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Fly Tying


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About utyer

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    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 07/20/1944

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    Orlando, Florida since November 2012

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  1. Mine is a Sage RPLX that I built from a blank 2 days before I went to Mexico for my first Salt Water flats fishing adventure in 1989. In a hurry, I coated the guide wraps with 5 minute epoxy rather than Flex Coat. The rod performed perfectly well on the trip to Mexico and l landed a 14# Snook with it, along with almost 100 other fish. Since it was holding up well, I used it for the next 29 years. Fished it for landlocked Kings in Michigan, Steelhead in PA, trout in Idaho, Wyoming and Utah, finally started fishing the Saltwater flats again in 2013, and it was still going strong. In 2018, I was setting up for another day with it, and notices a lot of cracked coating on the guides. One dropped off (which I couldn't find.) I had a second rod that I used that day, and after fishing stopped by Mud Hole on the way back home. They had the matching Ti Gold replacement guide I needed. At home I looked through the threads I still had, and I had just 2 spools of the 'rainbow' Herters thread left. Rewrapped the whole rod, and its set for another 29 years.
  2. Since I do use the real and drag, I like to slightly oversize my reels. Using the heavier reels gives me more room for backing on my reels. I agree that the reel brand isn't that important for most people, but the balance with rods IS. On my 6 weight rods, I use a 7/8 reel. On 8 weight rods, I like to sue a 9/10 sized reels. My only "expensive" reels are Lamsons, and they were gifted to me, and at least 12 years old. For me, the most important thing is keeping my reels clean. Fishing is salt water, and leaving that salt on any reel is never good. In a short time, any real can show the effects of salt corrosion. After every salt water trip, I clean my reels in HOT water, cold water won't dissolve the sold as well. Watch this video from Kelly Galloup: I agree with most every thing he says.
  3. Having fished the PMD hatches and Idaho and YNP for some 50 to 55 years, I think you nailed these just right.
  4. Materials for a Picket Pin: Materials List: Hook: any streamer hook in sizes 6, 8, or 10 These hooks have a 3 or 4 extra long shank. Thread brown or black 6/0 . The tail is either a small bundle of brown hackle or 2 hackle tips. The body hackle is also a brown saddle hackle similar to the tail. The body rib could be gold tinsel, but copper wire is also suitable. Body is several strands 3 or 4 depending on the hook size, of Peacock herl, The wing is usually squirrel tail Head is built up of Peacock herl like the body. Every one of these materials can be found at many on-ling fly fishing specialty shops. J Stockard should have everything you will need. You would want a Saddle patch similar to this one, in brown or grizzly dyed brown. or a natural brown Strung saddle. Follow this link for Peacock Herl: You would need a Squirrel Tail: You would want the Natural Fox tail. Copper wire in many sizes can be salvaged from old electrical wire. Ole recipes call for oval tinsel which was a metal tinsel, now tinsel is usually mylar, and not a durable, copper wire will give you a more durable fly. Any fine gage from 24 to 38 should work. Thread like this either brown or black would do fine. Eventually you will need other colors, or simply start using white thread, and color the head with a marker to blend with the patterns. The right hook: This is an example of a 3xl heavy wire hook (there are others,) suitable for the Picket Pin pattern which is a sinking fly.
  5. The most useful feathers from chickens would be the neck and saddle feathers. These are usually harvested as a full patches on the skin. Not something you might want to do, but you can pluck a few saddle or neck feathers from time to time.
  6. utyer

    Vise advice

    When I looked up the Crown vise at Sportsman's I find a knock off of the Regal. I have tied (and still have) a Regal vise. I have not been that impressed with the knock off above, and I have tried similar ones used by some of my students. This Crown from the Fly Shack is a clamp model for $39.99. I think you would do better to get the Crown from and one of these 3 shops. just make sure you are getting the rotary version. Save the $20.00 difference for hooks.
  7. For my personal needs, I rarely use hackle at all. Most of my mayfly patterns are comparaduns, and all my caddis dries are without hackle. When I have to use hackle, I always use saddles.
  8. There are no unbreakable rules in tying. They are called variations. Any material that is close can be used. No fish has a "rulebook." Try it out if it works keep on doing it. If not find other materials. Most of mine are tied with white macrame cord for wings.
  9. Kelly Galloup has 2 very good videos on Deer hair and elk hair types and selection. Start with this one, which covers different deer hairs options, and how to tell good hair from bad hair,. This second one, covers many other hairs and selection: These will give you a very comprehensive look at hairs and selection of good hair for your needs .
  10. utyer

    My new shop

    Very nice job on the bench. Looks like it will last a long time.
  11. You should keep right on tying your "ugly" buggers. The original pattern had longer and softer hackle than what you find in the shop. The "professional" flies available in shops and on-line are to catch anglers NOT fish.
  12. Your list of flies is a good start. Add some Schminnows in White, and your set. A schminnow is nothing more than a woolly bugger with a pearlescent crystal flash body and a white tail. Hackle is seldom used. Clouser Minnows Tan or Chartreuse over white. EP Shrimp: tan is usually good. Foam Gurglers in White. EP bait fish of some sort Light green, tan and white. I would say that 80% of all my flies are white. or pearlescent. Since I keep catching every kind of fish on white flies, I really scaled back on colors. For peacock bass, flies with orange or chartreuse are popular options.
  13. I follow Norm's method, and simply use a marker or nail polish to mark the spools. I don't use that many different threads, and almost all my thread is white or monofilament. So I have 3 or 4 spools wound with the same sizes. It then is a long time before reloading the spools. Currently have 18 spools. and 4 bobbins.
  14. My Dyna-King Sidewinder came with standard jaws, and I can go much smaller and larger than your range. They are a lifetime investment, mine is over 25 years about 27 years old, maybe more, I traded for it used. Still have no problems with it. The trick to all the Dyna-King vises is the detend in the clamping arm. Properly adjusted one of the three grooves in the jaw will hold a large range of hooks firmly. Learning how to adjust and clamp the jaws is the a little bit different than some other vises. The first owner didn't learn how to properly close the jaws into the detent, and damaged the forcing collet. Dyna-King replaced it for me at no charge. My second favorite vise ever.
  15. I have "processed" a lot of game bird skins. and even some of the commercial skins and necks I have gotten. A good washing in soap and water won't hurt the skins, but it will reduce the fatty oils. Use Dawn liquid it seems to work well on greasy things. Just use some salt on the skins place skin down on newspaper, and dry them in the sun if you can.
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