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Discussion Starter #1
Ok, I am starting to venture now into the world of tying dry flies! Getting better at the nymphs every time I sit at the vice. But now, dries to me are going to be a bit more harder. Proportions I think need to be exactly on the money in order to look correct. Buying dries at $2 a piece is biting into the wallet! LOL!

Since the tan caddis seems to be a very popular hatch. I want to start off with this fly. I been buying the CDC Elk Hair Caddis. With good results on the Tully, which is why I want to start with this fly.

I am just a little confused on which materials to purchase, any help?
 

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NRA,

I recently (last 6 months) started tying dry flies, and I can tell you that per fly they are probably twice as expensive (or more). You can buy a couple hackles at a time but they really put a hole in the wallet fast. Granted, you'll probably have the hackles the rest of your life because there are more feathers there than you'll ever use, they are expensive.


There are 20-30 different caddis fly recipes so you'll either have to experiment or pick the one that is best for you. I really like the tan CDC caddis or the tan elk hair caddis.

Tan elk hair caddis:
tan elk caddis

Black caddis
black and tan



One suggestion as you get into dry fly tying, do not buy the pre-packaged hackle "kits" that come ready to go presized for different sizes (14, 16, etc). I buy mostly all full necks but you can buy halves or quarters to save a bit of money.

It's a very accomplished feeling to catch fish on your own tied dries. We crushed the fish on the gray foxes and march browns so far. I've been tying up a pile of new flies for next week at camp.

Good luck
 

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Life NRA I tie only one caddis pattern in two colors with very good succes. That is the X caddis and it is a very simple and easy pattern to tie.I have tried differnt caddis patterns but have far better luck with this pattern. Good luck like Falcon Four said is it a good feeling to catch on your own flies.

I personally like like the whiting 100's hackles. Nice full hackles and they do the sizing for you. One pack will tie 100 flies for about $14.
 

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If you want save money on dry flies, learn to tie Comparaduns, which use no hackle at all, and they make excellent imitations of mayfly hatches, and are also very good for just general "searching" patterns.

Terrestrials such as ants, beetles, crickets, hoppers are also excellent, and don't require hackle.

A caddis tied with no hackle, just dubbing and some deer or elk hair, is also very good, especially when fishing smooth, slow moving water.
 

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Brushwolf, I started with a couple packages of the WHiting 100's, and didn't like them at all. I ordered them pre-sized for size 14 hooks, but I end up using those hackles on my size 18's. They were way too undersized for my liking... I just buy all of my hackles from Phil Baldaccino's fly shop up on Kettle Creek now. He has some of the best prices on his hackles and they are of a quality that I'm happy with.

Last neck hackle I got there was a medium dun and the full hackle only ran me $32.
 

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Don't pay so much - check out internet shops such as flystop.com and BigY Fly. Dries are only about $.60 each - this way you can save some money for your new tying hobby.

I use flies from both companies but flystop is from PA and the flies are nice
 

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Just a thought here:I learned to tie dry flies basically "on my own" I guess you would say.I bought a couple books on the hatches throughout the state so I would know what flies I needed to tie,and the material needed to tie them, and I learned to tie almost solely by watching a video called "Tying dry flies" by A.K. Best.Very easy to follow and very informative.Might be worth a shot for you.Good luck and have fun.
 

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LifeNRA, I fish the Tully a lot. You need dry fly hooks size 14 through 20 (go down to 22's when you learn how to tie the patterns), tan and green dubbing for the body, coastal deer hair or CDC (dun color) for the wings. No need for hackle. CDC works better for me on the Tully. TCO has all the materials.
 

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My .02 here is to first go out and buy a dubbing dispenser with superfine dubbing. It will have 10-12 of the most popular colors of dubbing and it will save you time, space, and clutter on your desk.

I personally am not a huge fan of the 100 packs of hackles. I prefer to buy half necks. If this is not just a "phase" for you, you will appreciate having a quality neck. If you buy a decent one it will have plenty of hackles ranging from #4-22. That will cover any size dry you will be tying. You can also use the larger ones for tailing and wings as well as all kinds of applications for streamers. If you get a brown, black, grizzly, dun, and creme one you will be covering most flies.

Get some deer hair, elk hair, and poly yarn and you will be covered for wings. Z-lon has a ton of useful applications for caddis patterns as well.

This would be where I would start if I wanted to begin tying basic or essential dries. You can always add more as you expand the flies you will be tying. I know this collection may be a bit pricey initially, but most of these things (especially necks) are something you will have for quite a few years.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
the outsider said:
LifeNRA, I fish the Tully a lot. You need dry fly hooks size 14 through 20 (go down to 22's when you learn how to tie the patterns), tan and green dubbing for the body, coastal deer hair or CDC (dun color) for the wings. No need for hackle. CDC works better for me on the Tully. TCO has all the materials.
Yeah, I was going to check with Tony and his crew.

Great info guys, and thanks a lot!!!
 

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One more thing. I don't know what thread you are using to tie nymphs, but use 8/0 thread to tie dry flies. Tan is the most basic color and I use it for most of the caddis patterns that I use on the Tully. An obvious exception example would be a black caddis. Also, I prefer coastal deer hair over elk, especially for smaller flies.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Yep, I have a bunch of 8/0 now. Going to TCO tomorrow to see what Tony has. I want a hair stacker, small? The size Ill be tying will be no larger than a 16, down to a 20.

Speaking of the Tully, Ill be trying the section just up-stream of the paper mill on Thursday. From the Cacoosing creek and up.
 

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The CDC caddis is a great place to start, and it will keep you busy when all your friends start bumming them off of you. Tied a bunch up for this past week on the tully and after the giveaways I am empty again. TCO has the best emerald dubbing. I think it matches great. A tan or light yellow works well too. I couldn't find the dubbing color I wanted so I just started using some real small light yellow antron yarn. instead of dubbing. The results were great. At least for half the day yesterday on the Tully that fly was outfishing all others thrown. I use brown Ultra-Thread for the head. I would start with 20 and work down to 24. With your skills this won't be hard.
 
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