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Thread: Danville's 70 Denier Flymaster 6/0 Waxed

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  1. #1

    Arrow Danville's 70 Denier Flymaster 6/0 Waxed

    Shortly after I started furling my own thread leaders just over seven years ago, I pretty much settled on Danville 210 Flymaster Plus for my all around leader for fishing dry flies with line weights 3-5. I've experimented with several other materials - mono, fluoro, Uni - but always came back to the Danville 210 with a strong preference.

    Last week, I got out the 3 wt that I hadn't fished in quite a while. On it was a Uni leader that Joni gave me several years ago. I fished with that leader a couple days last week and really liked the way it presented / turned over the fly and thought the drift was just dandy. I liked that it had a slimmer, lighter profile than the leaders I've been using. But it seemed to me that the Uni leader wanted to sink the dry flies I fished with it, drag them under, after a fairly short drift, at least compared to the drift I get with the Danville leaders I've been using.

    That went along with my recollection of prior experiences with Uni leaders - that they don't just submerge, but they sink and want to sink a dry fly. That probably is of no concern for people who treat their leaders with something to keep them floating, but since I like to fish with the leader submerged, it is a major problem for me.

    Back to Danville. This time to Danville's 70 Denier Flymaster 6/0 Waxed.

    I decided to use the same proportions that I use on the Danville 210 leaders - 40% butt section, 30% mid section, and 30% tip section. But I upped the configuration from a 10-8-6 to a 16-14-12 by adding three strands per side before starting the 10-8-6 layout. Not something I've tried before, but it seemed like it should work. As usual, I incorporated a tip ring before starting the twisting / furling.

    With the much lighter thread, even with quite a few more strands, it took about 10% more twists to develop what looked like an appropriate twist and account for the usual reduction of about 18%. It took a similiar increase in the number of countertwists for the power furling.

    Off to the creek ...

    ... with the 3 wt and a fresh Duck's Green Drake, which is an extended body fly tied on a size 14 2X short dry fly hook but is pretty much a size 10 fly in conventional hook size terms. Basically a parachute style fly with a few of my own twists. Fished it off about 4' of 4X tippet. The fly properly displayed ...

    ... and with another fishy just to be sure it wasn't a fluke ...

    Got lucky on the configuration. It has pretty much the profile of the Uni leader Joni gave me and presents / turns over the fly almost as nicely, and does it better with more line out. It is a bit more supple which improves the drift. But more importantly, for me, while the leader submerges, as expected, it does not sink the fly even over a long drift. And it handled all the casts I've developed over the years as well as the Danville 210 and the Uni do.

    I fished a couple other flies for the field test. An FEB ClackaCaddis dry about the same size as the drake and an FEB Hopper, which is a much larger, heavier, wind resistant fly. The hopper was fishable with the new leader, but it was a bit much. Did catch a couple fishies with it. But for that big a fly a beefier leader would be preferable. Thinking a 20-16-12 configuration, or something in that range might do the trick for the bigger flies.

    Anyway, since this turned out to be a successful experiment with a thread that has some advantages over Uni, depending on your priorities, I decided to report the field test.

    The fish are always right.

  2. #2


    "Thinking a 20-16-12 configuration, or something in that range might do the trick for the bigger flies."

    Why use all that material...when going to another category of fly...there must be a very suitable material that doesn't need all those loops?

  3. #3


    Do I hear that....I love projects!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Elida, Ohio



    You got to love an experiment that has results like that. If you would like to try another, I have some of the thread that Frank speaks of. If you would like to try some, shoot me a PM with a snail mail address and I will get a spool or two in the mail.

    "A woman drove me to drink and I didn't even have the decency to thank her."
    -W.C. Fields

  5. #5


    I use the Gutermann thread as well, and the Skala 360 is the same diameter of the 70 denier. It does require a bit more wraps but I don't mind and it makes a really good leader. If I'm not mistaken though the reason John likes the Fly Master thread is because of its properties in comparison to polyester thread. The Fly Master is pre waxed and wont absorb water like the polyester allowing it to stay in the surface film where the polyester if left untreated will absorb water and sink. My leaders float when I apply the floatant to them to allow them to stay on top. This is why I use polyester though as if left untreated it sinks well, and if treated floats just as good. I do have some leaders made from the Fly Master 70, 140, and 210 denier thread. Sportsmans here in Idaho Falls carries the 140 denier John if you would like I can get you some and snail mail it to you. This was atleast last I checked some time last year!

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Coeur d'Alene, ID


    Had to recall some 25 years in plastics to maybe help with this thread. Polyester is Hydrophobic. Which means It does not absorb water and will be quick to dry. Nylon is Hygroscopic which means it will absorb water (I still have some faint scars on my thumb from trying to mold with "Wet" Nylon, moisture does not like 525 degrees!!). Some precision Nylon parts are actually packaged with a few drops of water to let them "Normalize". Nylon also can become stronger when normalized.

    I did do a search on this subject an found a report from a professor of science that stated exactly the opposite about Nylon?? Lord save us from those that teach!! I present my thumb as proof!

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