Dyeing with acid dyes

s fontinalis

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I was gonna post this in Dan's koolaid dyeing thread, but thought it better as a separate effort since it is a somewhat different process.

I"ve never had success with koolaid, but i have with acid dyes, so i'll give my perspective on those. Simply an alternative to koolaid.

The dyes are pretty cheap, but not as cheap as koolaid.
One half oz jar of jacquard acid dye will cost about $5.50 shipped. In terms of how much that will dye, all the examples below used less than one teaspoon of dye in the bath.
One half oz jar will dye about 4lbs of material i believe, though you'll have to check the jacquard dyeing protocol to confirm that.
All the dye examples below came from jacquard except the magenta, which was from another seller on ebay (jacquard do not have a magenta dye)
Everything started off natural white

Lilac duck quills


Magenta hackle and snow shoe rabbit foot.



olive (bottom) and brown wool


I also did some amherst tail red, but have no photo.
The entire process from start to finish (not including drying) takes about 20-30 mins.

Dyes are available from Dharma trading, Fly Dye and ebay - these are my main sources.

Hope this helps those who are thinking about dyeing.

I started because i wanted lilac duck quills for the Jennie Lind wet fly, and noone had any; EVER. So i did my own.
Heres some of the stuff i've dyed, used in flies.

Jennie Lind - Lilac quills



Magenta Hackles - Throat hackle on the Wilkinson. I couldnt find magenta hackles anywhere, so again, my hand was forced to dye my own


Olive and brown wool - Body on the Lady Caroline, though its hard to see, is a blend of brown and olive wool. I wanted to be able to get my own shade in the wool, not some predyed shades.


Red Amherst - part of the wing on this Hammer fly i designed myself.
 
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s fontinalis

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Heres some more stuff i just dyed today. Was going for sunburst, I think it worked out well, at least with the cape. My (wife's) hairdryer went kaput before i got everything dried, so she may make me go kaput when she gets home from work!

Everything went in except the large bucktail


Bubbling bath


All done, dye fixed, and rinsed in cold water.


The hen cape, before the hair dryer crashed.


Pretty pleased with the outcome actually.
I used jacqard acid dyes in the approximate ratio 601 Yellow Sun 2.5:1 618 Fire Red
 

bigjim5589

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Eunan, awesome post! :thumbsup:

I've been using acid dyes too for many years now. It's like dyeing Easter eggs! :D

I've used the Jacquard dyes quite a bit, but have been using some of the Dharma Trading Co's house dyes. Better prices for more quantity & although with some colors there is a difference, for my purposes not enough to worry about.

Good stuff! :thumbsupu
 

mudbug

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Eunan, awesome post! :thumbsup:

I've been using acid dyes too for many years now. It's like dyeing Easter eggs! :D

I've used the Jacquard dyes quite a bit, but have been using some of the Dharma Trading Co's house dyes. Better prices for more quantity & although with some colors there is a difference, for my purposes not enough to worry about.

Good stuff! :thumbsupu
I bought some of the DTC house dye to dye some Mallard and grizzly hackle for my Rickard's Nymphs.

 

Pocono

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Great post, Eunan.

Very instructive and a clear demonstration that all of the older patterns can be tied to original recipes, can be successfully modified, and that new patterns can be developed; if you're willing to take the time to create the starting materials.

I think you're clearly on a path to your own category of fly tying expertise; and that's a very good thing.

Nice job!

Pocono
 

s fontinalis

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Today i went with some acid dyes from a new source. Instead of the previously used Jacquard, i went with Cushing Perfection Acid dye, this time in Rose Pink.
I"m always turned off by the garish 'fluorescent pink' hackles i see in stores and online, and wanted something softer.
I picked up three dyes, enough in each for one pound of material, for $13 shipped.
I bought two shades of pink (aqualon pink & rose pink), and one sky blue.
Today i dyed with rose pink. The primary reason for the pink, as mentioned, was the monstrosity of the colors available. I want to tie a 'pink ghost' with hackles that dont look like they've been treated with uranium.
So, to test, i bought a nice whiting hen saddle ($10), with the idea i could use the hackle for soft hackle flies and for steelhead flies too.

SO the result is as below.
White to Rose Pink whiting hen saddle.


THe difference between dyeing with the cushing's dyed and the jacquard dyes is the order things are added to the dye bath.
Jacqard is as follows:
Hot water
Dissolve dye
Add material
Allow dye to be absorbed by material
Add acid
Rinse and dry

With Cushing:
Boil water
Dissolve dye (with these dyes you can vary the shade of the dye by adding more or less powder to the bath)
Add acid
Add material
simmer until the dye bath becomes clear (all the dye absorbed by the material)
Rinse and dry

Both methods are good, and ill be continuing with Jacqard and cushings in future. Cushings had the pink shades i was after. The rose pink is slightly darker than the aqualon.

I might also get a nice light dun saddle to dye a light pink, as some of carrie stevens hackles had that shade.
 

bigjim5589

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Eunan, I always enjoy your posts & information! :worthy:

I agree with you about some of the loud colors for tying materials! There's a place for all colors, and even though I don't generally have great needs for pink, it does have some use for me. Looks like it's a good color!

BTW, us bass fishers call that "Bubblegum" pink! [poke]

:lol2:

Seriously, great post as always! Thanks for taking the time to add it!:thumbsup:
 

coug

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Very nice!

---------- Post added at 05:31 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:23 PM ----------

Eunan,

Have you thought about posting info on dying on Addicted to Vise?
 

s fontinalis

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Very nice!

---------- Post added at 05:31 PM ---------- Previous post was at 05:23 PM ----------

Eunan,

Have you thought about posting info on dying on Addicted to Vise?
I"ll post some stuff up there soon. I just dyed some new hackles for a fly, so i'll put some general info up when I post those hackles and that fly.
 

s fontinalis

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If anyone is interested, i wrote two detailed pieces for the J Stockard blog about dyeing with acid dyes....

I'll not link directly to them, but they're not to hard to find

Eunan
 

s fontinalis

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It aint no use if it aint chartreuse....Natural (left) and dyed Ringneck rump. Jacquard acid dye Chartreuse #628. Also, no filters used here, these are the colors as you see them in natural light.

 
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