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Thread: Confused about thread size

  1. #1
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    Default Confused about thread size

    Hello, my name is Kyle and I am new to fly tying, and becoming addicted. I was given an assortment of fly tying equipment, including vise, tools, thread, hooks, beads, and other various material. I have been watching a bunch of youtube videos and it seems when they wrap the thread towards the back of the hooks, it is always very wide and lays down very flat and completely covers the hook. I know if you unwind the bobbin it will widen the strand, but I never see them do this. Most of my thread is 6/0. For right now, I tie mostly midges. Is this thread the wrong size for midges? I am not sure which sizes of thread are bigger and which ones are smaller. Also, i'm not sure what size thread you should use for various applications. I was given dozens of spools of 6/0 thread, so that is what I have been using for everything. Is it necessary to change thread size for various applications? for example, I want to start tying pheasant tails. Can I use the 6/0 thread that I have, or will I need to buy a certain size for this fly? If there is a chart out there with thread sizes, that would be great. Any help is appreciated.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Confused about thread size

    check out this chart.
    you can get thin threads (veevus) that will have a high tensile strength. the #/0 rating is usually a reference to the thickness of the thread, or the number of strands of fiber per thread (aka denier)

    Generally i'll use 8/0 or 12/0 danville thread for midges. you could use a smaller size veevus for midge.

    For instance. On heads on salmon flies i use 14/0 veevus, because it is thin and strong, about the same strength as 6/0 danville. Because it is thinner, there is less bulk, which is what you also want with midges.

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  4. #3
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    Default Re: Confused about thread size

    Quote Originally Posted by SdDryFly View Post
    Hello, my name is Kyle and I am new to fly tying, and becoming addicted. I was given an assortment of fly tying equipment, including vise, tools, thread, hooks, beads, and other various material. I have been watching a bunch of youtube videos and it seems when they wrap the thread towards the back of the hooks, it is always very wide and lays down very flat and completely covers the hook. I know if you unwind the bobbin it will widen the strand, but I never see them do this. Most of my thread is 6/0. For right now, I tie mostly midges. Is this thread the wrong size for midges? I am not sure which sizes of thread are bigger and which ones are smaller. Also, i'm not sure what size thread you should use for various applications. I was given dozens of spools of 6/0 thread, so that is what I have been using for everything. Is it necessary to change thread size for various applications? for example, I want to start tying pheasant tails. Can I use the 6/0 thread that I have, or will I need to buy a certain size for this fly? If there is a chart out there with thread sizes, that would be great. Any help is appreciated.
    What type/size fly were they tying in the video you watched? Typically floss will lay down flat the way your describing. I use 210 floss a lot for saltwater flies but I can't imagine tying a midge with it.
    The best way to a fisherman's heart is through his fly.

  5. #4

    Default Re: Confused about thread size

    For my Midge patterns I now use Tiemco 16/0 thread or Veevus 16/0. I just noticed today (on FB) that Jan Siman is now offering 17/0 thread in three colors - Olive, Cream and Black.



    Siman Fly-Fishing Shop, Czech Nymph Products, Czech Nymph Masterclass.


    There is also Nano Silk, from Semperfli, which is really fine and strong...the hook will bend before this material breaks. It is offered down to 18/0. I have used the 12/0 and like it - just don't tie deer hair or elk as it will slice right through the hair...

    Semperfli Nano Silk 50 Denier Thread | Fly Tying

    PT/TB
    Last edited by planettrout; 07-15-2013 at 05:49 PM.
    Daughter to Father, " How many arms do you have, how many fly rods do you need?"

    http://planettrout.wordpress.com/

  6. #5
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    Default Re: Confused about thread size

    i do not believe danville makes 8/0 or 12/0 threads

    6/0 WILL tie midges but thread control is important.

    for smaller than size 18, i would recommend the veevus brand threads in size 12/0.

    the only time i unwind my tying thread to a ribbon vs a rope is when i'm doing thread bodies or under bodies when i want a smooth vs segmented look and when i do the finishing/tie off knot.

    the smaller the number (3/0) the larger the thread

    buy a spool of each number of thread (3/0, 6/0, 8/0, 10/0, and so on) and break some thread. this is one exercise that all new tyers should be learning way before tying that first fly. thread management is one of the most important techniques to learn. this will give you a feel for how much tension you can wrap the thread. then use the smallest diameter you a comfortable tying with.

    read these

    http://frontrangeanglers.com/newslet...singthread.htm

    http://www.flytyingworld.com/classro...0-Threads.html

    http://mvff.tripod.com/Reference/Denier.pdf
    Last edited by flytire; 07-16-2013 at 08:32 AM.
    Poor quality materials and tools are destined to discourage beginner tiers and cause greater expense when the time comes to replace them.

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  8. #6
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    Default Re: Confused about thread size

    Quote Originally Posted by flytire View Post
    thread management is one of the most important techniques to learn. this will give you a feel for how much tension you can wrap the thread. then use the smallest diameter you a comfortable tying with.
    Spot on Sir
    Eddie
    "We look to Scotland for all our ideas of civilisation."
    Voltaire

  9. #7
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    Default Re: Confused about thread size

    Not much choice of thread where I live even though brook trout are as common as bluegills or perch elsewhere. The only thread readily available is Uni-Thread.

    The thread I like the most is Danville's Monocord however it is a bit too large for tying flies smaller than size 16 so I have to use 8/0 Uni Thread. I buy the monocord via the internet. After checking out the links that the other posters have made available, I will most surely buy some of those thinner threads. Veevus thread sounds like great stuff.

  10. #8
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    Default Re: Confused about thread size

    Thanks guys.
    I too have been confused by thyread sizes and /0#s vs denier. The guys at my local "Fly Shop" (Sportsman's Warehouse) haven't been much help!

    This has!
    Vance in AK.

    Matthew 6:33
    "But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you."

  11. #9
    Join Date
    May 2010
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    Northern California, USA
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    Default Re: Confused about thread size

    "I know if you unwind the bobbin it will widen the strand, but I never see them do this. Most of my thread is 6/0. For right now, I tie mostly midges. Is this thread the wrong size for midges? I am not sure which sizes of thread are bigger and which ones are smaller. Also, i'm not sure what size thread you should use for various applications. I was given dozens of spools of 6/0 thread, so that is what I have been using for everything. Is it necessary to change thread size for various applications?"

    There is a wide range of thread sizes and types available these days, it's almost as confusing as walking into the potato chip aisle at the grocery store. Back in the day, you could get plain, bbq, and OOH!! at one point you could get ridged... and all of this was before anyone knew what a tortilla chip was =)

    When I started tying, there was Champion Silk, 6/0 and 3/0 in black and white... period. Shortly thereafter (early/mid 70s) we saw Nymo nylon thread, and Danville's "Flymaster". Both Champion and Danville's were able to be counter-spun to flatten the thread to do what you were asking about above.... and when it came to midges, I always used to spin the thread tight to a smaller profile.

    One thing that's different now is there are threads like GSP (gel spun polyester) and others that have a "core" wrapped with other fibers and these can't be counter-spun or flattened, which is why there are now so many sizes of thread from 18/0 to 3/0.

    The other thing is lots of threads don't use the X/0 designations, but instead, use "denier" ratings... see more here http://www.flyanglersonline.com/flyt...s/part211.phpv

    Good luck to you on this....

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