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Old 04-08-2010, 10:36 PM
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Default Quill Body flies

Hi Everyone,
I want to start tying Catskill style dry flies that require a quill body. This might sound like a stupid question but how do you guys strip your peacock?

Thanks for the help- Bobby
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Old 04-09-2010, 07:29 AM
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Default Re: Quill Body flies

First you will need to purchase a brass pole and a huge stereo system with some mad bass speakers and a DJ hit list of thumping beats or remixed techno dance music. Just kid in around!

A quick and easy method for stripping peacock is to use a pencil eraser and run it down the stem of the feather. If you need to do a lot of feathers than you can use a mixture of Bleach and water. AK Best explains it in his book Bleaching and Dying tying materials. I don't recall the exact ratio that he uses or how long you need to soak the feathers. Perhaps someone else who does use this method will chine in or you can try and get a hold of the book. Good luck and hopefully the peacocks around here will keep their clothes on.
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Old 04-09-2010, 11:17 AM
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Default Re: Quill Body flies

I agree with Bigge. I've tried both the bleach and eraser. The bleach method didn't work that well for me plus it's a pain. Just as easy to pick up the eraser and get after it. The eraser gets easier after it's worn a little. #2 pencil works great.
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Old 04-09-2010, 11:21 AM
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Default Re: Quill Body flies

I'm with Biggie on the eraser method. I grew up tying those flies and used the eraser for peacock. You may find that certain feathers from your dry fly capes when stripped will make excellent bodies too. They give a nice tapered effect (tie the tip in first and wind forward). With either quill (peacock or chicken) a coat of head cement on the body will keep it together for you better than no cement.

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Old 04-10-2010, 02:25 AM
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Default Re: Quill Body flies

The eraser works well and you can use your thumb too
I going too try the bleach method when I get my goose never thought of doing it with peacock tho

Chris
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Old 04-10-2010, 06:11 AM
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Default Re: Quill Body flies

The origanal method was bleach for the quill gordon. light on dark. the earaser is better for blue quills.
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Old 04-13-2010, 10:02 AM
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Default Re: Quill Body flies

Hi bobbyc21fish,

Here is a method of Stripping quills. You need some bleach and baking soda.

1. Soak the quills in straight bleach or a slightly reduced mixture. Use some tweezers to swirl the quills in the bleach. You need to wear gloves and goggles or a face shield. You must watch the quills until you see the fuzz disappear and the quills are clean.

2. Have a mixture of backing soda and water made ahead of time. The consistency should be fluid something like a thin pancake batter. When the fuzz is off the quills place them in the baking soda mixture. This will neutralize the bleach and stop the process. Move them around in the mixture to make sure everything is covered with the baking soda. Let them rest in the baking soda a few minutes to make sure the chemical cleaning has stopped completely.

3. Rinse in cold water and let dry.

This will give you a super clean quill and you can do a bunch at a time. You can clean enough for a year's supply with very little effort.

Frank
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