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Old 01-08-2013, 02:25 PM
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Default creative material sources--give your tips!

How about listing the weird ways/things you use for tying materials:

I'll start:

a wool army blanket: great olive dubbing

Dickies suspenders: rubber legs
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Old 01-08-2013, 02:50 PM
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Default Re: creative material sources--give your tips!

Cheep hotel blanket as long as we are going blankets to start. Get the ones that have a fuzzy grey on one side and a foam interior. These are made with two sides like this and sewn together so the foam is gone. I use it in a Black Stonefly pattern I do. I think it was the inspiration for fuzzy foam. I was showed this at a fly tying seminar that had some really big names at it. One of them showed me.

The lining from older postal envelopes. I'm not sure they still make them but it has a very tough paper-like lining that has visible fibers in it. You can't tear it and water does not effect it. I used it to make caddis wings. From the same aforementioned seminar.

Gorrilla Glue. I make hard body flies that float like a cork with it. Just mix it with equal parts of water and glue on plastic. You can color it with markers. I used it mostly for tiny white mayfly bodies that float like a cork.

Glow in the dark spider web from the Halloween section of K-Mart. It has the exact feel of EP fiber and works the same way except it glows.

Heart Beads from the craft store. I use them for heads on my version of the Reynold's Pike Fly.

Surgical glove. I use it for the body in some nymphs I tie. You can use a marker to color a strip of it and a second color against the edge to give it a segmented look. Very tough stuff. You can also cut curly tails out of it for minnow type flies.

Halloween wigs. You can get colors you can't get Big Fly Fiber in. It doesn't have the curley ends but a pencil and a hair dryer on high takes care of that. It also cost a fraction of what big fly fiber does. I got some that had the best colors of Flashabou you ever saw mixed in.

Christmas Tinsels.

I use a lot of odd stuff.
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Old 01-08-2013, 03:50 PM
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Default Re: creative material sources--give your tips!

... Just Christmas stuff

Mylar wrapping paper is very tough and shinny. Cut it into elongated diamond or teardrop shapes and use on streamers like you would junglecock eyes.

Mylar Christmas tree tinsel ... fly body material especially the "pearl" color.

Those bad Christmas tree lights that you recently threw out ?
The copper wire in those things is so thin that you could use it to rib dry flies.

In front of me right now is some hollow plastic tubing that was used as stretchers in the slippers that my son got for Christmas.... They're going to make some dandy "pencil poppers"
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Old 01-08-2013, 04:00 PM
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Default Re: creative material sources--give your tips!

(1) I've gone into the Thrift Store and looked for stuffed cuddly animals with long shaggy hair of a certain color. Then shredded it for Dubbing in a home blender.

I learned to shred just a little bit at a time, so that the blender motor doesn't burn out. It's when you put bunches in, that it burns up the motor.


I've also searched for certain kinds of Sweaters that can be shreded for dubbing.

The Pins used for sewing have a nice round head that makes nice Crayfish eyes.


There are a couple of other products which are useful for flies.
These are colored twines from the large lumber supply houses:

(a) One is called Multi-Color "Dazzle Twine" 200' x #18 (pink, whatever) says "Blue Hawk" brand.


(b) The second is Polypropylene Twine made by Everbilt and distributed by Home Depot with a 7 lb working load 230 ft.


.
There's other stuff, lots of other stuff a person can use as I've found.

There's still stuff I have to research, like the stuffing used for quilts in the craft stores.
I am not sure if this can be a "dubbing". Not sure either if it can be dyed and colored.

.

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Old 01-08-2013, 05:27 PM
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Default Re: creative material sources--give your tips!

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Originally Posted by brucerducer View Post
I learned to shred just a little bit at a time, so that the blender motor doesn't burn out. It's when you put bunches in, that it burns up the motor.
You can use a coffee grinder also. It does a good job and the wife might like it better than dead animal fur in the blender she makes Daiquirís in.
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Old 01-08-2013, 06:27 PM
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Default Re: creative material sources--give your tips!

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You can use a coffee grinder also. It does a good job and the wife might like it better than dead animal fur in the blender she makes Daiquirís in.
Ha ha.. Well I have one of those Coffee Grinders, but I won't waste it on dubbing, good grief. Coffee to me is like....candy to kids. To heck with the wife. I'm using the Blender. She can go buy her own stuff.

Besides, she's got her hands full managing the Checkbook and Credit Cards.
She don't need a kitchen! LOL [of course, she was nice and took me out to buy lots of Kool Aid for dye today, but that only goes so far!] I think I'll take over the TV too! If she ain't nice to me, I'll stop cleaning the house once every 3 months. Everyone should help out a "little bit". That's my philosophy!
Except for the Money and big decisions, I wear--the--pants in this family! One of these days, as soon as I get some checks and credit cards from her, I'm gonna hit the road and get outta here!

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Old 01-08-2013, 08:48 PM
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Default Re: creative material sources--give your tips!

sprigs from a buffalo tail...and yes ...there is only one way to get this one...and no...its not available online!
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Old 01-08-2013, 11:07 PM
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Default Re: creative material sources--give your tips!

I use dog under fur sometimes, road kill, an old Woolrich sweater that was perfect for caddis nymphs, hair extensions, red thread I pulled from a shirt I was actually wearing at the time, my girlfriend's cat likes to bring home moles so there's another source. Materials are everywhere.
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Old 01-09-2013, 12:04 AM
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Default Re: creative material sources--give your tips!

Sometimes i think everything I look at provokes a thought of material. That's the only way I can go shopping with women is to hit the craft aisle or sewing section or even toys and electronics.
My 6 year old granddaughter likes to make things so I'll always try to buy her jewelry making kits and things of that sort. And she's good to me " Ok Granpa what color beads do you want this time" ? As long as you make me one pretty fly! The newest one is this kit with all diffrent color waxed stings in it that you twist together to make something. Those little waxed strings make the best San Juan worms you have ever seen ! You can bend them and twist the tips just the way you want!
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Old 01-09-2013, 01:12 AM
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Default Re: creative material sources--give your tips!

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Originally Posted by wt bash View Post
road kill, Materials are everywhere.
That fly tying seminar I talked about, I mentioned road kill in one corner of the place. It spread like wildfire and in under four minute the whole place was buzzing with roadkill stories. My favorite was the guy that kept checking the dead skunk for it to 'deflate'.
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