Sunday, April 22, 2012

Advanced Fly Tying - Weaving

Hair Hackle Weave

Granny Weave
One of my favorite people on earth is Fly Box Hero - Dick Gross.  I met Dick online a few years back and we have been friends ever since.  The best thing about Dick's fly tying is his simple approach.  Simply put, his flies are dynamite! 

Dick sent me an email saying he started a weaving technique on his flies.  When a successful fly fisherman says weaving is a nice technique to incorporate  - the Smallmouth Fly Box listens!  These techniques may seem complicated, but you'll get the hang of them quickly

Tiger Weave
Dick sent me a link to Fly Anglers Online.  The weaving techniques Dick mentioned were clearly detailed.  The four weaving techniques I found were called the Granny Weave, Tiger Weave, Shuttle Weave and a Hair Hackle Weave.  All pictures used in this post came directly from Fly Anglers Online, except for the shuttle weave.  The shuttle weave is linked to an article published by the Connecticut Fly Fishing Examiner.  I linked the weaves to the site as well, so you can find the detailed instruction.  Looks like you need to use the search tool to find the "weave" articles on Fly Anglers Online.

Shuttle Weave

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Spirit River Jailhouse Marabou

I am a notorious cheapskate when it comes to paying for shipping.  My fly tying supplies have all been purchased at a store because I can't bear to part with that $7.95 for shipping.....silly I know.  When I say a product is "new" it means it is new to my local shop.  I walked in the fly shop and saw Spirit River's Jailhouse Marabou hanging on the peg hook.....all I could say was "Mine!."

Spirit River makes great stuff.  Their Mottlebou is still one of my all time favorite materials.  Their Jailhouse Marabou is another winner!  The barred pattern is a great detail on the Bronze Goddess or the Evening Scratch.

The material is packed bulk (actually blood quills) and are very easy to grab since they are not stitched together.  Many colors are available....give this stuff a shot!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Morlock's Tailer Teaser

Stealth Bomber Foam Popper/Slider Cutter Set

Here is a Stealth Bomber cutter set distributed by River Road Creations.  If you have not fished Kent Edmund's Stealth Bomber you need to start cutting foam right away.  The Stealth Bomber is a great bass and panfish fact, it is one of my favorites of all time.

This is a very durable, easy to tie pattern that is also very economical.  All of that stuff aside, this fly is a blast to tie.  Use Ward Beans barber pole leg technique and you will have very attractive and VERY FISHY flies! 

Ward's Barber Pole Leg Technique - Outstanding!

Here is my version of Kent's Stealth Bomber.  I didn't use these cutters, but it would have been nice to have them.  I called our version the Hopper Popper.

Smallmouth Fly Box - Hopper Popper

Kent really has a winner with the Stealth Bomber.  Here is a copy of the tying instructions with the template for the body.  The cutters make this pattern a breeze to put together though.  If the cutters are out of your price range here is a link to the original pattern.

More Stealth Bomber Tying Information

The Bead Butt (a.k.a. the Jennifer Lopez)

Hook - 2xl or 3xl nymph  (Daiichi 1710 or Tiemco 5263)
Thread - 6/0 Uni Bead - glass or gold
Legs - flat silicone rubber legs
Body - fine vernille

This is another great fly from Kent at Fly Fish Georgia. Here is the content from his website about this pattern:

Bream are one of my favorite species. Rubber legs are killer for them, as are smaller nymphs fished as a dropper behind a topwater popper ("popper & dropper"). With rubber legs however, the sunfish often tend to grab rubber legs and run, without actually taking the hook. And droppers behind poppers often foul on less than perfect casts.
The "Jennifer Lopez" eliminates both problems. The weight in the butt of the fly it tends to make the fly true in the cast. And if the bream nips the legs, he'll find the hook.
Side bead onto hook & insert in vise. Start the thread on the hook shank about a hook gap in front of hook point. Make half a dozen wraps toward the eye. Fold four 1" long rubber legs over thread and wrap on hook , being sure to let legs surround the hook shank. Fold the forward-facing legs legs back and bind down with increasingly tight thread pressure. The legs will flare around and beyond the hook point. The wraps should be kept to a minimum so that the bead can slide back to cover the wraps. Half-hitch and cut the thread and slide the bead back, covering the leg tie-in. Reattach the thread at hook eye, wrap back to bead, tie in the vernille, return thread to front. Wrap the vernille as body, tie off and whip finish. Trim the legs so they extend just to cover the hook point.

Drop the Bead-Butt from the bend of your popper on 12-30" of tippet. Work in slight twitches with lots of hesitation. Occasionally I like to use a long slow pull - the topwater will wake across the surface and the Bead-Butt will rise toward the surface. On the stop the Bead-Butt falls , hook-point first with the legs wiggling. This is probably when the fish will take.

Friday, April 13, 2012

Fly Box Hero - Jay "Fishy" Fullum

I have been a subscriber to Fly Tyer magazine for a while and always find myself turning to Jay's article first when I get my issue in the mail.  Jay is famous for using common materials to craft unique and effective patterns.  Take this month's issue for example, Fishy took a common foam float and converted it into a lipped popper.  You can always count on Jay to put together patterns that are fun to tie!

I will be posting my version of Fishy's Lipped Popper in the coming days.  The original pattern uses a very thin plywood material for the lip.  I will be using a material use in the point of purchase display business called HIPS (high impact polystyrene) for the lip portion of the popper.  Regular plastics are too brittle for this application and 1/32" plywood sounds like a hassle to maintain.  Styrene is cheap, extremely durable and easy to find in craft stores.  Look for the SMFB Lipped Popper soon.

Look at Fishy's Bonefish pattern on our  site as well as his many, many other creations in Fly Tyer magazine.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Anvil Push Button Hair Packer

I started using this tool on my deer hair bugs and have been very pleased with the quality.  The Anvil Packer is solid brass and is a serious tool - built to last generations.  At $15.60 this is a tool we should all have on our benches.  You can safely pack deer hair on hooks ranging from a size 32 to 14/0.  The guard protects your fingers from the point/barb and helps apply even pressure on the hook shank.

The head on this Wilderdilch is nice and full.  The Anvil Packer is a great tool for creating durable and well balanced bugs!

Smallmouth on a deer hair popper...can't get any better than that!