Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Technique Tuesdays: My (Current) Favorite Tying Tool

Random steelhead picture.  The fly this fish ate was tied using my favorite tying tool.

In the hopes that forming a new regular segment will motivate me to blog a little more consistently I am starting "Technique Tuesday's".  A new technique shared every week, ranging from tying to rowing to fishing and possibly even beer drinking and winter surviving (can it be April yet?).  I am very fortunate to have spent too much a lot of time over the past 15 years doing all things fly fishing, and spend a ton of time with other guides and great fisherman who have all sort of good tips that help make you (and me) a better angler.

The first in this series of posts is a highlight of what is currently my favorite tying tool, a cat hair brush. Available for under 5$ at your local pet store, the cat hair brush is an amazing tool for evening out fibers on steelhead flies and streamers that use any long, wavy material such as ice dubbing, artic fox, angle hair, etc.  Any of my buddies know that one of my mainstays for tying is flashy materials.  After getting some huge confidence in the prom dress I have been tweaking with all sorts of different flashy things.  Along with flash, I really like tying dubbing loops, weather it's with flash, bunny, fox, ostrich, you name it.  The above cat hair brush is the perfect tool for evening out fibers in a loop once they are spun, and then for final prep once the loop is wrapped on the hook. Here are a few pics for the process of making a dubbing brush using the cat hair comb, and the final product on a tube style intruder.
A custom blend of Blue,  Black and Pearl (minnow hue) Flashy Dubbings, wrapped in wire to form a brush.  Notice the combed out even look.
Previous dubbing brush wrapped on the tube, before being combed and primped.
Dubbing brush after being combed and primped.  Great "bump" for soft materials.
A second "bump" of flashy dubbing on the front of the tube, post combing.  All that is needed now is your favorite flavor of palmered Marabou and accessories!


  1. Fitting post for National Cat Day.

  2. Hahaha, National Cat Day, who knew?

  3. One of these days you may have to teach me to tie tube flies. That looks nice.

  4. Gary, any time man! Given your new locale though I think I may have to come visit for a tying/fishing session! This is the tube system I've been using for flies like this one. http://www.flyfishusa.com/fly-tying/pro-tube/pro-tube.htm#Pro_Tying_Needle0

    The tying needle will work with any tube, and I like the built in junction tubing. I also tie a lot of silvey's tandem tubes, and use size xtra small regular tubing for those so that standard cones fit over them.


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