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>> Archive: Salmon & Steelhead Flies Spey flies to mixed wings, new innovations

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Topic Review (Newest First)
01-07-2004 06:44 PM
removed_by_request You can send the Glasso flies my way along with a good cigar and a wee bit of brown nectar.

Nice ties every one, makes mine look like a parakeet on a stick.
01-04-2004 05:06 PM

All these fly's are questionable. Send me two of each so I can give you my 'unqualified opinion.'

All above is rhetoric .... I, being very knowledgeable - not mention a Wonderful Person - will pass judgement. No, make that THREE samples. I will show each to "Bella," her reaction RULES!
01-04-2004 03:48 PM
Yeah Ronn

I agree, just takes practice and patience and then they'll click. Found I could dress speys faster then the atlantics. I'm not a perfect dresser of the flank wings, but once I got my niche down, they became easier. I prefer the hackle tips anyways, but like to do the flank. Just haven't found that groove yet with the Atlantics, but I keep trying. I haven't thought about studying it as I went. Alot of times I went more by material prep then how I lay the thread, etc. Hmmmmm, may have to sit and watch. Still waiting on the "click" fly. :hehe:

Onto scanners. I think it depends on the scanner. I know that I've used a few scanners. The one I have now isn't bad, but can at times bleach out a color. But think it's the materials being used and how much the bright scanner lights reflect off said materials. I know some of my more "duller" flies come out looking better then some of my brighter floss bodied ones. Especially if I'm tying with flourescent materials. Really bleeds color out. I tied up my own rendition of a polar shrimp marabou spey and the scanned version doesn't come close to showing the colors of reallife. Ok, I DON'T want critiques on this fly. lol. Just showing what mine looks like after being scanned. The orange marabou is actually is the same color as the floss body. The floss body came out darker and the marabou came out lighter. Just an example of how my scanner can bleed out certain colors. In fact, the red thread head is actually a lighter red. Go figure.
01-04-2004 03:25 PM
sinktip It is evident that I don't have the skill nor the interest to passionately debate minutia but more power to those of you that do.

I will say though that before anyone starts questioning Flytyer's honesty regarding his scanner comments, I would do a search through the archives as he has complained for sometime that his scanner changes certain colors. Other than that all I can add to this is that he dresses a nice fly and fishes them rather than leaving them for display only.

Here are the Glasso patterns.
01-04-2004 03:06 PM
Ronn Lucas Steelheader69

I understand completely. Yesterday I spent about three straight hours doing a body on a fly only to cut it off and start over! [8^(

You will find that as with most things, there is a learning curve. Pay attention to every little thing you are doing, twist of the wrist, tension on the thread, angle that you hold a material and, so on. When something doesn't work, analyze why and don't do that again. Then. try something just a little different and see what happens. One day, all of a sudden, you will tie a fly without the problems you mentioned and you will be stunned. You'll wonder what all the fuss was about.

I think it is these little challenges more than anything else that makes tying fully dressed flies so personally rewarding for Tyers. Yeah, the often times outlandish beauty of the finished fly is cool too.

Happy Trails!
01-04-2004 02:45 PM
LOL Ronn

Actually, I have tried them and have all the materials/hooks. I can do some simple ones ok. But I long to do the full dressed with multiple wings. Always when I get to a topping or the likes they fall apart. I've seen the tricks of smashing down the feathers so they lay on the hook correctly. I've been trying, trust me. LOL. Spent a couple hours on one fly to have it fall apart at the end. It became a fishing fly at that point. lol. But yes, I keep trying. What I've been planning to do today if I ever get a chance to sit down for a second. LOL. Been going in and out trying to rewire a horse trailer. Get numb, then come back in to warm up. Now, have to run and pick up my kids (went to cousins birthday party yesterday and stayed the night). So putting me further behind. :hehe:

I also have Jorgenson's book on Atlantics. It's been helpful. Gonna sit down and really thoroughly read it. May have missed something. But between a few websites and what I have bookwise, I may get one that meets my standards. LOL
01-04-2004 02:34 PM
Ronn Lucas Hi Steelheader69,

I encourage you to give them a try. They really are not all that difficult to tie believe me. You needn't go out and spend $$ on materials or hooks to get started. I would venture to say that you have all the materials in your tying stash to tie some great looking full dressed flies.

Like the old Nike ad said, "just do it".

Happy Trails!
01-04-2004 02:29 PM
Ronn Lucas
One more try.

flytyer, in my original post, I offered to discuss this off board but you didn't take my offer so we are "airing it out" here.

In your last post you said "My scanner added the yellow to the body dubbing, I suspect because of the yellow hackle. The scanner also makes oval tinsel look like flat tinsel and makes gold tinsel look like it is silver (I suspect because it is "seeing" the reflection of the gold as simply light). The scanner also makes it very hard to see ribbing where the hackle is bushier. There are only 5 turns of tinsel on the Kate." Come on now. I have scanned hundreds of flies with a rainbow of colors and photographed even more and have never had the experience of selective image distortion you describe! There is no gold twist on the March Brown and the rib is silver oval. The rib on the Kate is flat tinsel, the spacing of the ribs particularly on the top one would indicate six ribs but I admit that you could have ended the ribs way behind where they would normally end. There are still no horns on the second one (which is a much better looking fly in my opinion).

You go on to say, "The hare's ear dubbing instead of silver monkey fur with orange added to it, is a standard substitute for the silver monkey/orange dubbing mix." Who's standard? With the wrong tinsel and wrong body, I can't tell if that is the right wing, that is not Kelson's March Brown!

You did not follow your rules or the recipes for these three flies yet you continue to offer them as Kelson's dressings. They aren't! This is what gets to me about you and some other traditionalists/purists. You have "rules" that you impose on others who might not be faithful to flies of past yet you do as you will without regard to the same "rules". Emerson (I think) wrote, "do as I say, not as I do". Whoever said that, it fits here.

Paul Ptalis published a great little book called "Century End, A Fly Tying Journey". In this book, Paul presents an array of classic dressings as well as some of his awesome free style flies. After the shock of the colors and patterns when I opened the book, the thing that really impressed me was that after the name of the classic pattern and the originator, he added, "...interpreted by Paul Ptalis". I would suggest that this might be a good thing to do when accomplished Tyers like yourself present a "classic" pattern that is not faithful to the original dressing. This will give the less knowledgeable among us the "heads up" that there has been a bit of artistic license applied to the fly.

Now, do you get it? My point is not to criticize you or your flies. I am NOT judging either. It is simply to help other, less accomplished Tyers understand what it is that they are viewing from more experienced Tyers such as yourself. You can tie your flies any way you like and I can do the same. Neither is better or more right than the other.

Happy Trails!
01-04-2004 01:30 PM

I love to tie flies, and will admit that I've longed to get the hang of full dressed atlantics. I've tried a few times, but none have come out as well as I'd like (I know, practice practice :hehe: ). Myself, I like all of them. I am FAR from a "traditional" or a "by the rules" type fly tyer. I prefer to interpret and tie to my likings, not to standard rules. But I'm not tying to meet the criteria of experts either. Since I don't have those skills, I won't critique.

All I have to say is nice job on all. Will sit down and learn how to tie these one of these days. I do better hands on then reading about them. But, will master them someday. LOL
01-04-2004 10:40 AM
even more confused!


Let me get this straight. As I see it, Pryce-Tannatt states decidedly ("...after due consideration of the fly-dresser and angler alike.") that horns are indeed an important anatomical and functional element of a fly - for the reasons I indicated in my last post. Kelson and Sir Herbert Maxwell dressed their Kates with horns as well. Yet, you (a 'purist') consider them to be a non-essential part of the dressing.

Am I to understand that the 'rules' in tying, classical or otherwise, are indeed subject to personal interpretation?

FT, I am by no means the tyer or historian you are, so I hope you'll shed some light on some confusing and contradictory points of view.


BTW - I may have missed something, but what WAS the purpose for posting the additional Kate?
01-04-2004 12:59 AM
flytyer Here is another Kelson Kate with jungle cock cheeks, which is also taken from one of my fly boxes.
01-04-2004 12:30 AM
flytyer Ronn,

My scanner added the yellow to the body dubbing, I suspect because of the yellow hackle. The scanner also makes oval tinsel look like flat tinsel and makes gold tinsel look like it is silver (I suspect because it is "seeing" the reflection of the gold as simply light). The scanner also makes it very hard to see ribbing where the hackle is bushier. There are only 5 turns of tinsel on the Kate.

I looked up Kate in Kelson's book and you are correct, it should have horns and jungle cock. I appologize for misleading anyone on that. However, Kelson wrote that jungle cock should be left off some flies for fishing because jungle cock is such a bright feather that leaving it out sometimes makes for a more effective fly, especially in hard-fished waters.

The hare's ear dubbing instead of silver monkey fur with orange added to it, is a standard substitute for the silver monkey/orange dubbing mix.


Yes, Price-Tannatt did write this; however, I have always been puzzled by it since jungle cock is not a brittle nor a fragile feather, and a single fiber of Macaw tail does not offer much protection to a jungle cock feather. Also, when a fly is fished, the single fiber of Macaw use as a horn, blends in with the wing and adds little if anything to the mobility of a fly, unless you are speaking of flies with topping or G.P. tippet wings.
01-03-2004 11:45 PM

Why do I think this Auction is going to cost me money??

01-03-2004 10:13 PM

Well said, Ronn,...well said, indeed!

flytyer - as a side bar...

Your comment of; "Since I have found that cheeks, tail veiling, horns, and anything other than a thread head make no difference in the fly's effectiveness, I tie and fish the Kelson version." was a little perplexing, especially coming from someone with a decidedly 'classical' or purist's philosophy on flytying.

Didn't Pryce-Tannatt write that, "They (horns) constitute an element of mobility in a fly, and mechanically are useful in protecting brittle, delicate feathers, such as Jungle Cock, when these latter are used as cheeks or sides."?

I would think that mobility and protection would be instrumental elements in a fly's effectiveness.

Certainly food for thought, eh?


BTW - Psst! R-o-n-N would be the correct spelling.
01-03-2004 07:48 PM
Ronn Lucas Hi flytyer,

Ok, I'll give you the chenille head but in "Classic Salmon Flies, History & Patterns" by Mikael Frodin, he states the following re the Kate as by Kelson. "... Kelson writes,..... is constructed as follows. Tag: Silver twist and light yellow silk, and a topping for the tail. The butt is of black Ostrich herl followed by a body comprising two turns of crimson dyed silk and then crimson dyed seal's fur. The body is ribbed with oval silver tinsel from the second turn of tinsel a crimson dyed hackle is wound. The throat is a light yellow cock's hackle. the wing (on Kelson's Kate) is thin and constructed first of fibers from grey Mallard and Golden Pheasant tippet and, then sections of Bustard, Golden Pheasant tail, light yellow, crimson, and light blue dyed Swan, Mallard and a topping. The fly should have cheeks of Jungle Cock feathers and horns of blue Macaw." Now, I am not a historian when it comes to early patterns but your "Kate" is not as specified in this recipe. I see yellow dubbing on the body, flat tinsel, no horns, no cheeks, hackle starting at the third turn of ribbing (as stated in your earlier "rules" but not as per Kelson). Do I see six ribs in it? Maybe one is covered by dubbing?

Your March Brown is also not as the recipe is listed in the same book which is as follows. "...Tag: Gold twist, Tail: A topping, Body: Silver Monkey's fur and a little dirty orange seal's fur, mixed together, Ribs: Gold tinsel (oval), Throat: Partridge hackle, Wings: Sections from a hen Pheasant tail (in large sizes Turkey)." I could be wrong but it looks to me that you have used flat silver tinsel as well as silver oval in the body. It is also doesn't look as if the required dubbing was used. Is there silver Monkey fur in it as well as orange Seal?

These are not the only things I see that are not correct either or may need a bit of improvement. I'd be happy to help off board as my earlier post indicated.

flytyer, my point in this is not to be critical of your flies or anyone else's. You seem to hold yourself up as the resident historian and keeper of truth. I am not, nor do I tie perfect flies. My sole interest is not to mislead Tyers who may be new to the craft and particularly the full dressed flies. When you presented these two flies as "Kelson", that implies that they are dressed as he would. If a new Tyer assumed you were right and wanted to dress a Kate or March Brown given your presentation of it, he/she would have been wrong.

I said it before, there are NO rules that can't be broken. I also said that when tying a classic, it should be tied as close as possible to the original and where substitutions are used, they should be noted. I don't expect you to have Monkey hair in this day and age (although I'd be happy to send you a small snippet of it).

The guys you hold in such high regard (Kelson, Pryce-Tannatt, et all) changed the patterns all the time and they noted it.

Either rules are rules or they aren't.

The goal ought to be to have fun tying flies and particularly the full dressed ones. That's my #1 rule!

Happy Trails!
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