Another spey critique.

Discussion in 'Fly Tying' started by jcalderon, Nov 30, 2009.

  1. Just looking for a few friendly pointers on the proportions and placing of this fly. I am working on a gift for a buddy who's dad was a fly fisherman and recently passed. For obvious reasons, Id like to make it right.
  2. Nice looking fly, I really like the color palatte you've chosen.

    You should PM FT or 'Flytyer' on the spey site. His comments are a goldmine when it come to traditional spey/dee flies.

    You getting excited about wrestling yet?

  3. Yes sir Thomas. We are getting better, and my 285'er is the real deal.
  4. Looks good to me! Wish I could tie the wings on so well... I'll take a few to try out! :thumb:
  5. As do I. There are two different types of flies, those for 'presentation,' those that are going to see water and get the heck beat out of them. That bit of 'fluff' would be a :thumb: under either set of criteria.

  6. Awesome! I'll mostly be going to the girls trounaments but I'll keep an eye out for you if I'm at the boys events, for sure in post-season. Cascade right?

    Wrestling is an afterthought at my daughter's highschool (Lakeside) but she is probably the best wrestler on her team, boy & girls combined from a technical standpoint. Looks like she'll get the nod for the boys varsity 119lb spot since she keeps pinning all the 135lb and under boys in practice... She'll take a butt whooping against the boys from other schools in the duals but it'll just make the girls stuff easier for her.

    Apologies for the threadjack, just excited about the season...


  7. Great Tom, Hopefully Ill bump into you. We have a decent girls turnout this year, most in the 130-145 range. Best of luck to your girl!
  8. jcalderon,

    Not too bad for what I assume is either your first attempt or one of your first attempts at a spey fly.

    These are the things done well:

    1) Nice, neat, small head that doesn't crowd the hook eye, which is the way the head ought to look on a spey or dee fly.

    2) Hackle is a bit on the sparse side, which is also proper for a spey fly.

    3) Nice, sparse face or throat hackle of duck flank.

    These are things that would make a big difference in the way your spey flies look. A word of warning is in order though, once you start to incorporate the following into your spey flies, the things you do when tying all types of flies will be effected.:thumb:

    1) The body is too long. The body and tip (tag too if you use one on a spey fly) ought to be infront of the hook's point. Keep in mind that all of the old masters on classic salmon flies mentioned that a spey fly's tip and body is in front of the hook's point, which results in the fly having a bit of a squat look to its body.

    2) The body is too bushy/thick. A spey fly's body ought to be thin, not bushy or thick. Glasso's flies have thin bodies as do the spey flies tied by the masters of old. This is another one of those things that all the old books mention about spey flies: the bodies are thin. Berlin Wool was called for on most of the old spey flies and it is nothing more than a very fine, thin, soft, high quality wool yarn very much like what UNI-Yarn or embroidery yarn looks like. A single strand of it was wrapped for the body on the old spey flies. Needless to say, this resulted in a very thin and not bushy body.

    3) It looks like there is too much ribbing, but it is hard to tell from your photo if this is the case. At any rate, there should almost always be 5 turns of ribbing on a spey fly, not more and not less. Glasso orginally tied his with 4 turns, but within a very few short years, he switched to using 5 turns on his spey flies because he found in his reading of the old books on salmon flies that 5 turns were always called for. It doesn't matter if it is a relatively small spey fly (like on an AJ Spey Hook #5), or a huge spey fly (say on an AJ #3/0 Spey Hook), 5 turns is all that is used. Use different sized tinsels to do this and combine flat and oval (the oval is wrapped right on the rear edge of the flat when they are used together) to get the proper width of tinsel ribbing to ballance the hook size used.

    4) The body hackle's (known as a spey feather) stem should be wrapped right up against and touching the rear of the oval tinsel ribbing. When tied properly, it looks like the spey feather is springing forth from under the ribbing tinsel, eventhough it isn't. Wrapping the spey feather this way helps protect it from getting cut when fished.

    5) The wing is too long. All of the old masters point out that the wing on a spey fly should never be longer than the bend of the hook, nor shorter than the barb of the hook. When the wing is longer than the hook's bend, it loses the "shrimp like hump" spey flies are noted for.

    6) The goose shoulder wing slips (at least it looks like goose shoulder to me) should sit side-by-side and be flush against each other at the tie-in point and not overlap. If they overlap, they wing will distort when fished.

    Tying the fly with these elements incorporated will take a bit more time for you to tie, but the end results are well worth it. And after you tie say 4 or 5 dozen spey flies this way, you will find they are rather quick to tie and will only take you 5-10 minutes each at that point.
  9. Thanks FT, just what I was looking for. I will try agian.

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