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I Love Skinny Water
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Do those actually catch fish or do they just look like they would
 

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poon flies
Last year in this thread Capt. Bob Lemay posted a pic of his "Sand Devil" .
I've got a few copies I made in my box for next time I chasing tarpon and will throw them at just about anything else if i see it while that fly is in hand ready to go...
Think it should be an excellent clear water fly.

 

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I jumped a bunch of baby tarpon on a 4 wt yesterday. This was the fly. I have no idea where I got it and I want to reproduce it. This is a deceiver, right? i want to tie up a few more but I’m not familiar with the synthetic.any idea what it is? Also what is the fat foil that is Wrapped around the shank.

I can reproduce with buck tail and flashabou, I’m curious as to what these materials are though. Thanks in advance.

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Howdy Bill, that's a classic Lefty's Deceiver, with saddle hackles (three on a side paired with the curve facing inwards to that the tail makes a single unit), then mylar tinsel (flat ribbon like material, comes in different widths and colors, years ago your choice in mylar was either silver or gold...) tied in just short of the head then wound forward from the hook bend to the thread where you catch the end of the mylar with the tying thread then trim the remainder away... Finally ending with bucktail (or the longer hairs from a calf tail - as long as they're still straight). Once the body is completed over the mylar a small head of thread is built up and whip finished away...

The Deceiver has been around for years and years - and there're probably more You Tube videos of it than just about any other saltwater pattern if you look a bit. Lefty's pattern was so universal it was even commemorated with a stamp issue of it by the Post Office a few years back... I used to do hundreds of them for different shops years ago.. mostly in size 1/0 with every color variation you can imagine. By the way most of us long ago got away from using mylar tinsel for that silver body - instead we use diamond braid or something similar that's quick to tie and provides more color choices... That mylar body is always the first thing to shred away from a Deceiver when you get bit....

Looked in my photo files but couldn't find a pic of a basic Deceiver... Here's the only one I still have - it's a full dress version of Lefty's classic meant for really big fish.. The shops that carried it called it a Southern Deceiver and I only did them on very strong, heavy 4/0 hooks...

this version is seven inches overall...
 

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Howdy Bill, that's a classic Lefty's Deceiver, with saddle hackles (three on a side paired with the curve facing inwards to that the tail makes a single unit), then mylar tinsel (flat ribbon like material, comes in different widths and colors, years ago your choice in mylar was either silver or gold...) tied in just short of the head then wound forward from the hook bend to the thread where you catch the end of the mylar with the tying thread then trim the remainder away... Finally ending with bucktail (or the longer hairs from a calf tail - as long as they're still straight). Once the body is completed over the mylar a small head of thread is built up and whip finished away...

The Deceiver has been around for years and years - and there're probably more You Tube videos of it than just about any other saltwater pattern if you look a bit. Lefty's pattern was so universal it was even commemorated with a stamp issue of it by the Post Office a few years back... I used to do hundreds of them for different shops years ago.. mostly in size 1/0 with every color variation you can imagine. By the way most of us long ago got away from using mylar tinsel for that silver body - instead we use diamond braid or something similar that's quick to tie and provides more color choices... That mylar body is always the first thing to shred away from a Deceiver when you get bit....

Looked in my photo files but couldn't find a pic of a basic Deceiver... Here's the only one I still have - it's a full dress version of Lefty's classic meant for really big fish.. The shops that carried it called it a Southern Deceiver and I only did them on very strong, heavy 4/0 hooks...

this version is seven inches overall...
Thanks captain, I’ll tie some up the way you suggest. And calf tail is a good tip, the buck tail is just not quite right.
 

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Finally did find a pic of the standard Deceiver I tied so many of for shops.. Here it is on a 1/0 hook - the body is calf tail (old timers called it "kip tail" since it was originally a substitute for Impala (kip tail) that was no longer allowed to be exported from Africa - long before I ever tied my first fly... Note that the body (whether calftail or bucktail needs to extend a bit past the entire hook for best effect. This version also comes with a pearl diamond braid underbody as well as pearl Flashabou Accent... The painted eyes you see are my own addition to the original version (and the tail on this sample is about 1/2 inch too long - but no one's perfect...
 

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Finally did find a pic of the standard Deceiver I tied so many of for shops.. Here it is on a 1/0 hook - the body is calf tail (old timers called it "kip tail" since it was originally a substitute for Impala (kip tail) that was no longer allowed to be exported from Africa - long before I ever tied my first fly... Note that the body (whether calftail or bucktail needs to extend a bit past the entire hook for best effect. This version also comes with a pearl diamond braid underbody as well as pearl Flashabou Accent... The painted eyes you see are my own addition to the original version (and the tail on this sample is about 1/2 inch too long - but no one's perfect...
Bob,

I'd love to hear how you tie on your hackle? Do you trim the hackle first? Strip the fibers off stem, etc.

Do you handle schlappen differently than saddle hackle?
 

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I do it in different ways - depending on the effects needed... with a saddle hackle tail the traditional way ("Deceiver style) you match your two sides (for the Deceiver it's three on a side, for a Tarpon Snake it's four on a side...) so that each side has all the feathers curving the same way.. .then marry the two sides (total six hackles for a Deceiver style tail, eight for a Tarpon Snake...) then holding them as a unit, strip off all the fibers not needed - then trim the bare feather shafts to the exact dimensions you want under the thread and tie in place with the entire unit on top of the hook shank. This allows a smooth body later for subsequent body materials to be mounted onto... if needed. Next I add any flash needed in whatever colors (for me, that's usually pearl Flashabou or Flashabou Accent and the strands will be tied in so they stream alongside the tail before moving on to the next step... The only time I add any glue (I long ago quit using head cement - the stuff doesn't glue much of anything...) is a tiny drop of super glue at my starting point after the first material is tied in place and a final drop on the head of the fly after all of the tying is done for that fly... My favorite super glue is called Krazy Glue, and I only use the original thin version - it's available in most grocery stores or drug stores... Here's a pic showing it in use...


Using neck hackles for a tail, things change... Like above, the various hackles are matched up (almost always only three on a side, then married up as a unit (all six feathers with the curve facing outwards then while holding them as a unit - then a quick cut across all six is done - slightly ahead of where you're going to tie them in and no fibers are stripped away at all... leaving the fibers in place will prevent any of the neck hackles from twisting (hopefully) as you tie them into place... + Now for the fun part - you again divide the two sides apart and only tie in one side at a time - not on top of the hook shank , but on each side so that the feather shafts align with each side of the hook shank....

A quick look backwards... Each tarpon fly (or something similar where you're using the tail feathers splayed apart) will either start with a bare hook shank or a "spreader" tied in first.... That spreader is a generous amount of calftail tied in first before you tie in the neck hackle tail...

this pic shows a hint of the spreaders on the Big Eye series of Keys style tarpon flies - particularly the upper right hand ones (Sand Devils)... if you look closely you can see a hint of orange at the base of each tail - that's the spreader... This photo shows flies ready to be packaged after the final finish was applied and allowed to harden (using FlexCoat, a rodcrafter's finish, that needs to be rotated for two hours after application..).

Spreaders add bulk to the pattern - but their main purpose is to prevent the tail feathers from fouling when you're tossing them at fish...

Hope this helps. I used to do classes and seminars on this sort of stuff. If you could watch the tying process you'd catch on pretty quickly.... All of my thread is simply Danville's Flat Waxed Nylon (roughly 210 denier if you're using
another brand of thread... ).

Almost forgot... Schlappen is handled the same as saddle hackles with one or two exceptions.... By its nature schlappen has heavier feather stems, so if you're going to palmer with it (wrap the feather around the hook shank) you'll not be able to use the part that has a thick shaft that won't wrap properly at all. I tend not to use schlappen for tails since, once again, it's nature won't provide those nice straight feathers you're wanting for a tail...
 

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I do it in different ways - depending on the effects needed... with a saddle hackle tail the traditional way ("Deceiver style) you match your two sides (for the Deceiver it's three on a side, for a Tarpon Snake it's four on a side...) so that each side has all the feathers curving the same way.. .then marry the two sides (total six hackles for a Deceiver style tail, eight for a Tarpon Snake...) then holding them as a unit, strip off all the fibers not needed - then trim the bare feather shafts to the exact dimensions you want under the thread and tie in place with the entire unit on top of the hook shank. This allows a smooth body later for subsequent body materials to be mounted onto... if needed. Next I add any flash needed in whatever colors (for me, that's usually pearl Flashabou or Flashabou Accent and the strands will be tied in so they stream alongside the tail before moving on to the next step... The only time I add any glue (I long ago quit using head cement - the stuff doesn't glue much of anything...) is a tiny drop of super glue at my starting point after the first material is tied in place and a final drop on the head of the fly after all of the tying is done for that fly... My favorite super glue is called Krazy Glue, and I only use the original thin version - it's available in most grocery stores or drug stores... Here's a pic showing it in use...


Using neck hackles for a tail, things change... Like above, the various hackles are matched up (almost always only three on a side, then married up as a unit (all six feathers with the curve facing outwards then while holding them as a unit - then a quick cut across all six is done - slightly ahead of where you're going to tie them in and no fibers are stripped away at all... leaving the fibers in place will prevent any of the neck hackles from twisting (hopefully) as you tie them into place... + Now for the fun part - you again divide the two sides apart and only tie in one side at a time - not on top of the hook shank , but on each side so that the feather shafts align with each side of the hook shank....

A quick look backwards... Each tarpon fly (or something similar where you're using the tail feathers splayed apart) will either start with a bare hook shank or a "spreader" tied in first.... That spreader is a generous amount of calftail tied in first before you tie in the neck hackle tail...

this pic shows a hint of the spreaders on the Big Eye series of Keys style tarpon flies - particularly the upper right hand ones (Sand Devils)... if you look closely you can see a hint of orange at the base of each tail - that's the spreader... This photo shows flies ready to be packaged after the final finish was applied and allowed to harden (using FlexCoat, a rodcrafter's finish, that needs to be rotated for two hours after application..).

Spreaders add bulk to the pattern - but their main purpose is to prevent the tail feathers from fouling when you're tossing them at fish...

Hope this helps. I used to do classes and seminars on this sort of stuff. If you could watch the tying process you'd catch on pretty quickly.... All of my thread is simply Danville's Flat Waxed Nylon (roughly 210 denier if you're using
another brand of thread... ).

Almost forgot... Schlappen is handled the same as saddle hackles with one or two exceptions.... By its nature schlappen has heavier feather stems, so if you're going to palmer with it (wrap the feather around the hook shank) you'll not be able to use the part that has a thick shaft that won't wrap properly at all. I tend not to use schlappen for tails since, once again, it's nature won't provide those nice straight feathers you're wanting for a tail...
Thank you Bob. I've been trying for 25 years but it was all self taught with some hints here and there and books could really get into the details like this. They were all pattern pictures and a recipe list.
 

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If I'm ever forced to leave the water - a fly-tying book is one of several different projects I'd consider... but I doubt I'll be leaving the water as long as I'm able to stand up in the morning... Pretty much in geezer territory now but still enjoy guiding...
 

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If I'm ever forced to leave the water - a fly-tying book is one of several different projects I'd consider... but I doubt I'll be leaving the water as long as I'm able to stand up in the morning... Pretty much in geezer territory now but still enjoy guiding...

PLEASE DO IT SOON :)

I've but half a dozen books about fly fishing.
I'll place an order today if you commit to to doing one.
I've got a couple years on you fly fishing the salt in Florida but,
all things considered I'm just a novice.
I'd bet there's at least a few of us who are willing to send an incentive now to be among the first to get some of your insight to the sport we love.
 
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