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About Stoneflylama72

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  • Birthday 08/04/1972

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    Knoxville, TN
  1. Hello, I am really enjoying this forum. It is much more active than my local forums. People are extremely knowledgeable and quick to offer help and advise. I started tying sometime in the early 90s but it's just a hobby and a way to supply my fly fishing needs. I love learning from some real experts on here and it gives me a skill level to aspire to achieve myself. I used to fish the Great Smoky Mountain National Park streams a lot. Mostly high floating dries and bigger nymphs. The pattern not so important. Last several years have been spent mostly on two very different tailwaters. One has the fish always looking up and focused on Caddis flies. The other has them almost never looking up, mostly midges with a very short window of Caddis and sulfer mayfly activity ( still mostly underwater), but povides the opportunity for very large healthy trout.
  2. I was at a fly tying event last weekend and talked to a guy about the real small soft hackles. He tied me a #21 rainbow warrior soft hackle and used a Whiting hen neck for the feathers. Come to think of it he had a pile of those Whiting necks laying around in all the colors. At $22 each at the local shop it's not a bad deal after doing some research. Thanks for the reply.
  3. Thanks for the information. Those JV necks look perfect. Other people must think so too since they are sold out on their site right now. They are kinda expensive for sure but if he was taking size 14 feathers from that far down on the neck there must be tons of 14-18 feathers on those necks.
  4. Yeah I'm still in the market for good feathers to tie 18s and 20s. The imported hen neck really only goes down to about 16s in useable quality feathers. I got the imported neck in a furnace color/pattern and I do like the darker center and lighter outer halo effect when wound on the fly. Worth keeping but no barring/mottling effect like game birds or grizzly. Does anyone have any experience in the differences between Brahma hen necks, 4B hen necks, and regular Whiting type hen necks in regards to which has most small fly size feathers?
  5. Thanks for the link. I like the method in the first video better than the method I have used. Looks to add less bulk since the feather stem isn't used. I will try it for sure as I like the color and barring on my grouse feathers better than the color of this imported hen neck.
  6. Went to the fly shop today and bought a Wapsi (imported) hen neck for about $6. It has some small and very small feathers to use. Wanted to buy the Whiting or Metz hen necks, they have a lot more small feathers and the feathers are a lot longer too. But $22+ tax was not in budget today, wanted to buy a few more items instead. I'm pretty addicted to these soft hackle flies so would like to pick up some better necks as well as starling in the near future.
  7. Thanks for the replies. I have a source for free or very cheap Bob white quail birds. I might see if I can go to the farm and scavenge feathers as I'm not sure if I want to try and cure a skin myself though. And the method shown in the spider video looks like a great way to strengthen the little feathers for small flies. The starling feathers in video look like they make really nice soft hackles. I have seen and used a couple of methods where you take a bigger feather than ordinary and tie it in at middle of hook, bind it down forward to eye and tie back into a smaller soft hackle than the feather would normally produce. It works but is a little bulky and I'm not good enough to get the hackle exactly the way I want it using that method. Also can't put a bead directly behind hackle that way if desired.
  8. I need to buy more feathers for my soft hackle flies. I've been using a ruffed grouse skin that my father shot for a couple of years. I have picked it clean of 14-20 size feathers. I tie mostly 16s and 18s but a few 14s and 20s would be nice if they were in there too. I don't know exactly which feathers/skin to buy. Hen capes? Partridge? Starling? Which kind is best for 16s and 18s? Brown with some mottling would be nice but plain brown works. Thanks for any help!
  9. This soft hackle seems to float just under the surface about 1-2 inches if not treated with floatant. With floatant it stays in the surface film until it wears off. It's a simplified Bastian's floating Caddis. I used craft store 2mm foam sheets for the body, it's pretty dense foam. The abdomen is wrapped from thinly sliced strips of foam, green in this case. The humpy back is from a thicker strip of foam, brown here. A few strands of poly yarn for tail, crystal flash rib, and the soft hackle ( grouse here). Tied on a dry fly hook or light wire emerger hook. This was the most productive fly for me this year on one of the tailwaters. I fished it treated with floatant and fished it behind a klinkhamer or other visible fly. A lot of times I didn't bother to regrease it after fish or after it started sinking a little. The fish didn't seem to care if it was at surface or 1-2" below. Worked dead drift and swung a little at end if drifts. It was deadly on a mostly Caddis River.
  10. Really nice fly rod you have there. The RPL and RPL+ were Sage's top of line models back in the 90's when I started fly fishing. ( the B at end of model # stands for Blank to denote it was sold as a blank only) the RPL + was super fast action back then but in a 10' rod would probably be on the fast side of med-fast today. I can't think of a nicer action today for a 10' 5wt than what you have there. Would be great for the big tailwater trout fishing around here or kayak/float tube fishing. Kind of like people thinking the cars of their young days as being nicer than a brand new model, I kind of get that feeling about fly rods. ( especially 90's model Sage rods as that is what the local fly shop sold as their top line rods)
  11. I have 2 llamas. I have 2 trash bags full of their hair/wool. There are at least 3 different textures/types of wool off llamas. A very fine and soft fur from the undercoat. A medium coarse kinda stringy fur, and a long soft, hairlike fur that could be used for streamer wings. We used to sell the bags of wool to the lady we bought the llamas from but haven't in several years. I don't use it much on flies anymore but I probably should experiment. It's easy enough to substitute it for hares ear.
  12. That loop knot looks like it might be good to attach dropper to tippet/leader just above the eye of the top fly as well as to bend of hooks.
  13. My first vise was out of a kit and it had a hard time staying tight on hooks. Then the C-clamp broke within a couple months. Next vise was a Thompson 360 slt. Ordered it along with a set of midge jaws. Got it, put the midge jaws in it, and have never felt the need to take them out. That was probably in 1995 or so. Still using it. I tie mostly #14 - #22 flies but I can put a # 2/0 plastic worm hook in it and tie an occasional flie for the bass pond next door. Have tied a lot of closers and buggers in size #2 - #6 without much hook slippage or any visible jaw damage. Every few months I browse through eBay and lust over the new vises. So many machined and true rotary beauties. But still haven't pulled the trigger. I have gotten so used to this thing and it still looks as good as new except for a little rust patina on the C-clamp knobs. I think it actually works better than it did when new. The delrin bushings and the cam have become smoother over time. I don't tie production and even took a few years off from tying at one time so this vise might not have as many flies through it as other folks' with much less age on them. But it's a good hook holder, solid as a rock, and let's me adjust the vise angle and rotate to see other side of flies.
  14. I'm going to try that method next time out. Would be nice to be able to change top fly without retying two knots and it wouldn't shorten the line between flies.
  15. I have been fishing soft hackles since early spring on the Holston and Clinch rivers here in east TN. Never fished them much before this year but probably over 90% of trout caught this year have come on these two flies. On the Holston all spring and early summer the top fly did the business. It's a simplified Bastian's Floating Caddis Emerger. I tie it with a green foam abdomen and brown foam back, ruffed grouse soft hackle is just brown. Dead drifted with a more visible Caddis dry fly as an indicator was deadly on the Holston. The bottom fly is just pheasant tail then a green glass bead, same grouse soft hackle. Slightly smaller for the Clinch River. Been fishing it wet, across and downstream swing since July. Been catching alot more fish on the Clinch that way than I ever did with little PT nymphs or midges. Both rivers have/had good hatches of size 16-20 green bodied Caddis with brown wings.
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