I am interested in tying mostly size 12-16 dry flies and would like to buy hackle in colors such as grizzly, brown, and blue dun. What type of hackle would best serve my purpose? What about quality of hackle?
Cabela's sells packets of three different colored sections of Metz dry fly hackle that can be used to tie approximately 200 flies in sizes 12-16 for $24.95. Is this good quality hackle for a good price? Whiting also sells packages of saddle feathers for various size dry flies. They normall include enough hackle to tie 100 flies and sell for about $10 per pack.
I would like to buy several different colors of quality hackle, but do not need or can I afford to buy three different colored, whole rooster necks. Any advice on purchasing dry fly hackle?
I'm not against mail order, but for widely varying items like hackles I am real touchy-feely and would never buy on-line. Sometimes the best hackles are in the most obscure shops as well - good hackles get picked out quick at popular shops frequented by many anglers "in the know". Other times the busy shops get a big shipment and if your in when they are stocking the peg you are bound to score with a top notch hackle. In any case if you see great hackles you'd be best off to jump on them - but buying sight unseen is not something I'd do for hackles.
I'll second Juros comment on the touchy feelly aspect of buying hackles. While all the major name hackle companies have a quality product, there are enough variables in appearance that I don't buy without seeing.
I have looked at some of the Metz & Whiting packs and both looked like a good value. Metz also sells a package with 2 half necks in different colors but I cant remember if it is hen or cock.
On the colors, if it were me I'd go with ginger rather than brown. Its slightly lighter and used in more dry flys I fish.
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