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Everything posted by kschu

  1. kschu

    Digital Camera's

    Let me share two suggestions regarding digital cameras. While digital zoom is nice, optical zoom is nicer. If you can get a camera with 3x (or better) optical zoom it will make a greater difference in your picture quality then a similar digital zoom. I used to own a Canon PowerShot A20 (out of production) and my son bought a Canon PowerShot A60 back around Christmas. I've got nothing but good things to say about these cameras. Okay, the next suggestion sort of counterdicts the "nothing but good things to say". On my first visit to Wyoming last summer, I lost my footing on the upstream side of a deep hole. I slipped into the water and the A20 was in my vest pocket. As soon as I recovered and got back on dry land, I pulled out the A20, pulled the batteries right away and removed the CF memory card. The pictures on the card were fine, but the camera was trashed. It is sitting on the shelf above this computer because I just can't bear to throw it out. The guy at the camera shop said that for what it would cost to fix the camera, I would be better off buying a new one. Makes me wish I had extended the warrenty / service contract one month before the trip. So my suggestion is, if you can find a water proof camera (or one with enough water resistance do survive a fall into a river) it deserves consideration. I would love to find a waterproof with at least 3x Optical Zoom, Macro mode, 2.1 MegaPixal (or better?) that was in my price range. I'll check out the Pentax that was mentioned. The other thing to consider in a digital is battery life. My brother in law (the artist) was looking at one of the Sony's that writes directly to a CD. I talked him into the Canon PowerShot A60 in part because one uses much less battery writing to CF memory cards that one does writing to CD (or floppy for that matter). I also put him on to some great NiMH rechargable AA batteries and a great charger from Maha. My son bought this charger as well and it has been great. Ken S. P.S. They do make a waterproof enclousure for the Canon PowerShot, but it costs nearly as much as the camera. That ain't going to happen.
  2. Thanks SD. I'll call the shop tomorrow and see if he carries these. I know he has other stock by Spirit River. I suppose I could also check at the local Gander Mountain. I hope to visit my shop on Thus. night for a tying session. Ken S.
  3. QUOTE (lanvaettir @ May 9 2004, 04:20 PM) I've got a little St Croix 4pc 4 wt and I like it. I found a little 4/5 Acuma that feels really good on it too. I have used 3 wt and 4 wt line on it and it casts both really well. Exceptional quality for the price IMHO. It is pretty hard to turn a 18+ inch fish with it though but then again that's part of the fun! One of the cooling ponds at work has had some changing water levels last week. There are two cluverts side by side that feed into the ponds. Under what I'll call normal conditions, the pond's level comes up to about this center of these pipes. I have pictures of the pond where the water level was about 3 feet below the pipes. Last week I fished one day before work with the levels down about 1.5 feet below the pipe. With the water that low, it was easy pickings to catch bluegills and green sunfish up in the shallows very close to shore. I could also see carp wollowing near the shallows. I was using a bead head prince and cast it right in front of the carp. I got 8 sunfish in the hour before work, and two of those huge carp. All of this was on the St. Croix 4 pc. 4 wt rod. Yes, I can be a challenge handling such a big fish on this rod, but it was also a lot of fun. I love that rod. I was able to beach the first carp and got lucky when I dragged it up the bank by the leader. The second fish was bigger and although I beached it, when I tried to pull it up the shore, the leader snapped, I lost the fly when the fish flopped back into the water and swam away. Maybe I can catch the same fish again this week. I wonder if that fly would stay put that long. Ken S.
  4. QUOTE (artimus @ May 8 2004, 06:27 PM) Garbage bags. I try to grab some of the fodder that is left behind from those less considerate. Its even helped me gain access to waters that are closed to others. Art Good call Art. I try to carry out more than I bring in. I don't carry a bag. I just use the back pocket on the vest. I have one smaller pocket on the vest that I regularly fill with monofiliment that I either pick up from the shoreline (when fishing ponds) or snag into (when wading rivers/streams). I could not believe the number and size of hooks on the extreamly heavy weight line I pulled out while wading in the DuPage River last night. The river averages maybe 10 yards wide. I've never seen fish big enough for the hooks they were using. Makes you wonder how the mess got left behind. It had to be heavy enough line to move a sunken tree trunk. But then I found the huge weight that this person had on the end of the line. It was stuck in some rocks. From the shore one would not have been able to drag it out. I had little trouble pulling it by wading right over to it. The fool must have had to cut the line since I doubt he/she could have pulled hard enough to break it off. Some of the ponds I fish do not have garbage cans in the area. Does anyone else get concerned about picking up empty beer bottles or cans and tossing them in the back of your car? In Illinois, they can write you a ticket for having open beer containers (even empty) anywhere in the vehicle. I've just been hopeing that should an officer ask me about it, I could show him/her the rest of the garbage I've collected and explain my way out of trouble. Ken S.
  5. QUOTE (Riverman @ May 8 2004, 07:46 AM) For me it's my hemostats. It makes removing the hook so much faster and cleaner. I have had mine for 32 years now and have been known to have a panic attack if I misplace them. Is "hemostats" a fancy word for what I call forceps. Those wonderful little locking jaws that have saved the lives of more bluegill than (fill in the blank). Those little fish sure do get anxious and even if you try to set the hook right away, they find ways to get a large prince nymph through their tiny little lips. If it were not for the forceps, I'd be cutting off flies and tossing bluegill back all the time. With the forceps, I can get the hook out with little if any "damage" to the fish. I lost my favorite pair, 4" long, black, with curved tips, late last year. I have picked up a new pair that are 6" long, shiny silver (easier to find if I drop them) and straight tips (cuz that was all they had in stock). I don't like them as well. I miss the curved tip. And the finger holes are smaller and sometime's it is a chore to get them off my oversized fingers once I have the hook out. I bought a zinger too, so hopefully I will be able to make this pair last a whole season. The other "have to have" is a small hand towel. I keep it in the back pocket of the vest. It is escential for getting the slime off one's hands after you catch that 20th Bluegill that is stealing your fly before the Smallie can get at it. I had a Bluegill take a large Clouser minnow last week. The Clouser was nearly as big as the 'Gill but that did not stop the hungry little thief. Ken S.
  6. I own two fly rods. My 6wt has been with me for many years. Could not tell you who made it. The label has been worn off for a very long time. It is a fiberglass rod. I think it is 8.5' long. Not great, but it has served me well. My "good" rod is my 4wt 8' St Croix Imperial. I bought the 4 piece rod, reel, line, leader and case outfit. I LOVE this package. The rod casts like a dream (at least compared to the older fiberglass rod). I can get it into some tight spaces. I fish some smaller sized rivers and the tree cover can get close some times. I did get too close to a tree late last fall and tied a woolly bugger into some branches. I was upset with myself and did not think about what I was doing. I bent the rod over trying to pull the bugger out of the tree. I broke the rod right where the butt section fit into the first joint. I asked my fly shop what the address was to send the rod into St. Croix to see how they would handle it. Since it was my stupid move that broke it, I was not sure if they would cover it under warranty. Now even though I had bought the rod through a great mail order discount offer, they guys at my fly shop told me that they were "my St Croix dealer" so they sent the rod in for me. St. Croix replaced the butt section under the warranty. All this cost me was about $4 for the UPS shipping charge to send it in to St. Croix. My next rod will be a St. Croix 4 piece 8wt 9' Imperial Outfit. I'll buy it at the local shop, regardless of the discount available elsewhere. These guys take great care of me and they deserve the business. I love St. Croix and would recommend them to anyone. I also love my fly shop, Fly'N'Field in Glen Ellyn, IL (23 mi. west of Chicago) and can't recommend them highly enough. Ken S.
  7. My wife works as a teachers aide in a first grade class at the Lutheran school that my kids attended. I hear "first grade" jokes all the time. This sounds an aweful lot like one of them. But I must admit, it was a very appropriate use of the play on words. Made me laugh. Ken S.
  8. Did you notice? The site is up to number 9 on the top 100. I've mentioned the site to a few friends recently. We are only 40 "unique visitors" behind the site in the number 8 slot. Ken S.
  9. QUOTE (TroutBum @ May 7 2004, 10:02 AM) Double hauling is something that is easier to do than to describe in print. Having recently posted my attempt to describe the manuver in print, I have to agree. Please don't let the length or verbosity of my explaination intimidate you. Try it yourself. Have a fellow fly fisherman demonstrate it for you. Seeing it has to be better than trying to figure it out from a printed description. I'd also agree that the double haul is a tremendously handy technique.
  10. That sounds like a fly I lost just today. It was a bead head nymph with four very fine diameter rubber legs. It was one of the flies I got last year when I bought the Orvis promo where they offered 8 nymphs in a small wool fly wallet for $10 and then they threw in a $10 Orvis gift certificate and catalog. I think I saw the same offer again this year in one of the fly fishing magazines. Anyway, the water in the pond at work was a bit murky today. I figured a bead head might be an attention getter. For some reason the level of the pond was down over a foot from normal level. That's the problem with a series of cooling ponds, they pump the water between the ponds and if the pumps get out of sync somehow, the water levels get all messed up (temporarily). With the water level so low, the bluegills were packed up against shore. And the carp were wollowing in areas where you can't normally spot them. The one "shelf" in this pond is normally about 3-5 feet deep. Today it was like 2-3 feel deep. I was casting to Bluegill until I would spot a carp and then I'd drop the nymph right in front of the carp. I got two really large ones, on the 4wt St Croix 4 piece rod. I was able to drag the first one up onto shore and then pick it up enough to get the fly back. The second carp was larger and while I did get it dragged onto the rocks, when I tried to lift it higher using the line, the leader broke and the fish quickly wiggled back into the water. He got away with my nymph still in his lip. If anyone knows where to get these fine diameter rubber legs, please share the info. I'd like to tie up a mess of these bead head nymphs. They are great for the bluegill (got eight in 90 mins before work this AM) and apparently they are just attractive enough to get the attention of a carp as well. I did get one small largemouth on the nymph early on. It was all of 6" long. Whoppie. Ken S.
  11. kschu


    In my novice opinion, I would say that 9 times out of 10 it is a matter of "just go fishing". We have all heard of days where those Trout get it into their tiny little minds that one bug and no other is on the menu today. For those days, they make dubbing packages with five shades of Olive. That is also why they make field tying kits. If the fish are only biting on one bug, that is the one you may need to come up with for that outing. Or you can switch to Smallmouth Bass or Bluegill fishing. They are never that picky. Maybe we all need to be like Jeff Gordon and the DuPont NASCAR racing team. We should paint the tools of our trade (or should I say "Sport") like a rainbow. More later, Ken S. Bumper Sticker from my last car: "Wonder Boy for President"
  12. kschu

    New Banners

    According to the counter, as I type this reply, this thread has had 120 reads. Now compare that to the 21 votes cast (at this time). My reply should make the seventh. So that is one reader out of six who actually votes. Now I'll admit, the first time I read this thread, I did not vote. Honestly, I had not noticed any new banners. I too have become "desensitized" to banners. So I went back to an index and checked out the banners. I like them and placed a vote in favor of them. I think "my vote" was number 10 or 11. I've came back to the thread to see how others are responding. I'm surprised that more readers are just lurking and not responding. Question: since this is my third "visit" to this thread, does that count as three "reads"? If it does, than the response seen so far may not be as bad as I originally percieved. The good part is that the response has been very positive. Ken S.
  13. QUOTE (johnnyquest @ May 5 2004, 10:57 PM) Double haul???? you lost me there......... I'll try this and someone will correct me if I get it wrong. Double Haul refers to a way to accelerate your line on the forward stroke to gain some distance. It is used when you have gotten as far as you can with your normal casting, but you want to go a bit farther. While you've got the line out to this point you want to cast past, you need to strip some excess line off the reel. The move is done as your false casting. Get as much line moving back and forth as you can control. You want your striping hand up closes to the first striping guide on the rod. You draw back your rod and your the loop of your line straightens out behind you. You get ready to cast forward and drop the fly to the water. You feel the rod start to load as your loop finishes and the rod tip is drawn back. As you start to move the rod forward, you pull down on the line with the striping hand (remember, it is up near that first guide). By pulling down as the rod begins to move forward, you add a little extra volocity to the forward movement of the line. As this last cast moves forward out in front of you, it will fly farther than it did on previous false casts. That extra volocity keeps the line flying longer and farther. I believe this is called the double haul because you are not only hauling down on the line as you lift it off the water to start your false cast, but you also haul down on it as you make that final forward cast. Perhaps the name comes from the fact that you are not only imparting forward movement to the line via the action of the rod, but also due to the hauling down on the line, pulling it forward from that flat out back position. I'm sure if you or I or anyone pulled out a book, there is a better description of this technique. I tried to keep this simple yet complete. I'm sure some of those with more experiance than I can add some suggestions and polish that will help even more. Try this as is and then add polish. It is a starting point. See what it can do for you. It may take a few tries to see results. Get your timing down first. If you do this final haul before the loop has truely straightened out, you could be getting into trouble. Once you work out the timing properly, think about seeing if you can pull that last haul faster than your first tries. The more acceleration you add to the line the more distance you may get. It is most useful to those of us who fish ponds and lakes where distance can make a lot of difference. It is not so useful on smaller streams where sometimes you are working hard to properly place a very short cast. More later, Ken S.
  14. It is really cool that this great site is number 10 on the Fly Fishing Top 100 sites listing. Obviously, we should all be spreading the word about how good the discussions and such on this site are. I've seen variations of forum software similar to what is available here, but this is the best implementation I've seen yet. My question is, what else can we do to help bump this site up higher on that Top 100 list? What events cause the rank to go up? Does it help if we the members click through on the little Top 100 graphic on the bottom of the Forum Index page? Does it help if we go to the Top 100 list and click through to the FTF page? Does it really come down to unique visitors coming to the site and being recorded by a counter? If we knew how we could help, I'm sure there are several of us who would be happy to do what we can. NOTE: I am not suggesting some computer wizard write some script or robot to artificially raise our count. I'm asking what legitimate and honest things can be done to improve the ranking. Having said all that, maybe hitting the Top 10 is significant enough and we should focus on thanking those who maintain this wonderful forum for us. More later, Ken S.
  15. OKay, let's see if I can do this right. Here is an picture of a Sunset on Casey's Pond. This is one of my favorite fishing holes on the property where I work.
  16. QUOTE (Chris Beech @ May 2 2004, 03:14 AM) ps - don't know where that bait fisherman sign came from! Welcome Chris, I too was caught off guard by the "Bait Fisherman" when I joined. From my short time experiance on this site, I recall that that 'label' was changed once I had posted about 10 posts. It seems to be a way to indicate that you are relative newcommer. I see on your posts that at this point, you have only posted two times. Keep posting and you will be "promoted" beyond the Bait level. If you want a more detailed explaination, send a PM to SmallieHunter. He is one of, if not the, main admins on this site. When I first joined, I was home sick for a while. I had time on my hands and went through many of the help pages. There is lots of good info there when you have the time to cruise through them. More later, Ken S.
  17. I bought this cute little tool for tying nail knots. It was only $3 or $4. It clips very convienently into a holder in the spine of my C&F Fly Box. I have never been able to make such nice tight nail knots. The knot holds together so well that you can trim the excess down very close. I have very little problems with anything getting hung up on the knot. Last time I was in the fly shop, some guy had just bought a new reel and had the backing and line installed. He asked Kyle (salesman and awesome fly tier) to tie a leader on for him. Kyle tied on a very heavy leader using the same nail knot tool I use and then tied a loop in that. They customer was shown how to change leaders quickly using the loops. Personally, I don't change leaders that often. I use this tool to tie a fresh leader on with a good nail knot. I keep several sizes of tippet material in a vest pocket and just replace the tippet (and sometimes a length of the next higher diameter above that) very regularly. More later, Ken S.
  18. kschu

    Woolly Worm

    QUOTE (JackG @ May 5 2004, 12:11 AM) hows the pink work compared to the red wool, do you notice and difference? When I went to the fly shop I was looking for the red darlon. They happened to be out of that color and Kyle (salesman and fly tier extrodinaire) said that this hot pink that they had would work just as well. I have noticed no difference between my older flies (tied by a co-worker) that used Red and these new ones that I'm tying. Kyle helped me work out this pattern, based on the old flies. We changed to the grizzly hackle. Kyle showed me the doubling over of the darlon to get a thicker and more visible tail. If you are ever in the western suburbs of Chicagoland, it would be worth you time to visit my favorite fly shop. "Fly and Field" is located in downtown Glen Ellyn approx. 23 miles straight west of Chicago's "Loop". The shop is right across the street from the Metra Train station. Anyone in Chicago can use the trains to get there. There is a group that meets at the store every Thus. night for pizza and tying. I have visited with this group on occasion and learned so much. I would put the staff of this shop up against the staff at any shop any where. More later, Ken S.
  19. QUOTE (jjn @ May 4 2004, 10:47 PM) Here is a picture I took with my Olympus C-5050 using the Macro setting, aperture priority, manual focus and overhead lighting. The fly was about 2 inches from my lens. That is a great looking photo! I like the look of the background. That is an awesome looking fly. The wing case looks like it was quite difficult. Mind you I just finished my beginner's class this spring. One comment or maybe question. I've seen pictures of flies posted where the photographer put a coin (or even a ruler) next to the fly to give you a better idea of the size. Now for presentation, this photo is great. Having said that, I could not guess if this is tied on a size 10 or a size 14 hook. So, for use in a pattern database, do folks think it is better to include some item for size referance? Note that the photo I posted earlier does not include anything of that sort. Could you tell that it was tied on a size 14 3x long Nymph hook? Does that matter? More later, Ken S.
  20. kschu

    Woolly Worm

    I've caught Smallmouth on these, but they are not as productive for Smallmouth as a Wooly Bugger, a Marabou Leech or even a Clouser Minnow. With the Wooly Worm, I seem to get smallmouth more often near sunrise or sunset, up in the shallows. I tie these in four sizes (10-16) and the larger sizes get more Smallmouth. The abundant panfish in the Fermilab ponds grab a smaller wooly worm before the Smallies have a chance. I tie my Wooly Buggers up to size 8 and the Clousers up to a size 6. While the Bluegills won't often take the bigger flies, we also have "Green Sunfish" which will. These sunfish look like a bluegill mated with a bass. Same slab form with a bit more "meat", same spot on the gills, but a mouth more like a smallmouth than a bluegill. And they put up a fight like a smallmouth. They rarely jump, prefering to try to dive deep when hooked. I had asked a Forest Preserve Ranger what these were and he told me they are "Green Sunfish". More later, Ken S.
  21. kschu

    What do you do...

    I am a Computer Systems Administrator for Fermi National Accelerator Lab in Batavia, IL. The lab is about 30 miles west of Chicago. On some discussion boards and such, I used to throw around my own little slogan: "Fermilab - where we smash atoms, so you don't have to". Seriously, it is a fascinating place to work. Fermilab's Tevatron is still the largest accelerator in the world. Check out the Fermilab Web Picture Book. Just today, we upgraded 392 dual processor "farm nodes" to a new version of Fermi's own Linux distribution. These nodes are used as part of a data reconstruction farm for a major international high energy physics experiment known at the lab as Dzero. There are scientists from Universities and other labs around the world who work with all this data. There is a picture of their detector in that Web Picture book. The best thing about my place of work is the fishing available on the property. The property is ten square miles. There are many ponds and most are connected. There is a series of ponds which provide cooling to the accelerator. That means warm water and great big fish. It is great to be able to go fishing for Smallmouth, Largemouth and large sunfish on one's lunch hour. My job is not bad, but the place where I work is great. More later, Ken S. My own Fishing web page
  22. I doubt that the full overhand vs 3/4 overhand is what added any distance to your cast. In my experiance, I get better distance when I get my timing right and if I can keep the rod movement between 10 and 1 O'clock. I have a really nice St Croix 4wt Imperial rod. It casts like a dream. I say that comparing it to my 25 year old 6 wt fiberglass rod. Can't tell you what brand as the label as seriously worn off. That fiberglass rod is like a wet noodle compared to the Imperial. I find myself wanting to move it between 9 and 3 O'clock trying to get it to feel like the Imperial. But I find I can get better distance, even with the old rod, if I keep my movement between 10 and 1. When I guit fighting the older rod and stop trying to make it something it is not, I can get it to do a good job with the streamers and poppers that are too large for the 4wt (at least their too large when it is windy). If you were pitching at 3/4 overhand, then this could be a good spot for you. You may have better control than full overhand. If you think about it, you may see that it is control and not angle of attack that makes the difference in distance. One man's opinion. YMMV. Ken S.
  23. The one Sony waterproof camera that I've seen is the Sony CyberShot DSC-U60. From what I have read, it does not have any zoom. The review on the site I've linked here included the comment "Very easy to take good pictures ... very hard to take spectacular pictures". I doubt that this camera does Macro mode photos. It can take 2.0 MegaPixal images. The only other waterproof camera I have looked at is the Pentax Optio 33WR. It does offer "3.2 megapixels (effective), 2.8x optical zoom/4x digital zoom", but this site does not say anything about Macro mode. I know this thread is about taking pictures of flies and not waterproof cameras. But since I've been doing a little shopping, and 'McFly' did ask about a Sony Waterproof, I thought I would share the link that I did have. Ken S.
  24. QUOTE (SmallieHunter @ May 4 2004, 09:28 AM) If you give me the model of you Sony I can look up where the macro feature is on your camera. My camera (the one that got dunked and does not work any more ) was a Canon PowerShot S20. It was an awesome camera and I miss it terribly. My son had experimented with mine and decided he liked the PowerShot. By the time he bought his, they were no longer making the S20, so he got an S60. My S20 did not have a macro mode, but his S60 does. His has a similar button with the flower for macro mode. I am not sure if it will automatically focus on something that is say 16" away, or if I need to go into the manual focus mode. The first shot of a fly that I took was done using manual mode. My son Kyle set it all up on my tripod. I had to correct the focus since he had it off by a bit. I've not played with the camera much. I'm sure I can figure it out, but I've not made the time to do this yet. I've just submitted a pattern to the Fly Pattern Database. It is called a "Wooly Worm" (If you search for it, I may have mis-spelled it as Woolly Worm). I included a photo (which I took) along with the materials and instructions. I'll try attaching the picture file to this posting as well. Constructive critisizm (of the picture, not my spelling) is gladly accepted. I took this photo with the fly lying on a granite topped table in our living room. There was a good bit of natural light comming through the bay window. I also used the camera's flash, but turned down to half-power. I thought the background would go well with this fly and not be too overpowering. I may have been able to focus it better. This is the best of three photos that I took, and those were my first digital macro photos. I used to be really good with a Canon A-1 back in college. More later, Ken
  25. A new addition to the fly pattern database has been submitted by kschu: Woolly Worm
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