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MartinlfJune 27th, 2012, 2:14 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3173
Those of you who have been following the Trico threads will immediately understand this post. I just realized that I'm running out of size 20-24 hackles on a wonderful Keogh grizzly neck I bought years ago. The shop that sold it to me doesn't have them anymore, and looking on the internet I now fully realize the impact the fashion industry has on the availability and price of feathers.

Does anyone have a suggestion for finding a good grizzly neck with an abundance of small feathers without paying an arm and a leg? A leg is OK, but I need both arms to cast and reel.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
EntomanJune 27th, 2012, 2:28 pm
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604
I'm afraid we're all in the same boat, my friend. I wished I had a solution.

Curious weather affecting water levels and hatches...
$4 gas making thrice weekly jaunts into the Sierra's impracticable...
The fashion industry soaking up our precious hackles...

It's the end of the world, I tell ya! :)LOL
"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
FalsiflyJune 27th, 2012, 3:30 pm
Hayward, WI.

Posts: 660
Louis, I donít know if this will help but there seems to be plenty to select from and the prices arenít bad either.
http://www.featherstore.com/cat-MASKS-15.aspx
If you need more of a selection just click the different categories along the left.
Falsifly
When asked what I just caught that monster on I showed him. He put on his magnifiers and said, "I can't believe they can see that."
OldredbarnJune 27th, 2012, 5:31 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2601
Louis,

I normally do my so-called serious reading in the summer months...I'm just finishing up a great bio on Heinrich Heine for example...I try to save my angling reading until the tying months and near the end of winter to get me through, and stoked for opening day...These are not normal times for me and since my wife and I sold the business I'm flopping around like a fish in the boat and I am totally out-of-sorts.

Cutting to the chase...I found myself looking through Chauncy's book and that turned in to another read through of it...Maybe you could use his old method of tying spent wings and use up some of the larger feathers in the neck until the girls finally bore of feathers in their hair.

If you don't remember, and I doubt you have forgotten, he would cut fibers from one side of a larger feather and place these in his home made stacker tips first...Then he would snip an equal amount of fibers from the other side of the feather and place these in the stacker butt end first...Give the stacker a tap and tie these in with a good old figure 8 and then run your tying thread through them once to separate a bit and once underneath the wings and the hook to tilt then above the hook plane a bit...

If it is, as Kurt suggests, the end of the world as we know it, or at least the end of quality hackle...You have failed your tribe by not hoarding supplies properly...You should of forseen this and come the revolution sir, we'll just have to leave you behind...;)

"Of all that was done in the past, you eat the fruit, either rotten or ripe.
And the Church must be forever building, and always decaying, and always being restored.
For every ill deed in the past we suffer the consequence: For sloth, for avarice, gluttony, neglect of the word of (Schwiebert :)), For pride, for lechery, treachery, for every act of sin. (ie not having an over supply of quality dry fly hackle)
And of all that was done that was good, you have the inheritance"...Marinaro, Lively, Fox, Leisenring, Schwiebert, Skues, Marryat, LeBranche, Brooks, etc, etc...;)

"And the wind shall say: "Here were decent godless people: Their only monument the asphalt road and a thousand lost golf balls." Not to mention a zillion lost flies snagged in the Tag Alders.

"This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper."

Many appologies to Thomas Stearns Eliot for this silliness...;)

Spence

By the way I have guard dogs and grandpa's old 12 gauge pump so don't think about trying to get to my stash...Call Tony. :)
"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
MartinlfJune 27th, 2012, 7:32 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3173
Well, at least I'm getting some laughs out of this. Actually I have some good leads on Whiting Bronze capes, and may check out Collins hackle. I just don't know enough about Collins.

And there's always Tony's stash. He's in the OR enough, I might be able to make off with a neck or two without getting shot.

Finally, as for hording, I did my part with the Varivas hooks, Spence. You can't expect one person to take care of all the hording that needs to be done, now can you?
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
OldredbarnJune 27th, 2012, 9:57 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2601
And there's always Tony's stash. He's in the OR enough, I might be able to make off with a neck or two without getting shot.


Ha! Louis that man probably has so much shit he wouldn't even know it was gone...:) We should wait until he and Matt head west...;)

When we stop laughing at ourselves and our obsession...Well that's when we should start worrying...Agreed?

I almost forgot about the hooks...You can man the barricades again comrade! :) Truth be known I'm rather soft on you "Pennsylvania Boys"...You guys are just the otherside of the same coin us rascals from Michigan inhabit...Besides G would box my ears if I didn't give you boys your due. :) He sent me a picture of him skiing last winter and man did he look serious...Might kick my you-know-what. :) Can't mess with them Hershey Bears' Fans...:) Well, between Tony in Pittsburgh and Shawn a Philly's fan...It's a wonder any of you even talk with this old Wings fan...:)

Oh...and you guys were nice enough to share Chauncy with us up on the Au Sable. That should just about get you all a get-out-of-jail card over here.

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
GutcutterJune 27th, 2012, 10:30 pm
Pennsylvania

Posts: 470
And there's always Tony's stash... Louis that man probably has so much shit he wouldn't even know it was gone...


Spence and Louis (aka Laurel and Hardy?)

If you were single for as long as I was, you would have almost as much stuff as I do.
But I know where every Hoffman, Metz and Whiting neck is located in my tying room.
I never got around to buying a Platinum Whiting, but I have a Gold and a few Silvers. I also have a few Metz #1's and a couple of #2's.
Oh, yeah. Did I ever mention that I am a Ninja and have studied the art of the boobytrap for years.
Come on over and try to get one. I dare you

You guys can fight over my Hoffmans. They're pretty much bare by now.
All men who fish may in turn be divided into two parts: those who fish for trout and those who don't. Trout fishermen are a race apart: they are a dedicated crew- indolent, improvident, and quietly mad.

-Robert Traver, Trout Madness
Jmd123June 27th, 2012, 10:44 pm
Oscoda, MI

Posts: 2545
I thought I had posted a reply on here earlier but somewhow it disappeared??

Louis, if you really need them, I have plenty of teeny tiny hackles on my two grizzly necks. I almost never tie anything smaller than a #16, so if you are that desperate, I can pluck them off and send them to you in a plastic baggie. Just let me know...

Man, I'm glad I stocked up on grizzly hackle over the years! Got plenty of saddle hackle to ride out the fashion craze, good thing because I love to use it on Woolly Buggers.

Jonathon
No matter how big the one you just caught is, there's always a bigger one out there somewhere...
MartinlfJune 28th, 2012, 9:04 am
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3173
Jonathon, I'll PM you to see if we can work out something mutually beneficial.

If not, I'll say to Tony that the statement,

I have a Gold and a few Silvers. I also have a few Metz #1's and a couple of #2's.


is just asking for it. The Cable Man may have to pay your place a visit while you're in Montana to fix a few loose connections. He has a close friend who is an ATF agent. I'm sure he and his buddies can handle any booby trap we, er, they, may encounter.

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

--Fred Chappell
WiflyfisherJune 28th, 2012, 9:08 am
Wisconsin

Posts: 649
Louis, 2 great sources for Grizz or any other hackle you are looking for...

http://www.featheremporium.com/

http://www.jimsflyco.com/

Over the past few months I have been to both and they have tons, and I mean tons of Whiting dry fly hackle. Call them.

By the way, when I saw the thread title "Neck Problems" I thought it would be about you complaining about starring up in the sky at spinners that for hours wouldn't come down. :-)
John S.
https://WiFlyFisher.com
WiflyfisherJune 28th, 2012, 10:53 am
Wisconsin

Posts: 649
Louis, I called Dave and he said you had just called him.

He told me about all the exotic feathers he has in full skins for salmon flies... I don't tie salmon flies but this is amazing too. Trout or salmon feathers he has it.

http://www.featheremporium.com/full-skins.html
John S.
https://WiFlyFisher.com
MartinlfJune 28th, 2012, 10:59 am
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3173
Shawn might be interested in the exotic feathers; he ties some flies with these. What impressed me most about Dave was his willingness to spend some time to find exactly what I was looking for. Thanks again for this excellent reference.

Oh, and I have spent time waiting for spinners that seemed they would never fall--and some that never have. Tight lines, John.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
Flatstick96June 28th, 2012, 3:21 pm
Posts: 127
I think Shawn is too busy catching trout to worry about artistic tying right now. At least, that's what I gather from all of the e-mails he keeps sending me as "teasers". :)

When I logged on and saw the several threads he'd created on here recently I thought: "Well, you can certainly tell that school has let out for the summer."

WiflyfisherJune 28th, 2012, 4:25 pm
Wisconsin

Posts: 649
What impressed me most about Dave was his willingness to spend some time to find exactly what I was looking for.

Louis, the time Dave spends is going through his piles and piles of capes and saddles he stocks. He doesn't need to call suppliers.. he has more than they probably do in-stock. And I am not kidding!! He is a true feather merchant, not a typical fly shop.
John S.
https://WiFlyFisher.com
MartinlfJune 28th, 2012, 5:36 pm
Moderator
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3173
Duane, you've got to get up here and fish some. I'm very busy at home now, but hoping to get up later to fish with Shawn, and with you when you get in. Hope all is well.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
OldredbarnJune 28th, 2012, 10:15 pm
Novi, MI

Posts: 2601
Spence and Louis (aka Laurel and Hardy?)


Damn Louis he's on to us...:) I don't know if you have ever seen a picture of his son in his hockey gear...Pretty serious looking little dude...He may be our problem when his Pop's in Montana...His own built in hackle guard dog. :)

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
Shawnny3June 29th, 2012, 12:12 pm
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
Wow, those are some sweet skins, John. Louis, I have been looking to upgrade to some better necks. Maybe we could work something out to defray the cost for each of us on some of these. Have you considered Conranch hackle? I have heard good things about it, and I've spoken with the owner, Denny Conranch, at length about his passion for birds and flytying (he is kindly helping me in an experimental project). His flock is quite rare, descended entirely from Darby's original flock. He's personally been breeding his birds for 60+ years. Like other breeders, he has worked hard on barb density and feather length, but he has also focused on some areas that other breeders have not, like developing very supple, easy-to-wrap stems. Basically, he has listened to what tiers say they want out of a hackle and has spent a lifetime breeding those characteristics into the feathers. He is also very passionate about achieving a wide range of colors naturally, which requires really careful breeding - he does not dye his skins. You should definitely look at his site - some really beautiful skins there.

-Shawn
Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
WiflyfisherJune 29th, 2012, 2:10 pm
Wisconsin

Posts: 649
Shawn, I think the real answer to that is for you to set them side-by-side and compare breeders' barb count, coloration, feather density, stiffness, and number of available sizes per cape and saddle.

By the way, here is from the Darbee strain as well: http://www.featheremporium.com/Fly-Tying-Feathers/darbee_dunns.html
John S.
https://WiFlyFisher.com
Shawnny3June 29th, 2012, 3:24 pm
Moderator
Pleasant Gap, PA

Posts: 1197
Good idea, John. You supply the skins and I'll test them both in the laboratory and on the water. I think we should test in at least the colors white, ginger, light and dark dun, brown, black, and grizzly.

In all seriousness, it is impossible to buy feathers online and really know what you're getting - it's a crapshoot to a large degree. In an ideal world, you'd be able to paw through loads of skins and pick out just the ones you want. I've heard there are places called "flyfishing shows" at which one can do just that, but I wonder if that's just people pulling my leg.

-Shawn

Jewelry-Quality Artistic Salmon Flies, by Shawn Davis
www.davisflydesigns.com
WiflyfisherJune 29th, 2012, 6:34 pm
Wisconsin

Posts: 649
Good idea, John. You supply the skins and I'll test them both in the laboratory and on the water. I think we should test in at least the colors white, ginger, light and dark dun, brown, black, and grizzly.


Shawn, from the years I have been on this forum with you and Louis I have always enjoyed the witty remarks and comments. That was a good one. :-)

I have been several times to JimsFlyCo (Campfire Lodge, West Yellowstone) and to Feather Emporium (Madison, WI.). They have what I have never found in any other fly shop... tons and tons of capes and saddles in a wide variety of colors, and with the "depth" in each hackle color in both capes and or saddles. No two capes or saddles are the same, neither are the birds. So when I want a specific color I need a merchant who has the depth of colors for the hackle. I don't want to call some shop that only has 1 in stock, because chances are when I get it I will regret it. For example, I can remember seeing 10 honey dun capes (pro & bronze). Out of the 10, I would say 4 were what I would call honey dun and the other 6 were not.

It is tough buying sight unseen. So, if I want a specific color I have to go to a fly fishing show that they are attending to see the hackle, or communicate by phone or email to request exactly what I want. In the past I have actually emailed a color tone I wanted to them and got what I wanted with the approval to return if not right, or called and shown them online what I wanted.

For those guys to attend a fly show and cover their expenses there has to be enough fly tyers there to make it worth their while. Plus, they can't take everything to the show. I know for example, if you looked at some Classic Salmon fly feathers you wanted from Dave Roberts (who is an expert on exotic birds and raised them years ago) he would probably allow you to return them with full refund if not meeting your expectations.

By the way, when you fish with Louis have him bring his feathers he got from Dave. I bet you will be impressed.

I will go on record saying, they ain't know other retail fly shop who can match Dave's selection of fly tying feathers in the USA. Along, the same lines, JimsFlyCo.com does have close to 1000 Whiting rooster and hen capes and saddles in stock. That is why those two are the only places I buy hackle from. Just like if I want deer or elk hair I mainly buy that from BRF and CDC from Trout Hunter.

John S.
https://WiFlyFisher.com
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