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Greetings,

I have some questions on tying classics, and I apologize if this isn't the right place to post them.  I have looked through a variety of sources and haven't found specific answers, so I thought I would pose them here.  I will try to be concise so this doesn't turn into a novel.

My questions center around proportions.  I have read the standard tail is 1.5x the hook gap, and that has worked well on the hooks I started tying on, mostly Partridge CS26 3/0.  However, now I am starting to build my collection of blind eye hooks, and these seem to have a much smaller gap than what I'm used to.  I have several different kinds of hooks, and even in the same size the gap and overall length vary.  Sometimes the difference in gap even in 3/0 is significant, and I don't know how to go about determining proportions for the flies I am tying.  Does the convention of 1.5x the gap still hold true?  Does the length of the shank determine anything besides wing length?

My next question is on these hooks with smaller gaps, how do you determine the height of the wing?  I know sometimes the wing can be huge; looking at flies like the Captain, Colonel, or Greenwell, the wings can be much larger than the hook gap.  I just want to make sure I don't end up with a fly that looks like a bear riding a tricycle.

I've read Kelson, Pryce-Tannatt, and others, and so far I haven't found good guidelines on this.  Any advice, suggestions, or resources would be much appreciated.

Also wanted to share with the group https://www.archive.org if you haven't come across it.  You can search their database which is how I found Kelson, Pryce-Tannatt, Hale (1892 edition), Mary Orvis Marbury, and others.  I think to download them you need to sign up, but it's free.  Thought people here might enjoy the database if they weren't familiar with it.

Thanks for your help everybody.  All the best,

Troy

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A member here gave me some great advice. Trace your hook on a piece of paper a few times like 6. Then on each hook sketch the fly you want to tie. 

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18 minutes ago, Sandan said:

A member here gave me some great advice. Trace your hook on a piece of paper a few times like 6. Then on each hook sketch the fly you want to tie. 

I have a feeling that might have been me. I have advocated laying a few hooks to be used out on a copier and simply make photo copies, then sketching the fly as you wish the finished product to look. As time goes by that will no longer be necessary, but it is a good tool to use when getting started.

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9 minutes ago, SalarMan said:

I have a feeling that might have been me. I have advocated laying a few hooks to be used out on a copier and simply make photo copies, then sketching the fly as you wish the finished product to look. As time goes by that will no longer be necessary, but it is a good tool to use when getting started.

Yes sir it was you George

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@SalarMan  @Sandan  I've been doing that for a while and found it really helps.  I tend to trace my hooks onto 3x5 notecards then measure and draw out where the tail and topping "should" meet.  That way I can hold up the card behind my hook to see if my tail is roughly where it "should" be.  Gives me a rough guide.

Regarding the gap, the 3/0 hooks I have range from 1/2" to 11/16" and while I realize we're only talking about 3/16ths of an inch difference, it sure looks like a lot more when I draw them out.

Is it safe to say that if the tail doesn't look preposterously out of scale, I'll be ok to use the 1.5x gap as a guideline and go from there?

Thanks!

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3 minutes ago, Sandan said:

I'd say yes, but @SalarMan is the real expert.

Phew...my hat size just went way up - 😎

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12 minutes ago, SalarMan said:

Phew...my hat size just went way up - 😎

Hahaha. Be careful you don't tip over

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5 minutes ago, Sandan said:

Hahaha. Be careful you don't tip over

Haven't been tying much of late, but you have inspired to get back over the vise...thanks Sandan!!!

Gotta go...cocktail hour🍷

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2 minutes ago, SalarMan said:

Haven't been tying much of late, but you have inspired to get back over the vise...thanks Sandan!!!

Gotta go...cocktail hour🍷

Enjoy yhe cocktail hour. It's 5,00 someplace. I'm glad I inspired you!! Can't wait to see what you tie.

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14 hours ago, Medic3141 said:

Greetings,

I have some questions on tying classics, and I apologize if this isn't the right place to post them.  I have looked through a variety of sources and haven't found specific answers, so I thought I would pose them here.  I will try to be concise so this doesn't turn into a novel.

My questions center around proportions.  I have read the standard tail is 1.5x the hook gap, and that has worked well on the hooks I started tying on, mostly Partridge CS26 3/0.  However, now I am starting to build my collection of blind eye hooks, and these seem to have a much smaller gap than what I'm used to.  I have several different kinds of hooks, and even in the same size the gap and overall length vary.  Sometimes the difference in gap even in 3/0 is significant, and I don't know how to go about determining proportions for the flies I am tying.  Does the convention of 1.5x the gap still hold true?  Does the length of the shank determine anything besides wing length?

My next question is on these hooks with smaller gaps, how do you determine the height of the wing?  I know sometimes the wing can be huge; looking at flies like the Captain, Colonel, or Greenwell, the wings can be much larger than the hook gap.  I just want to make sure I don't end up with a fly that looks like a bear riding a tricycle.

I've read Kelson, Pryce-Tannatt, and others, and so far I haven't found good guidelines on this.  Any advice, suggestions, or resources would be much appreciated.

Also wanted to share with the group https://www.archive.org if you haven't come across it.  You can search their database which is how I found Kelson, Pryce-Tannatt, Hale (1892 edition), Mary Orvis Marbury, and others.  I think to download them you need to sign up, but it's free.  Thought people here might enjoy the database if they weren't familiar with it.

Thanks for your help everybody.  All the best,

Troy

You do not state what kind of fly you are tying.

For the purpose of my answer I will assume it is a standard proportioned dry fly.

It is true that for a standard dry fly hook, that the tail is 1.5X the hook gap. But have you considered that the reason was that the LENGTH of the hook shank was also 1.5X the hook gap?

What matters is the length of the insect that we are imitating and NOT the hoop gap. Since the length of the hook shank determines the size of the insect, we should base our measurements on the hook shank and NOT the hook gap which can be relatively wide for a 1XS hook or relatively narrow for a 1XL hook.

So use the length of the hook shank as your guide for tying flies.

http://www.derekspace.net/prop.htm

35684732276_24e71c1174.jpg 

49936719427_492ba16f3f.jpg 

spacer.pngdry-fly-proportions.jpg?w=450&h=256[/img]

  

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@Silver Creek my mistake, i didn't specify the type of fly. I was talking about wet flies, specifically traditional Atlantic salmon flies.

What I've read is that from the tie-in point, right above the point of the hook, the tail should extend to the rear 1.5x the gap. The feather ends up being longer because it's curved. The problem I'm running into is how to plan out and tie my flies because I have hooks of the same size, 3/0, but they have different gaps and shank lengths. 

The info you provided is exactly what I use when I'm tying flies for trout. Well, what I try to use, anyway. The vertical wings and posts don't always turn out as planned. 

Thanks for the info, those are great pics and I'll keep them for when I'm tying trout flies! 

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its from and old app called "Fly2000" as shown in the top border of the photo

library in the app contains a variety of 1000 fly patterns.

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