Originally Posted by randyflycaster
Thanks. If microfibbets don't float so well then why use them on dry flies? I'm a bit confused.
Simple answer: because you usually don't count on the tails to provide buoyancy on dry flies. Dry flies are usually buoyant due to the combined properties of one or more materials. Hackle, CDC, foam, and even dubbing all add to a fly's buoyant properties. Add to that fly floatant and the tails on a dry fly are pretty far down on the list as far as assisting in floatation. Don't get me wrong, they can be important, just not most important.
Traditional winged and hackled dry flies relied on a combination of the tails and the hackles to support the fly on the water's surface due mostly to surface tension of the water and the very light weight of the fly.
I like Microfibbets because of their small size and close replication of the natural tails on adult mayflies. They are easy to work with in a variety of applications and the end result is a pleasing blend of man-made materials that closely mimics nature.
I've also used them as tails for nymphs, but there are better materials suited for that purpose.
Here is a fly where the combination of dubbing, hackle and tail all support the fly on the surface:
Here is a very small BWO dry that utilizes hackle fibers for the tail and very small hackle to support this small (size 20) dry fly:
Here I used hackle fibers for the tail of this parachute pattern, the parachute-wound hackle being the main support for floatation of this fly:
Microfibbets will closely mimic the tails of these mayflies:
I'm okay with those who advocate using paintbrush fibers, but a pack of Microfibbets has hundreds of evenly matched and sized fibers in a large variety of colors and so much more easy to use than having a paint brush taking up space on your tying desk. On top of that the Microfibbet packs are very inexpensive.