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Rusty Shackleford

Questions about silk and soft hackles

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I want to tie some Orange and Partridge soft hackles in # 14 and 16 and I am wondering if the silk thread I have will make a sufficient body or if I need floss to get that translucent color change? Nearly every video I've watched about tying them shows the tiers using thread for the bodies. 

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Silk THREAD was the tradition AND it will hold up a bit better than floss with it's individual fibers.  If you do use floss there is a trick to help keep it from "fuzzing out" from the fishes teeth - simply make sure that when you first lock-down the tying floss use a longer tag end then bring it up over your tied body as a shellback.

Also, the biggest thing in tying the "and" type soft hackles is not whether use use thread or floss BUT that you use silk.  The color of silk reacts differently in water than Uni-Stretch, rayon or other substitute and I tend to find more fish IN the water :) 

Hope this helps.

Kim

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15 minutes ago, WWKimba said:

Silk THREAD was the tradition AND it will hold up a bit better than floss with it's individual fibers.  If you do use floss there is a trick to help keep it from "fuzzing out" from the fishes teeth - simply make sure that when you first lock-down the tying floss use a longer tag end then bring it up over your tied body as a shellback.

Also, the biggest thing in tying the "and" type soft hackles is not whether use use thread or floss BUT that you use silk.  The color of silk reacts differently in water than Uni-Stretch, rayon or other substitute and I tend to find more fish IN the water :) 

Hope this helps.

Kim

Informative as always, thank you very much :)

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You want gold 6a though some people prefer the hot orange. This is as close as you are going to get to the classic traditional silks.  If this is something you’d like to do the colors of purple,primrose and gold or hot orange would be a good

foundation.

https://morus-silk.com/silk-for-tying-flies/?v=79cba1185463

263C9759-6FB7-44B4-8F26-D1E3955EB4FE.jpeg

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P & 0  sz 14 Partridge Captain Hamilton.

* a little ice dub thorax was added which is not part of the original dressing.

 

1B2274D6-C595-445D-96A7-D91F2FAF0C7E.jpeg

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i dont tie for tradition or museums, i just use tying thread

Partridge-Orange-2-800.jpg

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8 hours ago, Rusty Shackleford said:

I am wondering if the silk thread I have will make a sufficient body

That begs the question: What silk thread do you have?  And, what do you mean by 'sufficient body'?  Do you mean building bulk?  Traditional soft hackles are typically slim, often using just 1-2 layers of thread, sometimes with a thorax, as in @Moshup's beauty above.    

As @flytire says,  you can use any thread or floss for soft hackles, but traditionally, silk is used.  Silk has a few attributes which differentiate it from other types of thread in the course of tying and fishing flies.  One of them is a certain translucency when wet, which better imitates a natural, in the opinion of most tyers.   Whether that makes a difference to  trout all the time, who knows, but it certainly makes a difference to alot of tyers.  

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

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1 hour ago, niveker said:

That begs the question: What silk thread do you have?  And, what do you mean by 'sufficient body'?  Do you mean building bulk?  Traditional soft hackles are typically slim, often using just 1-2 layers of thread, sometimes with a thorax, as in @Moshup's beauty above.    

As @flytire says,  you can use any thread or floss for soft hackles, but traditionally, silk is used.  Silk has a few attributes which differentiate it from other types of thread in the course of tying and fishing flies.  One of them is a certain translucency when wet, which better imitates a natural, in the opinion of most tyers.   Whether that makes a difference to  trout all the time, who knows, but it certainly makes a difference to alot of tyers.  

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

I have Ephemera #625 and #633 and bu sufficient I just meant everything it's supposed to be and it sounds like what I have is just the thing, here is one I tied up last night with #625 which appears to be a pretty close match to the highly sought after 6A color. I realize the hackle is a bit thicker than traditional but I've never bothered stripping half of the partridge feather for any of my soft hackles and still caught plenty of fish. I will pprobably do some in the classic style as well though, just to try it out :) 

179431571_1167690727036895_123329941712296675_n.jpg

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A light coat of hardened Loon clear finish protects my soft hackle tying thread bodies from teeth and fading, and does not yellow over time. Non- traditional to be sure but the trout don't see to mind at all.   

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2 hours ago, Rusty Shackleford said:

here is one I tied up last night

NIce fly RS.  I prefer heavier dressed soft hackles for fast water.  

For future reference:

here is a visual comparison of the thicknesses of different silk thread brands  posted by @Old Hat last year on this forum. 

Quote

From left to right in Primose shade....Kimono 100.  YLI 100.  Ephemera.  Pearsall. These are wet 

Silk_Comparison.jpg

http://www.flytyingforum.com/index.php?/topic/91553-pearsall-and-langley-gone-but-others/&do=findComment&comment=774948

 

Here is a table I put together to compare/match colors for Kimono 100 and YLI silk with Pearsall's. 

Vintage Pearsall

YLI

 Kimono 100

2 Straw

213 Pale Yellow

 ?

3 Primrose

261 Buttercup

213 Pale Yellow

301 Ichiban

4 Yellow

214 Daffodil Yellow

 ?

5 Lemon Yellow

 ?

 ?

6 Amber

 ?

 ?

6A Gold

231 Bright Apricot

#304 Golden Pavilion

 

 

 

6B Sherry Spinner

 ?

370 Teriyaki

7 Blue

208 Ocean Blue

 

8 Purple

244 Eggplant

330 Purple Susan

 

 

329 Emperor (purple)

9A Gray

232  Light Blue Grey

377 Ginza

10 Ash

242 Pinky Brown

 

 

367 Meiji

 

 

 

11 Golden Olive

214 Dull Gold

 

11A Scarlet

210 Bright Red

319 Hezza

 

 

318 Geishe (red, scarlet)

12 Cardinal

 

321 Tokyo Rose

13 Crimson

 

 

14 Claret

258 Dark Purple

322 Raspberry Truffle

15 Dark Claret

276 Burgundy

248 Magenta

 

16 Olive

218

 

17 Brown

234 Chocolate

372 Hibachi

18 Highland Green

222 Bright Green

351 Midori

19 Hot Orange

216 Bright Orange

317 Orenji

20 Light Olive

 

353 Wasabi

30 Java Brown

 

368 Mt. Fuji

 

 

 

The info in this table was taken from a older post here, again by @Old Hat, and from  the WiFlyFisher website. See following links for original posts and images.  

http://www.flytyingforum.com/index.php?/topic/91553-pearsall-and-langley-gone-but-others/&do=findComment&comment=774950

https://wiflyfisher.com/YLI-Silk-Thread-Review.asp

 

 

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Where’s Old Hat when you need him? Exceptional tyer. Nice fly Rusty.

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On 5/1/2021 at 10:34 AM, Rocco said:

A light coat of hardened Loon clear finish protects my soft hackle tying thread bodies from teeth and fading, and does not yellow over time. Non- traditional to be sure but the trout don't see to mind at all.   

If using most threads/floss this is OK, but if using silk it keeps the water from affecting the color change that occurs when certain color silks get wet and therefore changes the pattern.

Kim

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