Tinsel help

Discussion in 'Fly Tying' started by gbeeman, Jan 24, 2013.

  1. gbeeman Active Member

    Posts: 343
    Kennewick WA
    Ratings: +35 / 0
    I recently tied up a bunch of zug bugs and when I caught a fish I would fine that the tinsel would unwind and come off the back of the hook. What am I doing wrong?

    GBeeman
  2. Richard Olmstead BigDog

    Posts: 2,494
    Seattle, WA
    Ratings: +792 / 0
    I think there are two possibilities. 1) you aren't securing it well enough at the front end and it is working free and unwinding. 2) If it is a fragile tinsel, the fish are simply chewing through it and leaving it ragged.

    I'm hopin' it's number 2. :)
  3. zen leecher aka bill w born to work, forced to fish

    Posts: 3,261
    Moses Lake, WA
    Ratings: +1,035 / 1
    Richard, there's option 3 where the tinsel isn't wound properly and the wraps are pulled to the back of the fly. I've had that happen a few times.
  4. gbeeman Active Member

    Posts: 343
    Kennewick WA
    Ratings: +35 / 0
    I think that is what is happening. What is the "proper" way?

    GBeeman
  5. Rob Ast Active Member

    Posts: 1,919
    West Pugetopolis WA
    Ratings: +238 / 3
    You can put a thin bead of super glue on the hook before wrapping the tinsel.
    Beachmen likes this.
  6. GAT Active Member

    Posts: 4,244
    Willamette Valley, OR
    Ratings: +2,709 / 0
    When tying patterns you plan to actually use :D, I personally think tinsel sucks for ribbing. Unless you reaf down on the stuff while winding and secure it with multiple thread wraps, it will eventual come loose... unless you're not catching fish. The tinsel stays in place quite fine if the fish are ignoring the pattern.

    Since I gave up on tinsel and switched to wire, I haven't noticed ANY drop in a catch rate of a pattern where I've substituted wire for tinsel ribbing. And the wire stays put no matter how many times a fish-type unit chews on the fly.
    Krusty and Duane J like this.
  7. Rob Ast Active Member

    Posts: 1,919
    West Pugetopolis WA
    Ratings: +238 / 3
    Gene,

    for a zug bug the tinsel is not ribbing, it is the body material.
  8. GAT Active Member

    Posts: 4,244
    Willamette Valley, OR
    Ratings: +2,709 / 0
    Then there's another Zug Bug out there I've yet to see ????

    This is the only Zug Bug pattern I'm aware of and silver tinsel is the ribbing. The body is peacock herl.

    [IMG]
  9. Bob Newman Member

    Posts: 144
    On the edge of ???, WA
    Ratings: +20 / 0
    Try to double the tinsel back when you tie it off in the front. In other words take a couple of turns of thread with the tinsel pointing forward, then turn the tinsel to the back of the hook and take a couple more turns of thread. That way it is locked in place. Oval tinsel is best, mylat flat tinsel can shred when hit by a fish tooth and come loose.
  10. Richard Olmstead BigDog

    Posts: 2,494
    Seattle, WA
    Ratings: +792 / 0
    I'm with Gene on using wire whenever you can get away with it. Tinsel can provide a broad segmented look better than wire, but that isn't often necessary.
    There's some good French oval tinsel that is pretty tough, as Bob mentions, but even it is not as strong as wire.
    D
  11. GAT Active Member

    Posts: 4,244
    Willamette Valley, OR
    Ratings: +2,709 / 0
    Use heavier wire. It also adds a bit of weight to the pattern.
  12. Thomas Williams Habitual Line Stepper

    Posts: 1,411
    Ansbach, Germany
    Ratings: +410 / 17
    +1 on the wire. I've also found that ensuring you are wrapping enough tinsel onto the hook to ensure its secure helps. I see a lot of SBS's that show them tying in the very tip only. I always think to myself....that won't last.

    Sent from my Nexus 7 using Tapatalk 2
  13. Jack Devlin Active Member

    Posts: 1,219
    Western Washington, Puget Sound area
    Ratings: +1,009 / 1
    If you are using mylar tinsel it doesn't stand up to fish teeth. You can use the real stuff - Lagartuns French Tinsel (tin) - or, as others have suggested, wire. A med silver wire would probably do the trick. I sometimes even wrap a fine wire over the tinsel. Suggestions based on the assumption you are tying in the tinsel properly.
  14. Rob Ast Active Member

    Posts: 1,919
    West Pugetopolis WA
    Ratings: +238 / 3
    My bad, I was thinking of the lightning bug

    [IMG]
    Beachmen likes this.
  15. GAT Active Member

    Posts: 4,244
    Willamette Valley, OR
    Ratings: +2,709 / 0
    Holy Cow! I've never seen that one before... kind'a disco-ish.
  16. psycho Active Member

    Posts: 363
    B.C. Canada
    Ratings: +142 / 0
    But it works.:D
  17. Thomas Williams Habitual Line Stepper

    Posts: 1,411
    Ansbach, Germany
    Ratings: +410 / 17
    It does work. I especially the purple one.

    Sent from my HTC_Amaze_4G using Tapatalk 2
  18. David Dalan 69°19'15.35" N 18°44'22.74" E

    Posts: 1,997
    Walla Walla, WA
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    +2 on wire. I use cheap brass wire from the fabric store. I use it as a gold rib on buggers, nymphs, etc. Anything that has delicate body material (floss, peacock herl, phesant tail fibers) or hackle wrapping the body. I use it as a counter wrap on most of my spey patters, if I don't use it for ribbing.

    I've made some down right indestructible Egg Sucking Leeches this way...good stuff.
  19. GAT Active Member

    Posts: 4,244
    Willamette Valley, OR
    Ratings: +2,709 / 0
    I also buy my wire from the fabric/craft shops. The colors and sizes are vast.
    David Dalan likes this.
  20. pittendrigh Active Member

    Posts: 313
    montana
    Ratings: +57 / 0
    Fritos Scoops come in a plastic bag that is mirror chrome finished on the inside. One bag can be snipped up into a lifetime's supply of tinsel. For what it's worth.
    Jeff Dodd likes this.