Ray's fly [Archive] - Fly Fishing Forum

: Ray's fly

06-15-2007, 06:44 AM
First time tying a Ray's fly. I was wondering if I got it right. I have never seen one tied by anyone else. I live a sheltered life:hihi:

Too sparse? Not sparse enough? let me know. this one is tied on a Tiemco 600sp 1/0 hook and about 4 1/2 (114mm)inches long. the peacock is a little longer than the photo, about 5 "(127mm for you metric types:D )


06-15-2007, 07:17 AM
Warren- looks good to me. One question though- when you tied in the white did you tie it on both sides leaving the top open for the yellow and olive or did you tie the white on the top and roll it around to the sides? Ron

06-15-2007, 09:11 AM
After I tied on the body, I tied the white and subsequent bundles of hair on by looping around the bundle with a gathering wrap and pulling it tight to the top of the hook. The white must have got compressed some when I tied on the subsequent bundles. Apparently I was not paying close attention to where the hair was going. The other side is a little neater.

By looking at the water color instructions in Ken Abrames, A Perfect Fish, Illusions in Fly Tying, it looks as if the white sort of wraps half way down the around the body & hook shank instead of staying all on top. I do not have a good large photo of a Ray Bondorew tied original.

In any event it looks like it will catch fish. As the old saying goes: I think I am in the ball park

06-15-2007, 09:20 AM
That will work. You definitely want the hair to come down on the sides of the hook. This helps prevent fouling which this fly does do, just less if you work the hair to cover the top half of the shank. Tying it directly on top gives you a much more foul prone fly. The way you have it in the photo is perfect.

Also a tiemco 600sp is probably a little heavy for this fly. You want it to swin some up in the current and a nickel plated hook while being cheaper will also swim the fly better as this is not so much a stripping fly as it is a current riding fly.


06-15-2007, 09:57 AM

Here is what I do. First off as Sean said ditch the heavy hook. Get yourself some mustad 34011 hooks and tie the fly bend back style. Put a very slight bend behind the eye using your pliers and tie everything on top of the shank. This will prevent the fly from fouling all together and also help make it weedless. I tie them up in varying degress of dressing from very sparse to a little heavier than yours. I go as small as a 4 with the hook up to a 1 or maybe a 1/0. I use yellow thread for the head and tie in some small tape eyes. I will try and get a pic up tonight.


06-15-2007, 12:50 PM
Thanks Sean & Sean for the critique, I do know I have the wrong hook. The only other hook I have in stock is 811S or the corresponding Mustad 44077 streamer hooks, way to heavy. I see that the 34011 is a long shank hook too. looking at the Mustad charts it looks similar in length to the 44077 just lighter wire. The recipe calls for a 1x short hook. Never the less. I will solve that problem later today when I get to the tackle shop.
I was trying to get the tying aspect down when I tied that one. I tied two previous to that one & cut them apart. They were a disaster.

I was going to look for the Eagle Claw No. that is listed in my recipe at Dicks or some place like that. Mustad hooks are a lot easier to find here. I like the bend back idea. How far back from the eye do you make the bend?

06-15-2007, 01:12 PM
Warren...my only suggestion is to use a longer shanked hook and wrap the full length of the shank with pearl flashabo or similar material (anything pearl or silver). I like to top mine with about 5 strands of peacock herl for the larger flies(4 to 5 inches) and use 2 to 3 strands for shorter flies. With the shank wrapped...this versital fly can be a baitfish, sandeel (if sparse) or silverside....if I had only one fly...this would be the one. My preferred colors are black peacock herl over chartreous over white. Sparser the better.

06-15-2007, 01:22 PM

The long shank is specific to the bend back version. If tying conventional I agree with the short shank which should help limit the tendency to foul. I will try and get a picture of a bare hook with the bend and the finished fly tonight. Just not sure I have any "in-stock"!


06-15-2007, 01:36 PM
Tiemco makes a factory bendback hook that is light wire like the 811s and super strong not to mention razor sharp.

I use them on similar patterns like my jelly belly which has no eyes but a little bit of synthetic just to piss off the purists :lildevl:

06-15-2007, 06:16 PM
Ron believe it or not there is a braided silver mylar tinsel body under there. The white hides it.

So a 811 or 34077 will be OK for a conventionally tied fly? I was concerned that it would foul on a long shank hook.

I did manage to find some Orvis 9034 which are similar to the 811S but slightly, and I mean slightly lighter looking. I do have some 2/0 34011s in stock. I'll try a bend back later on.
I'll see if I can find some Tiemco 800S (I think they are called) same as 811's but shorter for a right side up version.

I'll tie up a few more now that I have a better idea of what I am doing. once again, thanks for the suggestions guys.

06-15-2007, 07:31 PM

I am pretty sure the 800S is just a heavy wire version of the 811S. Same shape and gap etc...Here is a typical sightfishing ray's fly that I use. Size 4 34011 tied very sparse. Not the best pic but should do.

06-15-2007, 07:34 PM
As you can see the bend is very slight which helps avoid missed strikes. I have found using the shorter shank bend backs I miss hits. This includes the tiemco's Juro mentioned but it sounds like he is having different results. Bills bodi braid is around the shank.


06-23-2007, 07:59 PM
Warren, it does look just a little bit denser than "RAY" suggest tying it in his book.

here is a link to Ken's own site... and a photo not drawing of one



Please no direct links to other non-sponsor sites.



06-24-2007, 08:50 PM
nice try Warrren, but I think that you have 3 too many yellow hairs, and one too few white hairs. You couldn't even foul hook a striper with the fly pictured.
Sean, I think that you might lose your card tying Ray's flies like that. Maybe if you spelled it "fleye".

;) nice flies.

07-02-2007, 07:58 PM
I like the eagle claw 254 stainless for the Ray's fly and bonderoo bucktail.
Lot's of good hooks out there.

07-16-2007, 07:05 PM
Owner wide gap worm hook...

Tastes GREAT!
'Bet you can't eat just one...

07-18-2007, 12:02 PM
Owners less filling, betcha can't eat just one hook duly noted & filed in the proper folder:cool: :chuckle: