Adding Weight - Colorado Fishing Forum

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Old 10-12-2010, 04:37 PM   #1 (permalink)
TH
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Default Adding Weight

I've been tying some different versions of pheasant tails, and generally, I've been pleased with how they've fished, but I've had a few days where I'm convinced the fish were shot shy.

Any ideas on adding weight, other than tungsten beads? Would some lead raps behind a brass/copper bead work? I'm thinking of this for #16's and #18's.
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Old 10-12-2010, 05:11 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adding Weight

Sometimes lead tape works better than the other forms. If it's still too bulky you can build an underbody from copper wire or hide a bigger (or second) bead in the thorax
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Old 10-12-2010, 07:08 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adding Weight

8-10 wraps of .015 lead is perfect for 16,18 sizes. Like Funk said, many times a second bead under or as the thorax is all thats needed to put the flies in "the zone". I tie a few flies with differing weights and use different thread colors to differentiate them. Light weight - yellow thread, super heavy - red thread..etc. Otherwise they look the same.

On small flies ( either #20 or smaller, or short hooks like Mercer Mays) a tungsten bead one size larger than normal is the ticket. as there is very little room for additional weight without ruining the profile/proportions.
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Old 10-12-2010, 10:54 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adding Weight

Another idea is to use colored beads. I use an olive bead on a lot of my patterns and if you can go down one bead size. This keeps a little weight and makes the fly subtle as well. I think most fish get shy to the glare of brass or copper... You can even take a sharpie to them on the water if you think the fish are turned off by beads. I have noticed this too and had to change up a few patterns.
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:55 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adding Weight

When I am tying my smaller patterns for the tailh2o's and also again when I tie my larger stone nymphs I will use the weight to allow my fly to drift in with different balance.

On my many days staring into the zone and itching my head I have noticed that fly's will drift a similar way at times in the column. So I started experimenting with weight placement on the fly itself.

Maybe its voodoo maybe its confidence that your tweaking an already proven fly and maybe your getting more strikes and maybe it was just the day. but . I am a believer.

Anyone else?
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Old 10-13-2010, 09:08 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adding Weight

LaFontaine created the natural drift stonefly nymph for just that reason. I haven't been able to discern a difference in the fishing, though.
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Old 10-13-2010, 11:52 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adding Weight

I will throw in a vote for two tungsten beads. One for the head, one larger for the thorax.

(thorax, what a great word!)

Use a small thread to avoid unsightly build. I got some Tiemco 17/0 at the Retailer show, thanks to Brian Schmidt at the Umpqua booth. COO and tool in residence Jeff Fryhover would not part with the samples. Brian is a great guy, as are most of those Umpqua cats... Fryhover is not what I would call cool, maybe it is the generation gap? I understand the bean-counter mentality is what has made so many Umpqua signature tiers jump ship in the last couple of years. Fly fisherman being notoriously anti-corporate and whatnot.

But I digress. That TMC thread is pretty great. Low build, awesome colors. I don't think it is waxed, it has low twist, and is rather flossy. Go buy some from Charlie for five bucks a spool. Quit yer whinin', it's Japanese!

Cheers.

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Old 10-13-2010, 04:27 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adding Weight

Much appreciated, guys. I have .15 lead wire, so I think I 'll give that a shot for now.

One question about tape- does it lay down very well? I've never tied with it. I've only seen it on some wide body patterns, like stonefly nymphs.

Oyey- Thanks- a sharpie's making the next trip to Deckers with me.

Tungsten is the one thing I was using as extra weight, but I'm starting to tear through my supply at a pretty good clip. Otherwise, the two-tungsten fly would be perfect.

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Old 10-13-2010, 07:12 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adding Weight

I prefer BT types, bead in thorax.
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Old 10-13-2010, 07:32 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Adding Weight

OK here come the hillbilly
Take a piece of pine sap. gather some sand, dirt works just isn't as nice to work with. heat it with a flame of some sort. it will melt and fuse together. As it cools down it will become pliable, place it on the hook, create basic shape your after --- once thats done tie your fly atop
Next a sick piece of knowledge ---- grease your line with rubbing alcohol --- try it and find out, your line will drop
top that
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