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Thread: Tying down Hackle

  1. #1
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    Default Tying down Hackle

    Almost everytime I do my final tie-down with dry fly hackle I'm getting barbs laying over the hook eye. The eye isn't crowded. Just the barbs lay way forward on my tie down. Any techniques to prevent this?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Tying down Hackle

    Jimmie,

    When tying dry flies on patterns that are small 18 and under that only use one hackle I strip the side of the barbs so that when I wind the feather on the hook the concave side of the feather faces the eye. If the fly is going to get two hackles tied in I wind one with the concave forward (first) and one facing back. The two hackle fly would be something like an Adams or Gray Fox etc. these are generally larger than a BWO or blue quill and need a bit more buoyancy.

    Having the hackle (single feather) facing forward helps keep the barbs standing up against the drag of current and the drag created when you lift it for a cast. To aid in keeping the barbs under control during finish work I either wet the index finger and thumb of the free hand and stroke / hold the fibers back while building the head or make a hackle guard. To make a hackle guard take a heavy stock business card and punch a hole about 3/4" in from the edge with your dubbing needle, then cut a slice to the hole with your scissors, to use it, slip it over the thread and slid it over the eye of the hook. This will hold the hackle back away from the whip finish process. There are hackle guards for sale but when I need one I just do as I have described with a match book or business card. Let me know if this works for you,

    Ard

    Anywhere can be the land of great expectations, broken dreams, or paradise found, it's all up to you.

    Life On The Line - Alaska Fishing with Ard
    Ard's Forum blog, Alaska Outdoors

  3. #3

    Default Re: Tying down Hackle

    Jimmie are you tying it in at the eye and wraping it back then bringing the thread through too the eye to whip finish (the thread is left where the hackle is going too stop when wraping back from the eye)

    Chris
    "the fight is for habitait. Once its continuation is assured the fish will largely look after themselves." KD

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Tying down Hackle

    I get this occasionally also, generally I just finish tying it off and snip the fibers real quick and there doesn't seem to be a problem.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Tying down Hackle

    Thanks everyone.
    Ard: The hackle guard helped a lot is a neat idea and tool. I will keep using that one.
    Chris: That's going to cure the problem. I've never heard to wrap the hackle back from the eye. It is slick. I'll keep using that. It solves the hackle laying forward plus must make the hackle stronger when wrapped back forward to make the head.
    Lancer: That's what I was doing too. The guys that I was tying with never had to trim them so I knew I had to find a better way.
    We tie a new pattern every other Tue. Next Tue is an Adams so I'll get to show my new skills. Thanks guys.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Tying down Hackle

    Jimmie, it helps too use 8/0 thread, and wriggle it as you bring it through
    if you need more indepth info send me a pm.

    Chris
    "the fight is for habitait. Once its continuation is assured the fish will largely look after themselves." KD

  7. Default Re: Tying down Hackle

    When I finish hackle at the head, I'll take a couple of turns at the back of the head to secure the hackle. Then I'll take what remains, push it straight up with my thumb, then take a few wraps in front of the hackle towards the eye. So now the 'tag' end of the hackle is sticking more upwards instead of forward of the eye. Cut the 'tag' end, and form your head. You might try dabbing some cement on your thread after you cut the tag hackle so secure the hackle to the head even better.
    Last edited by wsender; 08-05-2010 at 02:37 PM. Reason: typo...

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Tying down Hackle

    Jimmie you've already got great adviceyou can also tie the head of your fly first:have a look herehttp://www.theflyfishingforum.com/fo...-share-10.html
    By the way have you used my capes?

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Tying down Hackle

    Thank you again Chris, 8/0 it is.
    Thank You wsender.
    Thanks Jean-Paul. That's a neat trick. I'm going to cut up a pin. Yes I have. PM sent. Thank You again.

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Tying down Hackle

    Jimmie,

    Try holding the hackle vertically at the end of the hackle wrapping process. Then bring your thread down along the back edge of the hackle, take one tight wrap with your thread and wrap each subsequent thread wrap away from the head. This should rid you of hackle fibers pointing forward; which you get from winding the thread towards the eye after you're already secured the hackle with the first wrap (there isn't any other place for the hackle fibers to go; they can't be positioned backwards at that point; only forwards).

    Also, get yourself a good, sharp, fine-tipped pair of scissors!

    Pocono

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