Posts Tagged ‘Fly Tying: Emergers


Fly Tying: Emerger Wing Forward

A few unique concepts for the beginning tier: A wing canted forward out over the front of the eye of the fly; a wound hackle inverted so the tips also face forward; a sparkle/shimmering material for tail to suggest nymphal case. The forward tilting wing is something the late Gary LaFontaine offered up. The inverted wound hackle is used in Tenkara fly patterns; the tail material is more frequently used for mayfly emergers and stillborns.


Fly Tying: Fish Envy?

Worse than anatomical envy is fish envy? As I perused FB tonight, I observed one pic after another of large steelhead and trout. Big fish, big flies? I mean it is so enticing, so powerful a draw. And yet, there I sit. Squinting even with my 2x googles. Bobbing back and forth to come into focus on a size 24 hook. Tying the simplest fly of a single strand of Krystal Flash drawn out to take the kink out. A simple tiny craft yarn was used for the thorax. Tying a small fly (midge), of late, has become a tying right of passage. Yet those slabs…… Fish envy is a nagging attack on your self worth. Look at April Vokey with yet another beautiful fish, then look down at the dime. Hmmm? Identity crisis and at my age.


Fly Tying: ‘Bzzzz’ & A Photo Question?

The fly is tied on a size 18, curved shanked hook. A typical mistake, as I so fortuitously provide here, is compressing too much material near the head. This results in an over developed head (fat head) at the end. ‘Less is more” (better) with many fly patterns and especially so with small flies.

Now a photography question: The back drop for this shot was bright white. The lighting was and OTT light directly over the fly less than 2″ away. On either side are two small halogen lamps also about two inches away. The Canon Xti with a 100mm Canon Macro is set on AV f22.  I seem to always get a quite dark shot with the back drop actually darker than depicted here. I tweaked it with Photoscape. I am not that accomplished with the photo lingo but any advice much appreciated to achieve better lighting.


Fly Tying: Emerger~Wet

Just my ongoing kick with CDC and Starling to create a wet fly sort of pattern. I say that because some will take exception to the overly dressed, complicated creation as not in line with the simple silk/floss body and two turns of sparse grey hackle. Buzzer sound here….  To each their own. It must be quite apparent, I am not a traditionalist, even though I do know and respect the origins of certain patterns. I am more in tune with the last times on the water and what worked and presented well.


Fly Tying: WFF Hairball

Justin Carroll @ Winona Fly Factory turns out yet another innovative, enticing pattern. You have to love Bead Head Pupa patterns. Nice tutorial/SBS piece here on the WFF Hairball. Cat fur is not a bad material, if they enjoy that comb raking through their sides and back… purr away kitty.


WFF Hairball by Justin Carroll at Winona Fly Factory




Fly Tying: Loop Wings of CDC

A straight eye, size 20 hook was used and 14/0 Sheer thread. I tied in a grouping of tail fibbets. I was not exacting as to two  or three tail fibers. I should have been as the extra fibbets added thickness to the top of the shank. I tied in a single wisp of 14/0 grey thread for a ribbing. I wrapped the black thread over the fibbets and back.  I think the initial layer covering the shank plus the two additional layers to cover the fibbets added a touch too much thickness to the abdomen. I wound the grey thread ribbing up the body and tied it off. I tied in two CDC plumes, tan in color, and held them toward the rear and then dubbed a small amount of Hareline Ice Dub, Black Peacock, for the thorax. I then pulled the CDC feathers forward over the thorax but provided slack to form a small loop wing above the thorax and tied off. The tail is probably a touch long, but it’ll do. I like the two photo’s because they give some sort of scale to these ridiculously small hooks. The shot is not as crisp as it could have been, but you get the general ideal w/ the description. Loop Wing Emerger


Fly Tying: Goggles/No Goggles

I tied two flies, not identical but close enough, on a size 14 hook. Although the differences are not that apparent there are a few obvious differences (pattern on right): I rolled the tail, wrapped the abdomen with more gaps and generally did not see the mistakes as I tied. With the goggles (ok, magnification specs) I tended to see as I tied my mistakes and unwound more often. What I know/see is that I am tying slower. That is ok, as I don’t tie that many patterns at a sitting anymore (maybe 10 to 15 at a sitting, often less). Most of my patterns are trout patterns and simply easier to tie, even if on a much smaller hook.

Goggles on the Left....No Goggles on the Right

I am enjoying this new fly tying tool (magnification specs/goggles). I have enormous respect for those tiers that tie with such precision. I will be satisfied to improve the basic elements of my tying: proportions, cleaner starts and finishes and everything in between.

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