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Sow Bug 2004

Rick Zieger
By Richard Zieger, Iowa

Just spent the weekend in Mt Home, Arkansas attending this event for the second time. It is the only tying event that I have ever attended, but I highly recommend it. If you can get to any tying event I think it would be a good experience.

Got some new patterns and found a few new tying tricks. I have a new minnow tied with Lions Brand Eyelash yarn. This has very long fibers coming off the main yarn. Also found a minnow pattern tied with pipe cleaners that have the thick and thinner sections and a dual-layered mylar piping minnow that I have more directions for coming to me. I got several other patterns also along the way.

Met Richard Komar, who has several patterns on this site. I have one of his Peacock Widows now. Dennis Conrad was there with several boxes of hackle that I drooled over. I have made a commitment to use up some of the hackle I have now before I go getting any more. I did get to talk with Dennis for a few minutes but then he had folks come up that he needed to take care of.

I will have to admit one thing before I go any farther on this. Wednesday night just before we left was a very hectic time in the office. I also had another place I HAD to be at 5:15. In the rush of trying to get everything put in the bag to go, and taking a phone call, I left without my vice and without any head cement.

I realized this when I looked in the bag to get a fly for a person I saw had just arrived at the hotel. This is not good when you go to a tying meeting and don't bring a vice to tie with.

Fortunately for me, Mark Delaney had another vice with him that he graciously loaned me to use Friday and Saturday. Also the tyer that I sat next to Saturday let me use his head cement for getting a couple of flies. It was very nice to have people so willing to help.

A few of the tricks that I learned there everyone else probably knows. The first one that I saw was in tying in any type of flash material for a tail. This tyer used fibers twice as long and half as numerous as the tail called for. He the folded them over the thread, pulled them down to the hook just off to the side of the hook and then wrapped the thread around the hook to secure the flash. I think if you try it a few times it will be easy to see how far down you hold the flash so that it ends up centered on the top of the hook.

The second was one that I saw several folks do but I had not noticed before. When the thread falls down the stem of the bobbin, especially when I get heavy handed and break it, put the end of the bobbin in your mouth and inhale. It pulls the thread up the bobbin so you can use it again.

One of the things that makes it easier to tie.

Richard Komar showed me to use pieces of soda straws as hackle guard. Cut the straw about 3/4 inch long and slit the side. When ready to whip finish, slip the straw over the thread and then up over the fly. Makes it much simpler to whip finish and is much simpler than a hackle guard for my big clumsy hands.

Fourth was a trick to put bead chain eyes on the hook. Wrap the thread on to start and then as you bring the bead chain eyes near the hook, make a wrap around the eye and then place the thread under the hook. You can then pull the eyes down to be on the hook without falling on the floor or any of the other many things they have done to me. You can make a few wraps around the eyes and then place them on the top of the hook where you want them.

It was a fun two day event. If you get a chance make it to one of these meetings, then tell me all the new tricks that you learned.

Hope you can get out on the water. ~ Rick ziegeria@grm.net

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