Discussion in 'Fly Tying' started by Nick Clayton, Feb 25, 2010.
Thanks for posting that Stephen. I'd have done so earlier if I could.
Thank you Preston, it is a beautiful fly. As a beginner, I found the instructions outstanding. Stephen
I've never tied these before. Someone gave me some once and I've used them from time to time and they seem to work well. After reading Preston's recipe I figured I'd sit down and try a couple. A few things I noticed right off. My first fly pretty much stinks. See first Picture Below.
Things I learned here: 1) using thin chenile results in a better tapered body than medium chenile like I used here. 2) It is easy to add too much hackle. 3) Whip finish just in front of the tail is a little tricky. Make sure you leave enough room so your whip finish doesn't slip off the chenile and collapse the tail around the bend of the hook.
After a couple tries I started to get the hang of it. This one is serviceable but not really pretty. Still, I'm getting the hang of the right amount of hackle, where to start and stop the body, and the length of tail. On these flies I was using Natural guinea because I like the way it looks and moves. I think it will make a nice undulating motion when stipped.
My pictures stink. How come they come in so freakin' big? I couldn't get them added as normal so I used the liink feature.
Well I've worked on just wrapping the mallard on a more standard spider pattern, and have somewhat gotten the hang of it. Now I'm trying to figure out how on earth to whip finish at the end of a hook instead of at the eye for tying the reverse spider. Have yet to get a handle on that technique, but its fun trying.
I tried guinea a long time ago and found the fibers to be a bit stiff for my liking. Duck flank feathers are quite a bit more flexible (although the orientation of the fibers along the length of the quill do make it a little more difficult to control) and pheasant tippet feathers (I use both ringneck and golden) are the most flexible of all.
I guess there are some advantages to having learned to tie before such things as whip-finishing tools became available. Hand whip-finishing at the rear of the bosy is quite easy.
Thank you Preston. I'll be sure to tie up some with those. I was kind of avoiding them because I find it difficult to get them just the way I like. I enjoy tying with pheasant. I wouldn't have considered those if you hadn't mentioned them.
Woops, I mis-spoke. I meant to say Amherst pheasant tippet, not ringneck. The feather shown in the step-by-step pictures is an Amherst pheasant tippet.
Just to complicate things
Here is one I developed called the Double K Reverse Spider I tied for a Shrimp Swap
It's a cross between a shrimp and squid based on Al Knudsen's pattern and Mike Kinney's variation
While working on a shrimp imitation pattern I developed this pattern which includes a second Mallard flank or Guinea Fowl feather half way down the shank of the hook that in the water looks like a set of legs.
I also replaced the chenille with dubbing so I could better control the tapper of the fly and have a wider range of color to the fly. I also tie a version with a hackle palmered toward the rear of the hook. Surprisingly I found the added mallard flank gave the fly more buoyancy and found when stripped quickly the fly will leave a wake from the water it displaces as it moves through the subsurface.
Watching large fish torpedo toward it as it moves along just under the surface prior to the strike can be as much fun as the fight once they are on.
I have often caught fish after fish on this fly while others fishing the same beach go without so mush as a hit.
While this was initially intended to be a salt water beach fly the amount of life like movement in it has hooked steelhead in rivers and small and large mouth bass in lakes.
I keep a small bowl of water at my bench and find wetting the feather fibers makes them stay together and easier to tie in.
Very fishy looking fly Kelvin, I will have to tie up a handful of those and give them a shot. Looks like something that SRC would trip over themselves trying to eat.
Kelvin, that is a terrific looking spider. I will have to tie and throw a few of them here in the south to test our local fish appetites for them. Thanks, great photo too.
After some discussion on this forum by Roger and Tony and et al on surface Sand Lance paterns I experimented and came up with these versions based on Roger's and Tony's information. Instead of using foam however, I used a second small piece of tube sealed at both ends tied to the top of the body tube, making for some head shape. Tested them in water and they float upright and level. Haven't given them the real test with fish as yet.