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> > Frog's Butts, Duck's Butts, and Bug's Butts

MartinlfMarch 10th, 2012, 12:03 am
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2801
OK, the whole floatant thing needs its own thread. But just to be clear, I'm following up on Tony's admission:

But when you have that one special fly that keeps getting fish when others fail, well, you gotta do whatcha gotta do...


Yeah, and yesterday fishing olives in the pouring rain reminded me why I like Frog Butt so much. It will dry out a parachute or a thorax cut wing and hackle and get that fly back in action fast. I only need to float the head of the fly anyway, not the butt, and don't powder the whole body.

I use Dry Magic some as well, and have an old Simms silicone pen that I dug up and am getting some use out of.

Wayne Aldridge, a very sharp guide up on the Delaware swears by Mucilin Hourglass Silicone, but I don't like the idea of carrying the glass bottle around, nor of dunking the whole fly. So, I'm thinking of getting some of the stuff and putting it in an old Gink bottle or something to see if that works. Has anyone used Hourglass?

One thing I tried and didn't like all that much was Fly Sauce. Too thick and gummy for me, especially on my cut wings. I'm using it to float my leader these days when I don't want to dig up my Payette.

Kurt, what kind of desiccant? A bit more detail here? How well does it work in a downpour?

Oh, and Spence I've used the Harrop Preen Oil floatant--years ago. I think it worked OK, but then I found Frog's Fanny. Once you go green you'll never, er, return.

"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
CrepuscularMarch 10th, 2012, 2:17 pm
Boiling Springs, PA

Posts: 914
Louis , good idea to continue this in its own thread. For years I have used a combination of Loon Aquel, and another Loon product, I think it's called top ride, which, if my memory serves, is similar to Frogs Butt. But as Kurt pointed out in another thread, a silicone treated fly, once it gets water logged, is pretty much impossible to get dry. So since I fish a lot of cdc flies, I purchased some of the Harrop preen oil-based floatant. I haven't really had a good opportunity to test it out on large flies, so I would be really interested in what others have thought about the stuff. One other question, what do most of you use to dry a fly out? Does anyone still use that amadou stuff?
MartinlfMarch 10th, 2012, 3:11 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2801
I have a patch of amadou glued to deerskin, that I rigged into a cone made from a plastic bag, all attached to a zinger,with the cord going through the point in the cone. It keeps the amadou dry in a pouring rain, and handy. I use both the amadou and the tanned deerskin. I've used the Harrop floatant, years ago, and liked it. As you can see, I also like to experiment. When the fish are rising fast and hard, I often use the Frog's Fanny to dry the hackle, post, or wings, and fish on.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
EntomanMarch 10th, 2012, 5:22 pm
Site Editor
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Louis,

Kurt, what kind of desiccant? A bit more detail here? How well does it work in a downpour?

Last question first. The answer is kinda like it is for black powder hunters or poker players. Just keep the stuff "close to the vest and hunkered over." Nothing works in a real downpour though, including trout.:)

I had the good fortune of being informed years ago that Seidel powder was being discontinued, so I bought several cases of the stuff. Any of you remember the flat tan squeeze bottles it came in? I transfer it into a film canister to facilitate stirring around in aggressively with the fly locked in forceps. Something else I never see mentioned - Don't put dirty flies in the stuff. You'll foul the whole batch in no time. For the same reason, don't pour the stuff in your hand, grind the fly in it, and put the remainder back in the bottle as some do. Even with a clean fly, the oils and dirt from your hand and fingers will quickly foul the stuff as well. You could throw away the excess, but a bottle won't last long that way.

There are basically three types of silica desiccant, the key difference being how the stuff is processed:

1. Granulated (The older Courtland brand. It's horrible stuff)

2. Powdered (the old Seidel and several other brands. The good stuff. It has the density to use enough pressure to force the water out)

3. Fumed (Frog Fanny & others, great stuff for finishing but not dense enough to really get in and dry out a soaked fly, which is the first step. There's so little resitance, it's like swishing around in a cloud)

Even a good desiccant won't work for long if the fly is still wet at the core. What happens is it repels for the first few casts, but once this surface coating is removed, you're back to casting a wet fly again. Simply putting a wet fly in the canister and shaking won't get the job done. You have to go through the steps I mentioned in the other thread. I use a good cotton hanky to absorb the moisture between steps because I always have them around. A good sized piece of amadou is the ultimate for absorbing moisture but is usually too thick to stroke the hackles and squeeze the body separately between the fingers on small flies.

Finally, never, ever mix using desiccant with floatants, i.e. pastes, greases, oils, creams, silicones, sprays, or what have you. You have to go one direction or the other. Sorry for repeating myself on this last point, but I see so many guys still doing it, and then blaming the desiccant for not working properly. Pre-treating with a non-oily Scotchguard type of silicone works very well and won't conflict with the desiccant if done far enough ahead of time to be thoroughly dried & cured before use.

BTY - you can buy the stuff on line in bulk for cheap. When my supply of Seidel runs out, that's what I will do.
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
EntomanMarch 10th, 2012, 6:03 pm
Site Editor
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
BTW2 - For putting on a leader, nothing works like the sticky silicone gels. When gunked a little, the leader shows up on flat water very well and is the perfect strike indicator. An application lasts, too. The only fly shop brand I'm aware of is Dave's Bug Float. You can get it for a tenth the price by volume at home depot, though. It's the stuff used for sealing pool pump and filter gaskets.
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
WbranchMarch 10th, 2012, 7:07 pm
York & Starlight PA

Posts: 2309
Okay, I'll weigh in on what I use for all my dry flies - no floatant at all *. I used to use those various white gels that get more viscous as the weather warms up/ I guess it worked pretty well. But for at least the last ten years I use no floatant at all. If the fly, most have some CDC in them, gets really so wet that two false casts won't dry it I blot it on a piece of Samadou, or my shirt sleeve, dip it in a bottle of Frogs Fanny, blow it off and fish.

* well 99% of the time I don't - sometimes if the CDC is totally trashed, and I'm willing to spend an extra minute, I'll squeeze a drop of Harrops's juice on the CDC after I've washed and blotted it.
Catskill fly fisher for fifty-five years.
OldredbarnMarch 10th, 2012, 10:46 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2585
Oh, and Spence I've used the Harrop Preen Oil floatant--years ago. I think it worked OK, but then I found Frog's Fanny. Once you go green you'll never, er, return.


Louis,

I don't know why I haven't used/tried the Frog Fanny? I have heard good things and the folks at BRF in West Yellowstone have been big on it for some time now.

I found my Harrop stuff and the label on the liquid is nearly worn off. On the paste it mentions that it is derived from the "preen glands"...(?)

I was discussing this with a guy from my fly tying group and he mentioned "fletching powder" that bow hunters use on their quills...He thought you could by it in large containers and the little containers we buy sold as desiccant was a rip-off. Has anyone heard of this?

I think too, that maybe we are trying to stretch out the life of a fly a bit too long. If the fly becomes an issues due to being water-logged...Change it...How many flies do we have in or boxes anyway?

Spence
"Even when my best efforts fail it's a satisfying challenge, and that, after all, is the essence of fly fishing." -Chauncy Lively

"Envy not the man who lives beside the river, but the man the river flows through." Joseph T Heywood
MartinlfMarch 10th, 2012, 11:47 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2801
Kurt,

This company is linked to John Seidel:

http://www.titelineproducts.com/about_us.htm

Might this be the powder?

http://www.titelineproducts.com/dry_fly_product.htm
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
EntomanMarch 11th, 2012, 4:29 am
Site Editor
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
Louis - Yes, you may be right.

Spence -

I think too, that maybe we are trying to stretch out the life of a fly a bit too long. If the fly becomes an issues due to being water-logged...Change it...How many flies do we have in or boxes anyway?

Very true. Though you will have to change less often if you stay away from the greasy stuff on flies #14 & smaller.

"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
MartinlfMarch 11th, 2012, 12:53 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2801
Pre-treating with a non-oily Scotchguard type of silicone works very well and won't conflict with the desiccant if done far enough ahead of time to be thoroughly dried & cured before use.


I've yet to do it, but I've thought about Scotchguarding a whole dry fly neck. Has anyone tried this? It sounds crazy good, but it might just be crazy. Comments?

Louis - Yes, you may be right.


I've emailed them to ask, and will report back.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
PaulRobertsMarch 11th, 2012, 1:14 pm
Colorado

Posts: 1774
Tony brought up Rain-X, which I've used for arrow fletching. I'm trying it on some dries now.

But... I've been in Matt's (WB) camp -a little Aquel (or ...) and then it's just squeeze dry in a rag, and a sharp puff to prop up the important parts. This probably means I'm just not up on the technology.
MartinlfMarch 11th, 2012, 9:03 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2801
One of the owners confirmed by email that the floatant that Titeline Products is selling is the same as John Seidel's powder. See their home page:

http://www.titelineproducts.com/about_us.htm

And this is the powder:

http://www.titelineproducts.com/dry_fly_product.htm

I'm ordering some to give it a try. Frog's Butt may be about to meet its match.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
WiflyfisherMarch 12th, 2012, 3:54 pm
Wisconsin

Posts: 597
Louis, have you tried "Fumed Silica Powder"?

I bought a huge bag of the fumed silica powder online for something like 6 bucks. It's seems to be the same thing as Frog's Butt.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/1-Quart-Of-Bulk-Fumed-Silica-Powder-Fly-Floatant-Compare-to-Frogs-Fanny-Cabosil-/170776461160?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item27c311ff68

http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_nkw=fumed+silica
John S.
http://www.WiFlyFisher.com
MartinlfMarch 12th, 2012, 6:22 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2801
Yep, John, I have a big bag of fumed silica myself, and refill my FB bottles when they run low. It's clearly the same thing, but I think the eBay listing may misleading. From what I've been told Cabosil is not exactly the same thing. Kurt likes the Seidel powder and I'm going to give it a try too. From what I've heard it's similar but a bit more heavy duty.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
WiflyfisherMarch 12th, 2012, 10:22 pm
Wisconsin

Posts: 597
Louis, I didn't buy it from eBay, I bought mine from a chemical company. I couldn't find the link. I will be curious to see if you think it is better. I might go back to what I used as a kid... gasoline and parafin. It worked great and you could steam the hackle back to the original state. Just don't smoke around it. :) Hope all is well on the Delaware, I must get back there some time.
John S.
http://www.WiFlyFisher.com
MartinlfMarch 13th, 2012, 11:26 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 2801
John, I got y fumed silica from a chemical company too, and it works just like FF.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell

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