Fly Tying Tip of the Day

Fun with fur and feathers

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AlanKulcak
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Post by AlanKulcak » Sat Dec 09, 2006 10:27 pm

I found these nice wood/glass storage boxes at Hobby Lobby for about $2-$3. They are cheap and keep your table clutter free, plus you can see threw then so you dont have to thumble threw stuff finding what you need.

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AlanKulcak
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Post by AlanKulcak » Sun Dec 10, 2006 11:20 am

To fluff up your dubbing I use the rough side of a piece of velcro. Stick it to the handle of your bobkin or on a small dowel rod. You can also use a rough grit of sand paper for those smaller nymphs you dont want to fluffed up. I have several diffrent dowel rods with diffent sizes of velcro and also diffrent grits of sand paper so that I can always get that perfect finish that im looking for. By sticking the most common one on your bobkin handle its always right there, you dont have to set a tool down and pick up another..

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AlanKulcak
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Post by AlanKulcak » Mon Dec 11, 2006 1:15 pm

Waspi now makes small applicator bottles for there glues. They work very well and I have starting using then instead of the jars. But I still buy the jars to refill the applicator bottles. They keep the glue fresh for a long time which means not having to thin it out.. It comes with a small needle as a cap with a rubber stoper on the end. You can use this needle to pull off a very small drop off the end of the applicator so you can gloss coat the ends of nymphs with out applying to much.

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AlanKulcak
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Post by AlanKulcak » Wed Dec 13, 2006 8:15 pm

Making a cheap but very effective fly tying backdrop.

When tying your eyes can get dizzy tying to focus on your fly with clutter in the background. One of the best things I've dones for my tying room is making a backdrop to tie against. There are many devices that you can add onto your vise to accomplish this task but can some times get in the way when your palmering a large feather or spinning deer hair. By making one out of a coat hanger and a piece of cardboard you can slid it around your table to get it out of the way easy.

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LabRat
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Post by LabRat » Wed Dec 13, 2006 9:22 pm

Great idea! Unfortunately my tying area is too narrow for that setup.

What I did was to buy a piece of foam posterboard (like kids use for science fair projects). The piece I bought is white on one side, blue on the other. I cut the foam to match the width of my tying desk, and clamped it on with a couple spring clamps. The white side is good for visibility on dark flies and when I tie light colored flies, I turn the foam around to the blue side. Really helps ease the eye strain (and I can hide from the family better) :wink:
Mark Dillow

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AlanKulcak
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Post by AlanKulcak » Thu Dec 14, 2006 3:37 pm

Tying neat heads..
When tying flies the best thing to make your fly look profesional is to leave a small smooth finished head. To accomplish this first always start your thread off about 1/3 down the hookshank. Never wrap the thread more than you have to around the eye. Don't wrap the thread all the way up the shank every time you tie in a piece of material, this will create a nasty looking fly. Use as few of wraps posible to lock in your materials. Make one or two raps around the material then fold it back and make a few wraps infront of the fold to sandwich it in between the wraps. Always pull back the fibers before making your first wrap infront, the more wraps of thread you put over a material the harder it is to fold it back to keep it out of the way of tying off. Nothing ruins a finished fly quite like feathers and estas sticking out of the eye.. Practice trying to make the smallest head posible while still keeping the fly durable. This is not to say that all flies should be tied in this manner, there are paterns that require a big head and/or a tapered threaded body. Just try and keep the fly proportional looking.

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AlanKulcak
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Post by AlanKulcak » Sat Dec 16, 2006 1:07 am

Often times when tying a pattern that involves feathers for the tail, as in many saltwater flies, it is hard to keep the feather strait and not have it spin on the hook. If you tie on a small piece of mono the same diameter as the hook shank you will have a flat surface to tie against, so you dont have to strugle keeping the feathers strait.



* I'll be up there on the river for a week and wont have access to a computer. I hope you guys liked the tips so far and I'll be thinking of more to post when I get back.
If you see me on the river stop and say hi, I'll be with my brother in our blue creekcompany one man pontoons. :D

LabRat
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Post by LabRat » Sat Dec 16, 2006 9:57 am

I think Dave Whitlock demos this on his bass bug videos too. He acutally ties in a loop of mono, one strand on either side of the shank, and uses zap a gap to make a falt tying surface. Seems to work really well.
Mark Dillow

Jimbo Roberts
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Post by Jimbo Roberts » Sat Dec 16, 2006 9:18 pm

Have fun fishing. I have certainly enjoyed your tying techniques, so keep them coming. Jimbo

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AlanKulcak
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Post by AlanKulcak » Sun Dec 24, 2006 9:04 pm

Just got back yesturday evening and I would have to say I had more fun this past week of fishing than I have ever had. Despite the crowds on the river we still caught lots of fish and learned alot of new spots with this low flow. I havent ever fished fished from rocky beach down to lower rio in the past, because we wernt lease members, so we fished that part of the river most. Its a great time to learn about the river with the low clear water. We floated the first two days then drove around the rest of the time from lease to lease. Its hard to be courteous to all the other fisher men when there are people at just about every lease and when the fish havent had a chance to spread out yet, but we tried hard not to step on anybodies toes. Any ways, Im back at the house and got to tie all day today to refill my fly box and make a few gifts for friends.


These small wooden boxes that I found at hobby lobby work great for gifts. I sanded them down and cut out some fly box foam to stick in them. You can stain and varnish them to make them look really good and fill them up with flies to give to your buddies!

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LabRat
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Post by LabRat » Mon Dec 25, 2006 8:14 am

Good idea, "buddy" :wink:
I wondered how y'all were able to float with all the traffic on the leases. I saw you a couple times with stretches of the river all to yourself, so that must have been fun.
Mark Dillow

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AlanKulcak
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Post by AlanKulcak » Mon Dec 25, 2006 9:10 pm

I was at my aunts house today for chirstmas and noticed she had those small metal iceing strips on her tree. Im thinking they would be good to use as tinsel. If my memory serves me correctly they come in many diffrent sizes and colors, and are fairly inexpesive.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to all!!!!!!!!!!!


It was nice to meet you Labrat, the next time I head up there I'll let you know, maybe do some fishing and some fly swaping.

mickmcco
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Post by mickmcco » Tue Dec 26, 2006 10:00 am

Alan:

Where'd you get the fly box foam for the wooden boxes? It sounds like a great idea.
Mickfly
Fish Friendly - Life's too short not to enjoy every minute on the river.

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AlanKulcak
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Post by AlanKulcak » Tue Dec 26, 2006 10:17 pm

Color coding your similar and frequently used materials can speed up your fly tying. Try and make the color schemes in cordination with the size or type of material. You can use this on just about any kind of objects around your tying table that you have to fumble threw every time looking for the right one.

Also mark the date on your materials with a permament marker when you buy them. This will help insure that you use up your old stuff first so you always have fresh materials.



mick: I got the foam at Basspro, Im not exactly sure who makes it but I think it was orvis. I was trying to find it on the net for you but couldnt. It comes in a 1'x2' sheet and has a sticky backing to it. You could cut it to fit just about any box.

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AlanKulcak
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Post by AlanKulcak » Wed Dec 27, 2006 9:15 pm

Here is something most of you probably already know, but I wanted to point it out any way. When dubbing your fly always use small amounts at a time to build the body in increments. Continue going over the body in layers untill you get the desired thickness. This will make it much easyer to produce the same size fly over and over. Using large amounts trying to bulk up the fly in one step often leaves the fly nasty looking and the dubbing never gets locked in very well.

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