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Thought I would take a dabble at it seeing as how I was fishing for steelhead this past spring 4 or 5 days a week buying about 3 flies a day from the bait store @ $2.25-$3.95 a pop, and fished for about 6 straight weeks.....that's alot of money to lose in the river :cheeky-smiley-022: Any tips or hints on good patterns to tie? Different materials to use?
 

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Welcome to fly tying. :)

I would recommend focussing your attention on the flies you've had success with first. You can keep your start up costs a little more managable that way. What types of patterns have been fishing most, egg flies, streamers or nymphs? In reality if you tied wooly buggers in different colors, some type of egg fly like a single egg or sucker spawn and a couple different nymphs like a stonefly and prince you could cover most of the season and expect to catch fish.

As far as materials I would recommend for getting started:

Chennile - size medium
Strung Marabou -
Peacock herl
Black dubbing (rabbit fur)
A fine yarn like Angora yarn - for sucker spawn
Saddle hackle
Pearl or krytal flash.

As for thread I use flat waxed nylon on sucker spawn but use a normal tying thread on everything else. If you my uni thread 6/0 will be perfect, UTC probably about 140 should do what you need.

That's a good starter list. :)

It's a little hard to make things out in the pick but one of the biggest peices of advice I give beginners is not to crowd the head when you tie. It very easy to do and then it makes it tough to get your line through them when you're on the water.
 

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Thanks for the advice! Ya, I was having some trouble with crowding the end of the fly having to untye some and fix it so I would be able to get the line through. As far as materials go, think I have most of what you said, but had a question about Ice Dub? How do you use it.....do you wrap it or let it hang out? Seems like its not very durable and just pulls apart at the slightest touch. I asked the guy @ the bait store where I picked it up and he said he didn't know.....how do you work in a fishing tackle store and not know anything about the products you carry? :coco:
 

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Not too surprising. Unless you're at a regular fly shop odds are only about 50/50 at best on whether the person selling the fly tying gear really has a clue. lol

There are a couple ways to use Ice dubbing. One is to just spin it onto your thread and wrap it on or use a "dubbing loop". For most applications I'd just spin it onto your thread. When you spinnig onto your thread you just spin it on with your thumb and forefinger. Make sure you are spinning it the same way all the time or it won't stay on very uniformally.
Depending on what I'm tying is how tight I want it on the body. Some things like an ice caddis I want it on fairly tight, other things I'll let it have a few more fly aways/maybe even a little bushy.
 
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