body to right behind the hook eye. This will give your thread (and hair) something to sink into. This will make the hair flare just like you want it to. This time, make the first thread wraps at the abdomen/wing junction. Use plenty of tension and wrap forward. If the hair doesn't flare enough, use more dubbing over the tye-in point.