Spey and Dee Fly Pattern, Material...

Discussion in 'Spey Clave' started by yuhina, Dec 5, 2007.

  1. yuhina Tropical member

    Posts: 2,315
    Boston-Idaho
    Ratings: +41 / 0
    Hey friends,

    I just start to tie some traditional spey/dee pattern. I really like the shrimpy looking hackles. I think maybe pheasant rump is good for a beginner to try?... or do you have any suggestion about using other material that have won't cost to much... any suggestion about the material (hook/hackle/wing/technique) would be appreciated!

    Thanks,
  2. Marty New Member

    Posts: 302
    Heber, Utah
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Not the greatest photos but you can at least get an idea and please don’t be too hard on me these are fishing flies. I have been using a lot of pheasant lately on all of my steelhead flies. Hareline has white pheasants dyed in different colors now. I have a black, purple and orange and use is endless. I have been using the rump feathers for wings and for body hackles. I like the Alec Jackson in black and silver and for wings I use Argus, goose shoulder and turkey tail, Argus being my favorite Nothing like hooking a fish on a pretty fly.

    problems with the photos, I will try again later
  3. FT Active Member

    Posts: 1,233
    Burlington, WA
    Ratings: +100 / 0
    Pheasant rump works well as spey hackle, just keep in mind it tends to have short stems so using it on large dee or spey hooks necessitates using more than one feather.

    Whiting Spey Hackle is another excellent spey hackle that will provide you with a lot of spey hackle/neck at a very reasonable price (Silver grade is $30.00 list price and Bronze is $20.00 list price). Whiting Spey Hackle has a nice, thin stem, nice long feather barbs, is easy to work with (much easier than pheasant rump on large flies because the stem is much longer), and produces a very nice spey or dee fly.

    I am very aware that Whiting Spey Hackle has been given a bum rap by many, but the stuff from the last few years is very good. Just remember to double it and not strip one side (you also want to double pheasant rump and not strip it) or it will be a bit too sparse.
  4. David Dalan 69°19'15.35" N 18°44'22.74" E

    Posts: 1,735
    Walla Walla, WA
    Ratings: +618 / 0
    I just bought some of the aforementioned spey hackles and I think they're great for fishing flies. I see some shortcomings for display dressings, but nothing fatal.

    They get thumbs up from me.

    I also really like the Phesant (Ringneck) rump feathers for hackes on flies up to size 2 (3 Alec Jackson) but find them to small/short hackled for larger ties. Also Golden phesant rump for collars (along with teal).

    Never forget good ole Schalppen (especially for the Dee style flies).
  5. Davy Active Member

    Posts: 2,019
    SIlverton, OR
    Ratings: +16 / 0
    Black duck is also good for speys, smaller ones especially.
  6. yuhina Tropical member

    Posts: 2,315
    Boston-Idaho
    Ratings: +41 / 0
    Thanks a lot for the great suggestions! I will try them!:thumb:
  7. Marty New Member

    Posts: 302
    Heber, Utah
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    got the photos to work
  8. yuhina Tropical member

    Posts: 2,315
    Boston-Idaho
    Ratings: +41 / 0
    Wow...thanks Marty!:thumb:

    That is too difficult for a beginner! But I will try...:beer2:
    Is that silk loop eye?
  9. Marty New Member

    Posts: 302
    Heber, Utah
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Alec Jackson blind eye with 20 lb backing for the eye.
  10. obiwankanobi Active Member

    Posts: 1,309
    Ratings: +97 / 0
    Marty, If those are your fishing flies then you are a great tier. One question, what did you use as dubbing for your Akroyd?
  11. HauntedByWaters Active Member

    Posts: 2,720
    Bellingham
    Ratings: +68 / 0
    If you ever find a dead heron that isn't filthy, especially an old blue heron, consider yourself LUCKY and snag it.

    That is where you will find the VERY best spey hackles.
  12. KerryS Ignored Member

    Posts: 6,539
    Sedro Woolley, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +1,537 / 0
    FYI: It is illegal to have in your possession feathers from the blue heron. Even from birds found dead. So harvest at your own risk.
  13. Marty New Member

    Posts: 302
    Heber, Utah
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    Tag is oval tinsel
    Tail is G.P. crest topped with G.P. tippet
    Body rear ½ is yellow seal with yellow body hackle
    Body front half is black seal with duck flank
    Rib is flat silver tinsel
    Throat hackle is black pheasant rump
    Checks jungle cock
    Wing is argus
    Hook Alec Jackson blind eye

    Far from the original but it sure looks good in the water.

    The blue one rocks up north.
  14. Nooksack Mac Active Member

    Posts: 1,915
    Bellingham, WA, USA.
    Ratings: +99 / 0
    Pheasant is the original and specified spey hackle for the Deep Purple Spey, which Walt Johnson seldom tied larger than No. 2. That's a beautiful and simple spey pattern, a great one to learn on.
  15. fredaevans Active Member

    Posts: 3,079
    White City, Oregon, USA.
    Ratings: +106 / 0
    Oh Ya!!! The 'feather' (and your butt) will end up down here in Ashland's animal forensic lab .... not a good thing.:beathead:
  16. FT Active Member

    Posts: 1,233
    Burlington, WA
    Ratings: +100 / 0
    Kerry and Fred,

    Right on about having heron feathers in your possession.

    As has been stated here on this and other sites many times, it is illegal to have them and it is not worth the risk of having them when there are other suitable feathers to use as spey feathers. What you two guys didn't mention is that it is a US federal felony to have heron feathers punishable by a fine of up to $10,000.00 and/or 10 years in federal prison. So please everyone, do yourselves a favor and don't use heron feathers.

    Also, keep in mind that the original spey and dee flies were not tied with heron, they were tied with feathers from the Scottish Spey Cock, a chicken variety that unfortunately has been extinct for over 100 years.
  17. David Dalan 69°19'15.35" N 18°44'22.74" E

    Posts: 1,735
    Walla Walla, WA
    Ratings: +618 / 0
    Spey/Dee flies are a bit like wine.

    To some it is the background, history, construction and aesthetics that give them (Wine and Flies) thier value.

    To others its about how well it works (flies) or how good it tastes (wine/beer/etc).

    If your looking for pretty working flies, there are many useful spey hackles. From stiff burnt goose shoulder to floppy ole marabou you can get just about any length of fiber, fiber stiffness and resullting action you could want. Colors are endless.

    Heron, like many materials of the past, has probably gained a certain aura as time has gone by.

    In terms of functionality to a fishing fly Heron is completely replaceable. In terms of "I have to use the exact material that XXXXX used" it is completely irreplaceable. But then so is Spey Cock hackle.

    So if you're looking for fishing flies..."Heron Schmeron."

    If your dying for "authentic spey materials" then go chop up a rooster. Heron is not what the majority of the original Spey/Dee used anyway.

    Back on the Spey file materials options...here are my (possibly useless) suggestions for certainl applications...

    - Deep running big flies on a floating line: Use stripped, burned goose shoulder. With a slim body, heavy wire hook and a sparse wing you can get a large profile (goose is so stiff it won't collape much) and good depth if you want it.

    - Action rich fly run shallow or on a head: Various phesant hackles (Ringneck, Golden, Blue Ear, etc.). Again by working on the body mass, hook weight and wing size you can get a very active fly that will sink or ride to your desired depth.

    -Action tastic: Marabou. In softwa water it looks all wiggly and in fast water it collapses and shimmers like a swimming fish.

    Have fun!
  18. HauntedByWaters Active Member

    Posts: 2,720
    Bellingham
    Ratings: +68 / 0
    Hey! Call me crazy but if I found a dead blue heron on a beach and it had a couple nice looking feathers popping up, I would STILL SNAG A FEW.

    I will take that risk.

    You can all go net-nanny ape-shit on me now.

    And BTW, anyone who thinks blue heron feathers are easilly replacable hasn't seen some that I have.

    I grew up on a beach and have seen few dead blue herons with hackles beyond your wildest dreams.

    Why do you think the fine for having a dead one in your posession is 10,000$? Because their feathers are easilly replacable? I don't think so....

    Give that bird some credit. It is beautiful and has some unbelievable feathers.

    AND is a better fisher than any of us.


    On another note to the net-nannies: it is illegal to not have a trash reseptacle in your vehicle. Better get to work! I think their are lots of shameless law breakers without trash receptacles in their cars on this forum!
  19. FT Active Member

    Posts: 1,233
    Burlington, WA
    Ratings: +100 / 0
    All I can say is if the federales come a-knocking, you will not find them to be very sympathetic or understanding.

    Instead, like an artist from Wisconsin a few years ago who used some found heron and hawk feathers in some artwork she took to an arts and crafts fair, the federales arrested her, put her in jail for a night, charged her with violating federal law through possession of the heron and hawk feathers. The end result was she was convicted, fined $10,000.00 for the hawk feather and another $10,000.00 for the heron feather possession charges, and given 5 years of federal probation.

    It just isn't worth the risk.
  20. Marty New Member

    Posts: 302
    Heber, Utah
    Ratings: +0 / 0
    So true about the Heron, however there is some legal Heron out there it is just hard to find. If I remember right it comes from outside the country and is not listed so they can import the feather. I bought 6 feathers for $20 10 years ago and still have 4 left. Can’t stand to use them because of the cost. White and blue eared pheasant is also an option but I have found Whiting’s Spey Chicken saddle (Bird Fur) to be a great substitute when I am looking for a long fiber. The stems are perfectly fine and easy to palmer. The fibers are a little soft but move a lot like marabou in the water. Just got done tying this fly. The long orange is bird fur, the dark color is died black ring neck. The wing is 4 feathers from a Whiting rooster cape.