How to Weight a Fly?

Brian Miller

Be vewy vewy qwiet, I'm hunting Cutthwoat Twout
Is there a way to weight a fly so when it is swinging with a short line and high rod tip that it would mimic how an unweighted fly appears underwater as it is swinging with a (fast intermediate) sink tip and a low rod tip?
 
I have tied flies with small metal beads in the body of the fly...under the dubbing , if that is the body material. I drill out the holes using a Dremel so the wee beads will slide over the pinched barb, varying the number of beads rather than the size to adjust the added weight. They work quite well, but I cannot confirm that the action on these is identical to that of an unweighted fly. I found this method superior to using wraps of metal wire or a bead/cone head. I "stole" the idea from the mid-body cone or bead used on big Hoh-Bo spey flies tied by an angler in Victoria.
 

Rob Allen

Active Member
Is there a way to weight a fly so when it is swinging with a short line and high rod tip that it would mimic how an unweighted fly appears underwater as it is swinging with a (fast intermediate) sink tip and a low rod tip?
Give is some context, what exactly are we trying to accomplish?

Swinging with the rod tip high means slack line , slack line and a weighted fly means a sinking presentation.
 

wetswinger

Active Member
They make different gauges of lead (?) wire you can wrap around shaft or lay parallel to shaft to help get them down. You'll have to experiment to find the presentations you want...
 

Brian Miller

Be vewy vewy qwiet, I'm hunting Cutthwoat Twout
Give is some context, what exactly are we trying to accomplish?

Swinging with the rod tip high means slack line , slack line and a weighted fly means a sinking presentation.
I am probably overthinking this; @wetswinger just wrapping the shank with lead*free wire is probably the tkt.

I want to find a way to weight a fly so at a closer distance with a vertical tight-line in the current it is broadside in the current as it swings to directly to the down stream position, in a way that closely approximates the same way unweighted fly at longer distance using a sink tip looks.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that I was going to use a different color thread to make a small head or stinger as a simple strategy for being able to quickly visually identify a weighted fly from a similar unweighted fly. What do you use?
 
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Rob Allen

Active Member
I am probably overthinking this; @wetswinger just wrapping the shank with lead*free wire is probably the tkt.

I want to find a way to weight a fly so at a closer distance with a vertical tight-line in the current it is broadside in the current as it swings to directly to the down stream position, in a way that closely approximates the same way unweighted fly at longer distance using a sink tip looks.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that I was going to use a different color thread to make a small head or stinger as a simple strategy for being able to quickly visually identify a weighted fly from a similar unweighted fly. What do you use?
The best way to present a fly broadside on the swing is to cast 90 degrees across the river then point the rod tip straight downstream. How the fly is weighted shouldn't change that much.
 
I am probably overthinking this; @wetswinger just wrapping the shank with lead*free wire is probably the tkt.

I want to find a way to weight a fly so at a closer distance with a vertical tight-line in the current it is broadside in the current as it swings to directly to the down stream position, in a way that closely approximates the same way unweighted fly at longer distance using a sink tip looks.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that I was going to use a different color thread to make a small head or stinger as a simple strategy for being able to quickly visually identify a weighted fly from a similar unweighted fly. What do you use?
When I tie in the beads on a pattern, I use fluorescent floss on the head to indicate how many beads I used. After the head has been finished and whip finished, I add a single band of Glo-Brite before the superglue and head cement finish. Yellow for two beads, green for three and hot orange for four.
 

Tacoma Red

Active Member
Perhaps going to metal tube flies using different densities of metal, ie brass, aluminu, copper....,
 

cmann886

Active Member
I am probably overthinking this; @wetswinger just wrapping the shank with lead*free wire is probably the tkt.

I want to find a way to weight a fly so at a closer distance with a vertical tight-line in the current it is broadside in the current as it swings to directly to the down stream position, in a way that closely approximates the same way unweighted fly at longer distance using a sink tip looks.

Oh, and I forgot to mention that I was going to use a different color thread to make a small head or stinger as a simple strategy for being able to quickly visually identify a weighted fly from a similar unweighted fly. What do you use?
sounds like you want a balanced leach approach.
 

tkww

Member
I want to find a way to weight a fly so at a closer distance with a vertical tight-line in the current it is broadside in the current as it swings to directly to the down stream position, in a way that closely approximates the same way unweighted fly at longer distance using a sink tip looks.
• Balanced leech approach (and a loop knot so the tippet/fly can change angle to match the current)

• Try adding foam to the rear of a non-balanced fly. You could take a regular fly and start adding pieces of foam (stabbing them on with the point) until you got something close to the desired effect, and then you'd have an idea of how much foam you'd need to incorporate.

• I would think jig hooks are a good idea here, and certainly necessary for the balanced leech approach.
 

Chic Worthing

Active Member
Brian, sorry to be playing devil's advocate here but in a nutshell areyou wanting to weight a fly so that it mimics a unweighted fly with a sink tip line??

Can you really see the action of these flies underwater clearly enough to make a valid comparison?
 

Yard Sale

Huge Member
Weight is more of a depth control than a presentation control. I agree with rob that it sounds like you want a broadside presentation. He’s right that casting angle is key. Another option would be a riffle hitch. With a hitch your fly is at a 45ish degree angle to your line.
 

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