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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 09-15-2012, 10:54 AM
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Default Re: bleaching

There are 2 ways to reduce the quill so that it isn't so bulky.

1. Soak the burnt & dyed feather overnight then ; holding it by the tip grasp the fibers on the side you want to use as close to the tip as you can achieve a good grip, pull the fibers down at a steady rate and force. This should result in the fibers tearing from the stem bringing with them a thin layer of the quill that binds them.(*)

2. Prior to burning the shoulder feathers hold them down flat on a good cutting surface; using a new single edge razor blade or exacto knife, split the quill in half. After you have split the quills then proceed with burning and dying. This method is time consuming (to some extent) but you will get quick at doing it. I only do about 6 feathers at a time, this produces 12 usable, thin strips of hackle for 12 flies.

(*) While this technique does provide a very thin strip of hackle, that strip tends to be very curly and somewhat difficult to work with. These are also quite fragile both during the tying and when the fly is used for fishing. I go with the split quills although it can be tedious.
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Old 09-15-2012, 11:08 AM
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Default Re: bleaching

Quote:
Hi Jim,

The situation is (I believe) that we are actually looking to damage the feathers to a certain extent. We use the bleach to 'burn' the fibers of ........for instance goose shoulder feathers. The process burns / removes the fine zipper like barbs that hold the feather fibers together. By doing this we are producing long feather fibers that flow nicely on many wet fly patterns.
Ard, Thanks for the explanation! Very interesting! Controlled damage. Not something I've done as I've never had the need to do this. I have used bleach to strip the fine fibers on peacock herl when quills were needed for a body, but not in the manner you've described. Learned something new!

What I described is more for removing color where you don't wish to damage the fibers.
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Old 09-15-2012, 11:13 AM
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Default Re: bleaching

Hi Jim,

Same principle as stripping herl from peacock, just a different feather being stripped. Burnt feathers are how tiers produce the heron look alike hackle for salmon and steelhead flies.
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Old 09-15-2012, 12:33 PM
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Default Re: bleaching

Well I just learned my "one new thing" for day!

See ya guys later!!
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Old 09-18-2012, 09:32 PM
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Default Re: bleaching

This is really interesting. Do you know if this will work with turkey feathers too?
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Old 09-19-2012, 05:58 AM
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Default Re: bleaching

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Originally Posted by JoJer View Post
This is really interesting. Do you know if this will work with turkey feathers too?
It can be done with all feathers,but turkey easily becomes brittle ,so for turkey is best that you find white feathers and then dye them in any color you want
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Old 09-19-2012, 11:28 AM
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Default Re: bleaching

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Originally Posted by bigjim5589 View Post
Try a hair color remover like those made by Clairol or Loreal and peroxide, which is what hair stylist use. My sister is a pro with over 30 years experience & she gave me some commercial color remover one time, which worked very well. She's also the person who told me not to use chlorine bleach as it seriously damages hair (or feathers).
+1 to the above.

A Sally Beauty Supply Shop is a national chain where you can pick up beauty supply shop hair lighteners. Just follow the directions to lighten the material and then you can use it as it or re dye to the proper color.
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