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Old 03-15-2013, 07:15 AM
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Arrow Re: Flies swimming hook up or hook down

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Originally Posted by flytire View Post
i cant tell you how many times ive fallen out of my tying chair when tying upside down
I always thought it was from the scotch and red wine!
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Old 03-15-2013, 10:13 AM
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Default Re: Flies swimming hook up or hook down

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Originally Posted by twr0305 View Post
What's up everybody!? Ive been on the forum for a few weeks and have learned a lot while on here as I have just recently started to jump into fly tying. Well one thing that I have not found though is, How do you know if the fly you are tying is going to swim hook up or hook down? I understand using the SBS instructions of tying certain flies they should swim like they are designed, but if I were to make up my own fly design, how would I know how to ty it to make sure it swims like I want it to? Thanks in advance for any info.
Welcome aboard!

Your question is a good one, and with a simple answer. The fishing hook is one of the most perfect examples of form following function. The extra weight of the hook under the shank acts as keel, if you will, and will always put a bare hook "hook down" when it lands on water. Now once you start adding materials to the hook you begin to change the weight distribution, but still, on you average dry fly a little hair or feather tied on the top is generally not enough to offset the keel of the hook under the shank. But it is possible.

With nymphs and wet flies I have begun to tie on any weight (if it's lead wire for a weighted nymph or just wire for a rid) onto the bottom of the shank as I wind it back and secure it onto the hook. I like to believe that this little added mass on the underside of the shank helps to keel the fly further. Of course you can do the opposite it you want the hook to ride inverted or up.

Rip covered the basics.
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Old 03-15-2013, 11:15 AM
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Default Re: Flies swimming hook up or hook down

dont forget that stream currents and or micro currents will have an impact on what the fly does underwater regardless of how much and where the weight is placed on the hook shank. the fly will spin and tumble around not just drift in a perfectly straight line or attitude.
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Old 03-15-2013, 11:32 AM
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Default Re: Flies swimming hook up or hook down

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Originally Posted by flytire View Post
dont forget that stream currents and or micro currents will have an impact on what the fly does underwater regardless of how much and where the weight is placed on the hook shank. the fly will spin and tumble around not just drift in a perfectly straight line or attitude.
Of course, which is why I've begun to further weight the underside, and a little heavier near the butt if I can, in hopes that the fly drifts right side up and with it's butt low. In heavy currents and pocket water, I'll usually go with an "in the round" style fly i.e. Brooks Stone, general Hare's Ear or even a weighted soft-hackle. The rest of the time, fishing a 3' deep run or riffle, I like to believe that the properly weighted nymph will drift how I intend it to...key words - like to believe ...
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Last edited by dean_mt; 03-15-2013 at 12:37 PM.
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Old 03-15-2013, 11:47 AM
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Default Re: Flies swimming hook up or hook down

More and more the nymphs I do tie are so nondescript that it doesn't matter if they are upside down sideways or what have you. Wrap a small soft hackle at the head and you have a buggy looking thing "in the round".
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