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Failure of Modern Fly Design


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#1 SilverCreek

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 03:03 PM

Food for thought and discussion.

 

A Failure of Modern Fly Design | John Juracek - Hatch Magazine.


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Silver

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#2 m_grieb

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 03:36 PM

Thank you for posting this. Fantastic article and very thought provoking.

 

Matt


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#3 ihang10

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 03:41 PM

Interesting.

My initial response would be supply and demand drives the evolution of fly tying, however so slight or complex. 100s of materials wouldn't be available if they (we?) weren't trying them and someone was buying/using said finished fly successfully. That business model wouldn't last in a demand system.

Then my next thought was, so what if someone wants to use a 1/2 dozen materials in their magical nymph variation? I don't have to buy it. It doesn't prevent me from enjoying my time on the water, No one has to buy it, at least I don't think there are any hostages in the sport (admittedly I do feel compelled to buy into a good sale, or maybe even the offer of free shipping). I digress.

What was most puzzling to me, and where I feel I am missing the point of the author was solving, or addressing the "fishing problems still waiting solutions."

My final thought on the article was a quizzical, "huh?" As in, I was left thinking there was a deeper, unexplained issue the author wanted to address. I don't know what that is. Maybe there isn't, but figuring out these "fishing problems" is/are going bother me for the rest of the evening, because now I'm consumed by casting mechanics and the water column.

#4 Jokey

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 03:58 PM

Sorry but I don't buy this at all. Complex or not, 6 types of material or just pheasant tail and wire, new idea or old pattern....it doesn't matter. The fish are the ultimate deciders. Flies that don't catch fish, don't sell, don't last and are a non entity.

 

To me this just sounds like sounds like someone who doesn't feel like moving forward as things inevitably do. The equivalent of "kids today don't know what good music is".

 

A matter of conflicting style and opinion is all it is.

 

J



#5 cheech

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 04:43 PM

Sorry but I don't buy this at all. Complex or not, 6 types of material or just pheasant tail and wire, new idea or old pattern....it doesn't matter. The fish are the ultimate deciders. Flies that don't catch fish, don't sell, don't last and are a non entity.

 

To me this just sounds like sounds like someone who doesn't feel like moving forward as things inevitably do. The equivalent of "kids today don't know what good music is".

 

A matter of conflicting style and opinion is all it is.

 

J

Well said.  

 

My thought is that the absolute best way to catch fish is a nightcrawler or a wad of dough bait...  Why do we morph into "fly" fishers?  Because it's interesting and fun to us.  Same can be said with fly tying.  I have had many a conversation with the "I don't fish with foam" guy, and the "I only tie with natural materials" guy, and the "I don't fish with beadheads" guy.  I guess the next guy is "I don't fish with flies developed after 1983" guy.


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#6 retrocarp

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 04:52 PM

Good point cheech .
As with anything else fly tying and fishing evolves .... And each person takes on ...what appeals to them .

Nick


#7 mikechell

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 05:49 PM

The article addresses flies in a fly shop ... not the typical fly tier at his/her bench.  

None of us "design" a new fly to be as complicated as possible.  

Although some DO tie flies that are more appealing to the fishermen's eye than the fishes (See the "realistics" thread for those), it's more the exception than the norm.

 

There's almost nothing about that article that applies to the fly tier ... just to the fly store idea of what will or won't sell.


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#8 tidewaterfly

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 06:06 PM

Mike, I agree with you & I agree with Mr Juracek, and you guys are missing the point. For folks who tie their own, it's never an issue. His point is that fly sales & "new" patterns being introduced on the commercial end are not being fish tested & revised to make them better, and are often more complex variations of already existing patterns that may not be better at all. Or, they're some commercial tyers attempt at "designing" a new pattern. It happens every years with many products, as each season companies look to introduce something new for that year. 

 

Fact is, the majority of time tested, productive fly patterns of any type sold in shops are simple patterns. They don't need to be improved. Unfortunately, there's a sector of the fly fishing demographics as a whole that buys these "new" patterns year after year. Doesn't matter if they're productive or not, it only matters that it's something "new" to buy. 

 

I like experimenting with patterns as much as anyone & certainly like playing around with all the materials available today. However, I won't claim I'm designing :"new" patterns. All most of us really do is rehash older patterns with substitute materials. Also, if you've tied or even just fly fished long enough at some point you see "old" patterns or styles or sometimes ideas that come around again as something new. 

 

Most "new" fly patterns are about sales problems and not about fishing solutions as Mr. Juracek has said. Heck, take a look at one of the major fly fishing companies catalog each year & look at "new" flies. 99% are the same flies, with different materials replacing older materials.  A shop can sell only so many Woolly Buggers. rolleyes.gif

 

 



#9 JSzymczyk

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 06:10 PM

Sorry but I don't buy this at all. Complex or not, 6 types of material or just pheasant tail and wire, new idea or old pattern....it doesn't matter. The fish are the ultimate deciders. Flies that don't catch fish, don't sell, don't last and are a non entity.

 

To me this just sounds like sounds like someone who doesn't feel like moving forward as things inevitably do. The equivalent of "kids today don't know what good music is".

 

A matter of conflicting style and opinion is all it is.

 

J

 

as with a lot of things, I don't know how much FORWARD progress has been made since the near perfection of genetic hackle, "modern" hooks, the billion-and-one synthetic materials, plastic fly lines, and unobtanium rods.  The fish haven't changed.  Thank God they're still dumb enough to strike at bits of junk and dead animals tied to a hook with thread.

 

The article addresses flies in a fly shop ... not the typical fly tier at his/her bench.  

None of us "design" a new fly to be as complicated as possible.  

Although some DO tie flies that are more appealing to the fishermen's eye than the fishes (See the "realistics" thread for those), it's more the exception than the norm.

 

There's almost nothing about that article that applies to the fly tier ... just to the fly store idea of what will or won't sell.

 

Agreed.   I'll add that I have never been able to understand a fly fisherman who does NOT tie his own flies, or a lure fisherman who does not tinker with making his own lures at some point, or a bait fisherman who does not go catch his own bait. 


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#10 tidewaterfly

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 06:24 PM

 

 

Sorry but I don't buy this at all. Complex or not, 6 types of material or just pheasant tail and wire, new idea or old pattern....it doesn't matter. The fish are the ultimate deciders. Flies that don't catch fish, don't sell, don't last and are a non entity.

 

To me this just sounds like sounds like someone who doesn't feel like moving forward as things inevitably do. The equivalent of "kids today don't know what good music is".

 

A matter of conflicting style and opinion is all it is.

 

J

 

as with a lot of things, I don't know how much FORWARD progress has been made since the near perfection of genetic hackle, "modern" hooks, the billion-and-one synthetic materials, plastic fly lines, and unobtanium rods.  The fish haven't changed.  Thank God they're still dumb enough to strike at bits of junk and dead animals tied to a hook with thread.

 

 

The article addresses flies in a fly shop ... not the typical fly tier at his/her bench.  

None of us "design" a new fly to be as complicated as possible.  

Although some DO tie flies that are more appealing to the fishermen's eye than the fishes (See the "realistics" thread for those), it's more the exception than the norm.

 

There's almost nothing about that article that applies to the fly tier ... just to the fly store idea of what will or won't sell.

 

Agreed.   I'll add that I have never been able to understand a fly fisherman who does NOT tie his own flies, or a lure fisherman who does not tinker with making his own lures at some point, or a bait fisherman who does not go catch his own bait. 

 

Well said Joel! smile.png



#11 Cold

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 08:18 PM

So a standard hares ear...

 

1. Rabbit fur tail

2. Wire rib

3. Rabbit underfur dubbing for the body

4. Turkey tail wing case

 

And that's not counting the hook & thread.

 

So is he *really* saying that adding rubber legs or a bead or some lead wire or some flash or a few turns of soft hackle is ridiculous overcomplication?



#12 RazzaMaChaz

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 08:36 PM

 

Interesting article, but I think it ignores the most important aspect of fishing a fly - presentation.

 

We oftentimes blame the pattern for our lack of success, when it's our presentation that needs work.

 

I watched a friend fishing the South Platte during a very heavy spring baetis hatch.  A size 18 or 20 BWO is the preferred pattern.  He caught fish after fish on a size 16 Royal Wulff.  It was all presentation.  The Wulff looked like food, so it was eaten.



#13 ihang10

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 08:47 PM


Food for thought and discussion.
 
A Failure of Modern Fly Design | John Juracek - Hatch Magazine.

 
Interesting article, but I think it ignores the most important aspect of fishing a fly - presentation.
 
We oftentimes blame the pattern for our lack of success, when it's our presentation that needs work.
 
I watched a friend fishing the South Platte during a very heavy spring baetis hatch.  A size 18 or 20 BWO is the preferred pattern.  He caught fish after fish on a size 16 Royal Wulff.  It was all presentation.  The Wulff looked like food, so it was eaten.

"Change your presentation, not your fly."

That was the advice and direction I've always followed.

#14 Losthwy

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Posted 18 April 2016 - 11:51 PM

An important aspect is innovation. Things to evolve, to improve. Who fishes with silk threads anymore? The same lame argument has been going on for 200 years.



#15 Crackaig

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Posted 19 April 2016 - 03:09 AM

This is something I am constantly aware of. I come under some pressure to design new and different patterns. I fight it. I have a few patterns that I've developed which have stuck around for a few seasons. In each case I can point at the reasons for developing them, and how they go at least some way to addressing the problems that inspired them.

 

Just tying another fly to do what lots of other, existing patterns, do, and often better, does nothing to advance fly design. For many years I have favoured presentation over pattern in my fishing. The logic is simple, you approach a fish, you cover it with a perfectly presented, but totally wrong pattern. The fish ignores it. You change for the right pattern, and present that, you still have a chance to catch the fish. On the other hand you present the most perfect imitation badly, the fish will be gone before you can correct the problem. With my focus on presentation the changes I make to patterns more often than not affect how the fly presents. This is my approach rather than yielding to the pressure to lash on the new latest material just for the sake of selling it.

 

One other thing about many commercial flies. Tying a fly in such a way that it sits on or in the water in a particular way is a fairly precise art. Another reason I fight the temptation to be a "fly designer" is that I have my doubts that someone who does not fish can not have any clue to the necessity of this precision.

Cheers,

C.


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