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Old 02-20-2001, 09:36 PM
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juro juro is offline
Coast2coast Flyfishaholic
Join Date: Jan 2000
Location: Steelhead country|striper coast|bonefish belt
Posts: 20,594
Favorite big-fly thread?

I've been in a few discussions lately on the topic of thread choices for big flies - striper flies, coho streamers, winter steelhead bunnies, tarpon, etc.

I've tried the following:

a) kevlar

b) flat waxed nylon

c) monocord

d) monofilament (not to be confused with monocord)

e) that braided one with the guys name (will modify when I get the name tomorrow)

Kevlar - strong as the name implies, but it does not wrap or grip the material well and does not compress at all. It makes plain ugly heads unless laquered over. I would probably use it for specialized applications requiring strength but it rarely gets on my bobbin anymore.

Danville's Flat Waxed Nylon - I've used this thread for winter steelhead flies as well as SWFF applications and find that although it's a great coverage thread for underwrapping hook shanks it is not the best for securing materials, stacking deer hair, etc. It is similar to a fine floss and thus spreads flat, losing some of the "bite" of a finer thread. Touching the point of the hook causes it to split into tiny filaments that cause irregularities in epoxy finishes and weakens the bite strength. Covering this frays up causes unnecessary buildup of thread in the affected area. Gluing over, or zap-a-gapping FWN overcomes it's lack of bite, but not all scenarios support this. I find that I can often pull materials out of the wing with this thread. It is good when the wrapping method holds hairs back, although once again this is not a durable arrangement and will require glue or other complement.

Danville's Monocord - in stout diameters this is my personal favorite. It does not cover hook shanks as fast as the FWN but when it comes to securing feathers, hair, eyes, or biting into stacked deerhair it does a great job without compromising strength. It bites hard and allows significant wrapping without rapidly increasing the bulk and buildup (for instance the head of a fly).

Monofilament (not monocord) - in medium thin diameters provides a perfect finishing thread for securing transparent synthetics to the fly at the head. One drop of zap-a-gap or epoxy and the monofilament disappears in water. I use this to finish the deep sand eel, especially when tying them for mid-summer flats work. I don't like it for general tying work because it is kind of hard and stiff.

Lastly, that braided thread that bears some guys name... I will look it up tomorrow. I found it to be a very good thread, but at twice the cost of Danville's monocord I haven't replenished my original sample supply.

For my personal style and preferences, I like <b>Danville's Monocord</b> the best of breed.

.02, your results may vary
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